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Router Table recommendations for a $ 200 budget

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Forum topic by woodman44 posted 04-30-2013 03:08 AM 4778 views 0 times favorited 28 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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woodman44

39 posts in 1380 days


04-30-2013 03:08 AM

Topic tags/keywords: resource

I have done some research on router tables and have come up with the following three company choices.

1. Bosch – RA 1171 ($ 159) or RA1181 ($ 179)
2. Grizzly – T 10432 ( $140) or W2000 ($ 235)
3. Kreg – PRS2100 ( $ 229) or PRS 2000 ($ 200)

Any recommendations on any of these or others is greatly appreciated. I am trying to be a an avid retired DIYer who last made anything out of wood was back in Jr. High School woodshop class.

Thanks,
Ken

-- Ken, Michigan


28 replies so far

View kdc68's profile

kdc68

1996 posts in 967 days


#1 posted 04-30-2013 03:24 AM

Can’t comment on your choices…You could purchase a top, then make your own cabinet with storage to suit your needs…Here is mine as an example… But if you do a search here will find a lot of great router table builds

Top was purchased from Rockler’s

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=31809&site=ROCKLER
v
Here’s mine
v

v

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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Bernie

414 posts in 1527 days


#2 posted 04-30-2013 03:32 AM

Ken – as for a router table, I’m not familiar with your wish list. I bought a Rockler with a Jessem lift and that is an important part of my workshop. Think of your purchase as an investment and buy the best you can. I retired 3 years ago and I’ve become an avid DIYer and furniture builder. Last year I spent 11 months remodeling our kitchen which involved taking down 2 carrying walls and extending the new kitchen into the barn area. The job has paid for all the tools I own and I have quite the collection. A contractor priced my job at $60,000 and I did 98% of the work. I spent $14, 348.27 which included new cabinets, quartz countertops, sink, dishwasher, LED lighting, dishwasher and all the material. The router table alone allowed me to make my own molding and doors for my country hutch and a few other items. I made about 100 ft of a fancy molding I saw in a store for $9/ft. The lift allows me accuracy so consider one in your future.

After seeing what I’ve done with all my tools, my wife keeps asking me if I need any new tools. Your workshop is an investment and can be worth its’ weight in gold.

By router table, I hope you are only talking the top, not the cabinet which is an item you want to build. There are lots of plans out here on the net and building your own shop furniture and cabinets is your woodworking classroom. My very 1st panel doors are in my router workstation. Welcome to retirement and do stay busy.

-- Bernie: It never gets hot or cold in New Hampshire, just seasonal!

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Bernie

414 posts in 1527 days


#3 posted 04-30-2013 03:34 AM

Kdc68 posted his comment as I was typing and he has the same top I have. His lift also looks familiar. Nice build kdc…

-- Bernie: It never gets hot or cold in New Hampshire, just seasonal!

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kdc68

1996 posts in 967 days


#4 posted 04-30-2013 03:39 AM

+1 Bernie...
” I hope you are only talking the top, not the cabinet which is an item you want to build. There are lots of plans out here on the net and building your own shop furniture and cabinets is your woodworking classroom ”

Bernie...Thanks for the compliment

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

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copcarcollector

159 posts in 807 days


#5 posted 04-30-2013 03:41 AM

On your list, I have the Bosch RA1181. I chose it over the other Bosch table as the 1181 has an aluminum top. But looking again at the picture of the 1171 that one might be better for dust collection or at least containment, as the 1181 has just the side legs and no cabinet underneath.

I only used mine a few times to put some channels into MDF. I have since moved to the larger Kreg full size set up.

View TorxNut's profile

TorxNut

58 posts in 587 days


#6 posted 04-30-2013 04:05 AM

I’ve had the Bosch RA1181 for a couple years. My workshop is kind of small and I didn’t feel I had the room for a table much bigger. A plus for this table is the many accessory parts that come with it. Feather boards, different guards, fence parts, etc. The router plate was not drilled to fit my PC 7518 so I had to do that myself. I also replaced the power switch with a larger paddle type unit. Above table dust collection is pretty good but a fair amount can get under the table depending on the bit and table insert.

I have no big complaints about the table and think it’s a decent value that has worked well for me.

Bill

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Loren

7739 posts in 2338 days


#7 posted 04-30-2013 04:13 AM

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Tomj

204 posts in 1072 days


#8 posted 04-30-2013 07:20 AM

That Veritas table looks nice but there is no miter gauge, though you could just build your jigs to slide along the front parallel to the bit. Also, you would need to build a fence for it.

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Woodmaster1

498 posts in 1277 days


#9 posted 04-30-2013 10:57 AM

I have the rockler table & the rockler lift. They seem to work fine for me.

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2710 posts in 1267 days


#10 posted 04-30-2013 10:59 AM

You could build a very nice router table for $200.
2 layers of MDF glued together, edge banded with hardwood, then laminated with formica makes for a great top. Depending on the router used, a plate is largely unnecessary. If you use one of the triton routers for example, you don’t need a plate at all. You can rout an area for shop made inserts. The stand can be a simple affair made of 2×4’s.

If buying is still your ideal way to get a router table in the shop, I would either raise the budget a bit and get rockler’s router table setup, or the kreg looks nice too.

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

View gtbuzz's profile

gtbuzz

366 posts in 1132 days


#11 posted 04-30-2013 01:25 PM

If you absolutely set on buying instead of building, I’d check out the Bench Dog ProTop Contractor table. I have that one myself and it’s a very nice table. The Bosch tables looked nice but I was worried about some QC issues. Didn’t really consider the other tables as I wanted something with a closed base to help keep dust under control.

I’ve noticed that my local Rockler has it in stock, so if you wait until they have one of their 20% off coupons, you can get it for a hair over $200.

As much as I like it though, I’d still recommend building your own. It’s more of a bang for the buck proposition as well as making sure you get something exactly the way you like it.

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BinghamtonEd

1436 posts in 1060 days


#12 posted 04-30-2013 01:55 PM

I also have the Bench Dog gtbuzz mentioned. It is a decent table and does everything I need, and I purchased it before I had experience making any sort of cabinet, however I will make my own next time. If you can, I’d recommend you build your own. But if you don’t, the Bench Dog is nice. I’ve probably had this table for 3 years, and it has served me well, and has bridged the gap between needing one and not having the ability to build one, and being able to build one (now I just don’t have the time).

I added a switch box to the outside, along with some hooks to hang push sticks. Made a mobile cart with shelves and a drawer for bit storage (see my projects, have since added the drawer).

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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TOM

71 posts in 681 days


#13 posted 04-30-2013 05:35 PM

Why not make your own – customized to exactly what you want?

View bbasiaga's profile

bbasiaga

112 posts in 685 days


#14 posted 04-30-2013 10:25 PM

i have the prs2000 fro Kreg. I like it. Very basic and gets the job done. Light and stores away easy.

-Brian

-- Part of engineering is to know when to put your calculator down and pick up your tools.

View felkadelic's profile

felkadelic

193 posts in 1230 days


#15 posted 04-30-2013 10:37 PM

I had an RA1171 for a couple years until I sold it and upgraded to a Rockler top.

Pros:
Pretty good dust collection
Flat top and the insert was easy to level
Came with a pair of featherboards
Includes two switched power outlets (i.e. one for the router and one for a shop vac)

Cons:
Simply too small for my needs
The mounting system on the fence for the bit guard and the featherboards is crappy. It requires the use of plastic spacer discs that I had a hard time with.

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