If you already own a woodworking router, you probably want to make the most of it. While you can use the tool freehand, consider a router table for greater accuracy. With complicated cuts, it is easier for you.
What to Consider in a Router Table
Before you buy a router table, you want to review some of its key components. Shape, size, material, fence and accessories vary from table to table, and these things make the difference between a bad option and a cheap but good choice.
- Flat, Rigid Top: The top of your router's table should be very flat and stiff. You do not want a table that bends when you push material over it ̵
- Metal Base Plate: Almost every router table has a base plate for attaching your router. The plate should be flat, very stiff and made of metal. The table should also include a way to align the plate to the rest of the top.
- An easy-to-set fence: Many of your router cuts require a fence to guide the material along the router bit. The fence should be easy to adjust and tighten with two to four large knob screws. Nicer tables will contain a two-piece split fence that allows you to adjust the hole in the center. You can also use split fences to join wood.
- Dust openings: When milling wood, one ton of sawdust is produced. If you do not mind, you can quickly slide your material over the tabletop. Dust connections allow the connection of a vacuum cleaner or other vacuum solution to extract the sawdust. Look for one at the fence and maybe a second under the table at the router.
- Stable Base: The last thing you want is for your table to shift as you push the wood through the router. Shifts will cause your cut to deviate and possibly ruin your part. A stable base should prevent slipping.
- Miter Slot: Similar to the miter slots of a table saw, the table top should have at least one slot parallel to the cutter and fence. You can attach spring plates and miter blades as needed to ensure a safe cut. Some routers may have additional slots for additional accessories.
Best Overall: Bosch table milling table RA1181
If you have selected the best router in total, we recommend: Then the Bosch RA1181 table is a breeze. It has a table top made of cast aluminum with a miter slot. The included base plate has pre-drilled holes for many standard routers, and you can drill more if necessary. It is also supplied with a split fence and some accessories, including several spring boards, three mounting plate rings and washers for joining wood. This table is the size of a table top. So you have to put it on another surface to reach a comfortable height. As a bonus, this device contains two slots, one for the router and one for a vacuum. By switching the main switch both functions are activated.
If you have a Bosch 1617EVS router, you may want to consider the optional undertable base. The router slips in and out of that base without unscrewing it each time.
Bosch benchtop router table RA1181
The table of this unit is a solid router table and is made of cast aluminum A miter slot, various accessories and permanent attachment to a table.
Best price: SKIL RAS800
The Skil router table is minimalist yet offers many features. It comes preassembled (which is a rarity) and includes a handy storage bag for all accessories. However, for the low cost you have to do without something: MDF is the material of choice here. And there is no special tabletop, but brackets that hold your router in place. So double check if your router fits before you buy. If you do not use it, it folds down to a slightly compact size. As a desktop router, you need to place it on another surface to use it.
SKIL RAS800 SKIL Router Table
This is the small router table that could do this. An MDF table top without a separate plate is used. Conveniently, it's pre-assembled and folds to a smaller size when you're done.
Premium Selection: KREG Precision Router Table System
Unlike other router tables in this list, the Kreg router table is a full-size system. You do not have to place it on another surface, and the table area itself is larger than the other options here. This means that you can route larger pieces of wood than otherwise possible. You still get a split fence, but this one is nicer than other router table fences. Instead of the knobs Kreg contains a locking system, as it is usually found on fences for table saws. This makes it much easier to adjust and straighten your fence.
Note, however, that you must drill the holes for the metal base plate and do not include an emergency power switch.
KREG Precision Router Table System, Kreg # PRS1045
This device is a true router and does not have to be placed on a counter or other surface. The table itself is larger than most of the others to accommodate larger pieces of wood, and the fence is a real improvement over other tables.
An attached option: Bosch style cabinet table RA1171
If you want to reduce noise, the Bosch Cabinet Style Router will help. If you put your router in the case, a part of the sound of your loud router will be muted. This table is similar to the overall selection, but costs less. This is partly due to the use of melamine for the table top instead of sturdier aluminum. Most of the other benefits, including the split fence, the dual power plug and the extensive accessories, are available.
Space saving: Rockler Convertible Table Router Table
When space is at a premium, you're dealing with the Rockler Router table. You can either place this table on a counter or attach it to a wall. If you do not use it, the table will be folded flat in both scenarios. Rocker's entry is also one of the few routers to support compact and trim routers. The table has a split fence, a melamine table and two cutter plates for compact or medium sized cutters. Due to its small size you want to lock this table when you use it on a bench or a table. Otherwise, there may be shifts on your route.