Which Router To Get Etc? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-22-2010, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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Default Which Router To Get Etc?

I know nothing about routing, joinery or woodworking, though I have looked
around the net and got a couple of books, see following.
I want to make house doors with and without glass in them I also want to make some hardwood casement window frames, to replace my current frames which are very dilapidated and rotting. I'll get the double glazings to go in them made up by the glazing people. It seemed an idea to also have a go at making myself some new kitchen cabinets and cabinet sometime in the future As I say this will be sometime down the road, at the moment I just want to concentrate on the doors and windows.

I very recently got a copy of John Birchards Door making Patterns & Ideas. Also due in the post in the next few days is his Make Your Own Handcrafted Doors And Windows.

I'm a bit overwhelmed by what seems to me the huge range of different routing bits for different things.And terms like profiling, rebating, stick & cope. Also the huge range of routing jigs, accessories, which the manufacturers and store owners would just love people to spend their hard earned money on.
Been finding out a little about stile and rail router bit sets and some router bits are best for hardwoods and others best for softwoods.

When I first looked at the Routing Forum several people thought the Porter Cable 892 plunge router was a very good one to get and not extortionately expensive. I did quite a through search, it does not appear to be available in the UK. Though other Porter Cable ones are available on Ebay UK. Has anyone any ideas what other Router brand, model I should go for. I expect I will need a router table, several are available on Ebay UK at what seems a reasonable price to me. I assume I will also need a fixed base router to fit in the router table, table and router must be able to fit together, if not is some type of adaptor available? Perhaps like the Porter Cable other brands have interchangeable bases. Looking at the inside-woodworking dot coms The Router Buyers Guide which seems unbiased, impartial I need to be looking at a 2HP router, fixed and plunge, perhaps also a lighter one 1HP for edging. Do I just need a plunge router and change it into a fixed base in the router table, by fixing the motor on the plunge bars?

As I mentioned I just want to have a go at doing some doors and my replacement house windows at the moments, probably other projects in the future.

What tools am I going to need at this point in time? Types of router bits to make various door mouldings etc?
Thanx loads.
Peter.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-22-2010, 07:12 PM
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Hi Peter

Welcome to the group.

You say it is all new to you and my first thought was that you are taking on a lot of projects that would tax an experienced woodworker to work through all of them. They will take some time to work through so I hope you aren't planning to do much else for the next couple of years! You've a fairly steep learning curve ahead of you !

Routing is great and certainly speeds up a lot of jobs but if you haven't used one before, I'd recommend getting hold of Albert Jackson and David Day's book on using a router. It was recommended to me originally and I still occasionally dip into it. It is full of illustrations and you'll find it very useful. I think it is out of print, but you'll find it on Amazon. ISBN 0-00-713978-0 It is not expensive. It also shows you how to make a lot of jigs yourself out of MDF and coach bolts. Making them initially will be good for practice in getting used to your router(s) It is not necessary to buy a lot of jigs.

The Porter Cable routers don't appear in Europe because they are 120v. A good solid one in the UK is the DEWalt 625, which will be powerful enough for anything you need. Fixed base routers are mostly an American thing and though there is the odd one over here, the vast majority of routers in Europe are plunge routers.
If you are going to be doing a lot of doors and windows the cutters for those are really only suited to use in a router table as they are big and would be dangerous to use hand held. You can make your own router table or see if any come up on eBay.
This could be worth getting Cast Iron Router Table Top on eBay (end time 26-Feb-10 16:46:26 GMT)
Don't get one of the little table top router tables as it won't be big enough for the jobs you mention.
I use one of these Triton RTA300 Precision Router & Jigsaw Table - 330100 on eBay (end time 27-Feb-10 06:49:07 GMT) but will probably build something bigger in due course. You'll need a stand to go with it TRITON ROUTER STAND RSB300 table bench on eBay (end time 14-Mar-10 23:40:31 GMT)
Alternatively, you could get the table, stand and a suitable router here TRITON ROUTER AND TABLE on eBay (end time 27-Feb-10 22:28:50 GMT)
This is a particularly good deal at this sort of price. It's UKP200 new. If I'd some way of getting it here, I'd have it as a spare ! TRITON ROUTER STAND AND TABLE (RSA300 & RTA300) on eBay (end time 01-Mar-10 15:24:33 GMT)

People like Axminster Tools often have very good deals on CMT cutters and Rutlands offer a wide range of reasonably priced cutters.
This should kick start you but come back if you've more questions.

Cheers

Peter
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 08:36 AM Thread Starter
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Hi Peter,
Thanks very much, for all the helpful, sensible advice Doing a quick search, The DEWalt 625 has several favourable user reviews, not checked out Amazon reviews yet. I will shop around and try to get one at best price possible. Earlier I requested a free paper version of router bit catologue that shows all the profiles , ( I think thats the right word, term ) The catalogue will give me a bit more insight at this stage.

My brother in law is a builder, 30 years experience. I go out labouring with him sometimes. I also have 3 very good friends, who are quite a bit older than me, all retired now. One is a builder, roofer, tiler, another one did cabinet making for over 25 years The other does wood turning as a hobby. So I should get some helpful hints in general from them. Regards the routing book just bought it on Amazon UK for only 1p + 2.75 p&p.
Can get some really good prices on 2nd hand out of print books from Abe Books. They have bookshop stock lists worldwide, get the best price, best condition. Though sometimes sellers p&p charge is excessive, have to compare prices etc. w w w dot abebooks dot co dot uk w w w dot abebooks dot com
Thanks for taking the time to reply,
All the best,
Peter.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 09:08 AM
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Hi Peter,

While I don't think you could go wrong with a DeWalt router as Gav suggested, I would suggest you look at Trend too, which is a U.K. based company. Their routers are renowned for their quality. I just bought the T11 model, which is pretty big, but they have other models as well. I have never heard a negative word about a Trend router, but I have heard lots and lots of positive words about them. One feature to look for regardless of which brand you choose would be height adjustment from the table top with the router mounted in a table. That means have a fine adjuster that works with the router hand held from the top of the router, or from the bottom of the router while mounted in a table. My advice would be to buy the best quality router you can afford. Read up on how to use and maintain it properly, follow that advice and you will be happy for a long long time.

Mike, an American living in Norway

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 09:42 AM
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The only thing I can say on the negative side on both ,is they are so high in price ...in the states we can get the same thing for about 1/2 the price...and sometimes less.

DeWalt has always been on the high side of the price line in the states for the plastic case stuff.. not to many outlets sale the Trend line in the states but it's coming on hard now days but still high in price..

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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OK thanks Mike I'll check trend out.
Peter.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input BoB.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-23-2010, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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Hello again Peter.
I've read a little about door hinge templates and jigs. I assume templates and jigs are one of the same thing? I'm assuming that a Dewalt 625 is too bulky, heavy to do hinge lock work? So I think I'm looking to get a laminate trimming router?
" Related to the router, is a smaller lighter version designed specifically for trimming laminates. It can be used for smaller general routing work. For example with an appropriate jig it can be used for recessing door hinges and recessing lock faceplates "

"You could also make a simple jig for a individual hinge from a scrap of MDF, I quite often do this for smaller cabinet hinges, route out with the laminate trimmer then clean up with a corner chisel." ----- ?

Once again Porter Cable only seems available in the States. " Porter-Cable 7310 5.6 Amp 3/4-Horsepower Laminate Trim Router
Shop made jigs using a router, are best done with one of these. Since it takes the standard 1/4" bits, it makes it a convenient, multi use tool. "

Anyone any suggestions on what laminate trimming router to use for house door hinges and lock faceplates. Also any advice, know how about the various hinge jigs/ templates, faceplate jigs/ templates.
Thanks.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 02:24 AM
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Hi Peter

If you want to go for a trim router, Trend do one. On the other hand, you could go for one of the inexpensive smaller routers from any of the B&Q type places. You aren't likely to be using it heavily.
One of my most used routers is a 1050w Einhell that is a copy of an earlier Elu classic design and it has always worked fine for me. It also had the advantage that, whilst not many accessories were available from the manufacturer (although a few came with it) a surprising number of other manufacturer's parts fitted, straight out of the box, so it now works with the Ryobi fine adjustment fence, Trend guide bushes and a Perles fine depth adjuster. It only cost 30 quid, complete with 10 tct cutters. At that price I've already had my money's worth out of it even if it went tomorrow.
Something like that is fine for hinge work.
Have a look at Milescraft.com - Universal Power Tool Accessories & Attachments who do some very useful and inexpensive accessories and lock jigs. People like Rutlands stock them.

Cheers

Peter
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-24-2010, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
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Hi again,
B&Q have a smaller router UB1020WR Black 1020W, which I assume will be suitable for hinge and lock work. Has one customer review, a positive one.

I will check out the Milescraft site, thanx. I intend to build a garage, got 13 x 12 ft wide trusses off Ebay a while back. Though had to wait for that size to come along. Got them for a really good price, hired a truck to pick them up, also at the same time , also from Ebay, got a 6 x 4 trailer that I hitched up behind the truck. I'm also intending to do a first floor rear extension above the kitchen extension.

It might be of interest for you to know, I'm using Ashampoos 3D CAD Architecture 2, to draw up the plans for the planning application to the local council. Ashampoo was a really silly price, about 25 it cost, really top quality professional program. Before I had Arcons 3D Architecture which costs 199, one just can't make any sense of how to use it, support is rubbish. They do offer courses on how to use the program, which probably, explains why the programs online help makes it very unclear on how to get the results one is looking for.

If Ashampoo is of any interest, one can download the fully functioning trial version, at the end of the trial, they come back to you offering the program even cheaper, crazy, they do the same with all their other software, do lots of different types. of programs.

Until I get the plans in and garage built, the only place I have to do any routing, wood working is in the back garden. I'm thinking of putting together a very basic work bench, I have a couple of plastic very strong plastic saw horses. On top of that put 2 or 3 old front doors, on top of that 1/2' ply, clamp it together, if need too concrete blocks on shelves of saw horses. cover with a tarpaulin. Stand it on some paving slabs on the grass. The router table and stand I can just carry outside. I'm going to see about off cuts of timber for practising routing getting old doors to cut up and use as practise timber.
Thanks for your help Peter.
All the best,
Pete.
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