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Recommend me a ROUTER?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by rojo412, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. rojo412

    rojo412 You're entering a world of bass... Supporting Member

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    Proprietor, ACF Custom
    I'm seriously contemplating the purchase of a router so I can start doing pickup/preamp/battery cavity routing. I'd also probably want it for doing some pick guard/control plate work.

    What would be best for handling something like that?
    I'd prefer something smaller and easy to use.

    I have a Dremel and feel that's too small for what I'm trying to do (on the regular, at least). I see things like the Bosch 1 hp, but I'd like to hear what the pros recommend.

    Thanks!
  2. richntiff

    richntiff

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    Bosch is good - Porter Cable is pretty much the Gold Standard in routers, has been for some time. I would suggest a plunge style router, or a kit that allows you to use either a fixed or a plunge base.
  3. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging! Supporting Member

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    Porter Cable 890-series - comes with motor, fixed base, and plunge base.

    I also have a Bosch 1617EVSPK, which is a great router, but it's much easier to find accessories for Porter Cable routers than any other brand.
  4. T-Bird

    T-Bird

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    Hi.

    Festool OF 900E has never let me down.

    Regards
    Sam
  5. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

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    Routers basically come in two flavors - those with 1/4" shanks, and those with 1/2".

    1/4" routers will typically be smaller, lighter and cheaper, and the bits are definitely cheaper. 1/2" routers will come with a collet so they, too, can use 1/4" bits - but there's no using 1/2" bits in a 1/4" router.

    I wanted to be able to use a 3/4" roundover (radius) bit so I can do a full bullnose on "2-by" (1.5") stock - and you'll need a half-inch router to do that.

    I bought the 1/2" Bosch package with a plunge and fixed base, and so far only use the fixed base in a router table. But I'm set for anything now...
  6. JLS

    JLS Supporting Member

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    This will be hard to beat--I've been using a Colt for several years.

    Using a Dremel for real routing jobs is a recipe for disaster.
  7. rojo412

    rojo412 You're entering a world of bass... Supporting Member

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    I just tested the Dremel on some crap wood, just to see if I could make a "cavity"...
    Gave up before I set the thing on fire.
  8. adivin

    adivin Supporting Member

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    Linksys. ;)
  9. 202dy

    202dy Supporting Member

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    Agreed on the Dremel. It is light duty for light duties only.

    Which brings us to the Colt. At one horsepower, seems to be more of a "laminate trimmer" than a heavy duty router. How does it do on hogging out a lot of material, like pickup or control routs?
  10. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging! Supporting Member

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    It's limited to bits with 1/4" shanks, and its smaller base has distinct advantages and disadvantages that cannot be ignored.

    My advice: for your first router, by a machine that can do it all. You can always add a specialty router with practical limitations, like the Porter Cable 7518 or Bosch Colt, later.
  11. R Baer

    R Baer Gold Supporting Member

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    I've been doing woodworking on film sets for 20 years and we abuse routers like no industry I've ever seen. For most of the heavy duty production work, we use Porter Cable routers. When it comes to precision work, or work on my own woodworking and cabinet projects, I use Bosch. My favorite is the 161EVSPK combo kit, which gives you a fixed base and plunge base in one kit. This would do pretty much cover all your needs in one nice case.

    http://www.boschtools.com/Products/Tools/Pages/BoschProductDetail.aspx?pid=1617EVSPK
  12. Turnaround

    Turnaround

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    +1 on the Colt - a staple of mine.
  13. JLS

    JLS Supporting Member

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    The Colt is charting new territory, IMO. Ass far as, "hogging", goes, I always Forstner out cavities.

    The small base ddin't slow me down at all--I make new bases for routers as soon as I get them. Having a TAP Plastics store nearby, with its scrapbin, helps in this immensely!
  14. lhoward

    lhoward Gold Supporting Member

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    There are also a number of videos on Youtube on various routers. You can do your own search, but two reviews on the Colt router and a Dewalt (used a Colt in a CNC prior to swapping to a Dewalt) gives some good points and comparison.

    Bosch Colt 1 HP Palm router: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXi50WPStT0
    Dewalt DW611 2.25 HP router:

    Enjoy.

    Lloyd Howard
  15. T_Bone_TL

    T_Bone_TL

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    Thread probably should move to luthiery.

    PC690. Comes with 1/2 & 1/4" collets. You can even get a 3/8" collet (which opens up a world of repurposing machine-shop milling cutters, though you can get some of those in 1/4 & 1/2 shank.)

    Your choice of "base package" - the router body is the same and can be used in any from the series - plunge, d-handle or "basic." You can get it in kits with several bases.

    I kinda hated routers before I got this one, because the ones I had met before this one were cheap and prone to "self-adjusting."
  16. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging! Supporting Member

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    The 690 is bulletproof and versatile, if a tad underpowered; make sure you get one with variable speed if you intend to use it with bits with a diameter great than ~ 1.25".
  17. xray

    xray

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    Dremel is highly over rated for what they "Say" they'll do and can be dangerous. I have a Porter Cable 1/4" shank and a Bosch 1/2" plunge router. Either will do the job. And get good quality carbide bits or you'll be throwing your money away. I tend to shy away from the sets and get the bits I truly need.

    Don't forget safety equipment as well: glasses, shield or goggles and a good set of ear muffs.
  18. Tom Cat

    Tom Cat

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    All above ... Good advice.
    As a life long wood worker I can only add that "where you buy" and the "support advice" you get shouldn't be overlooked.
    A quality wood working specialty store (not a big box store) employ people who know their tools and how to use them. They're not likely to steer you wrong cause they really want you to come back even if it's because you're having a problem.
    My 2 cents.
  19. P Town

    P Town Guest

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    Good one.

    For a big plunge router, the Bosch is pretty good. (I'm partial to Bosch, and own three different size Bosch routers).

    The Porter Cable 69X are all pretty good mid size, basic routers. I own a few of them too. The X determines the handle, and cord configuration. D handle, short, or long cord etc.


    I don't own any Makita routers, but I bet they are pretty good as well, and I would not be afraid to buy one.

    No Ryobi.

    Electronic speed control, and soft start, (especially on a big router) are nice.
  20. nightwulf

    nightwulf Supporting Member

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    Porter Cable and Bosch both make excellent routers...make sure you get one that can take a 1/2 in shank...you'll get less vibration and wobble, therefore a more accurate cut...best bang for the buck is to get a kit that has both plunge and regular bases...Festool makes an awesome router, if you've got WAY too much money, and absolutely MUST spend it....but value wise, they're not all that great...be aware that you will quickly spend more on bits than you did on your router...it pays to learn to resharpen them yourself...you can easily double or even triple the life of the bit that way...

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