Router suggestions

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Forum topic by cellophane posted 12-09-2011 05:25 PM 3189 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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42 posts in 3756 days

12-09-2011 05:25 PM

Topic tags/keywords: router question

With the holidays just around the corner my parents are asking me what I want and it seems like a good way to get a router. I tried to google Router Reviews and ended up with tech sites (duh) or wood magazines that want me to pay for a review.

I’m looking for recomendations on a good all-around router, preferably with multiple bases so I can maximize the bang for the buck as I don’t have a router at all currently.

I know you get what you pay for so I’m trying to avoid HF type stuff but I certainly don’t need a Festool. I’m not sure what a good price range is

22 replies so far

View John's profile


190 posts in 4831 days

#1 posted 12-09-2011 05:33 PM

i just bought a dewalt 618 kit with fixed and plunge bases “reconditioned” for $121 from tool-plus and i think the price has dropped since with the dewalt $25 off. it looks and works like new and is a great router at any price

-- John, Long Island, NY

View TJU's profile


72 posts in 3904 days

#2 posted 12-09-2011 05:59 PM

I have the Bosch 1617EVSPK to use free hand and a PC in my table. I realy like the Bosch but I hear the Porter-Cable 895PK is good also, it has more accesories that you can buy but it is priced much higher. The DEWALT DW618PK has a nice built in dust collection but I like the Bosch’s fine adjustment controles better. If I could do it over I would buy the Bosh 1617 again. Go with 2.25 HP because you can put it in a table in the future. If you are a memeber of FWW you can look here
If you are not a member I would recomend it. There is a lot of information that I found (and still find) helpfull when I first started getting into woodworking.


-- Although the voices aren't real they have some pretty good ideas.

View cellophane's profile


42 posts in 3756 days

#3 posted 12-09-2011 10:04 PM

Thanks. I saw a review for the PC 895 & the Bosch you mentioned and they both had really favorable reviews – good to know they use well also.

View Tedstor's profile


1691 posts in 3881 days

#4 posted 12-09-2011 10:13 PM

I have a craftsman multi-base router. Does everything I ask of it. Sears often sell these for $100 or less. Ask your folks for this router and a set of bits.
The Ridgid multibase kit would be another solid choice at a reasonable price.

View Loren's profile


11277 posts in 4896 days

#5 posted 12-09-2011 10:54 PM

I’d say go with the Milwaukee set. The fixed base Milwaukee routers
are really nice to use topside and have a through-the-base height
adjustment for table use.

View Chipy's profile


374 posts in 3841 days

#6 posted 12-09-2011 11:57 PM

I just bought the Ridgid router and got the plunge base free.It is 2 hp and has some nice features like….The fixed base has hole through the base plate and comes with a tee handle for above the table adjustment and bit change.You can put the motor in the plunge base and leave the fixed base mounted in your router table.It came with a bag as well if you want to take it on the road.One thing I do not care for is the placement of the index lock to change the bit,if you have the plastic dust collector mounted if is difficult to push in the tab to lock the spindle.For $179 I will live with the verry few short comings.I think Ridgid is building some decent tools thees days.

View gawthrrw's profile


207 posts in 3695 days

#7 posted 12-10-2011 12:43 AM

I to have the Bosch 1617EVSPK with the plunge and fixed base router. Its my go too router for just about every project. I love it.

-- Rob, Dallas TX

View knotscott's profile


8431 posts in 4623 days

#8 posted 12-10-2011 12:46 AM

The higher quality kits like the Milwaukee 5616, Bosch 1617, or PC892, aren’t necessarily the best bang for the buck, but they’re great routers….watch for sales. You don’t necessarily need routers of this caliber to do a good job. The Hitachi KM12VC kit goes on sale pretty frequently, and can be a great deal at the right price….I actually prefer this is router to my Bosch 1617 because its lighter and quieter. The new Craftsman routers get pretty good reviews and are often very attractively priced.

Whichever you get, be sure it feels good in your hands. If you plan to use it in a router table, be sure to get one with variable speed. Be sure it accepts 1/2” shank bits…buy and use the 1/2” shank bits whenever possible.

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

View NiteWalker's profile


2743 posts in 3825 days

#9 posted 12-10-2011 12:49 AM

I used to have the bosch 1617evspk kit and it was the smoothest router I’ve used yet.
I had 2 dewalt 618 kits, and while the plunge base is the best out there, the motors are extremely unreliable. Both speed control rings went out on me and one quit working all together.

The porter cable 890 kit uses a plunge base nearly identical to the 618, but is expensive.
The milwaukee kits get good reviews too. If budget is no issue, the porter cable 890 kit would be my choice.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View cellophane's profile


42 posts in 3756 days

#10 posted 12-11-2011 05:38 PM

Thanks all. =)

View RogerM's profile


809 posts in 3647 days

#11 posted 12-11-2011 05:57 PM

I have a shop full of Porter Cable Routers and have had excellent service from all of them. For what you are looking for it would be hard to beat either a Porter-Cable 693LRPK 1 3/4 Peak HP Router Kit, or for a little more horsepower a Porter-Cable 893PK 2 1/4 Peak HP Multi-Base Router Kit. These should fit your needs well.

-- Roger M, Aiken, SC

View Dan Lyke's profile

Dan Lyke

1530 posts in 5373 days

#12 posted 12-11-2011 06:11 PM

I came in here to recommend the mid-sized Porter-Cable, the 891 or whatever the modern incarnation in that place in the product line is.

I have the big honkin’ Porter-Cable 7518 with the Jessem lift in my router table, and a Festool OF1010 for handheld work, but before my wife pushed me into spending the bucks for the big router+lift for the table I was headed towards the PC 891. It seems versatile, has the option of easily integrating into a table, is small enough that you can do hand-held work with it, but big enough that you won’t be constantly wishing you could take more wood off in a single pass.

However, as I mentioned, I don’t actually have one, so give good weight to the suggestions above… (And if you do happen to go the Festool route, I wish I’d sprung for the 1400 rather than the 1010. The 1010 is great, but occasionally I’d like the ratcheting shaft and the 1/2” collet).

-- Dan Lyke, Petaluma California,

View JJohnston's profile


1622 posts in 4539 days

#13 posted 12-11-2011 06:25 PM

Go poke around There’a a lot of info there.

-- "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 mcase's profile


446 posts in 4377 days

#14 posted 12-12-2011 03:56 AM

+1 on the Bosch. There is no play in plunge nice and precise

View slopjock78's profile


70 posts in 3631 days

#15 posted 12-13-2011 06:31 PM

Does anyone know anything about the Mastercraft router at Menards? I just saw an add for menards that this router combo is on sale for $99. 2HP, variable speed, fixed and plunge base. Just another possible option.

For myself, i have the Ridgid combo set and am very happy with it up to this point

showing 1 through 15 of 22 replies

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