View Full Version : Routers/Router Tables????
03-07-2001, 01:05 PM
I'm just ready to start rolling on some bigger projects other than plate racks, etc. I have a 2HP Craftsman Router and a cheapie table of the same brand. I've been looking at plan, pics of router tables on PlanNow, Rockler, etc.
My first question is, I probably need bigger Router for raised panels,e tc? COrrect?
Should I plan on making a new router table to replace this craftsman of mine? Any suggestions on plans?
Finally, if I do purchase a bigger router, would I be able to use the big one in the table and leave it there and then use the 2hp unit for table free stuff?
Thanks guys, love the site...
karl in pa
03-07-2001, 03:00 PM
For raised panels you'll need a router with a 1/2" collett and, correct me if I'm wrong guys, at least 3 HP. You'll definitely need a larger table with a much more accurate fence unless you like constantly measuring, adjusting, and remeasuring to make sure it's set right.
Hold on to the Craftsman for the light work like rounding over and keep the better unit on the table. I think you'll eventually leave the cheaper unit in its case and use the better one for everything. Well, that's been my experience anyway.
03-07-2001, 03:06 PM
Raised panel cutters essentially require a 3+HP router with variable speed. Have had some bad experiences with Craftsman.
One of the tricks to cutting raised panels is to set the depth *ONCE*. Then you adjust the fence to expose progressively more of the cutter. This avoids fiddley depth adjustments. At the maximum exposure the panel rides up against the bearing on the cutter so that the maximum cuts are all the same no matter how the fence was adjusted.
Take a look at my router table - it's part of my saw: http://www.netexperts.cc/~lambertm/Wood/incra.html
You will probably get different answers from different woodworkers. I have been told that 2HP is big enough to handle raised panel work, but like one of the respondents also told to go 3HP.
As to the table, I ordered the plans for the router table from PlansNow.com and love it. After I finish the game box I am making for my daughter and her family, that table is my next project.
03-09-2001, 09:02 PM
I noticed you used a catscan for your final inspection - you may want to consider a little lab work for second opinions.
03-13-2001, 05:18 PM
Jim, I just went through what you're considering...my big concern was plunge or fixed base router. You can check my thread (under "Before I Buy" forum) and note the comments (before they got personal and childish). I ended up getting the PC 5718, a fixed-base model, and the Bench Dog Table top and Pro Fence...made the cabinet stand myself. The Bench Dog is very good, and is well worth the money. The Router was exepensive, but I hope that it will prove to be worth the extra $100 bucks or so over the plunge-based Freud 2000E (which many people like a lot). I've also heard many good comments about the Incra fence/system. I also have an inexpensive 1.75hp router for hand-held use...the 15 amp units are a bit bulky to handle, and I expect that mine will remain in the table.
John of Conover, NC
03-14-2001, 07:24 AM
Since I have limited space I use a rockler table with the folding legs. It really works well. For a router I use the Freud in my table and PC 690 fixed base router for hand jobs. Having the extra power and variable speed is nice. You definitely need both for raised panels. On thing that surprised me was how loud the Freud router is. Be sure to use hearing protection. When I get a little more space I am going to build a base for my Rockler table top with some storage simular to Norms.