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I’m interested in buying a compact router.

If I’m not mistaken, I recall reading Pat Warner comment in one of his books his liking the Dewalt Variable Speed 1.25HP, Model DWP611PK Compact Router. I find on Amazon that it comes with LEDs and plunge base for $165 with free shipping. The Porter-Cable 1.25HP Compact Router Fixed & Plunge Base Kit is selling for $174.

I wonder if anybody would give me a recommendation, and why one is preferable over the other.

I can’t tell from the illustrations whether the “holes for premium edge guide” in the base (labeled “M”) in the attached illustration, go through the entire base to the other side. I’m interested because I’d like the option of installing an edge guide on either side to effectively capture the work piece to route a mortise. Again, I’m curious is anyone else has done this, and if so, were the guides store-bought or shop-made. If store-bought, kindly provide me the specifics and source.

I thank you in advance.
 

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Jose, can't comment on the Dewalt model, never used it. I have used the Bosch Colt a few times and was happy with it's performance.

I did purchase this one at Menards last year. Perfomax router It was on sale, for about 1/2 the regular price IIRC. I don't often have the need of a trim router, so the price was the deciding factor here. And, altho I've only used it a few times, it has performed flawlessly.
 

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There are quite a few of us with the 611 package and I have heard virtually all positive about it. I enjoy using mine when there is no need for a larger router. It's slightly more powerful than a Bosch Colt. Pat also recommended the Ridgid trim router but I have no experience with it. I bought my DW combo from Amazon Canada for $149 Canadian so shop around a bit and you may be able to beat that price.
 
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I have the Bosch Colt and it's a good router but the height adjustment leaves a little to be desired. A Luthier friend has about 5 of the DeWalt and says they're great little tools, perfect for his guitar work and trim work he does in building furniture. I've never used the PC model so can't speak to that one.

David
 

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My choice of trim router is the Makita RTO700 for which several bases are available including a substantial plunge base. Compare the two shots and I'm sure you will agree that the Makita makes the DeWalt look like a toy.
 

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I have a Colt and really enjoy using it. Plunge and fixed bases and phenominal edge guide as well. If I had it to do over again, I'd consider the Makita pretty carefully. Although many people here like their DeWalt routers, I don't like its raising and lowering mechanism very much. Personal preference comes into play. If you can, go and feel the different routers because the best thing about the little routers is how nice they are to work with freehand. I feel far more in control with my trim router for doing simple tasks. Hinge mortises are a breeze for example, and there is an extended base with twin handles that with the plunge base makes sign making easier...that attachment is available for most name brand trim routers. Not familiar with the Ridgid, but they seem to make some really fine tools, so I'd check that out too. But in general, if it's a choice between Bosch and something else, well Bosch has earned my trust.
 

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I’m interested in buying a compact router.

I can’t tell from the illustrations whether the “holes for premium edge guide” in the base (labeled “M”) in the attached illustration, go through the entire base to the other side.

I thank you in advance.
- I have the Dewalt <amongst other routers> and am quite happy with it. Can't speak to the PC router. I use it as a hand held and also use it mounted in my CNC machine on occasion.

- the holes you have marked as 'M' do indeed allow a rod to go completely through the base <if I understand your question>.

- for an edge guide I cannot comment on the one you mentioned. I use a PC 42690 and it attaches to the two holes on the long edge of the router base. It could be adjusted to use the 'M' holes by re-positioning the rods in the guide.

https://www.amazon.com/PORTER-CABLE-42690-Guide-Models-Routers/dp/B0000222V9

- you probably can't go wrong with either the PC or Dewalt and I also believe there is a lot of support here for the Bosch Colt. Me, the Dewalt does everything I need in a handheld.

- ebill
 

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I have the little DeWalt and have been happy with it. The fixed base is mounted on a board for flush trimming cabinet parts. I use the plunge base for everything else.

I don't have any experience with any of the other compact routers.

The pictures show how I used it to route dadoes using my exact width dado jig and a pattern bit.

Hope this helps.
Mike

EDIT: Yes, the holes are on both sides of the base so the guide rods can extend out the opposite side of the the base. I just looked at it.
 

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I bought a Bosch Colt for my kitchen remodel since I needed a small trim router. I checked craigslist and bought a Bosch Colt for $50 which looked brand new. It did the job but I am novice when it comes to routers.
 

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@FlyingSawdust

Hey Jose..welcome to the community...

I have both the Bosch Colt and the Dewalt 611PK. Both with most of the common accessories. Both have worked out exceptionally well. Well enough that if/when one craps out, I'll replace it with another. The only issues I've had after several years of use are that the collet on the Colt just flat out broke a couple days after I got it and one of the LED's in the 611 crapped out in short order as well. The collet was easily and quickly replaced and the LED is still out *L*...not really worried about it. ZERO problems with either unit since.
The fixed base for both IMHO takes some getting used to because of the small footprint. Very different from the larger traditional round bases found on larger routers. With safe practices and controlled use, both fixed bases work just fine and get the job done nicely. For some the big opening to the bit window on the base of the Colt might be a bit scary but certainly not a deal breaker. You just have to get used to it. I like both of the plunge bases. Both adjust easily, hold their settings and provide a stable platform to work off of. Really don't have a favorite in terms of how the plunge base feels in my hands in use. I don't use dust collection on either router. I should, but I dont.
The Colt is used primarily for smaller tasks and softer woods while I keep the 611PK for medium sized tasks and harder woods. By doing this, I don't work either to death. Dont get me wrong, the Colt can/has handled larger tasks on harder woods quite well, but since I"m fortunate enough to have both routers, I just kinda break up the work load between the two hoping to prolong the working lifespan of each.
If I had to choose one over the other, I'd go with the 611PK only because it can serve as a more general purpose router for the shop/home.
 
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I'd read about the collet issue with the Colt so I bought a couple of extra just in case. So far no problem and I've had it for a couple of years now.
 
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