No announcement yet.

Can you recommend a router?

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Can you recommend a router?

    Instead of always borrowing, I want to buy my own router.

    1. Can you recommend brand?

    2. Fixed base or fixed/plunge kit?

    3. What about a bit set?

    The router will see moderate use in my home shop; nothing fancy needed here.


    [ 05-03-2005, 12:53 PM: Message edited by: dp ]

  • #2
    1. You can't go wrong with Porter-Cable.

    2. For someone just starting out, the fixed/plunge kits offer the most versatility. These can easily do double duty for hand held or table operations.

    3. There are as many opinions on bit sets as there are styles of bits. Personally, I feel most sets are a waste of money. I once bought a set of 33 bits that turned out to be total junk but thats another story. Before I tossed the whole set in the trash can I had uses for maybe half a dozen of the 33 bits. The others just sat there collecting dust. I now prefer to buy my bits as I need them and to buy better quality bits as they tend to last longer and cost less in the long run. Most of my bits are Whiteside.
    I decided to change calling the bathroom the "John" and renamed it the "Jim". I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.


    • #3
      For a good 1st router set try the Bosch 16EVSPK. It It comes with a plung and fixed base, electronic controll, hard case, wrenches, extra collet, and some (I think 3) collar guides.

      Sometimes you can find them with an edge guide as well.


      • #4

        I agree with the kit philosophy, I’ve had this kit for a couple years and this is a terrific deal on a terrific router if this router has a negative it would be that the switch location on top of the router is not favored by some. If your more inclined to go the Bosch route as suggested by Desmo you may want to check out this model: it is essentially the same router with a different color scheme and different wood for handles but can be picked up for around $160 if you hit the right sale, at that price it is hard to beat.



        • #5
          My vote is for the Porter cable 895 set. Look at Amazon for the best prices. Start with a small set of bits, 8-10 piece set. This will give you the most common bits, then you can add individual bits as you find a need for them. I really like the Woodcraft anti kickback bits. About every other month they put a bunch of them on sale for $5 each and you can't beat them at that price.

          [ 05-03-2005, 07:52 PM: Message edited by: papadan ]
          info for all: --- "I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me."


          • #6
            I would suggest going to and checking out what he has to say. He's a frequent contributor to many forums and really knows his stuff. He also sells clear bases, etc.



            • #7
              Makita RD or RF 1101 kit. great prouct for the money. combo has plunge and fixed base. Cant beat it for the money. I would have bought the milwaukee if it came in a similar kit, it didn't. I have heard great things about the porter cable as well.

              My experience is with the makita and it is a fabulous buy for the money


              • #8
                Here's my opinion for what it is worth. The kits aren't smart. When plunge routers were new they had a lot of slop in them and fixed base were more precise. But now plunge routers are tight and there is really no need for a fixed base. People will say mount the fixed base in the router table. Personally I want a plunge in the table also, it makes it so easy to adjust.

                Okay what is the answer. Wait for a great deal on hitachi M12V they are 15 amp router that is perfect for table mounting. I found mine for $100 on close out at Lowes but I have seen them for $150 nearly every where. Then go pick up a dewalt plunge or a Porter Cable plunge. I got a PC8529 for $100 from HD. I think the Dewalt sells close to $150 regularily as does the PC.

                If you buy a kit you get two bases one you will probably never use for $250. If you buy two routers a large one for table mounting and hogging out heavy cuts and a smaller 2-2 1/2 hp plunge for hand work. Mine cost me $200 for the both.

                Everyone recommends kits but 2-2 1/2 in fixed base is pretty small for most table work and I doubt you will be happy for very long.

                I bought the Dewalt 618 kit because everyone said it was the thing to do. After a couple of weeks I realized I paid for a nice box, and base I would probably never use. It had a crack in the casting so I took it back.

                Also don't be afraid of the Hitachi it is big but I often use it free hand. With soft start and variable speed it is very comfortable for me.
                Rev Ed


                • #9
                  As for routers i havent really had one thats really stood out to me, so no help there. But as far as bits , i agree with B Dave , Whiteside bits are the best ive ever used. I had always used freud bits untill i used whiteside ,then i gave all my freud bits to a friend and replaced them with whiteside.Stay sharp longer, less chipout,just love em.
                  \"practice is like farting; only you can do it yourself\' and no one can do it for you\"-sawaki kodo (zen master)


                  • #10
                    Thanks for your suggestions ...

                    Porter Cable, Bosch, Makita, Hitachi. I'm starting to beat this decision to death. Am I right to think that that in the combo kit price range this is mostly a matter of color preference?


                    • #11
                      I agree with DESMO888 about the Bosch 16EVSPK. I chased down a number of product tests and comparisons on the internet for combo routers (fixed AND plunge bases), and it and the Porter Cable were tied for first place in all of them. The deciding factors for me were a)the Bosch is 2.25 HP, vrs 1.5 (I believe) for the PC, and b)Amazon has the Bosch for sale for $219.00, BUT, they take off $25.00 instantly for any tool over $199.00, shipping is free, and, best of all, they included over $100.00 worth of attachments that I would have had to purchase anyway. One of the freebies was the absolute best edge-guide I've ever used. I got mine about two weeks ago (it took six days by UPS from the plant to me in Oregon, under the free shipping deal). It comes in a heavy-duty case, which also holds most of the attachments. Oh, and it has collets for both 1/4 and 1/2 inch bits, and most of mine are 1/4s, but I want some new 1/2 inchers. As far as bits go, I suggest buying them separately as you need them, and don't get a kit. The 'Woodcraft' stores carry one of the highest rated — 'Whiteside' — at a very reasonable price. I would suggest buying ONLY carbide bits, and be sure to check the C rating on the carbide, which should be at least a 3, and preferably a 4 (the highest rating). Good luck!
                      Nolo illigitamati carborundum


                      • #12
                        I too own the Bosch 16EVSPK and it's excellent, as my skills improve the tools will become more usefull.
                        I also own the Hitachi M12VC 2-1/4 HP Variable Speed Router.
                        it's the space alien looking thing, not only is the appearance cool
                        but this may be the underdog of the less expensive routers, ($129.00) it's comfy, lowest sound level I have heard a router motor make and the materials and quality is very good.
                        if you get a chance, go to the stores that have these routers or other routers mentioned in this thread on display and just plain hold them in your hands, see if they feel comfortable to you.


                        • #13
                          You want the Makita RF1101 Kit

                          *Variable speed
                          *Powerful 11 amp
                          *soft start feature with a electronic speed control

                          *rugged aluminum motor housing with small 3 1/4" diameter

                          *cam-lock for fast and easy depth adjustment and removal of motor

                          kit includes: fixed and plunge base, 1/4" collet, 1/2" collet, dust nozzel assembly, straight guide, sub base, wrenches, hex wrench,big tool case

                          I love mine...I had the porter cable, sold it..then bought the bosch....but used a friend of mine's makita..........So I bought one!


                          • #14
                            I'll second what Packers just said.
                            Had a Makita RF1101 Kit for 10 months now, and not had a single problem or bad thing with it, its one of the Quitest routers on the market and the price is very competative.
                            The case is very well designed, and has clips molded to the inside to take your template Guides and router bits and other things for your router, so that they are always at hand when you need them.

                            All The Best...Grayskin...

                            [ 05-19-2005, 09:21 PM: Message edited by: Grayskin ]