What routers are best suited for a table - Router Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 06:23 PM Thread Starter
 
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Question What routers are best suited for a table

I am brand new to the Forum. Greetings.
I would like to get some basic advice on what router(s) would be best suited to use in a table. I am concerned with a couple of things: how powerful a tool do I need (is a 2 -2 1/4 HP enough or should I look for a 3 HP); fixed base or plunge; can I get a tool that can be adjusted from the top surface of the table without using a special surface plate (I am reluctant to have to deal with leveling the plate and assuring that it is flush to the rest of the table top); is variable speed necessary; and, finally, what specific tool(s) do you all recommend? Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 06:49 PM
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Greetings Steven and welcome to the forum.We're glad you could join us.

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by selewis View Post
I am brand new to the Forum. Greetings.
I would like to get some basic advice on what router(s) would be best suited to use in a table. I am concerned with a couple of things: how powerful a tool do I need (is a 2 -2 1/4 HP enough or should I look for a 3 HP); fixed base or plunge; can I get a tool that can be adjusted from the top surface of the table without using a special surface plate (I am reluctant to have to deal with leveling the plate and assuring that it is flush to the rest of the table top); is variable speed necessary; and, finally, what specific tool(s) do you all recommend? Thanks in advance.
Hi Steven:

Welcome to the forum.

The answer to your questions depends on what you intend to do with the table-mounted router. If you don't intend to use large diameter bits (e.g. panel shaping bits) then a 2-1/4 HP router would do. However, if you intend to go for large diameter bits then look for something at least 3 HP.

Also, will the router and table setup be used for hobby work (evenings and weekends) or production? For production, best to go with a higher HP rated unit.

Some members use plunge bases on the table, with the plunge springs removed. Others prefer the fixed base.

I have a Bosch 1617EVSPK router kit (2-1/4 HP), which I intend to mount on my first table. (The table is a project for this summer.)

Like you, I don't like the idea of the plate. So, I am making a custom mount, which will also eliminate the need for either the fixed base or the plunge base. (I am borrowing an idea from John White. He used a custom mounting of the router to a router lift. I intend to replace the commercial router lift with my own home-made equivalent.)

HTH,
Cassandra
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 12:13 AM
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Welcome Steven to the router forum

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-28-2009, 10:06 PM
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I recently bought a Milwaukee 5625 router (3 1/2 hp, variable speed, fixed base) for my table. The height can be adjusted from above the table, although I have it mounted in a lifter. The extra power is nice for turning larger bits and the variable speed helps to keep from burning certain types of wood. While I probaly didn't need quite that much power, the price was not all that much more than some smaller routers I was considering. Good luck, Mike
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-29-2009, 07:15 AM
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Never had a router in a table that had too much power.

Get the biggest and baddest you can afford even if you do small projects with small bits.

Why make two passes when you can make one. And the price difference in some cases is no difference at all. Many 3 1/4 to 3 1/2HP routers cost the same as a 2 1/4 HP if you watch sales etc.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-29-2009, 09:52 AM
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Not to be discounted IMO is the 3.25 hp Freud FT2000, or 2200 depending on what is local.
They show up every now and then for about $119 on sale which is ridiculously low priced and great value. I love mine and added the big Milwaukee above yesterday to the arsenal. Mighty nice but a lot more money.

That brings up the price range you want to stay within I guess.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-29-2009, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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Default What routers are best suited for a table

Thanks all for the helpful responses. They bring up another question. In order to change bits and to adjust height from above the table, does one need to have a lifter? I have noticed some pictures where the table has a small hole to accommodate an allen wrench seemingly to adjust the bit height. Without seeing the picture, does anyone know if this suggests a lifter of some sort? Without a lifter or some restraint, how do you adjust from the top of the table and how do you keep the motor from falling out of the loosened base?
Does anyone suggest a particular model of lifter?
Thanks again.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-29-2009, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by nickao65 View Post
Why make two passes when you can make one. And the price difference in some cases is no difference at all. Many 3 1/4 to 3 1/2HP routers cost the same as a 2 1/4 HP if you watch sales etc.
How about first pass for roughing it out and the second pass as a finishing touch?

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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 04-29-2009, 04:41 PM
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A good bet would be the Hitachi M12V2 15 amp 3-1/4-Horsepower Plunge Base Variable Speed Plunge Router with 1/4-inch and 1/2-inch Collets.

This is around $180 - $200 on the net and got great reviews last year.
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