Shaper vs. Router?

Page 1 of 2  
Hello, Everyone -
I was in the process of figuring out how I wanted to set up a routing station when it occurred to me: why not just purchase a shaper? By the time I bought a 3hp router, purchased and/or constructed a table, purchased and/or constructed a fence, and perhaps purchased a lift, I would have spent as much money as a Grizzly or Shop Fox 2-3hp dedicated shaper costs.
If the overall costs are comparable, is there any reason not to go with the shaper? I already have a hand-held router, so I do not need that flexibility. The only thing I can think of is that my current router bits would be unusable in the shaper.
Any thoughts?
Thanks!
- Josh
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I guess it depends on what you're going to be doing with it. General edge forming and decorative routing is easily done with a router as is rail and stile joints and even raised panels. However a shaper does all this and does it better in my opinion. Its a heavier more stable machine and made for hard work. I have both and use both but I find myself turning to the shaper more and more these days as my collection of cutters grows. Thats another thing too. Router bits are more affordable that shaper cutters. Of course a router is better at things like grooves and dados but like you said you have a hand held router you could use for these tasks. Theres my two cents........
Jim

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
They have an insert to allow you to use your bits with the Grizzly shaper.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Personally, I have problems [being of a cowardly nature] running large router bits at 20,000 rpm, so for those situations I prefer to use a shaper. On the other hand even though you can get a shaper chuck that will take your routerbits the smaller diameter bits really do not rotate fast enough to do the job well. that is the reason routers run at high speed to bring the tip speed up so that they cut more efficiently.
In the interest of safety, and being the cowardly type, even on the shaper I use a powerfeed whenever possible.
In short each machine is designed to perform it's design function best....mjh
--



"Joshua" < snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news: snipped-for-privacy@posting.google.com...
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Well don't feel bad. I am scard of running large router bits at 20k, so I slow them down. Only the smaller ones do I spool up like that.
John
Mike Hide wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The router follows the local surface of a twisted or bent board. If you don't have near perfect wood, the shaper will not work properly. Of course the shaper will spin a much bigger panel raiser than a router. I take full cuts with a 5" cutter and back cutter in oak and hickory on my SECO 3 HP. With the belt in the low speed setting, it cuts through with no groaning.
You can do with a very small and cheap router for everything but panel raising, where the shaper excels. Rails and stiles are usually straight, so I do those on the shaper too.
One thing you can do with a router table is make the table/fence as long as you like. That makes a big difference in handling large pieces and keeping them straight.
That said, you can use a cheap router (Freud) and make all the rest. Many of the bells and whistles in the catalog are really convenience extras.
Wilson

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
If you don't have a straight board, what're you making other than a mess?
I like the router table for pattern following, box-joint making, small rabbets and dados , where, in spite of what some think, you can make numbers of grooves parallel to a fence.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Why do you persist in posting this statement over and over? You seem completely unaware that it's not a good idea to use *either* a shaper *or* a router on a twisted or bent board.
Buy yourself a jointer, man!
-- Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
How come we choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
And to add to that, in this situation (twisted or bent board) the effect is going to be the same thing on either machine. I mean, you either use a fence or a bearing piloted bit in the router right? Well, on the shaper you either use a fence or rub collars so what's the difference. Besides to go along with Mr. Miller, its a moot point anyway since you ought not use crappy lumber to start with, straighten it up first and none of this matters.
Jim
wrote:

a
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com says...

In addition he seems to be unable to distinguish between using a router in a router table vs. a using a router as a hand-held router. The OP was discussing a router table, not using a hand-held router; one would assume he was planning on dedicating a router to the router table. There will be no difference (zero, zip, zilch, nada) in results between a twisted or bent board sent over a router in a router table or sent over a shaper table -- maybe with the exception of the faster kickback from the shaper table.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
By Fri, 30 Jan 2004 23:06:06 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@milmac.com (Doug Miller) decided to post "Re: Shaper vs. Router?" to rec.woodworking:

Have to respond to this .sig:
Miss America contest has 50 candidates and presidential contest has only 2 or 3 -- because, quite frankly, can you imagine the bathing suit or talent contests for president?? I shudder to think of it.
Now back to woodworking: jointers rule! Ties with drill press for most used machine in my shop, even over the table saw, band saw and chop saw, and of course the router table!
/ts
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com says...

Josh, check out groups.google.com. There are numerous threads on this subject. As an aside, I reached the same conclusion as you, bought a Woodtek 3 hp shaper and have been quite satisfied. Many shapers have an adapter spindle that lets you use 1/2" router bits.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Hey Mark care to elaborate some more on the Woodtek shaper? I was looking at these not too long ago and would like to hear the pros and cons straight from an actual user. Feel free to email me if you prefer.
Thanks,
Jim
says...

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
James D Kountz wrote:

Naah, please keep it here. ;-) Now that I finally have a planer & jointer my Grizzly catalog is starting to open all by itself to the shapers... <g>
-- Mark
.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
says...

I got the shaper a little over 2 years ago after doing the trades of a dedicated router in a table or shaper. I got the unit with the sliding table attachment. I have found the sliding table attachment to be very useful for cutting rail and stile end-grain cuts, or any other cuts where the stock is sufficiently wide to allow a hold-down to be used.
Pros:     1. Table is dead-flat, there is no way I would have been able to get a router table to stay this flat.     2. Quiet -- I have never liked the screaming of routers and this unit just hums with power     3. The sliding table provides a good feed capability with stock that is sufficiently wide.     4. So far, I have not run into any problems using 1/2" shank router bits at the high speed setting. I don't try to force stock through very quickly, so this seems to work well.
Cons:     1. The height adjustment has a fair amount of backlash. I typically lower a cutter, tap on the top of the spindle with a rubber mallet to overcome the hysteresis, then approach the cut by raising the cutter.     2. Split fence is a bit finicky. I have found a process that lets me speed up the setup. I first get close with the fence using the bolt hold-downs that hold the fence to the table. After securing those bolts, I then use the two adjust screws for fine adjustment. What I don't do is tighten the lock-down bolts on those two screws beyond tight enough to keep the fence halves from having any play. This allows me to make adjustments without having to loosen and tighten those bolts.
    As I say, so far I am quite satisfied with this purchase. I have been using Grizzly shaper cutters (3/4" bore seems to be a nice compromise between cost and mass) because I am not doing production quantity work. I do have a Freud kitchen cabinet set, but everything else thus far is Grizzly cutters. The only problem with Grizzly's I've run into thus far is that one of the rub collar bearings seems to be tight and does not rotate without heating.
    One final bit of advice, when using the shaper, I try to set things up with safety in mind, especially as regards trying to make sure that I can make the cuts with some sort of guard in place.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Thanks Mark for the comments on the shaper. I have been using an ancient Craftsman, 1/2" spindle. Its pretty decent and it is about 36 years old now, back when Craftsman made somewhat acceptable machines. The only thing it really lacks is big power and 3/4" capacity. So when thumbing through the various "wishbooks" my eyes always seem to find their way to the shaper pages. Ive been looking seriously at the Grizzly and the Woodtek but haven't decided yet. I use a fair number of Grizz cutters too and I have found them to be fine in my experience. Your words will be taken into account though, its always great to hear from actual users!
Thanks again!
Jim

looking at

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
says...

You're welcome. FWIW, my FIL lives near Springfield, MO and when I'm there, I take advantage of the time to visit Grizzly. I took a hands-on look at their shapers (this was after I had bought mine). IMO, (and my opinion only), I think the Woodtek is a little better made -- the fence seems a bit better, much as I cuss at my Woodtek fence at times, the Grizzly fence seemed to have the potential to be more of a pain.
As I say, this is my own opinion, and was based only upon some time in the showroom playing with the Griz.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Personally, I have problems [being of a cowardly nature] running large router bits at 20,000 rpm, so for those situations I prefer to use a shaper. On the other hand even though you can get a shaper chuck that will take your routerbits the smaller diameter bits really do not rotate fast enough to do the job well. that is the reason routers run at high speed to bring the tip speed up so that they cut more efficiently.
In the interest of safety, and being the cowardly type, even on the shaper I use a powerfeed whenever possible.
In short each machine is designed to perform it's design function best....mjh
--



"Joshua" < snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news: snipped-for-privacy@posting.google.com...
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I was in your exact situation about a year or two back. I bought the Grizzly 1.5hp shaper and added the cast iron table wing extension and the router bit adapter. Never looked back.
One thing with the shaper that hasn't been mentioned yet; you can run the spindle both directions. Take the cutter off, flip it, and run it the other way. Not a really big issue for most, but comes in handy some times.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Otto Hoel wrote:

For instance? Thanks.
-- Mark
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.