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Bigger isn't always better.

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Review by Loren posted 06-01-2008 09:07 PM 2592 views 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Bigger isn't always better. No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

I have 8 routers and this one is my favorite.

I will confess that several of my routers are older or
have limited features and I’ll just leave them set up with
the same bit for a long time. Having a lot of routers
lets you do that. An old Craftsman from a garage
sale never got used for anything but trimming edge-banding.

This Festool router is lightweight and it is easy to use
with one hand. It has variable speed, excellent
dust collection and smooth plunging action. The plunge
depth stop system takes a bit of getting used to.
My other plunge router is an Italian made DeWalt
and it’s mechanism is easier to understand, but heavier -
and weight-reduction is probably why the Festool has
it’s peculiar arrangement.

Many readers will get to thinking that this isn’t a good
router because it doesn’t take 1/2” shank bits. That’s
a mistake. This router handles like a dream and it’s
great for light mortising work too.

Honestly the Festool stuff is really expensive and it’s not
all as great as the “cult of Festool” would have you believe…

but this is a superb router for handheld work.

I would never use this router in a router table.

It comes in a nice Systainer case. Mine came with a nice
fence but newer ones don’t.

The design is extremely well thought-out and the fit and
finish are flawless.

I’m not sure I would have bought this router if the Festool
OF 1400 EQ were available at the time. Tool-greed would
have probably got the better of me and I would have gone
for the 1/2” collet on the 1400 – which I didn’t need because
I had 3 half-inch routers already… but you know how wood
butchers are about tools.

I’m very happy with the OF 1000 though. It’s hard to choose
a favorite router to do everything – but I’m pretty sure this
is the best-handling plunge router on the market.

-- http://lawoodworking.com




View Loren's profile

Loren

7624 posts in 2314 days



3 comments so far

View USCJeff's profile

USCJeff

1044 posts in 2734 days


#1 posted 06-01-2008 11:28 PM

I’m with you on the multiple routers. I didn’t “get it” when I got started WWing. I had a cheap Skil router when I upgraded to a larger Dewalt. I gave it away to a friend since I didn’t “need” it. oops. Live and learn. Routers are always needed. I now have 3 and am good with those three. 2 are laminate routers (Bosch Colt and generic HF junker). They pretty much keep the same bit full time. One will have a chamfer and the other a roundover. My Dewalt is in a table, but has a plunge base I could switch to should the small ones not be able to handle a free hand job. The Bosch is my freehand go to router. Inlay, edges, flush trim, and hinges are a breeze. The HF is mounted in my bandsaw extension. It only does light bearing guided work.

The collet size isn’t so bad for me either. The Dewalt can use either, but I only have one 1/2” bit compared to a few dozen 1/4” ones. I will likely gradually change that as I upgrade, but I get by fine with the smaller size so far.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View Tony Z's profile

Tony Z

205 posts in 2456 days


#2 posted 06-02-2008 02:40 AM

Great review. Very honest. I especially liked the ’ Festool cult’ comment.

-- Tony, Ohio

View tooldad's profile

tooldad

657 posts in 2381 days


#3 posted 06-03-2008 06:19 AM

Once you go 1/2” collet it is hard to go back. I use my trim router for roundover mostly. I have 5 PC 1 3/4 HP fixed base (3 are in router tables, one has a dovetail, and other is changeable, but now it has a flush trim bit), on PC plunge router, don’t use it much. and a 1.5HP Ryobi that is used for general purpose, and 1 Ridgid trim router. Don’t ever get rid of a router unless you burn them up. I have actually burned up 2 Ryobi 2HP routers over the past few years using them in a dedicated stile and rail router tables. But I can’t complain, because I can’t count how many raised panel doors I did in that amount of time. The secret is not to overwork a router and it will last no matter the brand. However the 1.75 PC fixed base is a staple in the router world.

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