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okay I'm new to the router world, but like working with wood for over 40 years.
I was at lowes and they had a router and table for $35, and have wanted one for years, okay why not ! I've been looking at bit sets and think I'll go with mlcs, I don't have the time to work with wood to spend the big bucks for whiteside or cmt. but want good bits when the wife wants something made.
I have not bought the bits yet but it looks like from what I read, the problem with the table and a 1/4 inch router collet and the short shank of the 1/4 bits will leave me needing an extension, mlcs offers one one but it's for a 1/2 collet only.
does anyone know where or if a 1/4 inch to 1/4 inch extension is made.

$35 is only a
good deal if I can use it, I knew it would not be great, and will one day move up to better. I like working with red oak and don't want to mess up a piece of wood that cost more the the router and table HA !!!

I should have done this like everything else, yes that's right !! I didn't do my homework, but couldn't pass up what I thought was a deal !!??
I guess the best part of this is , when I have what I need, I'm thinking of all the stuff I can build, and the wife has started a list before me.
 

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Hello Robert! First, The router table for 35.00 is what I call small work. I am not conifident that it is large enough to do larger pieces.I would not get the router extension untill You can put it all together. Depending on the router, You may not need it. If Your router is 1/2 in. collet. Do not take a chance on a 1/4 in. extension. The shaft could snap, and send the collet across the room. or worse, into a Loved one and do a great amount of damage. Move ahead with a great deal of thought. Remember, the router table becomes useless if You are not able to use it!
 

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Robert,

Router and table for $35.00?

I can't imagine what quality or size that would be!

MLCS has extensions; MLCS Router Collet Extension and Review

Mike
From the MLCS web page "NOTE: Will not work with 1/4" collet routers."

I think Howard has the right idea. Get some bits and get the table set up then you will be in a better position to know what you need. Personally, I have never seen a 1/4" to 1/4" collet extension and seriously doubt one is commercially available due to liability issues. I think wives in general have a common malady in that once I've acquired a modicom of capability, they suddenly have visions of dining room sets and kitchen makeovers. I don't know what Lowes carries but I suspect for $35, on sale, it is likely a small Skil table and router. That's OK, everybody needs to start somewhere and that is as good a place as any. Will do a great job on small to medium sized projects and provide a vehicle for a lot of learning experience.
 

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You got me... I gotta stop watching TV and comprehend what I read before I post.
Sorry for the bad info.

Mike
 

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Robert, right now Woodcraft offers a set of the 10 most commonly used bits for $50.(until April 30) These are Woodcrafts own Wood River brand and are satisfaction guaranteed. I suggest you consider a different router that will accept 1/2" shank bits. I think a better choice for a router would be one of the Craftsman combo kits for about $100. This way you will have a fixed base to mount to your table and a plunge base for hand routing. You will find instructions for building a simple router table top and installing a mounting plate in a sticky thread in this section. This simple table top can be clamped to saw horses or a bench; this allows for easy storage and still gives you great performance. Be smart: purchase safety glasses, hearing protection and use them every time.
 

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Hi Robert

I did some digging on the Lowes web site and could not find one that low but you can get one with the table and the router from HF at a low price (1/2" collet type)

Benchtop Router Table with 1-3/4 HP Router
http://manuals.harborfreight.com/manuals/95000-95999/95380.pdf

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http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00928160000P?prdNo=2&blockNo=2&blockType=G2
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okay I'm new to the router world, but like working with wood for over 40 years.
I was at lowes and they had a router and table for $35, and have wanted one for years, okay why not ! I've been looking at bit sets and think I'll go with mlcs, I don't have the time to work with wood to spend the big bucks for whiteside or cmt. but want good bits when the wife wants something made.
I have not bought the bits yet but it looks like from what I read, the problem with the table and a 1/4 inch router collet and the short shank of the 1/4 bits will leave me needing an extension, mlcs offers one one but it's for a 1/2 collet only.
does anyone know where or if a 1/4 inch to 1/4 inch extension is made.

$35 is only a
good deal if I can use it, I knew it would not be great, and will one day move up to better. I like working with red oak and don't want to mess up a piece of wood that cost more the the router and table HA !!!

I should have done this like everything else, yes that's right !! I didn't do my homework, but couldn't pass up what I thought was a deal !!??
I guess the best part of this is , when I have what I need, I'm thinking of all the stuff I can build, and the wife has started a list before me.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the information, and yes I knew I would get busted on by some of you guys about the $35 combo deal. But there’s no shame in ignorance if someone is willing to take their lumps, be open-minded, listen and learn! That’s why I’m here; I’ve been around routers for years but have never owned or used one.
Here is some more information about the unit I bought.
The combo unit I bought is a task force; the table looks bolt for bolt the same table that comes with the craftsman combo now on sale for $99 (except for the name). The craftsman router however has a ½ inch collet. The router is a 9.5 amp fixed or plunge. The task force I have is a ¼ inch collet at 10 amps, plunge router. Yes the projects on the list for now are small things, but when I retire in MS. They will be much bigger and that’s years from now being only 52. This will give me the opportunity to learn some of the art of the router, and bring ones creativity to a new level.
 

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Justin, while I agree that you will likely want to graduate to a 1/2" router at some point, $35 is a great deal for both a (small) table and router, even if it's an off brand. Great way to get started. A lot of work has been done with 1/4" routers over the decades. Treat it somewhat gingerly by taking light cuts, and you should be OK.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That unit was a closeout model, or that’s what I was told by the salesperson. I couldn’t find it on their site either.
What does everyone think of the MLCS 30 piece set for $100? and I'll look at the woodcraft set for $50
I’ll be able to talk the wife into bigger and better after I turn out a few nice things for her, and we all know how that works. HA!
And any information for my future purchase of a better router and table would be appreciated, but keep in mind while I’m in New Orleans ( another 10 years ) it will have to be a table top style.
Thanks guys
Robert
 

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Hi Robert

The MLCS is OK but you want to get the best deal you can, take a look at the links below..a buck is a buck..

30 pc 1/4" Shank Router Bit Set | eBay

Amazon.com: 50pc Carbide Tipped 1/4" Shank Router Bit Set: Home Improvement

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That unit was a closeout model, or that’s what I was told by the salesperson. I couldn’t find it on their site either.
What does everyone think of the MLCS 30 piece set for $100? and I'll look at the woodcraft set for $50
I’ll be able to talk the wife into bigger and better after I turn out a few nice things for her, and we all know how that works. HA!
And any information for my future purchase of a better router and table would be appreciated, but keep in mind while I’m in New Orleans ( another 10 years ) it will have to be a table top style.
Thanks guys
Robert
 

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Thanks for the information, and yes I knew I would get busted on by some of you guys about the $35 combo deal. But there’s no shame in ignorance if someone is willing to take their lumps, be open-minded, listen and learn! That’s why I’m here; I’ve been around routers for years but have never owned or used one.
Here is some more information about the unit I bought.
The combo unit I bought is a task force; the table looks bolt for bolt the same table that comes with the craftsman combo now on sale for $99 (except for the name). The craftsman router however has a ½ inch collet. The router is a 9.5 amp fixed or plunge. The task force I have is a ¼ inch collet at 10 amps, plunge router. Yes the projects on the list for now are small things, but when I retire in MS. They will be much bigger and that’s years from now being only 52. This will give me the opportunity to learn some of the art of the router, and bring ones creativity to a new level.
Hi Richard - Weren't trying to bust you on a $35 table at all ( shoot, I'da probably gone for it myself) just weren't sure of your expectations. The eBay bit set Bj suggested is an excellent buy. Seems like Task Force is a house brand for some discount or mail order chains. I know I've seen it, just can't remember where. You can do an awful lot of work with a small table and router, and, by the time you retire, I'm betting you'll be on your second or third table:)
 

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I apologise for resurrecting an old thread, but it I feel that it contains lots of good information for newbies/beginners. This is my first post, although I had registered a couple of years ago.
To get to the point, I too have the same table and found out that the bit only partially exposed above the table. Although I am new to routers, I have been blessed with common sense, which helped me ignore the stupid suggestion I got from Lowes when I pointed the problem out to them. Their suggestion was, "Don't insert the bit all the way into the collete!" I was horrified on teo counts--selling a product without ensuring tjat the router is matched with the table, and offering a solution, which is stupid, nay dangerous if not fatal, not to mention liability if it could be proved in case of injury that the "solution" was provided by Lowes.
I thought about an extension, but wondered if it would be safe, because it would place the load on the bit further away from the collete, thereby increasing chances of catastrophic failure manifold. Thanks guys for enlightening me by confirming my doubts.
I took it back to Lowes and exchanged it for another unit of the same kind, hoping that the problem was one of a kind with the unit I got the first time. It turned out that it was wishful thinking on my part. I have a set of fifteen1/4" shank bits, (Skill) also from Lowes. I have tried the bits and the router off the table on some wood I had lying around, and it did to do an ok job, with a few blemishes, which are more a reflection of my inexperience than the tools.

I think I could make the table more useful by buying a fixed base router wih half inch collette and 1/2" to 1/4" adapater and buy 1/2" bits once I have developed my skills some more.
Doea it sound like a reasonable plan?
 

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It would help. You might consider adding a Musclechuck to the new router. Read the sticky thread about collet replacement devices and extensions under our General Routing section for more information on this.
 
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