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  • Router replacement

    My old Freud router in my BT33100 is dying! Any suggestions for a replacement?

  • #2
    I haven't shopped for a router for many many years, but I think they are still selling the Bosch 1617EVS if you want a nice router in both fixed and plunge bases.... I use mine a lot and its always been a joy to use. In fact, I have 2, one in my router table and one for hand use.
    Loring in Katy, TX USA
    If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
    BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

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    • #3
      Make a list of router features and capability that matter to you. Some ideas to consider:
      * do you want a router system made up of a motor plus a fixed base plus a plunge base? Or is a router like the Freud FT2000 where the motor is integrated with the base sufficient?
      * do you want to use the router in a table? Do you need "through the table" bit height adjustments? Or will the router be used in a lift?
      * One wrench plus a shaft lock style or two separate wrenches?
      * Max router bit diameter do you envision? I.e. are large panel raising bits needed? That helps define the speed range, HP, and router base diameter necessary.
      * Preferences for handle style: D-handle, two knobs, etc? Or "don't care."
      * Must it accept the industry standard guide bushings (aka "Porter Cable" bushings) or are you willing to use vendor specific bushings or an extra-cost vendor-to-PC adapter?
      Let us know, then we can help you narrow down your options.

      I have the Bosch 1617EVSP in an Incra lift... the lift holds the motor so both the fixed and plunge bases are still available for hand use. Many folks screw the fixed based to their router tables (without lifts) and use only the plunge base for hand router use. I also have the smaller Dewalt DWP611 which takes only 1/4 inch bits but has both fixed and plunge bases. I use this for hand stuff quite frequently; I only hand-use the larger Bosch when I have to use 1/2 inch bits. The small Dewalt is just so much easier to control... it's really sweet. Especially when you can get it on sale.

      One thing about routers in tables: few routers can raise the collet above the table so getting wrenches in there is difficult. Options are to remove the router for every bit change or get offset wrenches (they're bent to drop down into the table opening) for your router. A couple of years ago Bosch introduced a new router designed for table use: above table bit height changes while using the fixed based screwed to the table - you insert a crank through a small hole in the table to raise/lower the router. On this new router, the motor part is a separate piece to plug into the fixed or plunge base but the main power switch isn't in the motor body itself; instead the motor body has a series of contacts so the switch can be in the handle. This makes it MUCH easier to turn the router on/off for hand use as the switch is where your hands are. Most router motor bodies put the switch at the very top so you can't have both hands on the handles when turning the router on or off. Bosch however "blew it" in my opinion by not making it possible to raise the collet assembly above the table. When this router was first brought to market, I checked it out with the owner of my local Rockler. Like me, he was amazed the new design did not have this feature.

      mpc
      Last edited by mpc; 09-19-2020, 02:22 AM.

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      • #4
        If you want just one router, look for something along the lines of what Loring suggested. An EVS with soft start and dual bases. Uses 1/4 & 1/2 inch bits.

        MPC gave some great router characteristics to look for, whether buying 1 or 2 or 3 routers. (I have 5 - two 1/2" in a table, one 1/2 inch free use with dual bases, one 1/4 inch free use and one 1/4 inch Trim router. EVS and Soft Start are great characteristics. If you don't have those features, you won't miss it, but once you have them, it is hard to do without. SOFTSTART: If you have ever turn the router with the bit up and turn it own, you KNOW that you need to hold it with a good grip as you turn it on - or the sudden start-up torque will make it twist and fall over which can be dangerous or damaging. Soft Start eliminates that.

        IF you wish to have more than one router for different uses, then it probably means at least 3 to cover the basic scenarios:
        1. General Use -The same as listed as the EVS with soft start for general and medium to somewhat heavy duty routing. ( uses both 1/4 & 1/2 inch bits.)

        2. Table - A. An EVS with plunge ability to mount under a table. Or B. Table with a lift, no need for plunge because the table has its own lift mechanism. (1/4 and 1/2 inch bits.)

        3. Small Trim router. 1/4 inch only. I have been surprised at how many times I have grabbed the 1/4 inch Trim router for small quick projects since buying one about 2 years ago. VERY handy.

        3b. BUT there are two choices today on 1/4 inch trim routers: Corded and Cordless. I have a corded Ridgid trim router. Great little router and It sure is handy due to its smaller size and weight. However, for the full benefit of a "HANDY" router, a cordless would be nice. They do cost more and require one to have a couple of batteries on hand. Bosch has the hands down best (from reviews) but I would get two batteries. The best thing to do on a cordless IMHO is look for one in which the batteries are interchangeable with current cordless tools you own. ( I have basically Ryobi, but do not like the Ryobi cordless router because it is so top heavy, due to their battery design.)
        Last edited by leehljp; 09-19-2020, 08:31 AM.
        Hank Lee

        Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!

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        • #5
          Again, it depends on the use. Since you said it was in your BT table I'll tell you what my set up entails. I have 2 mounted routers, a Hitachi M12V in a custom table with dual collets capable of spinning the big bits when needed and an older 1/4" collet Craftsman mounted in my BT table. Hand held I have the Bosch 1617 EVS with both bases and a Rockwell M100. For light cuts my go to is the Rockwell. It was reproduced a few years ago but I don't think it is available anymore. Something like the Bosch Colt or a similar trim router would fill the bill.
          Don, aka Pappy,

          Wise men talk because they have something to say,
          Fools because they have to say something.
          Plato

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          • #6
            I have 6 routers. The one that is mounted in my BT3000 is a Ryobi with three bases, and I may have removed it and put it in the plunge base once. It is, at the very least, an unenjoyable process. My suggestion is to fix the Freud and buy a separate plunge router. And, definitely have 1/2" collet capability.

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            • #7
              If we are comparing routers, I have a
              • Bosch 1617 (fixed speed) with a router speed control mounted in a Jessem lift and plate. I have a table base mounted to a Woodpecker plate and the original fixed base lying around.
              • Bosch 1617evs with fixed base and with plunge base for all handheld work. Signs and lettering and stuff.
              • Bosch Colt 20 for handheld detail work, 1/4" but being able to wrap your hand around it comfortably is wonderful.
              • Craftsman router 1/4" only I haven't used for ages.
              • Dewalt DW621 plunge router I got and never used, I don't know why, I should probably sell it. I understand its a great plunge router but my Bosch is fine, maybe not as powerful.
              I think at one time I had the Craftsman mounted in the BT3000 aux table and used it a lot with roundover or chamfer bits with bearings to put finishing edges on stuff - you know always ready makes it easy to put such a nice finishing touch on stuff. The BT3 Aux tables weakness was using the fence (and having to lock down the rear when used that way) but as a bearing bit edge finisher that's not a problem.
              Loring in Katy, TX USA
              If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
              BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

              Comment


              • #8
                Clarification: I want a router that can be mounted (and it will stay mounted) on my BT3100 without an adapter plate. I have another router with fixed and plunge bases (and it can be mounted in my over arm fixture). HP rating is not critical; most jobs are small with soft woods. The very short outfeed platform on the BT3100 makes large projects unmanageable.



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                • #9
                  No adapter plate - A bit optimistic; All routers pretty much need to use the BT3000/3100 router mounting plate or similar to fasten to the aux table. Although I suppose you could drill the BT3100 aux table directly.
                  Last edited by LCHIEN; 09-25-2020, 06:02 PM.
                  Loring in Katy, TX USA
                  If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
                  BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by LCHIEN View Post
                    No adapter plate - A bit optimistic; All routers pretty much need to use the BT3000/3100 router mounting plate or similar to fasten to the aux table. Although I suppose you could drill the BT3100 aux table directly.

                    I have an auxiliary table that has two tracks for a crosscut fence that has a hole configuration that I believe will allow mounting a router without the aluminum mounting plate. I’ll take a photo and post it shortly (or longly).

                    I’ve read comments that that special accessory table won’t be accurate for miter cutting as it can’t be adjusted to have the grooves parallel to the saw blade - it is apparently only for guiding workpieces thru the router.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Ah, you must have one of those later model Craftsman BT3 clones with a slightly different Aux table that had miter slots (one on each side?) and several sets of mounting holes in the Aux table itself. No ribs if I recall. Difficult or impossible to routinely line up the miter slots parallel to the rip fence.
                      Last edited by LCHIEN; 09-27-2020, 11:19 AM.
                      Loring in Katy, TX USA
                      If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
                      BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ballard770 View Post


                        I have an auxiliary table that has two tracks for a crosscut fence that has a hole configuration that I believe will allow mounting a router without the aluminum mounting plate. I’ll take a photo and post it shortly (or longly)
                        Attached is photo of twin track accessory table. Second photo of visitor to our neighborhood.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Yes, that's the Craftsman 21829 saw version of the plate. Thats the red and black saw, with a fold-up stand, and non-ribbed top and the router mounting patterns built into the aux table.

                          Nice picture you snuck in of your visitor.
                          Last edited by LCHIEN; 09-27-2020, 11:27 AM.
                          Loring in Katy, TX USA
                          If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
                          BT3 FAQ - https://www.sawdustzone.org/forum/di...sked-questions

                          Comment

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