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What is your "go to" router?

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by tjclem, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    My inherited Porter cable 90th anniversary model 90690 is worn out. I need a main router for neck pockets, pup routes, control cavities etc.etc. Plunge would be a + this is for a full time shop. What would you suggest? And where would you get it? Thanks .Tom
  2. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Inactive

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    I love my 690! But my main one is actually a Craftsman plunge router. About 15ish years old and from back when Emerson made Craftman's electric tools. This one gets well over half of all routing tasks.

  3. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
  4. kuso


    Feb 25, 2010
    Plymouth, MA
    I'm looking to get my first decent router, would you say the plunge is a must have?
  5. JmJ


    Jan 1, 2008
    Festool baby yeah!
  6. A couple years ago I got a nice set from Hitachi and it came with a plunge base too.
    Hitachi KM12VC 2-1/4 HP Fixed Base Router Kit - Variable Speed
    I think I paid maybe $150 or so for the whole set, great power and very smooth operator.
  7. I'm a big fan of the Bosch 1617EVSPK combo setup.
    Also, Tom, if you've never been to Utter Guys in Sanford then you should definitely check them out. Great deals and no waiting for shipping.

  8. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Might be worth a look So tell me more about curly ash crotch wood. :hyper:
  9. jchrisk1


    Nov 15, 2009
    Northern MI
    Will you go half? I like the Bosch as well.
  10. Musiclogic

    Musiclogic Commercial User

    Aug 6, 2005
    Southwest Michigan
    Owner/Builder: HJC Customs USA, The Cool Lute, C G O
    My goto is actually 2 routers, my Bosch 1613 evs for all of my standard bit work, and my Ryobi RE600 for all of the large bit work. Both are 15+ yrs old, and among my 10 routers, these are the main mules in my shop.
  11. Rodent

    Rodent A Killer Pickup Line™ Commercial User

    Dec 20, 2004
    Upper Left Corner (Seattle)
    Player-Builder-Founder: Honey Badger Pickups & Regenerate Guitar Works
    been a Porter Cable fan for years, but I'm possibly in the market for a new hand-held router myself as I plan to relegate my current PC to the router table since the pin that stops shaft rotation when tightening/loosening the collet finally gave ways to years of use and sheared

    lots of options to consider ... and I may just be swayed towards a new brand

    all the best,

  12. gyancey


    Mar 25, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Me too. I bought this combo again after my first Bosch 1617 was stolen. My favorite router now though is a 3HP HSD spindle for the CNC. Whisper quiet when running.
  13. Jazzdogg

    Jazzdogg Less barking, more wagging!

    Jul 29, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    The routers I seem to use the most are Bosch 1617EVSPK (one motor and two bases - fixed & plunge), Bosch Colt, Porter Cable 690, and the Porter Cable 7518 that never leaves my router table.

    I will never again buy a hand-held router unless it has variable speed - preferably with soft-start.

  14. Me three! I Did a lot of research before getting this set, I love it. Mine came with an edge guide, as well...perfect for truss rod slots in neck blanks.
  15. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
  16. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    Sorry for asking what to some of you would be a stupid question but when would you use a lower than maximum speed on your router?
  17. Hi.

    Since the woods are pretty similar to each-other in instrument making, and the bits used are rather limited, that's not a stupid question.

    In general woodworking, one wants to match the cutting speed and the cross sectional area of the cut to suit the material, and it's properties.

    In order to keep the cutting speed reasonable, the spindle speed has to be reduced. Also If you use oddly shaped bits with large diameter changes, the spindle speed may have to be adjusted.

    Routing any wood that splinters easily, may benefit from a lower spindle speed as well.

    When routing for deep pockets, reduced speed can aid in the control and chip removal.

    Too high speed on a hard material can lead to premature dulling of the blades.

    Too high speed on synthetics (plastics mainly), will melt the material.


    I'm sure the more experienced woodworkers will present other needs for spindle speed control.

    Edit: Oh, almost forgot, Festo OF 900E is my choice for a router. Then again, I have a milling machine for really rough or precision stuff if the need arises, so a small plunge-base one like that is enough.

  18. This:hyper:
  19. tjclem

    tjclem Commercial User

    Jun 6, 2004
    Central Florida
    Owner and builder Clementbass
    I am headed out the door to check them out. I will for sure check into the Bosch .tom
  20. Spino


    May 21, 2006
    You could check out Festools routers German made.Very reliable .
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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