Colt for making inlays?

I have two fixed base routers-a PC 690 and an older Bosch. I need to route out a 3" square 1/4" deep inlay in a box top. I was considering purchasing the plunge base for my PC 690 router ($89) and adding a 1/4 or 1/2" bearing guided straight sided carbide bit...or getting an inlay bushing set with a bit. Then I was looking at a Colt and PC Laminate trim router and was wondering if I could tip the square base on its side and carefully plunge it into the top using an inlay bushing and small spiral bit. The problem arises when trying to adapt inlay bushings for PC to the Colt. I think it will require a new base plate and an adapter to mount the PC bushing? I found the PC trimmer well made but not as well made as the Colt. Questions: Is it safe to use a square base trim router to plunge a small bit by tilting it's base? What do I need to add a PC bushing to the Colt and is it worth the trouble? Would I be better off just getting the plunge base to do this job, sharpen my chisels or what?
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I cut 16 hinge mortises on Thursday and used a jig to guide me. I used a Bosch 1617evs fixed base router with a 1/2" flush trim "TOP" bearing bit. Just being careful and setting the spinning bit down on the wood works out very well with out the need of a plunge mechanism. I cleaned up the corners with a chisel. I would save the money unless you are going to be doing this daily, maybe not even then. Try it out on a piece of scrap, I think you will find that if you go in 3 or 4 progressively deeper steps with a bit that is 1/2" or smaller in diameter you will be able to free hand close enough to the lines and clean up with a chisel.
A hint, use a utility knife and straight edge to establish the borders and make several passes with the knife going deeper each time. This will help you get a good clean line to clean up with the chisel after routing.

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Well, for what it's worth, I've done it and it doesn't "feel" unsafe. As long as you're using a smallish bit (1/4"?) and it's not set too deep (<1/4"?), you should be fine. As with anything else, practice on scrap to get a feel for it. I can't help you with bushings on the trim router. But could you make a larger template so the whole subbase of the router rides inside the template? More like routing against a straightedge, but in this case, your straightedge would be a square. Of course this would depend a lot on the size of your project etc., but I would think it should be doable since you're just routing a square. Also, I might leave a strip of un-routed material in the middle of your square - just so the router base has something to ride on, and doesn't slip down into the area you've already routed. Does that make sense? Good luck, Andy
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I recently purchased a Colt. I've only used it for laminate trimming so far and am far from an expert on routers. However, I think this may help you:
http://patwarner.com/pr20_subbase.html
I'm still trying to understand what I can do with my Colt so any comments are welcome.
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snip

Probably not an issue since you're filling it with an inlay, but by pivoting the bit into the wood will leave a gouge.
JP
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Jay Pique said:

If it is an issue and you have a selection of bits, you could first use a hemispherical coring bit to cut a starter hole, then swap to the end cutting straight bit.
FWIW,
Greg G.
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