Woodpecker PRL5625. Step 1: install

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Forum topic by NBeener posted 11-16-2010 11:09 PM 3953 views 1 time favorited 40 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4816 posts in 3714 days

11-16-2010 11:09 PM

Topic tags/keywords: router lift prl router table

A couple months ago, I noticed that the Woodpecker Precision Router Lift, Version 1, was on sale—$130 off—$199, total.

For many months, I’d been eyeballing it, but … at $330 … it was WAY too rich for my blood.

For two hundred bucks, though, I jumped.

It was about a 13wk wait to get it, but it arrived yesterday. Today, I put it into my Kreg PRS2000 table, with the hulking Milwaukee 5625-20 router.

I only have initial impressions, so far, and they are … I love this thing.

The install was about a three minute process:

pull the old insert,
slide the Milwaukee’s motor out of ITS base,
slip it into the PRL,
tighten a couple of nuts,
drop the assembly into the Kreg table,
ensure it sits level, and
... done.

After that … the only things I did were to use the crank to run it up and down a few times, execute a (my FIRST) above-the-table bit change, and just get a feel for the adjustment mechanism.

I chose the 32tpi (finer adjustment, but slower) over the 16tpi (coarser adjustment, but faster). I’m not in a hurry, and wanted the tiny adjustments to be a little easier.

The crank mechanism moves the router smoothly, and with only a reassuring hint of resistance. The brake is a nice thought … in that … you don’t have to think about it, at all. It releases the moment you insert the crank handle to full-stop.

Once I fired up the Milwaukee, I immediately noticed what seemed to be an elimination of vibration that I’d never really noticed, before. In other words … my router always seemed smooth, but … with the heft and the stability that the PRL offers to the router … it just seems quieter, and more stable than before.

Having just installed my Wixey height gauge on my Ridgid R4330 Planer, I’ll probably set about to make the remaining UHMW setup blocks (3/8” and 1/2” thickness) for my glue-line router bit. That should be a pretty good test for both the height gauge AND the fine adjustment capabilities of the PRL.

My immediate impression: $200 really well spent. Very well built. Very thoughtfully designed. Initially, a pleasure to use.

-- -- Neil

40 replies so far

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 3397 days

#1 posted 11-16-2010 11:27 PM

Great Review Neil.
There £250 this side of the pond.
But well worth the spend.


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View PurpLev's profile


8552 posts in 4189 days

#2 posted 11-16-2010 11:31 PM

13 week wait? I know there is a shortage of aluminum, but thats a long time…

it does seem like a super lift mechanism. makes small adjustments a bit more convenient to do.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View JJohnston's profile


1622 posts in 3832 days

#3 posted 11-16-2010 11:38 PM

That’s really tempting, and I haven’t even started building a router table.

It’s only been a day, but do you feel inconvenienced not having the quick lift feature?

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3714 days

#4 posted 11-16-2010 11:48 PM

alba: At that price, I would still only be looking at online pictures ;-)

PurpLev: I didn’t get the impression that it was a materials supply delay, but I can’t be sure. Believe me: the 13 weeks was like being stuck at a traffic light for 2hrs in a row ;-)

JJohnston: So far, it is only my thoughts on that, and it’s a valid question.

Personally, I think I’ll think about that situation, from time to time, but don’t really picture me actually regretting it.

A larger issue may be whether the raising/lowering taking 2X as long (because of the 32 pitch vs 16) will ever bother me.

Either way … to the extent that something like that becomes a nuisance … I try to remind myself that it’s a pretty good problem to have ;-)

Since I have the oft-referenced lousy vision—particularly at near—I tend to rely on technology to make the sorts of fine adjustments, so common in woodworking, as easy as possible. Eyeballing, while trying to raise or lower a few thousandths can be a tedious process, for most, but—for me—can mean Game Over … before I get started !

So … gizmos like this, coupled with a digital height gauge, and or use of my gauge blocks, buy me more shop time.

And that’s A Good Thing !

-- -- Neil

View Cato's profile


701 posts in 3853 days

#5 posted 11-16-2010 11:50 PM

Nice set up there Neil, you are on a roll.

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3736 days

#6 posted 11-16-2010 11:54 PM

Thanks for the review Neil. 13 week wait is a little excessive though that thing is a beauty so it sounds like it was worth it.

PS. You may want to put the review in the Review section. They are sorted there by tool and brand and that is the first and only place I look and I’m sure others as well when thinking of buying new equipment. Good review though.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3714 days

#7 posted 11-17-2010 12:09 AM

Good thought, Eric.

I figured I’d put a few miles on it, though, and try to see what more could be learned, then I would link to this page IN a “proper” review.

And … I’d like to tell you that I exhibited the patience of a Buddhist monk, in waiting for this thing, but … I’d just be lying :-D

Cato: yeah. I’m quickly running out of my much-needed excuses for either messing things up, or not getting things done ;-)

-- -- Neil

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4213 days

#8 posted 11-17-2010 02:47 AM

Great review, Neil.

View jack1's profile


2131 posts in 4568 days

#9 posted 11-17-2010 03:25 AM

If that’s the same 3 1/2 hp Milwaukee I have, you really do have a great set up. How do you like the Kreg table? I’ve had the urge to upgrade…

-- jack -- ...measure once, curse twice!

View PhineasWhipsnake's profile


77 posts in 3588 days

#10 posted 11-17-2010 05:02 AM

I’ve had one of those for several years now (with the big PC router), and don’t know how I’d live without it. I use a cordless drill with an Allen in it to raise & lower the lift, then fine tune the height manually. Enjoy!

-- Gene T

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3647 days

#11 posted 11-17-2010 06:58 AM

Neil, you will find the wait was worth it. The PRL and the PRL-V2 are absolutely the best in my opinion. I LOVE my V2. I agree with you on the PRL-32 for your circumstances. You have a fantastic set up there. Enjoy my friend. Rand

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3714 days

#12 posted 11-17-2010 07:18 AM

PhineasWhipsnake: I just saw a tip, in one of the latest WW mags, about using the cordless drill to speed-adjust the drill press table. Yours is a great idea, too! I can even pick up a $10 cordless at the thrift store, and just dedicate it for that !

Spent some time, this afternoon, knocking out 1” UHMW setup blocks for my glue joint router bit. It is amazing how easy it is—particularly with the 32 pitch threading—to dial in just a few thousandths at a time. It made these setup blocks an absolute snap to do.

The height adjustment was the only weak point, IMHO, in the stock 5625. I think the threading would just get clogged up with sawdust, periodically, but … half the time … I had to cradle the motor with one hand, and turn the dial with the other, to get smooth, linear adjustments.

But even then, fine adjustments were NOT its strong suit.

Jack: I’ve really been satisfied with the Kreg PRS2000, and at just over $200, it’s a pretty good value, too. But it’s one of those few things in my shop that—if I had it to do over again—I’d definitely have built my own cabinet. That said … it serves its purpose, and—particularly with this lift in place … I’m likely to keep on using it for the foreseeable future. I think the pros and cons were summed up by the handful of reviewers that wrote it up, on Amazon

Rand: Thanks ! I see you are a man who knows of what he speaks ! Along with the fact that the PRL just works, I think it’s in that class of tools that’s so well engineered and built … that it’s just a joy to use. Kind of like anything Starrett makes: when you have it in your hand … you know you’ve got a solid tool that’s gonna’ do exactly what it’s supposed to … for years and years.

-- -- Neil

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3647 days

#13 posted 11-17-2010 07:58 AM

Neil, over the years, I have found that there are 2 good things about buying the best.
1. You are never disappointed,
2. You only spend your money once, therefore it is less expensive.

I’m glad that you are so happy with yours. Rand

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18709 posts in 4216 days

#14 posted 11-17-2010 09:24 AM

You should be able to dial in +/- “0” with that :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View mafe's profile


12144 posts in 3630 days

#15 posted 11-17-2010 03:46 PM

Wauuu, it makes my homebuild lift look like a toy!
Really cool,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

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