Router Lift.... Which one?

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Forum topic by Drew1House posted 07-31-2007 12:17 AM 2190 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Drew1House's profile


425 posts in 4113 days

07-31-2007 12:17 AM

Topic tags/keywords: router lift tool selection jessem rosseau bench dog woodpecker

I am in the process of upgrading my table saw from a 6 month old unisaw to a sawstop… while I am at it and before I route a hole in the side extention table for the new sawstop… I want to know if I should keep my powermatic router table insert from Jess Em or if there is a better one. The one I have has 2 supports and I am seeing 3 on many of the newer ones from Jessem, woodpecker, rosseau and bench dog… Which one should I get? Why?

What about fences and such… anything I could use with the table saw fence but improved would be worth looking at. I like the precision ones…


-- Drew, Pleasant Grove, Utah

5 replies so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4014 days

#1 posted 07-31-2007 01:01 AM

I currently have a Jessem MastR-lift, but I am not too happy with it. It’s a great lift except for one thing.
It uses a cogged belt which will skip teeth when anything gets fouled with saw dust.

I have just purchased a Woodpecker PRL which uses a chain so I know it won’t skip a tooth.

I have a router table which I built (you can see it in my workshop pictures) so I can’t say
much about fences.

Hope this helps.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View WayneC's profile


13754 posts in 4123 days

#2 posted 07-31-2007 01:15 AM

I have the Jessem Rout-R-Lift FX and am happy with it. I do not belive it has a cogged belt as described by Gary.

My question to you would be is have you hit any limitations with your current insert? I would probably get some use out of it until I had a specific list of issues then would go shopping.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4014 days

#3 posted 07-31-2007 01:44 AM

Good point Wayne about current limitations.

One thing to pay attention to when cutting the hole in your top and that is the size.
If you were to use your current insert it might be bigger than a future lift you might get.
Then you are stuck with a hole that is too big.

I know because it happened to me. The Jessem and the Wookpecker have the same length
and width.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Drew1House's profile


425 posts in 4113 days

#4 posted 07-31-2007 03:13 PM

It is not so much the limitations I am seeing now… I have used this one for 6 months so far and in trading the unisaw for the sawstop my buddy is giving me every dime I spent on the saw towards the new one and will do the same with the lift. While I have not met any limitations with the Powermatic 6682004 I am afraid that by the time I really find some the thing will be used enough that I will have missed the opportunity to do this trade. I did not look into the purchase that deeply to begin with… while I had researched the saw qite a bit the router lift was somewhat of a whimsical afterthought.

-- Drew, Pleasant Grove, Utah

View scopemonkey's profile


188 posts in 4189 days

#5 posted 08-02-2007 06:48 AM

Drew…I just finished doing this exact thing to the extension table on my SawStop. I have previously used Rousseau plates and already had a template for routing the hole and rabbet. So, I elected to use the Rousseau lift which is the Jessem lift mounted to the Rousseau 3/4” phenolic plate (it even says “made by Jessem”). No belts or chains, just a direct screw drive. Its sturdy and easy to use, not to mention a bit less expensive than some of the others. I got mine for about $150 Some people have criticized the Rousseau plate because of a slight crown they put in the plate. They claim this is an asset to ease infeed resistance. Some folks prefer to have a dead flat plate. I really don’t see any crown at all when installed and it is pretty darn flat when I check it with my straight edge. Their plates are an oddball size: 9” x 12”. So, once you cut that hole, your committed to their plates. I haven’t used any of the other lifts, but I can at least give a “thumbs up” to the Rousseau lift and plate.

Go here for a picture of the final installation. You will need to reinforce the underside of the table where the plate inserts. I glued and screwed a piece of plywood to the underside of the table before cutting the hole. I still use the fence from my old Craftsman router table since it is solid, adjustable, has a dust collection port, and lots of t-track slots for featherboards, etc. I routed in two t-track slots for the fence. You could probably do the same and use any of the aftermarket fences out there. I also built a cabinet below the table to enclose the router and lift and put a 4” dust port in the bottom to add dust collection from below as well. Hope that helps.

-- GSY from N. Idaho

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