New router features

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Forum topic by mandatory66 posted 05-10-2015 11:20 PM 707 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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198 posts in 1551 days

05-10-2015 11:20 PM

I see that some of the new routers coming on the market are touting having new features like a switch built into the handle and a shaft lock so you only need one collet wrench etc. I have a 25 year old Craftsman 1.5 hp router that has the switch in the handle, a sliding shaft lock that does not need to be held in with a finger, just slide it to lock and it stays locked until released.A built in light so you can see the bit working. I guess what’s new is old as they say. I do not use the Craftsman much because of the switch in the handle, There are times when I pick up the router I inadvertently hit the switch and the router starts. This is scary when it happens and I had a few near misses so I don’t
use it as much my other routers. (that’s probably why I have it 25 years) It’s just an accident waiting to happen.

7 replies so far

View pjones46's profile


986 posts in 2064 days

#1 posted 05-10-2015 11:47 PM

Back in the early 70’s the Rockwell Model 150B had the same features as well as one of the Makita‚Äôs . Still have them but do not use them much.

-- Respectfully, Paul

View dawsonbob's profile


1838 posts in 1176 days

#2 posted 05-11-2015 01:06 AM

Have a 1983 model Black & Decker around here somewhere that has all those features.

-- Mistakes are what pave the road to perfection

View pintodeluxe's profile


4825 posts in 2234 days

#3 posted 05-11-2015 03:01 AM

Yes, Craftsman was ahead of the game with some of those early features years ago.
The difference with the new kits (Bosch for instance), is that it is a combo base router with trigger switch on the handle.
I would almost prefer a dedicated plunge router and fixed base router so the switches could be in the handle.
Still, the modern router kits like the Dewalt 618 are a pretty good package.

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

View knotscott's profile


7146 posts in 2796 days

#4 posted 05-11-2015 11:25 AM

I had an old Cman router too….I paid less than $40 new with a case in 2001. The work light, collet lock, and handle trigger were all great features….so was the flat top so you could set it on a table upside down to change bits. Too bad it only had a 1/4” collet, and a plastic height mechanism. The features were great. I don’t get why more routers don’t offer the same features.

-- Happiness is like wetting your pants...everyone can see it, but only you can feel the warmth....

View Yonak's profile


979 posts in 942 days

#5 posted 05-11-2015 06:56 PM

The feature I wish they’d incorporate on hand held routers is a swivel top with the power cord so when you rout around, say, a table top, it would relax the twisted cord. It’s a hassle having to do a pirouette with the router over my head every time so the cord doesn’t twist. After doing 50 or so of them I begin to get a little dizzy.

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Mainiac Matt

5955 posts in 1749 days

#6 posted 05-11-2015 06:59 PM

I have switch in the handle on two old Craftsman routers and like it a lot, as it enables you to turn the router on and off while having both hands on the handles in firm control.

Even with soft start, you can still get a little torque steer, and switch in the handle allows you to overcome it easily.

-- Pine is fine, but Oak's no joke!

View WoodNSawdust's profile


1417 posts in 597 days

#7 posted 05-11-2015 07:34 PM

I have a router with the switch in the handle it is a neat feature.

I wish someone would invent an automatic spindle lock for routers mounted in tables. No changing bit depth or reaching into the cabinet to lock the spindle.

-- "I love it when a plan comes together" John "Hannibal" Smith

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