Turning-in my Porter Cable Membership - Router Forums
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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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Default Turning-in my Porter Cable Membership

A sad day for me ... I've been a PC user for 25 years, or more. I've watched the descent of PC as it became a brand within Stanley Black & Decker.

Today, I wanted to practice Mortise & Tenon cuts for an outdoor bench I'm making - 40 M&Ts in all; each requiring the use of a template guide (which is complete). I purchased the bit and guide collar from Whiteside. Installing the bit, I realized it was rubbing on the collar - the reason was the Plunge base did not tightly hold the motor assembly - it wobbled. Shifting to my Fixed base, it's not centered with the collet - now that I look at it, clearly it's off-center.

My options are to purchase another base - perhaps my two bases (Fixed & Plunge) have somehow gotten out of alignment; or my plunge posts have become loose, or my fixed base assembly isn't ... something ... so it's not holding the motor assembly tightly perpendicular to the base. Or perhaps, my woodworking expectations have increased over the years, and I'm less tolerant of 'play' within my tools.

So, I'm going to look at Bosch & Festool - my trust in these brands remains.

Last edited by Mike; 08-02-2012 at 07:48 PM.
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 12:25 PM
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I guess you know what my choice would be Mike.

PS: Notice what color Mark chose for my name?
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Last edited by Mike; 08-01-2012 at 12:27 PM.
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 12:34 PM
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I used my Dad's old Craftsman router for a lot of years, until the bearings piled up. About 15 years ago, I picked up a PC 690 kit with both bases. It was selected because I was told it was a decent enough router at a reasonable price.

In the last few years, I've picked up several more "high end" routers including the big Milwaukee for my router table, 2 x Hitachi M12V, the big bosch (not sure why I got it, other than online people bragging about how good it is), and a couple of trim routers. Needless to say, I'm over equipped on the router front.

... so I view the old PC690 as a garage sale item, suitable to abuse, disposable.

... and what abuse it has taken. A couple of weeks ago, I used it to plow a flat bottomed dado in drywall so I could bury a low voltage alarm wire in a wall. The drywall dust was pouring out of that thing, as I slid it across the wall. That can't be good for the bearings.

Anyway, this past weekend I used it to cut some oak pieces from a template and found myself marveling on how great it still works after all these years of use and abuse, and how well made it is. My plunge base was never any good but the fixed base and the motor have the comfort of an old friend.

No soft start. No curvy plastic moldings. No variable speed. It's just a crude aluminum body with a steel toggle switch that will jerk your wrists when you snap it on but it is totally reliable, cuts accurately, and has a nice feel to it when it's cutting. It will leave your ears ringing if you run it long without protection, though. lol!

I feel we're losing a good brand, with the downward spiral of Porter Cable.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjdorsam View Post
My options are to purchase another base - perhaps my two bases (Fixed & Plunge) have somehow gotten out of alignment;
Have you checked the template bushing to make sure the hole is perfectly centered?
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 02:16 PM
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Well that being said is going back to a post I made a while back about "Quality of tools" My Ridgid table saw will out perform the Porter Cable table saw I had only 2 years apart and $100.00 but a WORLD of difference in the quality...... Just sold a Dewalt jigsaw and now own a Bosch same thing here what a difference

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks - all.

I've thought about my initial post throughout this day; and I'll probably ask the Forum Liaison to delete it, if I can't - not that I believe it's incorrect or over-stated; just that I'm not a negative person, at heart. I'm angry that PC has diminished so badly - I have several old generation PC tools that remain workhorses - a tougher-than-nails Reciprocating saw which helped me remove over 600 sq ft of deck - and more; the quintessential Palm sander which still provides glass-smooth finishes; but I've had to throw out two Random Orbit sanders, a jig saw, and now the Router - these are not old tools.
Most of my hand power tools are now Bosch - replacing the PC tools I've discarded, as well as new tools I've purchased as needed. The Bosch is my preferred replacement; though, I'm enamored with Festool's system. Mike (from Detroit) speaks highly of the Bosch routers - and I know he's demanding of his tools.
Thanks, again.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 06:06 PM
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Am I wrong ,but didnt rockler use to be PORTER CABLE.
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 06:11 PM
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Mike, there is no reason to delete this thread. Black & Decker bought Porter Cable with the intention of destroying it. They have done a great job of it. I still own many older quality PC power tools but will not spend a penny on the new stuff.

Ken, Rockwell split into Porter Cable for portable tools and Delta for stationary tools. No affiliation with the new Rockwell.

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Last edited by Mike; 08-01-2012 at 06:14 PM.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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The Bosch MRC23 looks like a great choice.

Mike - I think I've read somewhere that Bosch has a track system, similar to Festool's; do you know of it, or is it still the 'stuff which dreams are made of' (from the Maltese Falcon).
Thanks.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 08-01-2012, 08:41 PM
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I really like my MRC23EVSK. It has a couple of improvements over the 1617: a bit more power, always on LED work lights, a power cord that swivels to eliminate twisting and safety catches to stop the router from falling out of the base when removing it. I highly recommend the optional dust collection accessories for the 23 and the 1617; reduced clean up and healthy lungs are a big plus. Both do an excellent job at capturing the debris.

I am not aware of a Bosch track system but it is easy to build your own with a piece of 1/4" Masonite or plywood and a 1 x 2". I gave mine to a friend and will photo shoot the new one when I build it. (Just need to get a sheet of Masonite) This style does double duty if one side is for your router and the other for your circular saw.

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