My plunge router bit the dust this week and I was thinking about buying
one of those kits that contain the plunge and fixed base routers. I
assumed that the plunge router would be used on the benchtop and the
fixed router would be attached to the router table. However, when I
saw several brands in the store, it looked like the plunge base had
screw holes for the table attachment and the fixed was to be used
Was my thinking backwards?
You can use either depending on your personal preference. I don't know
how big of a router you need, but if I was looking at the smaller
routers (like the PC 690), I would probably opt for the new PC 890,
which allows you to adjust the depth through the table. The fixed
base's depth adjustments just don't let you to fine tune. I personally
have a Triton and a couple of PC 690's. I love my Triton, but the
thing is a beast. Don't know if you want to consider a 3 HP model. If
you do, the Triton is a great router.
A lot of plunge router bases have a kit that you can add that allows
you to easily adjust the height from above the table. I have the
porter cable 690 set with a fixed and plunge base. The fixed base
works in the router table, but it can be hard to adjust since I have to
have one hand twisting the motor under the table while the other hand
measures the bit height above the table, all while being able to see
the bit. I'm planning on getting a higher hp router ro replace the 690
in this job. If I can't afford a router lift, I'll definitly get one
of these plunge base height adjusters.
I have 2 regular Router tables, plus both an horizontal
and overhead tables...ALL have fixed based inexpensive DeWalt 610's
mounted in them... all the time...
My Plunge router is reserved for hand use only...
The little 610's are only 1 hp but to be honest I never felt they were
underpowered for what I do... adjustments are quick and simple ...
I just do not have the need...or want for a router lifter... .
You can mount either one to a router table. It all depends on which one you
find easier to handle.
I use a PC 890 with a fixed base. This base makes it quite easy to set the
depth from the top of the table.
With the Bosch 1617EVSPK, only the fixed base is recommended for
under-table mounting. I read somewhere that mounting the plunge base
could "damage the base." Note sure how or why, but there you have it.
There are some who preach that you have to use a fixed base router to get
the best accuracy in a table setup. Personally if I was replacing my only
router I would go for a multi-base kit. That way you can use it either way
in the table; and have the utility of both kinds of machines for hand use.
I have a Bosch 1617 and love it. The Porter Cables are good looking
machines too but I have not used one.
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