I bought a router lift - Router Forums
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post #1 of 99 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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Default I bought a router lift

"I bought a router lift because the magzines said the ultimate table had one. I don't know which router will work in it, can you help me?"
This is a very common situation. People you do not need to spend all that money. Magazines are paid to promote high dollar items. Stop drinking the KoolAid. There is one style of router which benefits from a router lift: This is because the motor twists in the base to make height adjustments. IE.. the PC 7518. The Triton 3-1/4 hp router is designed for table mounting only. When you crank it up all the way it locks the spindle for bit changes. Total cost should be under $300. All the combo kits have above the table height adjustments in the fixed bases, no lift required. Having seen lifts in action I can assure you I change my bits and make height adjustments faster by popping the router out of the table. This is why mounting plates were developed.

If you want a lift fine, study up before you buy. Know which routers will work so you do not have to hassle with returns. I will be spending the extra cash for router bits.

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post #2 of 99 (permalink) Old 03-31-2012, 10:58 PM
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Very well said Mike. The K.I.S.S. rule certainly applies to this.

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 #3 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 03:08 AM
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Amen, Mike!
I'm sure that tables and their accessories are a delight to work with, but the individual has to be realistic about what they do with their routers.
For me tables are impractical. My shop is 12' x 27'. If I'm dadoing a 10' or 12' plank a) it's heavy, and b) I don't have room to start swinging it around. Far safer and easier to simply clamp it and bring the tool to the workpiece.
I mostly use the router on casework and it's just more efficient (for me) to machine my pieces flat on the work table.
Same for laminate trimming with my trim router. If I had to machine a 7' tall gable, how the heck would I be able to trim the ends? I'd still have to pull out the trim router for them.
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post #4 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 04:36 AM
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At last, a man who appears to agree with me in saying that most routing can and should be done hand held. Hence the reason that I have always claimed that a BASIC router table is all that is required, not those ubeaut ones with all the bells and whistles, sure they're great for sitting in front of and admiring!

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post #5 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-02-2012, 05:03 PM
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About lifts:
They look pretty expensive, made an adjustment system for a Ryobi plunge router
for about $5.
Works fine: resolution is 1mm by turn (1/25")
Just based on a 6mm metric threaded bar 6x1mm.

Table routing makes a lot of sense in many occasions, like having a heavy bit
for pannelling, making molders, or just a nice chamfer.
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post #6 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-02-2012, 07:36 PM
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The rule I was taught is that small things are better done on a table. Large things are better done by hand. It seems to work well that way.
Mike and Gerard are right, a lift can be improvised around quite easily. As Mike said, spend your money on bits, that's something you can't improvise around.

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 99 (permalink) Old 04-02-2012, 08:06 PM
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Since every website and magazine has declared they have "The Ultimate", the term has lost all its meaning, to the point of it being ridiculous. I have even e-mailed a few magazines to that fact.
I will say that most of my routing is done on the table. Just the way I like to do it.
My PC890 is manually adjusted. And I reach under the table for bit changes. I have a plunge base for it, but it collects dust, as I never remove the router from the table. Not even sure where that base is anymore.

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post #8 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-02-2012, 11:40 PM
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I have never seen the need for a lift on my router tables and it is funny because I am a gadget guy. I have found a need for digital readouts because I'm getting old and can't see anymore, they have really helped. Good shop lighting is also more important, and dust collection makes you breath easier. Then more router bits and then more routers......

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post #9 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-03-2012, 02:14 AM
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for the price of a router lift I could buy a used rigid ts3650...and for around $10 bucks for the plans some scrap wood and a few steel rods you can build your own lift.
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post #10 of 99 (permalink) Old 04-03-2012, 09:26 AM
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begin(rant)

Although I agree fully with Mike, that an purchase should be fully researched before hand, I also think it is a little arrogant to presume to know my needs without knowing me, my situation, and my intended application.

I have arthritic spurs in both shoulders and lifting a 15 pound router, router plate, and bit out of a table to change bits, is not as easy as it used to be. I have NOT went to a lift yet(but I never pull the router to change bits or adjust bit height either!) but I assure you at some point I will. Revealing personal info like this should not be be necessary in order to obtain advise!

As for tables one of my primary applications is making raised panels. I don't recommend and have never seen any on else recommend making them without a table. Most, but not all my routing is done at the table!

So I agree that many of these questions could/should be answerable with a little research, but If I have decided to buy a lift and need and ask for advice, telling me I should do it another way is not always helpful or wanted!

End(rant)

Last edited by Dmeadows; 04-03-2012 at 09:51 AM.
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