What are the three most important aspects of choosing a router table? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-08-2014, 10:55 AM Thread Starter
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Default What are the three most important aspects of choosing a router table?

I am in the market for a router table that will be a long lasting and permanent addition to my shop. I don't want it too complex as I am learning to use a router and want a better grade unit to learn on. I don't necessarily want a bench top nor do I want to build one.

I would like to know what your top three most important aspects of a router table are and which, if any models you recommend. I am currently looking at spending less than $500 or so (without a router) on a good/high quality unit.

These are the two that I am currently evaluating (from online posts primarily):
The RT1000 models from Nova Scotia and the Craftsman Premium Die-Cast Aluminum Router Table. I want value for the dollar yet quality as well. Is that too much to ask?

I would appreciate any and all advice in this matter.


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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 01:10 PM
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The best table I used, was at my former boss. I think of getting one for my self. I need to finish my renovation first. So I guess it will be at the end of the summer for me. Here is the model: Kreg PRS1040 Precision Router Table System. They must have it in the US too. I'm sure you have Kreg Jig in the US, it's so easy to work whit that.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 01:35 PM
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-15-2014, 01:53 PM
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Having it at the correct height for you and then what Pat said. The only way you can guarantee it is the right height is to make your own. The Sears table has too small a working surface. The RT is a well made table but I'm not a fan of putting a router inside a closed box. Some think they get better dust control that way but a pickup on the back side of the fence will do just as good a job in my opinion and that makes it easier to get to your router for adjustments etc.
This Grizzley table is a good deal but I have seen a few complaints about it being flat. https://www.google.ca/search?q=grizz...95%3B500%3B374

All the tables I see for sale have the same flaw. The router sits dead center which leaves a lot of wasted table behind the fence. You could do better and cheaper building your own for way less money and there is a ton of info on this site to help.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 07:52 PM Thread Starter
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thanks Charles. I've bought the plywood to make a table and an reconsidering enclosing the router and placing it in the center of the table. I'll have to reevaluate the plans and modify I think.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 08:37 PM
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I'm with Charles on the flaws, looked at a bunch of tables & almost went with the Kreg precision table & decided to build my own, went with a larger work surface & offset the router to the right. I will be making raised panel doors & felt like the larger work surface would be better. I think if you are doing smaller projects then a smaller table will work for your needs.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-17-2014, 09:21 PM
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I agree with Charles on this. Offset the router. I have the Router Workshop table, which is offset to the left. Right, or left, either is fine IMO. Offset to the left leaves you a small work area which is all you will need most of the time. Turn the fence around and you have the larger area of the table to work with. This, IMO, is the advantage of using clamps to hold the fence down, and not t-track. Again, the clamps are what works for me. If you decide to use t-track for your fence, great. It is, after all, YOUR table. Use what works for you.

To your question, a removable insert to mount the router on, fence with dust collection, and offset from center.

If you do decide to purchase one, as Charles stated.. stay away from the aluminum one. In addition to being too small, the aluminum will leave marks on your wood. The RT1000 looks like a fantastic table. And, I think it's big enough that the router being centered won't make that much of a difference. I've used the Grizzly table and found adequate. The one I used was flat, so had no problems with it.


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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-10-2014, 08:45 PM
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I am trialling a shop built design that must be easily dismantled, accommodate a saw when I remove the router an fence, but have a "large" flat table top 1800 x 1300 mm. I have a steel frame bolted under a top of 18 mm ply, Tasmanian Oak fence held with clamps, and two jawhorses underneath. It is very stable. The saw clamps underneath in a steel bracket, outside the fence.

I haven't quite got the whole setup right, and will return with pictures when I have. It is a bit of work to set up, switch tools, etc, Dust collection needs work, too.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-11-2014, 09:38 PM
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all good ideals, i liked building my own table. what put it to the next level was putting plastc laminate, formical ,on surface.wax once in a while, its the cats meow. later, bowdean
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