Plunger in a table ? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2015, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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Default Plunger in a table ?

Hi everyone!

I am a little unsure if I can use a plunger router in a router table. if so what are the advantages\disadvantages?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2015, 10:00 AM
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You can use a plunge router in the table. Look at the original Router Workshop series 1 videos, they use a monster plunge router in their table.

A lot of new plunge routers allow for some adjustment from below, so it is like having a built in router lift. Older plunge routers like my old Porter Cable 690 work well in the table if you remove the springs. Otherwise, you are fighting the spring tension as you try to adjust it from below. There are a lot of videos online for how to remove the springs from various routers.

If you only have one router, make it a plunge router. you can go from in the table to out of the table quickly, and have the advantage of handheld and table mounted routing.

The router I have in my table is a fixed based unit now, because it is actually a little easier to adjust than the plunge router was with the springs.

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2015, 10:16 AM
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I have used a Ryobi RE600 plunge router in a table for 30 years and it works great. I added a router razier to it about 7 years ago, great addition for around $100 Cdn.

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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-24-2015, 07:17 PM
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If you are going to use a plunge router in the table, I would remove the springs..

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 05:53 AM
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I started with a De Walt 625 in my UJK router table but found adjusting it form below and changing bits was quite awkward. I then bought a Triton A001 to use in the table and it is a great improvement. As long as you fit a separate no-volt safety switch a small modification tot he router power switch allows you to raise the chuck right through the top of the table without even having to reach underneath to switch off the power switch. Don't do this unless you use a separate safety switch as other wise you can lock the spindle without cutting power to the router - unlikely I agree as you could hardly fail to notice it was running! I suppose you might switch it on by mistake when it was locked although you would have to reach under the table to do this. If you plan to use this router freehand as well as in the table don't modify the switch. Either way its a great tool and has masses of power and a really good chuck with separate nuts and collets supplied to 1/2" or 1/2" bits.
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 12:15 PM
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I also use big plungers in my router table. I use the threaded rod for my height changes. I also just have my router and plate sit in the rabbet on my table so that I can lift them out at will. Having the router laying on its side on the table top makes major changes easy. Then I fine tune with the router in the table. The newest big plunger I have has above table adjustment so once I get it mounted it will just stay in the table except for bit changes.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 01:43 PM
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Usually, it's the plunge base that is designed for table use. One big exception is the Bosch 1617 whose fixed base is designed for table use and the plunge base is not recommended in a table. The Bosch fixed base is excellent in a table--at least in my opinion.

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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 05:20 PM
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You guys lost me. The plunge function is disabled in the table mode, so how is it a desirable feature (for router tables)?
My Bosch 1619EVS has that clever spring lockout device which allows it to be easily used either disassembly required. The 1617EVSPK on the other hand, is as Earl just pointed out, designed specifically so that the fixed base can be table mounted, the motor unit dropped out and plunked into the plunge base for freehand/plunge use. The one thing that the 1619 does not have is through-the-base ht. adjustment which of course the 1617 does have.
The consensus here has always been that if you only have one router, buy a plunge. That does not translate into meaning that it's the best solution for table mounted routing. Just the most economical.
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-25-2015, 05:31 PM
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Some plungers are designed to work in a table so it's a relatively cheap way to go. However, you can also use a lift with just a motor. I prefer that option - having a PC 7518 motor only in a JessEm lift. Personally, I see it as great way too go. Super easy bit change and above table locking. Would be hard pressed to find something better.
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 05-27-2015, 06:53 PM
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Phil made a good point that I would like to expand on. Any router that must be turned in the base to make height adjustments is easier to work with using a router lift. Why? First would be the fact that with a router lift your switch is always in the same position. This ends fumbling under the table to find where the switch is. Adjustments are faster using a lift, especially on large changes.

For many years I have said that lifts are great for people with physical limitations; and for those who simply want one that's OK too.

None of the under the table adjusters or lifts are as fast as popping your router out of the table to make changes. Some people prefer them and that is fine; the goal is to be as comfortable as possible with your choices in how you use a router.

The Bosch 1619EVS (GOF 2000 ACE the other side of the Atlantic) is the only router with a spring defeat feature as shown in the photo. This is very handy for people who use their router in a table and free hand. This is the only plunge router Bosch recommends for table use.

Other plunge routers used under the table are easiest to work with when installed on a mounting plate and with the springs removed. They allow for the fastest bit changes and height adjustments when popped out of the table. (Using wrenches)

About 10 years ago the quick change collet was born. John DeRosa invented The Eliminator chuck. Soon after the Extreme Xtension was cloned from it. Faster than factory collets but with the disadvantage of marking up the bits shanks; also prone to increased vibration. John next invented the Musclechuck. This is as good as it gets for quickly changing bits but it has one limitation: on some routers that do not have enough travel you can not make cuts shallower than 3/16 of an inch. This is because the Musclechuck extends the bits mounting position by about 1/2". This is when using normal length bits; using shorter bits solves the problem. The additional 1/2" cutting depth can make the difference in completing a cut without an extension so it is a worthwhile trade off. After all, how often do you make dado cuts less than 1/4"? The cost of an extra bit or two for these situations becomes irrelevant.
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