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handheld router - what to get

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Forum topic by fiddlebanshee posted 09-24-2018 11:51 AM 797 views 0 times favorited 39 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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fiddlebanshee

240 posts in 3146 days


09-24-2018 11:51 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question router

Hi gang,

Now that I have my Milwaukee 5616 in my new Kreg router table lift, I really do not want to take it out again. So I am contemplating getting a second router for hand held work. what I didn’t like about using the milwaukee for hand held work is that it was rather heavy and big. So I am contemplating getting something smaller.

The type of work I’d be using this on is stopped grooves and dados on pieces that are too large for the router table, that’s really all I have used the Milwaukee for in the last years. Maybe I’d do some flush trimming at some point, I really don’t know where my woodworking will be going so I also would want something that is a bit versatile.

I am looking at trim or palm routers but I guess none of these come with a plunge base. So can you cut stopped cuts with these type of routers? I see people make carvings with them, wouldn’t that be kind of the same technique (basically dropping the router into the workpiece by hand?) Ok I guess I didn’t look very well, I see that some of them actually do come with plunge bases, like the dewalt DWP611K.

What small handheld routers do you like? Are the small powered ones (1 HP or under) carry enough punch for dados in hardwoods?

Many thanks!

-- As if I needed another hobby!


39 replies so far

View JayT's profile

JayT

5960 posts in 2411 days


#1 posted 09-24-2018 12:40 PM

I’ve got a small Craftsman trim router that is my most used tailed router. It works just fine for anything that can be done with a 1/4” shank bit, including dadoes and grooves. Because of the lower power and smaller shank, you do have to be cognizant of how much load is being applied. As long as I’m careful about how deep a cut is being taken, especially for larger diameter bits, like a 3/4 straight bit for dadoes, it does a good job. It does sometimes mean taking more passes at a shallower depth could be done with a bigger machine and a 1/2” shank bit.

And no, that is not a recommendation for the Craftsman. If doing it over again, I would spend the extra and get the Dewalt you mention.

-- In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock. Thomas Jefferson

View Kirk650's profile

Kirk650

576 posts in 948 days


#2 posted 09-24-2018 12:56 PM

I have a Bosch Colt trim router, though I don’t think they call it a trim router. Finally bought the plunge base for it, and have really gotten a lot of use out of it. I can use th same template guides that the Bosch 1617 uses.

That said, I also have a Milwaukee Body Grip router and do a lot of my heavier duty hand routing with it.

View rwe2156's profile

rwe2156

3171 posts in 1681 days


#3 posted 09-24-2018 01:06 PM

DeWalt 1Hp is an excellent tool.

I opted for the kit with the plunge base, which has proven hand.

DWP611

-- Everything is a prototype thats why its one of a kind!!

View Tedstor's profile

Tedstor

1678 posts in 2833 days


#4 posted 09-24-2018 01:09 PM

I’m in the market for a compact router (with plunge). This Makita kit will likely be the one I purchase.

https://www.amazon.com/Makita-RT0701CX7-1-1-Compact-Router/dp/B00HAQMHEO/ref=sr_1_3?s=power-hand-tools&ie=UTF8&qid=1537794450&sr=1-3&keywords=makita+router

View fiddlebanshee's profile

fiddlebanshee

240 posts in 3146 days


#5 posted 09-24-2018 01:16 PM


That said, I also have a Milwaukee Body Grip router and do a lot of my heavier duty hand routing with it.

- Kirk650

Yea that one is now stuck in my router lift, I’m not taking that out again until it dies. Being a petite woman I found the Milwaukee heavy and clumsy, and hard to handle, let alone with one hand using the grip.

-- As if I needed another hobby!

View GR8HUNTER's profile

GR8HUNTER

5121 posts in 913 days


#6 posted 09-24-2018 01:50 PM

I love my 7310 no plunge base but very easy to lower into wood with great control GOOD LUCK :<))

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

5088 posts in 2551 days


#7 posted 09-24-2018 02:58 PM

I am looking at trim or palm routers but I guess none of these come with a plunge base.

Not true, you can get the Bosch Colt with a plunge base, here. I use mine a lot more than I thought I would when I bought it.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View fiddlebanshee's profile

fiddlebanshee

240 posts in 3146 days


#8 posted 09-24-2018 03:38 PM



Not true, you can get the Bosch Colt with a plunge base, here. I use mine a lot more than I thought I would when I bought it.

- bondogaposis


Yea, I realized that as soon as I posted and edited my post. My bad.

-- As if I needed another hobby!

View Andybb's profile (online now)

Andybb

1494 posts in 804 days


#9 posted 09-24-2018 03:49 PM

Love my Dewalt DWP611K. Bosch 1617 in the table. Porter Cable above the table when I need a 1/2” collet. It may seem like a trivial thing but the light in the Dewalt is very nice to have. Get the dust collection attachments too.

-- Andy - Seattle USA

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

4784 posts in 2509 days


#10 posted 09-24-2018 04:03 PM

My vote

Dewalt 611 would be my choice

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View fiddlebanshee's profile

fiddlebanshee

240 posts in 3146 days


#11 posted 09-24-2018 04:48 PM

I guess the dewalt 611 gets an overwhelming nod from y’all. Thanks!

-- As if I needed another hobby!

View fiddlebanshee's profile

fiddlebanshee

240 posts in 3146 days


#12 posted 09-24-2018 04:52 PM


My vote

Dewalt 611 would be my choice

- AlaskaGuy

Who would’ve guessed? Lol. Can’t have enough!

-- As if I needed another hobby!

View Waldo88's profile

Waldo88

207 posts in 1497 days


#13 posted 09-24-2018 05:15 PM

Love my little Dewalt router. Barely ever use the Craftsman I have mounted in the table.

View jimintx's profile

jimintx

855 posts in 1785 days


#14 posted 09-24-2018 07:40 PM


I m in the market for a compact router (with plunge). This Makita kit will likely be the one I purchase.

https://www.amazon.com/Makita-RT0701CX7-1-1-Compact-Router/dp/B00HAQMHEO/ref=sr_1_3?s=power-hand-tools&ie=UTF8&qid=1537794450&sr=1-3&keywords=makita+router
- Tester

I got that Makita kit and I am very very impressed by every aspect of it. I purchased form H Depot, but it is sold by many outlets. I recommend it fully.

-- Jim, Houston, TX

View DrDirt's profile

DrDirt

4510 posts in 3942 days


#15 posted 09-24-2018 07:51 PM

The 1HP routers are nearly all about the same… but pick one with an LED light.

I find that the small footprint base makes it really tough to get enough light in. I put a clear home made lexan base on my colt… but have been looking at one with more light.
Getting old isn’t for sissies I guess.

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

showing 1 through 15 of 39 replies

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