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Forum topic by AAANDRRREW posted 12-17-2016 06:03 PM 1180 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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AAANDRRREW

218 posts in 2223 days


12-17-2016 06:03 PM

Hello All,

I know very little about routers, but I’d like to pick one up. I have a few projects on the horizon that I need one, plus I’ve always wanted to mount it to an extension to my tablesaw and have a router table. So, that being said, I can kinda figure that maybe Bosch and dewalt are good ones and can gauge by price, but is there a good quality router out there that will have the power to do what I need and would last me for a couple years without outgrowing it immediately? Do I have a fix based one? plunge? combo? power requirements? I kinda of sort of lean a hair towards Rigid because of their warranty, but doesn’t mean I’ll go with it if its a known poor model.

For example, a nabbed a 10” Hitachi miter saw on sale and rebate at menards for like $75 (it was originally like 140 or something). The saw has been amazing for me, and sure, I’d like a 12” sliding one, but its overkill (both price and ability) for my needs. The saw had great reviews and I’d say they are accurate.


20 replies so far

View knotscott's profile

knotscott

8415 posts in 4426 days


#1 posted 12-17-2016 06:26 PM

There are lots of decent routers out there, and lots of difference preferences. DW, Bosch, PC, Hitachi, Milwaukee, Makita. For hand use, it’s important to get one that feels comfortable…that varies by individual. For table, use it’s good to have ample power to spin bigger bits, in which case variable speed is a must. Either way, get one that will accept 1/2” and 1/4” bit shanks, and buy the 1/2” shanks whenever feasible. Combo kits offer a lot of versatility. Many of us end up with one in the router table, and a separate one for hand use. Some folks have several.

My Hitachi M12V router is quiet, reasonably priced, and runs well. My Milwaukee 5615 is a little tank and has a great BodyGrip strap, and their plunge base is excellent.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View Rich's profile (online now)

Rich

6768 posts in 1640 days


#2 posted 12-17-2016 08:33 PM

It’s all personal preference, of course, but I really love the Porter Cable 7529 for its precise depth adjustment. I do a lot of hinge mortising for interior and exterior doors, and being able to bottom out the bit sitting on the jig and then dial down to the hinge thickness in 1/128 inch increments makes it easy to make them fit perfectly.

It has the standard stuff like variable speed and soft start. The plate that holds the bushings is designed to be centered using the collet, so no additional tools are required to get it in place.

Let us know what you choose.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

View mike02130's profile

mike02130

170 posts in 1723 days


#3 posted 12-18-2016 02:17 AM

Don’t even entertain rigid. There was a time you could by anything American and it would be good. Now it’s Chinese or Mexico. I’d choose used American for most tools, but router bearings get abused. I recommend an American brand made in Mexico with Chinese parts.

-- Google first, search forums second, ask questions later.

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LittleShaver

738 posts in 1670 days


#4 posted 12-19-2016 08:25 PM

I have a Porter Cable fixed and plunge base set. I bought it to replace a fixed base porter cable router that I picked up used about 35 years ago. It was finally time to step up to 1/2” collet.
To my surprise, the new motor fit all the old attachments and the base from the old router. 100% backwards compatibility.
I’m not sure any of the other manufacturers can make that claim.

-- Sawdust Maker

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OSB

147 posts in 1576 days


#5 posted 12-20-2016 07:09 AM

I was looking for a router table setup about three years ago and I wound up with a used “folding” router table made by Freud or some other respected brand and a Triton router.

The table is pretty nice with a good fence but due to the “folding” legs, it is not super stable. The Triton router is a beast. It has a plunge base but I think the motor is a 3.25 hp so it is really big and powerful, too much for most purposes other than in a table. In table mode it has a cool plunge mechanism that can be adjusted from the top of the table so you don’t have to spend $$ on a router lift.

All together I have about $400 in it and it did the job I needed it for which was a big one, it easily paid for itself.

About the “folding” table, it can’t actually fold unless the router is removed.

Since the first job paid for it, to me it is like a free router and it’s a damn good one. I’m going to build a router wing for my new (used) table saw so the stability issue is going away.

If you want a router to put in a table eventually, I think you should look at the Triton as about the cheapest “buy once, cry once” solution.

If that is too expensive, you might try Craigslist (where I found my router table), looking for a lightly used mid level router that will get you by for a while before you upgrade.

View BigYin's profile

BigYin

421 posts in 3467 days


#6 posted 12-20-2016 07:46 AM

Makita worksite not hobby model – 1/2 inch with all the extras available to fit that model. it should have a more powerful motor than a 1/4 model. (you can use reducer collet to use 1/4 bits but cant use large bits in small router)
a router is a bit of a one trick pony till you buy or make a router table then it can become one of the main features of the workshop

If you have an ALDI supermarket near you they tend to be OK. low price, well made, guarenteed, not wonderful but OK but only in stock for about 1 week per year

do not buy black & decker – ever

-- ... Never Apologise For Being Right ...

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ChefHDAN

1803 posts in 3900 days


#7 posted 12-20-2016 01:24 PM

I’d recommend the Dewalt kit with 3 bases , This single set up will really do you for quite a bit until you reach the point where you need/want a 2nd router. The fixed base can go into your table and with the other 2 bases you can cover everything else with the plunge and D handle bases. THat said if it’s a money is no object there are some good deals for motors and lifts, but you’ve got to be ready to drop a couple/few $100 just for the lift.

-- I've decided 1 mistake is really 2 opportunities to learn.. learn how to fix it... and learn how to not repeat it

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Woodmaster1

1699 posts in 3637 days


#8 posted 12-20-2016 02:54 PM

I have 4 pc690, triton 31/2 hp, Bosch and a craftsman professional router. The pc690 is my go to router. I have the triton and a pc 690 mounted in tables. The reason for the number of routers 4 of them cost $5.00 each and I could not pass up the deal. The pc 690 is a great router.

View abie's profile

abie

922 posts in 4821 days


#9 posted 12-20-2016 03:56 PM

Trend T-4 from The UK
Great price and great performance
Plunge and all the bells and whistles.

-- Bruce. a mind is like a book it is only useful when open.

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OSB

147 posts in 1576 days


#10 posted 12-20-2016 07:00 PM



I have 4 pc690, triton 31/2 hp, Bosch and a craftsman professional router. The pc690 is my go to router. I have the triton and a pc 690 mounted in tables. The reason for the number of routers 4 of them cost $5.00 each and I could not pass up the deal. The pc 690 is a great router.

- Woodmaster1

I’m sure the pc 690 is great but which would you buy if you were paying retail?

I didn’t have a chance to try both so I went with the cheaper option and so far I have been pleased with the quality of the Triton.

Is the pc 690 worth the price? I think I paid about $240 for my Triton.

View Loren's profile

Loren

11136 posts in 4698 days


#11 posted 12-20-2016 07:03 PM

Unless you want a special feature like dust
collection or multi-bases, I think buying
a 2hp variable speed router, whatever is
on sale is fine. If you want to make mortises
get a plunge router. If you want easy
handling get a fixed base router.

View Ripper70's profile

Ripper70

1379 posts in 1959 days


#12 posted 12-20-2016 07:09 PM

Check out the Hitachi KM12VC. It has a 2 1/4 HP variable speed motor and is priced well for a kit that includes a fixed and plunge base. You can find some vids on YouTube that show all the features in action.

-- "You know, I'm such a great driver, it's incomprehensible that they took my license away." --Vince Ricardo

View Woodmaster1's profile

Woodmaster1

1699 posts in 3637 days


#13 posted 12-20-2016 07:24 PM

I love my triton, the ease of height adjustment on my table is awesome. I use the 690 for the freehand stuff. I budget was a problem the 690 is $125.00 and the triton is $240.00. The triton router is a great router so if you have the cash get the triton. I only use it in my table so I can’t say how easy it works freehand.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

8502 posts in 3249 days


#14 posted 12-20-2016 07:31 PM

You gotta love those HP ratings… way cool how a [email protected] motor can be rated at 3.5hp :)
(or that 11amp Triton can be rated at 2.25hp!)

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - In Dog I trust... everything else is questionable

View Rich's profile (online now)

Rich

6768 posts in 1640 days


#15 posted 12-20-2016 08:03 PM


You gotta love those HP ratings… way cool how a [email protected] motor can be rated at 3.5hp :)
(or that 11amp Triton can be rated at 2.25hp!)

Cheers,
Brad

- MrUnix

I think they use inrush current measurements to bump up those numbers.

-- Half of what we read or hear about finishing is right. We just don’t know which half! — Bob Flexner

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