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Help: Assembling Router Switch

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Forum topic by livewire516 posted 12-17-2018 01:22 AM 434 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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livewire516

38 posts in 280 days


12-17-2018 01:22 AM

Topic tags/keywords: craftsman router

I have an older Craftsman that just cut out on me earlier today. The switch no longer initiates the motor, nor turns on the worklight.

I read elsewhere on this forum that a common culprit is dust in the switch, and to try cleaning it out.

After removing the switch and a cursory cleaning, I tried starting it again but nothing happened. I then disassembled the switch mechanism itself and failed to appreciate there was a second spring inside it, so it…sprung apart everywhere.

Any help would be appreciated! I’m eager to get back onto the project itself (I’m making a Roorkee chair/Safaristol).



6 replies so far

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KuhShise

11 posts in 351 days


#1 posted 12-17-2018 01:46 AM

Don’t know where you are located, but this sort of double pole snap switch is pretty common. Also pretty common is the burned contact condition of the right hand contact in the picture. Typical replacement is less than $ 10.00. Reason for the burned contact is the low starting impedance when the motor isn’t turning, or a failed starter winding switch inside the motor. Starting currents are typically 3 to 5 times the run current. This means that a 2 HP motor might have an initial draw of up to 60 amps for 1 or 2 cycles. ( 0.02 seconds ) and then rapidly falls to the run current of about 12 amps. A switch replacement is probably much easier than trying to get everything put back into the correct place in the switch. This will also quickly reveal if there is a problem with the start winding or starting switch inside the motor. If, After replacing the switch the motor fails to wind up as it did in the past, I would suspect the motor start switch or brushes. Some of these are easily replaceable by removing the end bell from the motor and replacing the switch. Some motors are sealed and require a more difficult repair effort. Since this is a Craftsman, simply enter the model number into the E-replacement web site for the replacement switch. I would also take a close look at the motor brushes and make sure they are not worn or sticking in the brush holders. Be careful… Do not loose the brush holder caps, and they are NOT readily available anywhere. I accidentally dropped one into the shavings pile. Never found it. Ended up having one made by a 3-D plastic printer locally.

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livewire516

38 posts in 280 days


#2 posted 12-17-2018 02:10 AM

Thanks so much for the info.

I live in Boston. What kind of supplier would you recommend I try calling? I inherited the tool – I know longer have the box so it I’m not sure how difficult it will be to identify the router’s model no. or how old it is to see if Craftsman still caries parts for it.

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KuhShise

11 posts in 351 days


#3 posted 12-17-2018 09:15 AM

Look the router over for the Model number and serial number. Then go to https://www.ereplacementparts.com/craftsman-parts-c-158286.html
or to the Sears Parts Direct web site. The original manual and assembly drawings should be available for nearly all Craftsman tools. Put “Boston electrical Distributor” into your search engine to find a close-by location. Take the old switch with you when you go. You might get lucky and have it be a standard size that is easily replaced with one the distributor has in stock.

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Fresch

434 posts in 2340 days


#4 posted 12-17-2018 08:52 PM

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livewire516

38 posts in 280 days


#5 posted 12-22-2018 09:03 PM

Following KuhShise’s advise, I bought the router switch. It arrived in the mail today.

After wiring it up, the router turn on as soon as I plugged it in – which is weird because the trigger switch was not depressed. I rewired each receptacle one by one, so I’m doubtful that I wired a short (but it’s possible). I unplugged it and plugged it back in after checking for an obvious short but it won’t turn on again, whether or not I depress the switch.

Does anyone have any ideas what’s happening? I’m wondering if I should strip and re-solder the wires, thinking strands may have broken from being pulled and pressed to/from the switch terminals. Perhaps the power switch has gone?

Putting a value on my time, if there isn’t a obvious next step, I’m ready to pronounce it dead or bypass the switch entirely and make it a dedicated table router (provided the motor is fine).

I appreciate any input.

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KuhShise

11 posts in 351 days


#6 posted 01-06-2019 05:49 AM

Sorry livewire516, I didn’t see your post until 1-6-19. Carefully examine the wiring on the replaced switch. Be sure that the two wires are not touching, bypassing the switch. Maybe putting a few wraps of plastic electrical tape around the connections will prevent the short. Since the router came on when you plugged it in, the brushes would be the next logical suspect. There are two black plastic caps with screw driver slots located in the body of the router toward the top and on opposite sides of the router. Unplug the router and carefully remove the plastic caps, covering the brushes. You may need to take a small screwdriver or toothpick to gently pry the top of the brush contact out of the brush holder. These “brushes” are small carbon or graphite (black) squares about 3/4 inch long with a spring and cap contact attached. If you look inside the coiled spring, you will see a braided copper wire (pigtail) attached to the brush body and the other end soldered to the cap. Compare the length of both brushes (carbon part) and replace if they look short or the spring doesn’t push the contact tight to the plastic cap. Another way the brushes can fail is to stick in the brush holder. Using the end of the spring contact slide the brush in and out of the holder to make sure it is not sticking. Since you found the correct switch, you can go back to the same site and purchase a new set (2) of brushes. Post to let me know how you do with the switch.

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