Router_Upgrade_Advice

Hello,
I am thinking of upgrading my (craptsman) 1/4'' collet router to a router that accepts 1/2'' bits. I bought this router before I knew anything about routers (big mistake). I want to be able to use those hefty panel raising bits that are not possible with only a 1/4'' collet.
I want to be able to mount it in a table, so a plunge router is out. I was thinking of buying one of those plunge/fixed base combo deals. Any advice? I don't want to spend more than say $225.
Bosch has a 2HP plunge/fixed base combo (Model 1617PK) anyone own this one?
Are the plunge/fixed base combo routers just as sturdy when mounted to a table using the fixed base attachment?
Thanks
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stoutman wrote:

I *love* my DW 621 plunge router in my router table. I have a lever / rope / pulley / foot pedal jig that lets me plunge on the router table. I'm just not comfortable lowering wood on a spinning bit.
-- Mark
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www.patwarner.com
Everything you ever wanted to know about a router....and more.
Just a satisfied customer,
Bob S.

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Got one and I love it! I have the 1617EVS, electronic variable speed version.

Yes! You can get an extra fixed base, without the wooden handles, including a fine adjustment extension, that you can leave installed in the table, for about $45.
I can't say enough good about the 1617EVS, but be sure you check out the new Porter Cable. It looks really nice and deserves an inspection. Since your thinking table, spend the extra bucks for a variable speed model no matter what brand you go for.
Barry
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"stoutman" wrote ...

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I hear that's a fine router. I have the Porter-Cable 693??? combination myself and I think it's a great router. My only problem is I haven't figured out why the plunge thingy is so popular. I don't seem to use it that often, but I wouldn't have made a different choice.
--
Cheers,
Howard
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Two schools of thought. Pat Warner says that if you only have one router, the DW621 plunge is a good deal. Another article I just read says a fixed base is more stable due to the handle position and that should be your router of choice.
Depends on your needs. My fixed base is in a table. I use my plunge very little, but for some cuts, it is perfect, such as for mortises, shelf pin holes. Ed
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dont count out a plunger. they are more versitile than fixed base. you can get the hitachi mv12 at amazon for 159 and ive heard there is a special code to get even more off. 134.00 final cost i beleive. the plunge on this router is realy smooth and workes well in a table. thats what is in mine. the router raizer is cheep enough that for your price range you can get em both and the raizer works in or out of the table. nice feature for in and out of the table. and its 3 1/4 HP so you get to swing the big bits. i think amazon offers free shipping on this item too and no sales tax. skeez
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I like what Pat Warner says about routers in general on his semi-commercial website. Lots of bits of good info there, IMOOP, that is.
www.patwarner.com
Tales of a Boatbuilder Apprentice http://pages.sbcglobal.net/djf3rd /
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Pat Warner writes that using a plunge router in a table is not a good idea.
Taken from his website: http://www.patwarner.com/plunge_or_fixed.html
"The tool (PLUNGE ROUTER) is especially valuable for multidepth inside hand cuttings where the cutter can safely stab an excavation in the eye and handily waste it away; something a fixed base router can only do at risk. To put this tool upside down in a router table not only ignores its designers intent, its presence there compromises the integrity of the work surface, frustrates the smooth travel of the work and complicates the construction of the whole router-table."
I think I'm gonna stick with a fixed base...
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stoutman wrote:

I've had a Dewalt 621 in my router table for three years and it works fine. I did remove the return spring since it works against you when mounted in a router table - no big deal to remove it. The DW621 has a quick cut depth adjuster AND a micro adjuster- something really handy when you want to sneak up on a depth of cut - like when doing the male part of a sliding dovetail joint.
charlie b
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For $135 you can get the Hitachi M12V delivered to you door from Amazon.com (http://tinyurl.com/xy9h ). This is a 3.25hp router that has seen some good reviews here on the wreck, and will certainly be able to turn panel raising bits. It also comes with an accessory package that includes a micro-height adjustment knob. See the thread titled "Hitachi M12V Sale!" (http://tinyurl.com/xya9 ) for more information.
JP
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I agree w/ Jay and Skeezics. The Hitachi is probably the best deal out there right now. I believe everyone here would love a Porter Cable 3HP but, not many can afford it. You might see some people B*tch about the Hitachi's 1/4" collet. And its true. It does not hold 1/4" bits well. But what idiot needs that kind of HP to run 1/4" bits? MLCS has a special on their new brand of 3HP router for $179.00 and it comes w/ some accessories. It looks like a PC knock-off. I've never used one or heard of anyone who has (probably because they just came out w/ it).
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While the model you mention is an excellent router, I have had the 1617evs since summer of 1998, if you are going to be spinning a raised panel bit with any regularity, think bigger. At least a 15 amp model.
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stoutman wrote:

If your going to do raised panel you better think of at least a 3 hp and variable speed. Raised Panel bits don't fair well at 24,000 rpm. My preference is Porter Cable.
Rich
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but you can't make them THINK"
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why rule out a plunge router for a table mount? i have the 3 1/2HP Porter Cable vari-speed plunge router and use it mounted in a table all the time. well, actually it's mounted into the underside of my workbench, which is just an 8' long router table. :-)
the plunge feature allows easy raising and even easier lowering, and the lock on the Porter Cable has always held the bit at the level i set it at. i've been using it this way for about 6 years.
i know, after six years i should probably just buy a shaper. which is why i did last week.
andy b.

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stoutman wrote:

No so fast...plunge routers have been used in tables for quite some time. The Triton router is specifically designed for table use...and so is the new PC. I have the Triton - and it works great in the table as well as handheld. They may both be out of your price range... but IIRC, the DW621 is closer...and it does well in the table, as well.
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Chris Merrill
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I used my Bosch 1617 for the first time this weekend and I was impressed. The slow start is a nice feature and the router isn't noisy compared to my old 1/4" shaft unit.
D.Martin

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Just this past weekend I purchased a new router to replace my PC plunge router (once I fix this one, I'll end up with two). I ended up with the Milwaukee router, which will work out great in the table since you can adjust the router from the bottom without having to purchase a 3rd party upgrade kit. It's one downfall is that there is no way to adjust the speed. :-(
It's also only 1.5 HP and depending on your use it may be just a bit underpowered. However, for my needs it certainly gets high marks and I really think Milwaukee and Triton deserve a pat on the back for coming out with router that can easily be adjusted from above the table.
Wayne
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