Router for leveling slabs

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Forum topic by watermark posted 07-26-2013 02:47 AM 3891 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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483 posts in 1908 days

07-26-2013 02:47 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question router

New to woodworking and have very little experience with routers to know what size I would need. I plan to use it mostly for leveling rough material I have milled for use in projects. The one I am looking at is a 2.3HP bosch available at HD for $240.

Will this be sufficient for running 1” leveling bit? I have been checking craig’s list for months hoping to come across a good used one but nothing yet.

-- "He who has no dog, hunts with a cat" Portuguese proverb

14 replies so far

View Tenfingers58's profile


96 posts in 2643 days

#1 posted 07-26-2013 03:14 AM

I believe it will have the guts to run that bit as long as you don’t try to take it all in one pass.

You will get a smoother flatter surface if you take shallow cuts and more passes.

The only drawback is time, and the fact it’s mind numbing if the piece is large.

The Wood Whisperer has a video on flattening with a router (#174).

In the video a basic homemade jig to use is shown and built.

Also a fancier jig can be found in Fine Woodworking December, 2011.

The way it works for me is there will be several routers on Craigslist as soon as I buy a new one.

View watermark's profile


483 posts in 1908 days

#2 posted 07-26-2013 03:59 AM

Thanks tenfingers. Yeah that episode was very helpful when I watched it. I have a jig already I made to level small areas to attach legs but the router I have will only take 1/4” bits. Way too small! That’s the way Craigslist works for me too.

-- "He who has no dog, hunts with a cat" Portuguese proverb

View Tenfingers58's profile


96 posts in 2643 days

#3 posted 07-29-2013 12:43 AM

That router you have that takes 1/4 inch bits will come in very handy in the future. You can sometimes find bits at garage sales and flea markets. I have one that has it’s own table and all it does is 1/8” round overs. I do a lot of them on the kids toys I make and it’s nice that the machine is setup ready to go.

As long as you don’t cut too deep or too fast that router will do a lot of work for you.

View Shawn Masterson's profile

Shawn Masterson

1325 posts in 1913 days

#4 posted 07-29-2013 12:55 AM

+5 for tenfingers58. personally I would spend the extra $100 for the PC 7518. These are time tested and proven monsters. I have two of the single speed version of these. They are very popular in production environment. also the extra weight may be good for flattening slabs.

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 2452 days

#5 posted 07-29-2013 01:00 AM

For decades 1/4” shanks were all there were. You don’t need a 1/2” shank to do the job, just a smaller cutter.

I have both, 1/4” and 1/2” routers that are dedicated. I can’t tell much difference in the two in the 2HP routers.
Of course I only take very shallow cuts and am not in a hurry. YMMV, Objects under tee shirt may be larger than they appear. Do not try this at home. Professional driver, closed course.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View yrob's profile


340 posts in 3617 days

#6 posted 07-29-2013 01:03 AM

Yeah in fine woodworlkling mag, Nick Offermann (the actor who is also a very good woodworker) shows how he made a jig to level big slabs he uses to make live edge furniture. Right here.

-- Yves

View watermark's profile


483 posts in 1908 days

#7 posted 07-30-2013 03:51 AM

Thanks for the input now just got to figure out how to make that extra cash.

-- "He who has no dog, hunts with a cat" Portuguese proverb

View MarkSr's profile


215 posts in 2015 days

#8 posted 07-30-2013 04:18 AM

Watermark, I have built The Wood Whisperer’s leveling jig as in his video. I used it on a smaller project and it worked excellent. I am at the stage of putting my top together for the work bench and I hope to follow his video to level my top the same as Marc did, it will be a chore. I had to order a 2” router bit, but I think it’s still a two day job. My bench will be 27” x 60” pretty close to Marc’s, but in the video it really doesn’t tell you how long it took him to complete it. But his layout can’t be beat, unless you use a builders lazer level which I have and I just might give that a shot.

Anyway, what I am getting at is my router is only 1 3/4”HP, Porter Cable w/ 1/2” collect and as long as I didn’t go more than 1/8” at a time the small project worked great. So your 2 hp. with 1/4” bit of say, 1” will work fine, but be prepared for long tiresome hours and don’t forget the clean-up. I repete take your time, don’t rush it and take many short brakes. Enjoy yourself.

It will work fine, and have fun making saw dust.

-- Mark, ”...NEWBEE: On the road to learning a lot; but; a lot more to learn…” ("My Granddad used to tell me, if you didn't learn something new today, it just wasn't worth getting out of bed")

View watermark's profile


483 posts in 1908 days

#9 posted 08-01-2013 08:21 AM

Thanks MarkSr now I have been looking online also I am thinking about this Hitachi.

-- "He who has no dog, hunts with a cat" Portuguese proverb

View brtech's profile


1028 posts in 2887 days

#10 posted 08-01-2013 08:58 AM

I have that router, and a jig, and used it to level a bench top. Works great. Mybbitbis 1.5”, but have no problem with about 1/8” cuts

View bowedstraight's profile


100 posts in 1738 days

#11 posted 08-01-2013 04:03 PM

I use a 3 hp makita with 2 inch bottom cleaning bits to true up cutting boards and large stock but I really like the frued 1 1/4 BCB for just cleaning up big stock a 3 hp Hitachi would be a good way to go, I bought the Makita on Ebay for 75.00 hardly used, almost new, I take about 3/16 per cut a good whiteside would be the way to go I have never used a bit that cuts and has less vibration than a Whitesie

-- Work in the city woodshop in tha country

View mds2's profile


310 posts in 1909 days

#12 posted 08-01-2013 04:11 PM

I built the Nick Offerman jig that yrob mentioned. It works ok, but it takes a LONG time. Big mess, tons of noise.

Quite honestly I think it is easier to do it with a hand plane.

View watermark's profile


483 posts in 1908 days

#13 posted 08-02-2013 07:09 AM

Thanks to everyone sharing their experience

-- "He who has no dog, hunts with a cat" Portuguese proverb

View Joseph Jossem's profile

Joseph Jossem

492 posts in 2233 days

#14 posted 08-02-2013 07:34 AM

planer or pay someone with a widebelt sander there gotta be a few in hilo and all over

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