Bosch Colt Palm Router-inspection - Router Forums
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 03:19 AM Thread Starter
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Default Bosch Colt Palm Router-inspection

I am a hydraulics machinist, and have extensive inspection tools, put them to use on this newly purchased Bosch Colt variable speed router.

First off, I have read many reviews on this tool, looking closest at the bad ones.
Some complaints I came across,

Faulty lock button.
Bad run-out at collet.
Base out of square.

Lock Button, well, they included a 10mm wrench for the spindle as well as a 17mm for the collet nut, I would rather use the wrenches. The button seems fine.

The collet, major problem there.
Some how, the collet was very tight, with no tool in it. The collet was sprung, making it hard to get a tool in it. It is so bad, the collet with nut had to be removed to push a tool into it.
I use a precision ground 1/4" drill blank 4" long for the test.
The test piece ran out at .012", probably more then 1/4" 3" out toward the end.
I went back where I bought it, the salesman handed me the collet out of the display router.
This collet was much better, showing near zero runout near the nut and only .002"- 3" out from the nut.
I am fine with that.

For the base being square to a cutter test,
I tapped on the test rods end lightly with a piece of wood, until it ran true, as the rod ran true at the nut.
Then using a small Master square, checked the base to the test rod, from the four corners of the base, nearly perfect alignment.

I am just guessing that when the router was test ran, the collet may have been very loose on the spindle, then suddenly run up tight and sprung it. Perhaps just a one in ten thousand.
Something to look for when first opening the box.

With a dial indicator on the test rod, I found the collet needs to be pretty tight to run true- about as tight as the two wrenches provided can within reason get it, of course it could be over done by a weight lifter.

The manual, I think is good, explains the how to make it work clearly enough.

I had a slight problem removing the motor from the base and replacing it, using the little arrows.
Soon found, looking in the base- and aligning the pin with the ramp on the motor, made that more easy and quick for me.

Testing on various woods, this little router does a good job- me happy.

Don

Last edited by Sawdust Don; 12-20-2012 at 03:35 AM.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 05:22 AM
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Hi Don

Thanks for the review. The run-out problem on the Colts (and the EU version, the GKF600) is something which appears on a number of hobby CNC fora as well. The frequency of these comments makes me suspect that Bosch have had a quality control with their collets from time to time. There are high accuracy collets and collet nuts made by PreciseBits for the Colt/GKF600 but on the same web site you will find a very informative test and videos which show the problem you have highlighted. PreciseBits is of the opinion that QC or manufacturing on the Colt/GKF600 is less rigorous than it used to be because of a massive increase in reported problems with the tool since late 2012. If you need a Colt/GKF600 for accurate work their report is worth reading. Fortunately for a lot of conventonal trim work this is less important, but were I doing inlay work or using a Colt/GKF600 in a CNC router I'd take note

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Phil

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 07:00 AM
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Thanks for the review Don. I get a little suspect whenever I encounter a collet nut that is tight with no tool installed.
The weak spot on the Colt, to me anyway, are the depth adjusting threads tapped into the aluminum motor housing. The first kit I recieved, those were partially stripped. Seems like it would be easy to do should one attempt to adjust bit depth without releasing the lock lever.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 08:50 AM
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On many routers all it takes is tightening the collet without a bit to create the problems mentioned, this is the nature of the self releasing collet isn't it? I had one Craftsman router I bought used where the collet had been over tightened this way and I used a small blade on a tiny pocket knife to slightly spread the slots apart and problems solved.

Thanks for taking the time to do the in depth report Don.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 12-20-2012, 11:36 AM Thread Starter
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I managed to keep the collet that came with the router.
Looking at the Precise Bits site, I did the mark/ink the side of the collet they suggest, to see if their ER collet conversion will work with a given router.
The replacement collet had contact about midway up the taper bore.
The original collet had contact only at the narrow bottom.

I pried the original collet out of the nut, noticed that the collet is single angle, where it has a flat face that meets the nut. On the face of the collet, it was machined "not ground", the machined surface was rough "dull tool cut it".
I smoothed the machine marks by using 800grt wet dry paper on a granite flat.
The original collet went from .012" runout to .004", but, the collet does not hold a tool stable because it holds mostly at the rear, when tight, the end of the tool can be pushed out of true with finger pressure.
The replacement collet holds good. And, testing this time using a tenths indicator, the collet ran .00035".

To get it to run that true, I get the nut just finger tight, while rotating the tool in the collet, I can feel the right spot, then use the wrenches to finaly tighten it.
All the various collet systems I have work better doing that.

The store display router has had considerable abuse, probably plenty from me as, I picked it up every time I was in there, tried the fine adjustment with the base locked.
The about 1/3 exposed threads on the base, is looking pretty bad, but still works.
When the base is unlocked, it can spin off and fall on the floor, did that twice-OOPs.

The new router I bought, the base is "of course" much tighter, and when turning to lock it into the fine adjustment threads, it goes in with a snap, wont just fall off like the hammered display router.

On the Precise Bits site, they say its alittle less then 50-50 that a router is going to be a good one. And other reviews seem to indicate there could be problems.
On that, I felt its worth paying more at a local store then the online deals. Then, you can more easily take it back and try another.

Don
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-13-2013, 03:47 PM
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I experienced the same problem with the collet. When I pushed a bit into it, it broke. I had to buy a new one. The new one worked fine. I actually came on this forum to inquire about it before. Not happy it happened to you, but feel vindicated that it wasn't just me "not reading the manual".
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-14-2013, 01:23 PM
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Bosch stands behind their products 100%. If you have a problem contact them and they will make it right. I wish all manufacturers were as easy to deal with.

Mike
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 12:38 AM
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I recently bought a Bosch Colt and I believe I'm having some of the issues mentioned here with the collet but want to be sure as this is my first small trim router.

First, it's a 1/4" collet and when trying to put a 1/4" bit into it I cannot do it. I feel like I have to hammer it in. Even then I don't feel like it's going in right. I even took it the collet off and tried to put a 1/4" bit in and it's extremely difficult. Any ideas? Get a new collet?
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 12:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blobula View Post
I recently bought a Bosch Colt and I believe I'm having some of the issues mentioned here with the collet but want to be sure as this is my first small trim router.

First, it's a 1/4" collet and when trying to put a 1/4" bit into it I cannot do it. I feel like I have to hammer it in. Even then I don't feel like it's going in right. I even took it the collet off and tried to put a 1/4" bit in and it's extremely difficult. Any ideas? Get a new collet?
the collet is not completely releasing...
call Bosch CS... you'll be glad you did...
I don't know what to tell you otherwise because I've never run into this any of mine...

after thought... do have an imported bit that isn't a true ¼'' shank???
did you clean the collet and the bit's shank???

http://www.routerforums.com/attachme...outer-bits.pdf
http://www.routerforums.com/attachme...aintenance.pdf
http://www.routerforums.com/attachme...er-collets.pdf

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Last edited by Stick486; 07-11-2015 at 01:12 AM.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 07-11-2015, 01:05 AM
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The bit is most likely imported and not a true 1/4". I should probably go buy a Bosch or Diablo bit and see what the results are.
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