Router for a Newb -- Under $200 I hope - CL or Ebay?

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Forum topic by PatrickIrish posted 01-10-2013 05:49 PM 1596 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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120 posts in 2068 days

01-10-2013 05:49 PM

So I need a router….ok ok I want a router. I’m noticing all the projects I cant do or do in a difficult wat because I dont have a router. Just making a zero clearance insert was a chore and trying to duplicate it will be tough with a jig saw, sander etc.

What are your thoughts on buying a used one from Craigslist or EBay? I worry the bearings could be shot. Also, many routers tend to sell on ebay for maybe $40 less than knew, to me thats not a deal enough worth it.

I plan on either builder a stand alone router table or a bench top one, havnent decided in my limite space garage.

I was looking at the Bosch 1617 kit. Amazon has it for $217 shipped. I also think Lowes carries it and I can find a 10% coupon. Just saves tax so the same as Amazon really.


22 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

4998 posts in 2516 days

#1 posted 01-10-2013 06:02 PM

The 1617 was $199 in Lowes the last I looked, and is a fine choice for a dual base kit. The other one worth looking at is the Milwaukee 5616, but it’s a little higher. The Milwaukee has a built in through the base adjustment for a router table, I’m not sure if the Bosch has that. But either one would be fine. I don’t poo-poo buying from CL or e-bay, but I think you may be just as well off buying new in the case.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Marcus's profile


1163 posts in 2042 days

#2 posted 01-10-2013 06:02 PM

I love my Bosch 1617 and have no complaints. I think Rockler has a pretty good deal on a Porter Cable router right now, but I dont have any more info (a friend mentioned it to me).

View felkadelic's profile


218 posts in 2563 days

#3 posted 01-10-2013 06:03 PM

The Bosch has through the table adjustment (provided that there’s a matching hole in your router plate), so don’t let that feature sway you toward the Milwaukee

View Cole Tallerman's profile

Cole Tallerman

392 posts in 2208 days

#4 posted 01-10-2013 06:03 PM

I love my bosch and its also great in a router table.

View pintodeluxe's profile


5702 posts in 2836 days

#5 posted 01-10-2013 06:09 PM

There are a lot of people touting the 1617. I like Bosch tools and I have a Bosch router, but I would look at Dewalt. I have been so impressed with my Dewalt 618 combo kit. Good power, and accurate too. It has cut dovetails, inlays, circles and dados flawlessly.

I personally don’t like the way you switch bases on the 1617 – you have to align it and carefully twist it in. The 618 just drops straight in. The handles are very comfortable on the 618 as well, tied with the Freud 1700 for best handles. With the wooden handles on the 1617, you either love them or hate them.
Sometimes it is the little things like ergonomics that separate a good tool from a great one.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View a1Jim's profile


117115 posts in 3600 days

#6 posted 01-10-2013 06:16 PM

If this is a hand held Router I strongly recommend a “D” handle router for it’s ease of control. I have had very good luck with PC routers ,I like the availability of parts and accessories for PC routers and I don’t feel they are as top heavy as the Bosch. I have been using the the PC 691 it does not have soft start but if you have a “D” handle router it’s less important than a router with two side handles.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Bsmith's profile


330 posts in 2693 days

#7 posted 01-10-2013 06:20 PM

Go new. Sounds like your’re on the right track. You probably won’t save any money buying a used one.

-- Bryan

View crank49's profile


4032 posts in 2994 days

#8 posted 01-10-2013 06:31 PM

Not a tool I would buy used.

View PatrickIrish's profile


120 posts in 2068 days

#9 posted 01-10-2013 06:37 PM

Do the 5616 and Dewalt 618 have through base height adjustment while mounted in a table?

View Loren's profile


10476 posts in 3671 days

#10 posted 01-10-2013 06:57 PM

You won’t go wrong with any of the name brands.

There are differences in features though, so consider:

> how is dust collected? (Black and Decker owned brands shave a patent on
collecting it through the plunge column, which is a nice system).

> Can you adjust the height in a router table through
the base? (you can with Milwaukee and Triton and probably
some others).

View NiteWalker's profile


2737 posts in 2600 days

#11 posted 01-10-2013 08:50 PM

Go with the bosch 1617evspk kit. It’s a great combo. Avoid the dewalt dw618 kit. The motors have reliability issues. And buy new for the warranty.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Purrmaster's profile


915 posts in 2116 days

#12 posted 01-10-2013 08:58 PM

You might want to check CPO reconditioned tools. At the advice of someone on forums I found my Bosch 1617 kit there. It’s performed flawlessly and is in just as good shape as the brand new tool. Same warranty as well.

View Tedstor's profile


1643 posts in 2655 days

#13 posted 01-10-2013 09:06 PM

Milwaukee body grip routers look awfully nice. Reasonably priced and come with a 5yr warranty.

View bandit571's profile


20211 posts in 2706 days

#14 posted 01-10-2013 09:09 PM

I walked into Sears about a year ago….

Spent about $170 out the door..

for a 2hp router “kit”. Came with a carry-all bag, and both a 1/4” and a 1/2” collet. Has a few other features I like, such as a LED light, Electronic Soft Start. Plunge base even has a way to adjust while in a router table, and they supplied a wrench to do it with. Almost all metal. Bases are able to use Porter-Cable style bushings, without any problems. Might check to see IF they will have another sale…

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View elingeniero's profile


25 posts in 2132 days

#15 posted 01-10-2013 09:10 PM

Dewalt or Bosh combo kits. Buy an aftermarket offset base plate if you don’t get a D-handle base. I like Pat Warner’s offset base plate.

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