Best Wood Router 2019 – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
Welcome! Are You Looking For the Best Wood Router in 2019?
I know if you are new to the wood router or if you want to get into routing then it can be really confusing to find the best one. Mainly because there are a lot of options, there are a lot of features and you don’t really know whether you need a half inch or quarter inch collet, normal or variable speed, a plunge router or a stationary/fixed router, router lift or router table. Also, there are a lot of technical things like horsepower, torque, RPM and many more. Therefore, I have tried my best to sort out your difficulties. You will get the comparison table, features, questions & answers, pros & cons and buyer’s guide at the bottom, all in one place.
So, get a cup of coffee & just go through this article.
Why I’m writing this article?
Once my father bought a router for the workers so that they can hollow out the wood to make some good designs for our home. But unfortunately, the motor stopped working after 30-40 minutes. The lights were working but not the motors. We send it for repair but it disappointed us again after 3 days. After that, I searched a lot on google, checked youtube videos, asked friends and finally I found the best wood router from Amazon.
I was also in the DIY club where I used different types of routers, router tables, jigsaws, cordless drills to make designs for my mechanical robot. Which of course is when I decided to write a review article on them.
Best Wood Router 2019
Here, I have made a comparison table of 15 Best Wood Router in 2019 and below that features of each of them. I have also made questions and answers ( Q&A ) related to it and the BUYER’S GUIDE at last.
|Router Name||Weight (lbs)||Warranty||Our Rating||Price|
|1. DEWALT DWP611PK 1.25 HP Max Torque Variable Speed Compact Router with LED’s
” TOP PICK | BEST COMBO KIT “
|2. Bosch 12 Amp 2-1/4 Combination Horsepower Plunge and Fixed Base Variable Speed Router Kit 1617EVSPK with 1/4-Inch and 1/2-Inch Collets
” RECOMMENDED | BEST HANDHELD ROUTER “
|3. PORTER-CABLE 690LR 11-Amp
” FOR BEGINNERS | BEST FIXED BASE ROUTER “
|4. Makita RT0701C 1-1/4 HP
” BEST COMPACT ROUTER “
|5. DEWALT DW618B3 12 Amp 2-1/4 Horsepower Plunge Base and Fixed Base
” SECOND BEST COMBO ROUTER KIT “
|6. Bosch PR20EVSK 5.6 Amp 1-Horsepower Fixed-Base Variable-Speed Router with Edge Guide.
” BEST PALM ROUTER “
|7. Triton TRA001 3-1/4 HP
“BEST PLUNGE WOOD ROUTER“
|8. DEWALT DW616 1-3/4-Horsepower Fixed Base Router
” HIGH-QUALITY & EASY TO USE “
|9. Bosch 12V Max EC Brushless Palm Edge Router (Bare Tool) GKF12V-25N
” BEST CORDLESS WOOD ROUTER “
|10. Festool 574692 Router OF 1400 EQ Imperial
” TOP ROUTER BUT COSTLY “
|11. DEWALT DW625 3-Horsepower Variable Speed Electronic Plunge Router
” BEST FOR BIG & COMPLICATED PROJECTS “
|12. Makita RD1101 2-1/4-Horsepower Variable Speed D-Handle Fixed-Base Router
” SMOOTHEST & QUIETEST “
|13. PORTER-CABLE 7518 Speedmatic 15 Amp 3-1/4 HP Fixed Base 5-Speed Router
” 5-SPEED SETTINGS “
|14. Bosch Colt GKF125CEN 1.25 HP (Max) Variable-Speed Router
” SECOND BEST PALM ROUTER “
|15. PORTER-CABLE 892 2-1/4-Horsepower Fixed-Base Router
” BEST FIT FOR ROUTER TABLES “
1. DEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router – Best Combo KitThis is the best (plunge+fixed) base router for both beginners & professionals who want to do wood design works or some trimming works.
This is one and a quarter peak horsepower DEWALT DWP611PK router which draws seven amperes and it includes an 8-foot cord that’s 18 gauge. The motor itself has a variable speed dial on it going to start at 16,000 rpm and setting 6 to 27,000 rpm and then each digit in between gives you about a 2200 rpm bump or you can just finally adjust it in between. It is recommended setting, 1 to 3 for your larger bits i.e. larger cutting bits and then for up to 6 for your smaller bits. It has a dust-free switch on it, just a plastic cover that prevents dust from getting in a switch and causing premature failure. Some people like it while some people hate it. Ultimately it’s preventing failure of your switch.
The base has a locking lever and you can pull its quick release tabs to release it from the base on the base itself. You have also a micro adjustment scale in this and it does a 360-degree turn to do all your micro adjusting. Now the way that it works is you’ve got a little aluminum ring here and when you slide that into the router just going to go ahead and pull back these quick release levers and a lock right and then as you spin the dial it adjusts it up and down, just pretty slick not too complicated and it works very smoothly and when you get whatever setting you want. Lock down the lever & you’re ready to go. The adjustment there might be a little bit complicated for somebody who just never use this style before.
The Dewalt DWP611PK comes with:
- 3-year manufacturer warranty &
- 90-day money back guarantee.
- This router has a durable 1.25 HP motor that delivers the power to meet the toughest applications.
Its variable speed control feature enables bit speed to be optimized for changing applications.
Soft-starting motor features full-time electronic feedback that maintains motor speed through the cut.
It has dual LED’s and clear sub-base ensure maximum visibility in operation.
- Adjustment ring enables controlled bit depth changes to within 1/64″ (fixed base only).
The large, low-pressure spindle lock button allows for comfortable, single wrench bit changes.
Depth ring and clamping mechanism combine to ensure motor remains locked in position (fixed base only).
Overmolded rubber handles provide a comfortable and secure grip (plunge base only).
Allows up to 1.5″ of depth travel with standard base & 2″ with the plunge base.
Aluminum motor housing and base construction provide long term durability.
Extended 8-slot 1/4″ collet maximizes surface contact with router bit shank for a tighter grip.
PROS & CONS :
|The LED lights are positioned perfectly to light your path .||If you have big paws then you will find the switch uncomfortable .|
|The Plunge base adjusts with ease. Press the lever to adjust and release to hold with confidence that it will not slip.||A 1/4" collet is very limiting in bit choice .|
|Changeover from the fixed base to the plunge base takes literally seconds.||It doesn't have the rubber back on the hand so it gets cold .|
|You can change the depth by a quarter of an inch just by flipping that around .||For longer bit , you will have to get towards the end ( 64th) which takes a little bit more time .|
2. Bosch 1617EVSPK – Best Handheld Wood Router
This is for those who need a top handheld & inexpensive powerful combo (plunge+fixed) router. Best for both beginners & experts. If you are a newbie, then you should definitely go for it.
This is a two and a quarter horsepower Bosch 1617EVSPK router which is pretty much right in the middle of the range of wood routers. Here, EVs stands for variable speed which is between 8,000 rpm and 25,000 rpm. Now, this is not a new tool by any means. This one has been out for quite a few years and that is one of the reasons why I like this unit. I love it when a manufacturer comes out with a tool that works well, everybody loves it and they don’t change it.
What I like about this unit is you will never need anything bigger, this size unit fits almost every router lifts so if you’re looking to going toward a router table in the future and you want to put a router lift in then go for it.
This is one with a stationary base, this unit is also available with the optional plunge router base, so if you come with the kit with the plunge router, you get an extra base that you can put its motor on it. The motor comes off very simply. It is quick and easy and it gives you the option that if you decide later to buy the plunge router base, you can.
There’s just a little locking lever down there which you can unlock it and then there is another tab that you can push in, which is the coarse adjustment i.e. height adjustment but if you squeeze that in, it releases the router unit and you can pull it right out.
This unit comes with a quarter inch collet and also the half inch collet. I like the security of two wrenches, it just makes things really simple and easy so to put this unit on the stationary base. They made it really dummy proof. For coarse adjustment, we need to take the little t-handle wrench which comes with it and you can put it in through the top of the table and you can use your micro adjustment from the top of the table. That’s nice, that makes things real, simple and easy to get it from the top of the table. It’s almost like a router lift.
This Bosch tool comes with a 1-year warranty.
- This Bosch router has 2.25 HP/12 Amp motor and it has a versatile speed range of 8,000 to 25,000 RPM.
- The router table’s variable speed dial allows you to set the optimal speed for the routing task and material.
- It has an electronic variable-speed motor and fixed base router kit which allows soft starts and micro-fine depth adjustments.
- With the built-in Constant Response Circuitry, your hand router will maintain a constant speed throughout the cut, so you get cleaner, more accurate results.
- Aluminum construction makes this one of our most durable routers for woodworking yet with wooden handles on a fixed base and a soft-grip handle on a plunge base.
- Fixed base has threaded holes for mounting to router table positioned in Bosch 4-hole pattern and common 3-hole pattern.
- Wide base openings and 2″ sub-base openings and provides better visibility, right or left.
PROS & CONS :
|This Bosch wood router is quite comparitively .||Overheating occurs sometimes .|
|Plunge base is smoother .||Difficult to adjust the bit depth .|
|Collet grabs the bits tight and releases them nicely when done .||Metal edges on the router has burrs and sharp edges which is not good for safety purpose .|
|If you are a noob then don't worry. Bosch explains everything , how to use it step by step .||The base will not disengage from the motor .|
3. PORTER-CABLE 690LR – Best Fixed Base Router
This tool is for those who are are looking for a cheap, compact & high-quality fixed base wood router.
This Porter-Cable 690 LR is a one & three-fourth horsepower wood router that has a powerful 11 amp, 27,500 RPM single-speed motor which is ideal for tackling a wide range of applications with accuracy and ease. It is ideal for your workshop or on the job site. The dust-sealed switch, sealed ball-bearing construction, and aluminum parts enhance the durability and performance of this tool reliable use.
This router has a cam lock lever which enables simple coarse height adjustments and motor release ( fixed base only ). Its over-mold grip provides greater comfort and less work fatigue and also, it comes with both 1/4 in. and 1/2 in. collets.
You can’t expect it to be full of great features because it is cheap and especially for beginners. This router has 1.7 horsepower motor which produces a torque of 0.34 pound-feet at a fixed speed of 27500 RPM, which is really a great force making it better than below-mentioned routers.
Size of the bits you can use is limited because the RPM is limited. In this router, you get very good accuracy up to 1/128th of an inch.
This Porter-Cable 690-LR router comes with:
- 3-year limited warranty,
- a one-year free service contract,
- and 90-day money back guarantee.
- This porter cable router has 11 amp motor ( 27,500 rpm ) which produces 1-3/4 peak HP.
- Its cam lock lever enables simple coarse height adjustments and motor release (fixed base).
- It has a micrometer depth adjustor accurate to 1/128″.
- Tool durability enhanced due to dust-sealed switch and sealed ball bearing construction.
- Precision machined aluminum motor housing and base.
- Collets included accepting 1/4″ and 1/2″ shank bits.
- Its Auto-release collet system allows you to easily remove bit after use.
- Overmolded grips help you to get greater comfort in extended use.
PROS & CONS :
|Very suitable for home hobbyist.||The bit can not be tightened enough to stay in place .|
|Suitable for doing hand works like dove tail , round over bit & so on .||Opening on the plate is too small and the collet hits the plate sometimes .|
|Its accessories fit without any special mods or plates .||Brushes sparks much .|
|Light weight and basic .||It is louder than other wood routers .|
4. Makita RT0701C – Best Compact Router
This tool is for the people who are looking for a durable & compact router especially used for classic bead corner, bead bullnose profiles or even trimming edges.
This Makita RT0701C is a one and a quarter horsepower compact router. The router comes with a standard quarter-inch collet and straight guide and it takes industry standard template guides. The fixed base takes an optional dust port for improved dust collection. Some of the features of the router include smooth rack & pinion depth adjustment system for more precise settings, a quick-release cam lock system for easy depth adjustments and base removal or installation and a heavy-duty aluminum housing engineered for increased durability. The router accepts three optional bases. The plunge base can be used to cut grooves as well as data wing mortising or inlay pattern work, it also takes an optional dust port that attaches to the base. The base comes standard with three preset stops for added precision and it can also be used with the guide rail system for multiple applications.
It comes with a 1-year limited warranty.
- It is a 1-1/4 hp compact router comes with two wrenches and a guide.
- Variable speed control dial (10,000 – 30,000 RPM) enables the user to match the speed to the application.
- This router comes with 3 different bases: Plunge, Offset & Tilt.
- It has a quick release cam lock system for easy depth adjustments and base removal/installation.
- A smooth rack-and-pinion fine depth adjustment system for more precise settings.
- Non-marring high-durability base insert for increased work piece protection.
- Durable flat top design for added convenience when changing bits.
- 1/4″ Collet.
PROS & CONS:
|Comes with 3 bases : plunge , offset & tilt.||Straight guide only works if you don't attach the plunge base.|
|Machining is tight , adjustments are easy and accurate.||Offset base do not contain collet , collet unit & hex wrench.|
|Motor never get hot after cutting full 1 inch quarter round profiles in a single pass.||Bits keeps coming loose sometimes.|
|Dust collection is decent.||Basic base plate is difficult to get on & adjust the depth.|
5. DEWALT DW618B3 – Second Best Combo KitThis is for the people who are looking best combo wood router kit for handheld jobs like dovetail jigs and more.
The Dewalt DW618B3 is a two & quarter horsepower router. Here “B3” means that it comes with 3 bases. It has a 12 Amp motor with enough power to rout smoothly through the toughest hardwoods. This is very easy to set up quickly and precise. It can get an exact depth in seconds on the plunge notch out for a mortise and a minute later using it in the fixed base or any router table for whatever else it is used for. With the 2 1/4 HP, it can handle about any bit you can think of and also it can be used with very large bits as a shaper with exceptional results. The variable speed is built in & lets you select from between 8,000 and 24,000 RPM for specific applications. So no need for an external unit to plug into. The speed can be dialed in as you are testing it on scrap or on the fly if you are burning your work, all at your fingertips.
It is awesome in terms of the warranty. It has :
(a) 3-years of Limited-Warranty
(b) 1-Year Of Free Service &
(c) 90-Day Money Back Guarantee.
- This router has electronic variable speed with full feedback control for constant speed under load from 8,000-24,000 rpm and soft start to reduce start-up torque for enhanced control.
- It has D-handle which incorporates trigger switch with a lock-on feature.
- It also has micro-fine depth adjustment ring provides precise depth adjustments in 1/64″ increments and adjusts vertically for a constant switch/cord-set location.
- Adjustable, tool-free steel motor cam lock makes depth adjustment and base changes quick and solid-looking.
- Integral, through-the-column dust collection collects 95% of the dust and provides superior bit visibility.
- Quick release motor latches for fast and easy motor pack removal for bit and base changes.
- Nickel plated motor housing for a smooth, long-lasting depth adjustment.
- Detachable cord-set offers cord-set serviceability and removes the need for a ‘shorty’ cord motor pack.
- Dust-Sealed Switch protects against dust ingestion for longer switch life.
- Precision machined brass bushings and case-hardened steel guide rods provide a smooth and accurate plunge stroke.
PROS & CONS:
|It has low center of gravity which is great for hand made jigs.||Height adjustment ring is difficult to make minor micro adjustments.|
|D-handle gives superior control and the clear bases make visibility better.||Not suitable for bigger jobs|
|Bases are very solid , well finished with comfortable handles that provide a firm non-slip grip.||Collets would not screw onto the shaft sometimes.|
|Clear sub-bases for viewing of bits.||Dust collection is not good. It blows chips away from the motor.|
6. Bosch PR20EVSK – Best Palm Wood RouterThis is for both professionals & beginners who are looking best router for carpentry, trimming deck planks, mortising hinges & any other professional jobs. If you are a woman or an aged person then this is great for you, as it is easy to handle.
The Bosch PR20EVSK is a 1-Horsepower Fixed-Base Variable-Speed Router which comes with an edge guide. It has a 5.6 Amp motor a variable speed of 16,000 to 35,000 RPM. It has a soft-start which helps in reducing the startup torque. Its Colt is designed for small-profile 1/4-inch shaft bits, which can be installed and removed rapidly.
The best thing I like in this is its fast setup ( even when changing bases ). It comes with a thin 10 mm open-end wrench, so if you are facing difficulties in depressing and holding the shaft lock, just use that wrench. It has also a wrench for collet of 17 mm. The standard base has a square sub-base, which works very well when it is used against a guide. The motor clamp or lock works easily with the thumb. This fixed variable router has a straightforward depth adjustment which makes it more easy & ideal for home use. Another thing which I like about this palm router is that it has PR004 Offset Base which permits trimming in inaccessible areas.
One thing I dislike about it is the dust combines with the grease in the exposed portion of the screw, so you will have to clean the fine adjustment mechanism regularly.
It has a 1-year warranty for Repair or Replacement of Parts.
- This is a variable-speed palm-grip router kit with soft-start and quick-lock systems.
- It is a fixed base router with a 5.6 AMP motor with 15,000 – 35,000 rpm; depth adjustment system and finger support pockets.
- This Bosch router edge guide offers a rugged aluminum fixed base that’s durable, solid, and reliable. Case Type: Hard plastic.
- Includes palm router and Bosch router accessories (drop-forged collet and shaft wrenches, collet, fixed base, straight-edge guide, case).
- This router packs big power in a small, compact package (weighs 11.8 pounds). Includes a one-year warranty.
PROS & CONS :
|For fine furniture , it is great tool for mortising decorative stringing.||One issue is that the fine adjustment mechanism must be cleaned and greased regularly.|
|It has fast setup even when changing bases.||Quality and design issues.|
|One of the great items in this kit is the PR006 Underscribe Attachment. This permits cutting very accurate joints between two laminate panels, both small and large, as the panels are being installed.||This router will NOT hold its depth setting.|
|The power cord is about a foot longer than the old unit and made with a soft material, which doesn't get tangled.||After 7 to 8 projects , sometimes it begins to slow down.|
7. Triton TRA001 – Best Plunge Wood Router
This is for people who are looking for the best plunge router for their router table due to its amazing table functionalities.
The Triton TRA001 is a three & quarter plunge router which comes with multi-function fence, a 1/2-Inch collet, a 1/4-Inch collet, and collet wrench. Yes, it is big & heavy. But this thing is a workhorse and tons of power. You will love how quick and easy it is to change the bits. Even more the ability to use as a fixed or plunge in one base. The ease and accuracy of height adjustment have helped tremendously to get it dialed in. You should know your application before buying it because it is not for light routing.
The thing I dislike about this router is that the dust collection is not good. You should be aware of the guide platform that comes with it, is only useful for over the edge guiding unless you modify it by adding material. Its guide edge is 1-1/2″, but that’s probably a plus point and not a minus.
It comes with 3-year Guarantee. To activate the guarantee you need to register it at their website within 30 days of purchase.
- This router has single button switches from conventional plunge to fixed-base router with rack and pinion mode.
- Through base, single wrench bit change is achieved with automatic spindle lock.
- Micro winder enables continuous fine depth adjustment through the full plunge mode.
- It has removable plunge spring that allows easy bit adjustment when table mounted.
- It has fully enclosed guarding provides maximum protection from the cut zone.
- Quick Access to change worn brushes.
- Soft start and variable speed provide the perfect speed for all cutter types.
- Side air vents reduce intake of dust into the motor casings.
PROS & CONS :
|It has plenty of power.||It is big & heavy.|
|Quick & easy to change the bits.||Dust collection is not good.|
|The ease and accuracy of height adjustment helps tremendously to get it dialed in.||It's a bit complicated to learn to run if you are a Porter Cable or Makita or Ryobi fan.|
|When the router is at the highest position (for changing bits) , the switch cover is locked. This is a safety feature.||The crank mechanism jams sometimes.|
8. DEWALT DW616 Router – Great Quality-To-Price Ratio
This is for the people who are looking quality router at the cheaper rate which is easy to use and also, can cut hardwood easily without burning it.
The DEWALT DW616 is a one & three-fourth horsepower router which comes with 11 Amp motor that provides enough power, durability, and versatility to do all robust jobs. This router may not be variable speed, but it cuts beautifully. It has very low vibration and is very well-built. The router has very accurate adjustments & the adjustment up and down is very simple and smooth. Changing bits is also easy. It does require the two wrenches ( included ), but the task is still simple. If you were using Dewalt DW618 then this router will fit with the plunge base and D handle that came with DW618 perfectly. The only thing I would want to be changed would be an arbor lock.
This Dewalt router also comes with:
(a) 90-Day Money Back Guarantee,
(b) 1-Year Free Service Contract &
(c) 3 Year Limited Warranty.
- This router has a micro-fine depth adjustment ring which provides precise depth adjustments in 1/64″ increments and adjusts vertically for a constant switch/cord-set location.
- It has an 11-amp motor that provides the power to rout smoothly through the toughest hardwoods.
- Quick-release motor latches for fast and easy motor pack removal for bit and base changes.
- Sub-base concentricity gauge included ensuring bit concentricity for best-in-class accuracy.
- Adjustable, tool-free steel motor cam lock makes depth adjustment and base changes quick and solid locking.
- A dust-sealed switch protects against dust ingestion for longer switch life, and the motor housing is nickel plated for a smooth, long-lasting depth adjustment.
PROS & CONS :
|Long, eight-slot collets that are self-releasing provide excellent bit retention for dependability.||This isn't a lightweight router; it's full size and full weight.|
|The router has incredibly accurate adjustments and the adjustment up and down is very simple and smooth.||It does not fit with every router table.|
|This router does not vibrate much.||It is little bit noisy in comparision to others.|
|The rubber handles have plenty of grip.||Machining on collet is odd. Turns hard and requires wrenches the whole time.|
9. Bosch GKF12V-25N – Best Cordless Wood Router
If you are looking for a best cordless router with good grip, specifically for edge routing and trimming, then this wood router is best for you.
The Bosch GKF12V-25N is a 12V Max EC Brushless Palm Edge Router which is cordless. It has a really unique design & I’ve never seen any other router like this. Due to its design, it gives you a lot more control & the center of gravity is a lot lower. Its 12-volt battery isn’t really making this top heavy at all. The switch is easy to reach because you can crawl your fingers up here to get to it as it is without changing your grip on this at all just thumb down thumb off, very easy to turn this on and off one-handed. It has a brushless motor that is optimized for a 13,000 rpm that is roughly half the speed that most other trim routers have. Let’s talk about runtime, this thing is specified by Bosch with a point two inch round over bit in the beech to get 23 feet per amp hour battery so with this 2 amp hour battery we should get 46 feet in beech. That’s a good runtime.
It has a Limited 1-Year Warranty.
- This cordless router allows easy handling with most of the tool and its gripping areas positioned over the workpiece for maximum stability when edge-forming and trimming.
- It provides ergonomic 12V Max palm edge router construction and delivers a lightweight, well-balanced design, cordless convenience, EC Brushless power and runtime for hassle-free edge routing.
- Featuring a versatile depth-adjustment system, the GKF12V-25N ensures precise fine depth adjustment (0.04 In. per dial revolution) and easy macro depth adjustment.
- It includes a drop-detection sensor that stops the motor when dropped, as well as finger barriers to help prevent contact with the bit area.
- The router’s depth adjustment lock helps prevent tampering with depth setting while the easy-change spindle lock provides easy one-wrench bit changes for maximum convenience.
- With an EC Brushless motor, the GKF12V-25N cordless router provides efficient power, with a maximum 13,000 rpm and up to 23 Ft. of round-over capacity per battery Amp hour.
PROS & CONS :
|It is cordless.||Lack of dust collection.|
|The ergonomics on this are great, especially if you actually are running roundover/chamfer bits, since your grip tends to push into the extension of the base plate.||Because the bit is offset and not centered in the base, you cannot route all 4 edges of a door without turning the door for every edge.|
|Spindle lock is awesome.||Heating issues.|
|You can grip the router pretty well and loosen the collet off easily.||Because of the low RPMs, the bit creates a lot of chatter and not a smooth edge.|
10. Festool 574692 Wood Router – Top Quality But Costly
This is only for those people who can spend more money on routers to get the best one. It is best for most routing tasks. It can be on the top spot but I ranked it at 10 due to its high price. So, if you have money then you should definitely go for it.
The Festool 574692 is a 1400 watts powerful wood router. This is a router that has a number of accessories for the accessories list is as long as the whole list of bits that are available in the catalog and so it’s basically the Batman utility belt of routers available in the Festool now, which also means that the sustainer is very well packed. There is a plunge beneath router, it plunges really easily & you can plunge this off on the side. The router itself has a little bit of a different economic to it because of its handle situation. You’ve got this to lock and unlock the plunge so you can lock it into place, unlock it fairly easily. Trigger control leaving a trigger lock and the variable speed is conveniently located for your thumb. We have a rocker switch that acts as a ratchet lock & the ratchet lock is going to be for changing out the bits. The best thing I liked the most about this router is dust collection, it is awesome. The thing I dislike is that the edge guide is sold separately, even after spending so much money.
It has a 3-Year Service (All-Inclusive Warranty) & 30-Day Money Back Guarantee.
- Festool routers are designed for increased control and reduced fatigue.
- Its integrated switches allow use with just one hand.
- Integrated dust extraction ports capture dust and debris at the point of creation, increasing visibility, prolonging cutter life, and saving valuable cleanup time.
- It can be used with edge forming bits, maximizing chip and dust extraction even around curves and corners.
- Attaches and releases quickly with the tool-free spring clip system.
- Its micro-adjustability dial allows routing with tremendous precision.
- This router is designed for use with the FS Guide Rail system, MFS multi-routing templates, and a wide range of other accessory options.
PROS & CONS :
|Dust collection is amazing.||It is overpriced.|
|The fine adjustments with the Festool parallel guide is amazingly simple and accurate.||It is little bit hard to use because your hand placement is in a different position then traditional routers.|
|It is NOT noisy.||It do not comes with edge guide.|
|The plunge height adjustments are obviously well thought out and easy to use.||No more negative reviews.|
11. DEWALT DW625 Router – Best For Complicated Projects
If you are looking for a 3 HP powerful plunge wood router with a vacuum attachment for big & complicated projects at the best price, then this is the best tool for you.
The DEWALT DW625 is a three horsepower router with a fifteen-ampere motor which uses state-of-the-art circuitry for soft starts and smooth operation. Its chip deflector and vacuum attachment still allow some chips to be distributed, but this is expected in using a high-speed router. Its variable speed motor runs with constant speed under load to ensure a quality finish in all the materials. You will like its spindle-lock button because it is a big square with a finger depression.
The only thing which I dislike about the DW625 router is that it does not offer a carrying case. It is comparatively heavier than the most router, which is not a negative point because it provides stability while using it. It makes you feel like a real woodworker and it makes you proud of the end results!
Dewalt is always good in terms of warranty and it also has :
(a) 90-Day Money Back Guarantee,
(b) 1-Year Free Service &
(c) 3 Year Limited Warranty.
- This Dewalt router has a powerful, smooth-running 15 Amp motor that generates 3 HP.
- Full wave electronic variable speeds between 8,000 and 22,000 RPM.
- The dimensions of the base are: 5-5/8 x 6-11/16 inches and weigh 11.2 pounds.
- Rack and pinion depth adjuster.
- Magnified scale; Micro-fine bit depth adjuster for faster, more accurate bit depth settings.
- It includes 1/4-inch collet, 1/2-inch collet, dust extraction adapter, template guide bushing adapter, and wrench.
PROS & CONS :
|Solid as a rock and it's quiet.||The handles are shiny hard plastic and slippery.|
|Smoother plunge system.||The switch is little bit difficult to use.|
|No loss of power or overheating.||If you want to use an edge guide or router base you will also need wing nuts. They are no longer included even though the picture on the package shows them.|
|It has vacuum attachment and chip deflector.||The chip deflector and vacuum attachment still allows some chips to be distributed.|
12. Makita RD1101 | D-Handle Wood Router
If you are looking for the smoothest and quietest router then this D-handle fixed-base Makita tool is best for you.
The Makita RD1101 is a two and a quarter horsepower router which has a powerful 11 Amp motor with variable speed. It has a great feel and is a pleasure to use. Its D-Handle gives amazing control when we are doing edge-routing or doing dadoes. Its collets are also very well built and do not let bits slide up or down while using it. There are many things which I like the most in this router, like a very gentle soft start, good silicone cord, amazing quiet operation, excellent torque at RPM & tight head bearing. The thing which I dislike the most is the complete lack of any dust collection & poor visualization of the actual cut.
It comes with a 1-year manufacturer warranty.
- This Makita router is designed with a Soft start feature for smooth start-ups and contains all-ball bearing construction for longer tool life.
- It has a powerful 11.0 Amp motor with variable speed.
- It is the quietest ( 81 dB ) and lowest vibration router in its class.
- Rugged aluminum motor housing with small 3-1/4″ diameter for easy handling.
- Sub-base accepts industry standard template guides for convenience.
- Electronic speed control maintains constant speed under load.
- It has a soft start feature for smooth start-ups.
PROS & CONS :
|It is the smoothest and quietest among of all of the routers.||Complete lack of any dust collection options.|
|D-Handle gives great control when edge-routing or doing dadoes.||Poor visualization of the actual cut.|
|The smaller opening on the base lends itself to improved stability when working over smaller stock.||Sometimes router shaft begins to wobble.|
|This Makita router has a flat top, so you can turn the unit on its head for easy access for bit changing.||It is lacking a micro spindle to make small depth adjustments.|
13. PORTER-CABLE 7518 – Router With 5-Speed Setting
If you are dealing with big bits or making heavy cuts and wants different speeds then this router is best for you because it has 5 variable speed settings.
The PORTER-CABLE 7518 is a three and a quarter horsepower router with 15 Amp motor which provides power for toughest applications and also makes it durable. It has a soft start safety feature which reduces the torque at startup and the motor maintains constant speed under load. I know over the years porter-cable has changed and cheapened their brand, but this router will remind you of the routers that Porter-Cable built 20 years ago. The thing which I liked most about this router is that you can find the ideal speed setting for your work because it comes with five-speed settings from 10,000 to 21,000 rpm. The thing which I dislike is while using the handheld, small depth adjustments are not easy like other wood routers.
It is also good in terms of the warranty. It comes with:
(a) 3-year limited manufacturer warranty,
(b) 1-year free service contract with DEWALT &
(c) 90-day money-back guarantee.
- This router provides five speeds between 10,000 and 21,000 rpm, so you can tackle a variety of jobs with ease.
- It has a soft-start feature that reduces torque at start-up and motor maintains constant speed under load.
- Auto-release collet system allows for easy bit removal after use.
- Precision machined aluminum motor housing and base.
- Its dust-sealed switch and sealed ball bearing construction enhance tool durability.
- The base includes largely integrated cast handles for enhanced stability and durability.
- Power and durability necessary for the toughest applications.
PROS & CONS :
|It has five running speeds - 10,000, 13,000, 16,000, 19,000 and 21,000 rpm.||It is heavy ( 18 pounds ) .|
|It has enough power to turn the hardest wood into sawdust.||When using the hand held - small depth adjustments are not as easy or precise as other routers.|
|Its sealed ball-bearing design keeps the dust out of the vital components for longer life.||Collets are too short and grip bits so poorly.|
|This Porter-Cable router can help improve productivity by saving you time and effort--even when you're dealing with big bits or making heavy cuts.||The problem with excessive runout is that at the speeds these motors turn, it produces vibrations that can make the router difficult to control, noisy and cause the bearings to fail prematurely.|
14. Bosch GKF125CEN – Second Best Palm Router
If you are looking for a palm wood router with better grip & control, then this Bosch tool is best for you.
The Bosch GKF125CEN is a one & quarter horsepower router with 7 Amp motor which allows it to easily round-over the edges of soft & hardwoods and easily execute pattern cuts. The included PR101 fixed base has a wide bit capacity ( it accepts bits up to 1-5/16 inch wide ). The router also comes with finger support pockets for additional stability, especially when trimming the edges. It includes a ball-joint cord swivel which helps in easier cord positioning. It also includes a durable spindle lock for fast, easy & comfortable bit changes. I really liked the white LEDs, it provides clear views of what you are doing along the way.
The thing which I dislike is that it does not offer dust collection accessory for its base.
It has a limited 1-year warranty.
- This powerful 1.25 HP (max) router has a 7.0-Amp motor that delivers abundant power for routing and trimming applications.
- The motor features soft-start circuitry, a variable-speed dial, and Constant Response circuitry to maintain speed under load.
- The Bosch GKF125CEN features a robust variable-speed palm router construction, made to provide precision and performance with a 1.25 horsepower (max) motor, advanced electronics, rugged base, and proven ergonomics and reliability.
- It has fixed base features macro- and micro-fine depth adjustment and a centerable round subbase for easy guidance.
- Features a rugged 360° (non-split) aluminum base housing with wide-bit capacity that accepts bits up to 1-5/16 in. wide.
- The durable spindle lock allows for fast, easy bit changes.
- This Palm Router package includes the router, self-releasing collet chuck, and a comfortable forged collet chuck wrench.
PROS & CONS :
|This router with electronic control over the power can mill deeper and faster on speed.||Fine adjustment control is a knurled knob with no alternative way to turn.|
|The led Lights are super nice.||Base plate is not so good .|
|The body is all aluminum and the spindle lock is a lot easier than the old design.||Needs to fit all colt Accessories too .|
|The cord also has a pivot on it which is nice.||It is hard to get a good grip on this router.|
15. PORTER-CABLE 892 – Best Fit For Router Tables
If you are searching for a mid-sized wood router for woodworking projects which can easily fit with any router tables then this tool is best for you.
The PORTER-CABLE 892 is two and a quarter horsepower router which comes with a 12 Amp motor that delivers 23,000 RPM. This fixed base router has a feature of full-time electronic feedback which maintains the speed of the motor throughout the toughest applications. You can cut the power while maintaining control of the router with the help of its dual-position switch. The thing which I like about this router is that it has a variable-speed control ranging from 10,000 to 23,000 RPM which helps you to get optimal speed all the time. The thing I dislike is the heating of motor housing after using it.
It comes with:
(a) 3 Year Limited Warranty,
(b) 1 Year Free Service Contract &
(c) 90 Day Money Back Guarantee.
- This router has 12 Amp motor features full-time electronic feedback that maintains motor speed through the toughest applications.
- The variable-speed control feature (10,000 – 23,000 rpm) enables bit speed to be optimized for changing applications.
- Release the motor, adjust bit height, and clamp the motor from above the router table with a 3/16-inch hex socket (sold separately) or model # 75301 kit (sold separately).
- Overmolded grips for greater comfort in extended use; Spindle lock feature allows for single wrench bit changes.
- Dual-position switch allows the user to cut power while maintaining control of the router.
- Weighing just 9 pounds and measuring 12.81 inches in height, the 892 is easy to handle and hold.
- It comes with 1/4- and 1/2-inch collets, a collet wrench, and a carrying case for easy portability.
PROS & CONS :
|The variable speed option really helps to prevent burning the wood and the blade.||The collet bites the bit hard and won't let it pull out.|
|It adjusts depth in small increments to allow for cuts for a dovetail joint or a router table.||The motor housing gets quite hot after continued use, and to change the bit you need to grab the housing and hold tight, so gloves or something to shield your hands from the heat is needed.|
|The router comes with 1/4 and 1/2 collet which are awesome.||It doesn't come with the automatic spindle lock .|
|It's relatively quiet, has low vibration and the shaft lock works better than others.||The tiny screws that hold the adjustment rack on the side of the motor work loose easily.|
Wood Router – Buyer’s Guide
I hope, you have now got all the information about routers. But, now the question is how to select from these 15 routers? Which will be best for my application or job?
Read all the 5 questions below. After that, you will be definitely able to decide which one to choose.
Fixed base routers are more compact & they’re usually lighter and they have handles mounted near the base, this lowers the center of gravity making them easier to balance on the edge of a workpiece. They’re also less expensive than the more complex plunging models.
Fixed base routers are often easier to mount upside down in a router table. On the other hand, there’s no denying the benefits that come with that plunging mechanism, especially if you are starting or stopping a cut away from the edge of a workpiece. If you’re cutting a deep mortise, then a plunge router may also be better suited for removing material in stages so that you don’t hog out too much at a time.
If you could only have one router though, then I think I would suggest you go with the plunge router, with it you can do just about everything you could do with a fixed base model.
Some routers come with what’s called EVS ( electronic variable speed ) and that’s an essential feature in my opinion. If you plan on using large router bits, you just have to have the ability to slow the tools’ spindle speed, if you’re going to work safely. Even small bits can benefit from slower speeds when running certain materials that burn easily. In the last few years many routers equipped with EVS.
Another feature called soft start, rather than jumping from zero to twenty-two thousand rpm the instant you hit that switch, a soft-start motor takes two or three seconds to ramp up. This dramatically reduces the sudden torque on the motor which can be hard on the bearings and on your wrists.
One more feature I found in some EVS equipped routers is an integrated feedback system which keeps the bit at a constant speed, for example, if your bit enters an area of denser grain, then the motor gets just a little bit of a boost to power so that it can keep its speed consistent and give you a consistent finish.
In my opinion, it’s worth buying a new router if the one you have doesn’t have at least a basic variable speed feature.
Outer power ratings can be confusing even misleading, for example, how can your little router be rated at 3 horsepower when your giant table saw motor is only a horse and a half. It is because of induction motors on big
machines are rated for their continuous horsepower while your brush type router motor is rated for its peak horsepower. Your router might be capable of 3 horsepower but only for a few seconds.
Some people look at amperage ratings but those can be confusing as well. They’re intended to tell you how much current you can pump through that router without burning it up. The idea is the more juice you can safely run through the tool the more oomph the motor will have but some manufacturers slap inflated ratings on their tools to make you think they’re more powerful than they are.
Fortunately, there’s an organization called Underwriters Laboratory that rates motors by testing how many amps or watts they can draw continually rather than just for a few seconds so when you’re buying a power tool like a router, look for the UL amperage rating, the higher that rating is the more power your tool has.
You can even convert the UL amp rating into horsepower by multiplying it by the volts you’re using ( usually 110 ) and dividing it by 746 i.e.
Horsepower Rating = UL Amp Rating x Volts ( 110 usually ) / 746
Now once you figure out how powerful your router really is, the next question is how much power do you really need?
I suggest at least 11 amps for a handheld router, 12 amps are better especially for heavier cuts and
hardwoods. The extra weight of a 12 amp motor compared to an 11 amp will help to reduce vibration and you’re going to get a little bit cleaner cut.
I would recommend router bits with a half inch shaft.
They vibrate less and the extra circumference around the shaft gives you four times the surface area for the collet to grip the extra metal. It also dissipates heat faster and cooler bits stay sharp longer. Now all bits are available in half-inch shafts but most routers that will accept a half inch bit will also accept a quarter inch bit with an included adapter so buy one that will take half inch bit and you can use it for quarter inch as well.
In a perfect world, we would have a different router for every bit but routers are expensive so here
are my recommendations:
- First, get a good 11 or 12 amp plunge router ( 12 if you can ). This will be your everyday use for both handheld and table-mounted tasks. Look for one with an easy to adjust micro-adjustable depth stop. If possible, test the springs before you buy, it makes sure that the plunge mechanism works smoothly. There’s nothing worse than a sticky plunge mechanism.
- Look for one with variable speed and soft start and buy the most reliable brand you can afford.
- You should also get a fixed base router to permanently mount in the router table so you don’t have to fuss with swap in and out.
- Better yet look for a router set that comes with both plunge and fixed bases. You can leave the fix in your router table and just pop the motor out and into your plunge base when you got to work handheld.
- You could even buy a second fixed base separately for the times when you need that lower center of gravity handheld as we discussed later. One router, multiple bases gives you a lot of versatility for a lot less money.
- Eventually, you may want to also add a compact trim router. This is used for your light-duty tasks where you need finer detail and it’s just easier to control the smaller router. A few brands offer these with plunge bases. This is fantastic but it costs quite a bit more, so if your budget doesn’t allow for the plunge base, buy the trim router without it but choose a brand that has a plunge base option that way you can upgrade.
From here you can buy a router which has both fixed and plunge base:
To Know More About These Wood Routers -> CLICK HERE
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