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Wood Tool accessory Floor Plywood Metal


Woodworkers, contractors, carpenters, and DIYers have all used a router at one time or another. Everyone has their preference, but regardless of how the router of your choice works, it should at least include specific features that make it easy to handle. Those features can range from ergonomic handles or horsepower to electronic feedback capabilities or speed controls. Every feature should provide a useful function and offer versatility. But if you must choose between these two, consider the pros and cons of each. Table Mounted vs. Portable Routers: The Pros and Cons
If you had to choose just one, which would you choose? Why?
 

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Weird question...
If you have the actual router, you can do both. A piece of plywood and a straight piece of 2x4 gives you the table.
If you actually mean which would you prefer to use(?)...it's entirely dependent on what you need to accomplish.
If you needed to do a round over on a large tabletop, for example, I'd be doing the handheld operation, but that's just me.
 

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Theo
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Table. Because.
 

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what DaninVan said..
 
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That's a Hobson's choice, Cricket.
That's like asking if you could choose just one, what clamp would you choose?
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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As DaninVan said, it's the wrong question. You only have to purchase one router because you can get one with both a plunge and a fixed base. My fixed base is permanently mounted in a table and I use the plunge base hand-held. Both worlds, one router. Oh, and the table is shop-built so I didn't spend a lot of cash for that option.
 

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I dont believe that Oliver, He's telling porkies.
How can he make that much stuff with only 1 router?
I'm a rank amateur beginner and I have 5.

My big Makita in the table is my go to machine, hands down. But if I have to round over 600 foot of planking on all four edges..... uh uh.
 

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I would say if you had one router you should leave it on a table. Sure there may be the occasional job that can't be done on a table but I seldom do those kinds of jobs. I started a thread a few years ago on that very question and to date I have not have a job that I couldn't do on a table.
 

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Oliver (Prof. Henry)
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Okay, I actually have five routers but only one with a plunge base. It's the one I use both in my table and hand-held for plunge operations. A couple of the others are trim-style routers plus a Bsoch 1617 that lives in my CNC, and an ancient Sears router that hasn't the light of day for many years. Art (mgmine) may be correct that most jobs can be done on the table, but here's one I did the other day using the router hand-held with an edge guide.To do it on the table would require it to be face down and make it difficult to see what I was doing. Why don't I leave one in the table all of the time? Because my folding table has room for the fixed base but not enough room for the router to be attached when the table is folded. And, for the record, I indicated you could get by with one router and said, "My fixed base is permanently mounted in a table and I use the plunge base hand-held. Both worlds, one router." That's true. I didn't say I only owned ONE. Owning only one router? That would be downright silly.
 

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You're not selling this to Cambridge Analytics, are you...?
 

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No question about it, most of my posted projects could not have been possible on a router table. But, there are jobs that a router table can do best.
Here are just a few of my plunge routed projects.
 

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As has been pointed out, there are jobs that are easier to do on the router table and some that would be better not. I built a top 30+ years ago and used it mainly for cutting dadoes in drawer parts and drawer lock corner joints. This probably back in the days when 1/4" plywood was 1/4" and you could cut a nice fitting dado with a standard 1/4" bit - most of mine nowadays are cut with a flat-bottom rip blade, moving the fence as needed to get the required width. Rabbets on the edge of cabinet sides are cut using a hand-held with edge guide, dadoes across cabinet sides are cut with two passes of a hand-held and which ever guide I'm using at the time. I made some shallow drawers, wanted to cut a radius on the edges and struggled with a hand-held trim router trying to balance it on the edge - the next one will be cut on the router table as long as the table gives me enough support. Anything large, I'll clamp a support on the edge and use that, same as I do when I cut the rabbet for the back in a cabinet that I've already assembled - always more than one way to skin a cat.
 

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No question about it, most of my posted projects could not have been possible on a router table. But, there are jobs that a router table can do best.
Here are just a few of my plunge routed projects.
I continue to be impressed with the beautiful work that you turn out, and told myself that I also needed a sled after a posting where you showed using it to cut the inside profile of some projects. Maybe one of these days, as I can see it being the easy way to round over the inside and outside edges of drawers and similar boxes. The base would have to be pretty tall though to use it for cutting the rabbet inside cabinet boxes - guess I'll stick with clamping on a support for now.
 

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First choice is table, as that is what Bob and Rick taught me..

Second is hand held , as that is what @harrysin taught me....(along with so many over the years....)
 
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