Buyer Beware - DW618 not suitable for router table

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Forum topic by kdr152004 posted 07-01-2018 05:12 PM 5574 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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29 posts in 1394 days

07-01-2018 05:12 PM

FYI to all router table users,

My DW618 was used lightly for ~3 years, then after making a set of 10 x MDF raised panel doors in a Jessem table with Router R Lift 2, the internal magnetic ring shattered, essentially trashing the router. – yes, I took light passes at low speed, with a large bit

Apparently this is a well-known issue – I called Dewalt, because the router was only 1 month over warranty, they were not willing to do anything – not the sort of company I want to do business with going forward.

Now I’ve switched to a Bosch 1617EVS which has a better track record – fingers crossed.

12 replies so far

View JCamp's profile


1041 posts in 1162 days

#1 posted 07-01-2018 05:58 PM

You could put this over in the reviews section
I’ve never been a fan of Dewalt tools in general. My dad use to have a few of their battery drills and they were crap. Never could figure out why so many folks swore by them. Guess we all have different experiences that make us bias about brands

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View Rich's profile (online now)


5157 posts in 1201 days

#2 posted 07-01-2018 06:37 PM

DeWalt makes excellent tools, period. To infer from a failure like this that they don’t is foolish (but then so is posting private messages in public forums). I’ve used DeWalt products for over four decades with excellent results.

Not all motors are designed to be upside-down in a router table, where debris settles into the motor from the bottom. A huge red flag in your post is that it failed after making 10 MDF raised panel doors. Talk about abuse. MDF dust is about the nastiest thing you can do to a motor, and the fact that you were using a raised panel bit means that the opening was as large as it gets, allowing maximum dust to fall in there.

The good news is that you will love your Bosch motor. I make stick cuts on 1-3/4” thick hardwood for residential entry doors in one pass without a hiccup. The electronic speed control system is awesome.

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

View BroncoBrian's profile


875 posts in 2570 days

#3 posted 07-01-2018 06:45 PM

I think Dewalt makes some great tools, but not all of them are the best in class.

If I were you, I would return that router and buy a PC 7518, they are the best router table routers you can get.

Each brand has its strengths:

Dewalt: DW735, hard to beat in its class
Bosch: jigsaw, run a poll and you will get 90%+ recommended
Porter Cable: Big Routers, no-nonsense and powerful workhorse
Makita: Drill and Impact Drivers, excellent value, last forever

-- A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

View RobHannon's profile


332 posts in 1142 days

#4 posted 07-01-2018 07:02 PM

Most big tool companies have some gems and they all have the occasional failure. Customer service is where they can stand out. Personally I have had some bad customer service experiences with DeWalt in the past and there are some pools that I will now purchase in a different color. There are others, for me the DW780 miter saw, that are designed so well at their price point that I will give them a chance on. Not much different than auto manufacturers, I have had some bad luck with a vehicle or two with a bow-tie on it, but I’m not about to say I’d never grab an old Chevelle or Nova if given the chance.

You may be right that it is not the best router to use inverted. I have seen them a lot in CNC setups and I can only assume there is something about the design that lends to that setup. That Bosch is a good midsize router, but if you do a lot of MDF work you may want to either research a router that is designed to deal with abusive fine dust, or go cheap and plan on replacing the motor regularly. Either case I would seriously look into your tables dust collection, for both your tools and your health. MDF can be some evil stuff.

View Kazooman's profile


1413 posts in 2564 days

#5 posted 07-01-2018 07:45 PM

I can’t agree with the OP or JCamp regarding DeWalt power tools. I own many including two cordless drills, a large corded drill, a hammer drill, circular saw, a DW735 planer, and a DW610 router on my router table. All have provided flawless service. The router must be well over a decade old. Works just fine every time. YRMV

I would tend to agree with Rich. The router didn’t die, it was murdered with MDF dust.

View Rich's profile (online now)


5157 posts in 1201 days

#6 posted 07-01-2018 08:04 PM

If I were you, I would return that router and buy a PC 7518, they are the best router table routers you can get.

Porter Cable: Big Routers, no-nonsense and powerful workhorse

- BroncoBrian

After using my Bosch 1617EVS to build over 100 residential doors, interior and entry, I think it’s earned the title of workhorse. The funny thing is, I bought it instead of the PC 7518 because I’d blown my budget on a Bench Dog router table and JessEm Mast-R-Lift II. I figured it would last a while, burn out due to the heavy load I routinely put it under, and I’d toss it and buy the PC. Well, it’s showing no signs of letting up. I can even raise a panel with a 3-1/2” panel raising bit in one pass, but I do it in two passes because it’s easier to manage the wood.

Much like wattage on your stereo amp and megapixels on your digital camera, the quality is more important than the quantity.

Don’t get me wrong, that PC motor is awesome, and if you’ve got one I’m sure you’re happy with it. But to suggest that it’s the only choice, particularly when the Bosch might fit one’s budget better and he already owns it and has probably used it, is not the best advice.

Besides, I could just as easily tell you not to waste your time with a router table, period, and instead go buy a 3 HP shaper.

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

View Redoak49's profile


4359 posts in 2600 days

#7 posted 07-01-2018 09:13 PM

Reading your previous posts, I assume you were using a 3.5” diameter bit. IMHO that is too big of a bit for that router and you were asking too much from it.

View ArtMann's profile


1462 posts in 1428 days

#8 posted 07-02-2018 03:36 AM

I agree with Redoak. It is only a 12A router.

View AlaskaGuy's profile


5523 posts in 2921 days

#9 posted 07-02-2018 04:46 AM

Hard to tell, maybe you got a lemon or pushed it to hard. I have a lot of experience with Dewalt routers over time. The only problems I’ve had with mine is accidentally cutting the cord or distorting the base when I drop them on the floor. I have to agree with Redoak49 also. Your post title (DW618 not suitable for router table) is probably correct for something like panel raising.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View dca's profile


28 posts in 637 days

#10 posted 07-02-2018 06:31 AM

I’ve had this same router for about three or so years as well. I haven’t had any issues but I use it only in the plunge base. I actually ran across several of these same reports as well of the magnetic ring failing – not sure how prevalent it is or not but it is definitely an issue that this model has had if you read any of the reviews or forums on these routers. Some recommend removing the magnetic ring altogether which eliminates the potential for it breaking and causing collateral damage – but that eliminates the variable speed.

I was going to build a table for it – but I don’t like using the router (any router that is) – so I only pull it out when I have to.

I’ve used up to a 2 1/2” chamfer bit on it – but typically just use a 3/8 spiral upcut.

My main issue with it is both the depth adjuster and locking lever both slip unless you put an unholy amount of force on them. It’s butchered quite a few pieces by slipping. I should probably sandpaper the depth adjuster to rough it up – not sure what I’d do about the locking lever.

The best thing I did for it was screw on a 12” square piece of 3/8 lexan as the router base to improve it’s stability and attach edge guides to. I’ve flipped it over a few times and clamped it to my workbench as a makeshift router table as well (hold my beer).

Note it took me 2 1/2 years of using it before I realized there was integrated dust collection in the plunge base.

If I was to do it over again I’d probably buy the Bosch too as there are no reports of failing in a router table – but of course the grass is always greener.

View Desert_Woodworker's profile


1975 posts in 1826 days

#11 posted 07-02-2018 11:45 AM

My thoughts and smiles go out to people like us… The Router…
1. Machine failure or lack of dust extraction (it saddens me when people blame MDF dust… the dust that I would be concerned about- fine dust that Bill Pentz warns us about)
2. Before the router lift- The router was mounted to the underside of a table. Then, I came across (many years ago)

I mention this because you may not even need a “lift”- these guys don’t. I have used a similar setup, as seen on AGuy’s photos of an inverted 3hp DeWalt without the springs. Except my DeWalt was made in America.

Ps +1 3hp shaper

-- Desert_Woodworker

View JAAune's profile


1872 posts in 2928 days

#12 posted 07-02-2018 10:47 PM

My favorite is the Porter Cable 890 for proven durability or the Dewalt DW621 for features (micro-adjust and dust collection). Bosch 1617 routers used to be my favorite and I’ve got several. They feel good to use. But after purchasing a CNC, I’ve discovered that the Bosch routers couldn’t handle that and would break down quickly. In one year I went through 3 1617’s before reinstalling the 2-year-old 890 that outperformed all of them.

-- See my work at and

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