What is a router template?
If you want to get the most from your router, you need to master template routing. With template routing you can make one or 100 parts that are exactly alike. Second, template routing simplifies the job of making curved or complex shapes. A midsize fixed- or plunge-base router is fine for most template routing.
What is the best template material?
I use tempered MDF, also called Masonite) and 1/4″ thick most of the time. For templates that I will want to keep in good condition for a long time I prefer HDPE plastic (cutting board material).
How thick should a router template be?
Templates should be made of sturdy inexpensive material such as MDF. Some woodworkers prefer to use quality plywood with a reliable edge surface. The template material should be at least 1/4 inch thick to provide enough bearing surface, but no thicker than 3/8 inch.