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Home / Tips and Tricks / The Four Best Routers (The tool for woodworking, not the Internet device) – Review Geek

The Four Best Routers (The tool for woodworking, not the Internet device) – Review Geek

  A Bosch 1617EVS with bit inserted on a cherry tree board.
Josh Hendrickson

One of the best tools you can add to your workshop is a milling cutter. No, not what gets your Internet up and running, the rotating tool that cuts and shapes wood. Here are the four best routers you can own.

What To Look For In A Router

Routers are incredibly versatile tools that woodworkers use for many purposes. If you need to glue two pieces of wood together to get a larger piece of wood, you can first flatten the edges with a router to make them better aligned. Routers can round off sharp edges for a better feel on a table or other furniture. You can cut long holes (so-called insertion holes) in your piece to make a chair or to complete a door. And the list goes on.

Because of these different uses, there are two main router types: Fixed Base and Plunge. And you want to pay attention to which products you buy because they have different strengths and weaknesses. In addition to the router type, you should also consider the collet size, speed, and power (usually in horsepower).

Fixed-base router

<img class = "wp-image-23713 size-full" data-pagespeed-lazy-src = "https://www.reviewgeek.com/thumbcache/0/0/33fec4e212ba4200b4d97c66943a3957 /p/uploads/2019/09/xb35f7f4d.jpg.pagespeed.gp+jp+jw+pj+ws+js+rj+rp+rw+ri+cp+md.ic.kY8_kzTj7L.jpg "alt =" A solid Bosch Routers with Visible Rotary Knob [19659009] Bosch

Of these types, a solid-base cutter is the more precise cutting instrument Before you start cutting, use a knob to raise and lower the cutting insert to the desired depth and the "Locked Depth" allow you to make accurate measurements and cuts.

Once you have found the desired depth, the cutting insert does not move until you turn the knob again, making long, smooth cuts very easy, but they always do Starting and retracting an edge of a piece of wood, fixed-base routers are not the best choice for cutting that of holes or incisions. This is because the cutting insert stays in a fixed position and you can not just lower it straight down into your piece of wood.

Grooving cutter

<img class = "wp-image-23714 size-full" data-pagespeed-lazy-src = "https://www.reviewgeek.com/thumbcache/0/0/7ef100de53e1fe4d90c8da761bb85acf/p/ uploads / 2019/09 / xb0d59491.jpg.pagespeed.gp + jp + jw + pj + ws + js + rj + rp + rw + ri + cp + md.ic.vk6_JiDNgg.jpg "alt =" A Bosch grooving cutter with Bumpers Routers are different from fixed-base routers in that you can easily adjust the depth of your burr, even if you cut a piece.

Before you begin, use a built-in tool to set the maximum depth level your machine will hit Then you can position the cutting insert of your router on an initial level.When working, you can slightly lower the milling cutter until the stop bar hits the cutter plate.

Milling cutters are ideal for milling holes in the middle a workpiece and to remove a lot of material. Attempting a ti To remove efe wood layer at once does not work well. With a dip router you can quickly remove small layers until you have removed the entire required amount. However, they are not as accurate as a fixed-base router.

For most new wood workers, a solid-based router is a good starting point because of its precision. The strengths of a plunge router focus on advanced skills such as slot milling. Many routers come as combo kits and can be upgraded from the fixed socket to dive and back.

Collet size

  An immersion mill with two wrenches for adjusting the collet.

In addition to your router also need router bits. The shank of the cutter inserted into your router is measured in diameter. The collet is the part of the milling cutter into which the mill is inserted. As a rule, manufacturers produce cutters with a shank diameter of 1/4 inch and 1/2 inch.

For most hobby woodworkers, a diameter of 1/4 inch is sufficient. However, for large projects (such as a wood panel) it is better to work with half an inch. Cheap routers typically only support 1/4-inch bits, while more expensive routers come with two collets (one for each size) that you can swap as needed.

If you already have router bits, you want to make sure the new ones are used. The router has a suitable collet or you need to buy bits again.

The routers usually include two wrenches to loosen the collet so you can change the router bit as shown in this image.

Variable Speeds [19659027] A speed dial on a router in the range of 1 to 6. ” width=”325″ height=”325″ data-credittext=”Bosch” src=”/pagespeed_static/1.JiBnMqyl6S.gif” onload=”pagespeed.lazyLoadImages.loadIfVisibleAndMaybeBeacon(this);” onerror=”this.onerror=null;pagespeed.lazyLoadImages.loadIfVisibleAndMaybeBeacon(this);”/>

Some routers offer speed control via a rotary knob. If you need large cutters with a 1/2 inch shank, this variable speed is helpful so that you can slow down the turns.

Slow turns provide more torque, which in turn chews more easily through the wood. Cheap routers tend to have a speed while other routers are equipped with a rotary knob to speed up or slow down the bit as needed.


The size of a router's motor determines how much power it delivers. The larger the engine (measured in horsepower), the easier it can be used for large projects. However, lower power routers are also smaller and easier to handle. This is useful if you need to cut a small piece like a box.

Router manufacturers typically report either the available power (PS) (usually between 1/4 PS) at the bottom and 3 1/4 HP at the top) or describe the router in terms of size. A Palm router is typically 1 HP or less. A medium-sized router often has a performance of 1.5 to 2.5 HP and a normal router a performance of 3 to 3 1/4 HP. For most hobbyists, the average size is ideal for your first router, although with Palm routers you save money when your budget is tight.

Best Overall: Bosch 1617EVS Wood Router Tool Kit

  A Bosch 1617EVS router with wooden handles.

Bosch, one of the best-known tool brands, offers you everything you want with the 1617EVS router. This midrange router has a power of 2.5hp and should provide enough power. For larger projects, the speed is variable. If you're talking about supporting larger projects, the router comes with two 1/4 and 1/2 inch collets.

Although this is a solid base router, the basic router can be removed, and you can buy a single-immersive router add-on to convert as needed. After incredibly large professional projects, this router should be able to meet all your needs.

Best Overall

Premium Selection: Bosch 1617EVSPK Wood Router Tool Combination Set

<img class = "wp-image-23673 size-full" data-pagespeed-lazy-src = "https: / /www.reviewgeek.com/thumbcache/0/0/1551196ac2258f9d2ed2231e2fc8f532/p/uploads/2019/09/x1cfb596d.jpg.pagespeed.gp+jp+jw+pj+ws+js+rj+rp+rw+ri+cp + md.ic.lk9w6FhVD0.jpg "alt =" A Bosch 1617EVS next to an optional submersible foot. [19659036] Bosch

No, you will not experience déjà vu if you think you've already seen this router, the Bosch 1617EVSPK Here's an upgrade of our entire selection, and all the best about this router is that they get the same performance, collet sizes, and variable speeds, but this kit comes with a fixed base and piston base.

You can buy them separately, and we In any case, recommend this if the price of this kit is too high in advance, but with the kit, you will typically save 60 US D in the long run ollar.

Premium Selection

Budget selection: Makita Rt0701C

  Makita Rt0701C fixed-base router.

You do not need a powerful cutter and do you plan to use it primarily for rounding or flush cutting the edges of your material? Then the Makita Rt0701C is a good choice. You will make some compromises, eg. However, the smaller motor is also a potential benefit as this router is compact and can be operated with one hand.

You can still set the speed variably, and the fixed system allows for precise cuts. And weighing in at four pounds, it's nearly half the weight of our choice, making your arms less tired after cutting.

Although this is a fixed-base router, you can switch to a dive-based model. The Makita is a smaller router with a 1 1/4 hp engine. But it is better in the hand and weighs less. This router accepts only 1/4 inch end mills.

Battery Operated: Ryobi Trim Router

  Ryobi Trim Router without battery.

The only problem with all the other routers in this list is the power cord. Freehand (instead of a milling table) move the cutter over the piece of wood you want to cut. However, if you move around your workpiece, the power cord will inevitably get in the way or it will be too short.

The Ryobi Trim Router is a small fixed base and battery powered router. Like most small routers, it is best suited for edge trim and trimming (as the name implies) and accepts only 1/4 inch end mills. Although there is a variable cruise control, you will not find performance here due to the nature of the battery power. Suffice to say that with this tool you do not average like a dado. This is best suited only for edging work.

The battery is sold separately. However, if you own Ryobi tools, you may already have a compatible One + battery.

A good cutter bit set: Hiltex 15-piece set

  Hiltex 15-piece cutter set in a wooden storage box with pictures of the milling cutters.

Like a drill, a cutter does no good if no milling cutters need to be used. In general, you'll probably want at least a straight bit, a round-over bit, and a Roman OGEE bit at the beginning. Piece by piece buying high quality router bits can be expensive. If you prefer, the easiest way to buy a piece is when you need it. And then, until you need the next piece before you buy more.

But to get started, you can buy this 15-piece kit. You get all common router bits as well as some more and a handy storage case. Bits included in such a kit usually do not last that long, but they are a good place to start to learn what the different bit types do and which ones you use most often.

Good Router Bit Kit

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