Router Forums banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
260 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all.

I am a fairly experienced carpenter, but have spent most of my life doing production type work. I really want to try my hand at building some things that are pretty.

I have a cheap craftsman router/table setup and I have had a little fun with it, but I quickly learned that I need something much better.

I am intrigued by shapers and I have seen some that look like the would do a lot of the same work a router/table will do. I understand that the speeds are different, but I believe there are a few shapers out there that can handle the different speeds.

Well any I have someone offering to sell me a Rockwell/Delta 43-120 with some cutters and different sized bushings thrown in for a total of $250. This will cost me a drive of about 2 hours, but I am in the LA area and everything cost you about a 2 hour drive :)

So what do you guys think of the price? Do you think this is a good move or should I hold on to my $250 and put it towards a higher end shaper with more range? All input is welcome and if you think I should be talked out of the deal altogether please share it or if you think I should try to get the price down let me know that as well.

Thanks for the help in advance. What I have read on the forums so far leads me to believe there are a great bunch of guys here and I look forward to picking your brains in the future ;)
 

·
Official Greeter
Joined
·
20,260 Posts
Welcome to the forum, Fred.

Many members have built something "pretty" without a shaper.

What did you have in mind and why do you feel you need something 'much' better?

What other tools do you have?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,909 Posts
I wouldn't go for the deal. Shaper cutters are expensive and you are limited to what you cna do with a shaper for example if you wanted to make dove tails then you would be out of luck. Look on Craigs list for a good used router thee are plenty of them and with the money you save you can get some bits for it. If you are new to routers check out the MLCS web site for a good selection.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
435 Posts
Ditto - went to the fine woodworking forum and found this "I had one many years ago. Mine had a 1 HP motor, but 1/2 HP was also available. It actually cut pretty good because you had to feed the wood slowly as it was underpowered. With the Delta HD you tend to feed the wood too fast because you have plenty of power. Since you have less cuts per inch cut quality suffers. It had a small table and was very unstable when moving using the retractable casters. The big motor hanging on the back caused the instability. I upgraded to a Delta heavy duty shaper, which I still use, and a Hammer saw/shaper combo has made it's way into my shop. I would probably past on the 43-120 and get a Jet or Grizzly medium duty shaper or a Delta heavy duty shaper."

I would stay away from shapers and go with a nice table (wide) and quality router, but we all have to live with our choices so the decision is yours.

good luck - Baker
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,711 Posts
I'd stay away from that shaper.. it is only 1/2" spindle. I recommend if you are determined to have a shaper, get one that has at least 3/4" spindle capability! Unless you are running a production shop, as already mentioned, router bits are generally considerably less expensive than shaper cutters.

There are things you can do on router table that you cannot do on a shaper! I have both, so speak with some knowledge on the subject. I'd do the router table first and when and if it no longer meets your needs look for a good shaper. You may never get to that point!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
167 Posts
Hello Fred,

Welcome to the forums.

Have never used a shaper before, but have come to learn that there is alot that can been done with a router. there is alot of knowledgable people on this site who can probably figure out a way of doing any job with a router that you can do with a shaper. Within reason of course.

Cheers, Chris.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
260 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Welcome to the forum, Fred.

What did you have in mind and why do you feel you need something 'much' better?

What other tools do you have?
I have an old Shopsmith Mark V 500 with a few accessories (some of these are shaper acc, but honestly that set up looks a little sketchy) and it has been a fun machine, Compound Miter Saw of decent quality, Contractors TS, 5-6 yr Old RAS and new, cheap craftsman router/table combo. I have had a bit of fun with the router/table, but honestly the system I got has really just taught me that it is not nearly as good as what I would like to have. Btw I also purchased "The Complete Illustrated Guide to Routers". I hope that doesn't make me sound too nerdy, but I have so little experience in "Fine" woodworking that I am not only unsure as to how to do some things, I am also unsure as to what there is that can be done.

The reason I have looked into shapers is that the info for router tables and the shear number of products/price ranges has my mind boggled. I looked at shapers and thought "oooooh I get that and how that works" and there aren't 1,000 variations. Actually there probably are, but in the range of $350-$1,500 its pretty easy to follow.

There is also the cost. It seems like whenever I see a router table/router setup that I really like it ends up costing a lot of money. Shapers are numerous, especially used ones, but router tables... I see them, but not anything making me shiver with need.

After what has been posted so far I think I will steer away from the Rockwell that I mentioned and look at more router tables.

I doubt anyone would say "Fred just go buy this.", but I am almost to the point I wish someone would. :lol:

If anyone has a recommendation on a great, but reasonably priced setup please let me know.

And because I am not totally walking away from the shaper idea let me ask what you guys think of these Grizzlies

G0510Z 3/4 HP Shaper
G1035 1-1/2 HP Shaper (Sorry I would have linked them, but I am too new to forum to post urls)

I like the price on the first one. I don't think my wife will let me spend what the other one cost :unsure:

Thanks guys
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,711 Posts
Well, the Grizzly G0510Z, also a 1/2" spindle machine does have one advantage. It does come with a spindle to allow using router bits. AT 8900 RPM, the spindle speed is marginal for router work.. most routers run from around 10,000 to 22,00 RPM or so. Although Grizzly does have a fair selection of 1/2" shaper cutters, there are not near as many as available in 3/4". You can run 3/4" cutter with bushings, but with a 3/4HP motor, very light cuts may be necessary. It will about as much a compromise as your current Craftsman router table.

You don't need to buy a highend table to be way better than the Craftsman. Here is one nice example...

Best router table

There are also cast iron router table tops available, but that isn't necessary either. Guess it depends whether you want to make decisions based on wants or needs. But only you can determine that! But buying a low end shaper will disappoint just like buying a low end router table.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
12,004 Posts
Fred, shapers are for production shops for the most part. If you want to build projects almost any router will allow you to do much more. You do not need to spend a ton of money to get going.

A good table that will handle just about any job is the Grizzly T10432, about $130. Other companies sell similar tables for a lot more minus the leg set.

The most cost effective way to go with a router is one of the combo kits. This gives you a fixed base for table mounting and a plunge base for free hand work. The motor is switched between the bases to help keep the cost down. Bosch routers are my favorites and the 1617EVSPK is what all other combo kits are styled after. This kit has a motor that draws 12 amps and is industrial quality. I think you can find them now for under $200. If your budget allows the MRC23EVSK is a 15 amp version with more nice features for about $120 more.

I highly recommend that you get brass set up bars; this is the easiest way to make most of your height adjustments. Many companies offer these sets and the one shown is from Rockler and it is often on sale for $15.

The bit set shown is from Woodcraft and it includes the 10 most popular router bits. They are often on sale for about $50 and it is the set I suggest for people starting out. These bits will let you perform most routing tasks and are decent quality. Since most members make mistakes at first (I know I did) it is better to trash a $5 bit than a $30 bit.

There are plenty of other options out there but I feel these are worth considering.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,535 Posts
Fred, shapers are for production shops for the most part. If you want to build projects almost any router will allow you to do much more. You do not need to spend a ton of money to get going.

A good table that will handle just about any job is the Grizzly T10432, about $130. Other companies sell similar tables for a lot more minus the leg set.

The most cost effective way to go with a router is one of the combo kits. This gives you a fixed base for table mounting and a plunge base for free hand work. The motor is switched between the bases to help keep the cost down. Bosch routers are my favorites and the 1617EVSPK is what all other combo kits are styled after. This kit has a motor that draws 12 amps and is industrial quality. I think you can find them now for under $200. If your budget allows the MRC23EVSK is a 15 amp version with more nice features for about $120 more.

I highly recommend that you get brass set up bars; this is the easiest way to make most of your height adjustments. Many companies offer these sets and the one shown is from Rockler and it is often on sale for $15.

The bit set shown is from Woodcraft and it includes the 10 most popular router bits. They are often on sale for about $50 and it is the set I suggest for people starting out. These bits will let you perform most routing tasks and are decent quality. Since most members make mistakes at first (I know I did) it is better to trash a $5 bit than a $30 bit.

There are plenty of other options out there but I feel these are worth considering.
That right there is enough to get anyone off to a great start with quality tools. The Grizzly table is a very good value, and in short time you'd be able to build a decent cabinet to replace the steel legs. The Bosch 1617 is my favorite router, but i've not held an MRC23 yet!!

While at Grizzly, this set of bits H5561 Router Bit 12 pc. Set, 1/2" Shank might be reasonable to add to the table order. While there, they sell Bill Hylton's "Router Magic" book for about $16--that's $9 less than i paid for it used and it's chock full of jigs, plans and techniques. Building some of your own shop stuff hones skill and makes all of this a lot more affordable.

Best wishes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
260 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Guys thanks for all the input. I am stepping away from all shapers - at least for a time and I now have a shopping list that I can actually understand and follow. I am excited about it and I intend to use Mike's list and I am ordering "Router magic".

As soon as I use this new equipment (prob take me a couple months to work that out) I will post the results with pics.

Again guys thanks and I think I have found the forum for me :)

Fred
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,266 Posts
The Bosch 1617 is my favorite router, but i've not held an MRC23 yet!!
when you do you will not regret it...
you will take it home and your '17 may just get neglected..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
31,266 Posts
Well...i do have two 1617's. And a Hitachi M12V2 that i rarely use. Selling a 1617 and the Green Monster would pretty much fund an MRC23 and HAS been rolling through my mind!!
sell a '17!!!!

can we offer a 12 step program of some sort????
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top