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Thread: How many Routers do you have and how many did you originally think was enough

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada

    How many Routers do you have and how many did you originally think was enough

    I thought it may be worth for the sake of others to make a post regarding routers and how many we have and how it came to be.

    I started out as a fool and purchased on price a Black & Decker plunge router. All singing dancing machine that only takes 1/4" shank bits. Its now a relic that sits in a box somewhere.

    Then again without having joined a forum like this i got caught up at the woodworking show in a deal on the Porter Cable 2&1/4 HP PC 890 all singing dancing kit with two bases and collets for both 1/4" and 1/2" and whats more height adjustment from above the table. (said in my best tv direct marketing voice )

    Well i thought that was going to be it. Then i purchased a bandsaw from Delta and it came with a free PC 690 1.75Hp as part of the deal. This is a great router.

    Then i joined the forum and realized there is a whole world of knowledge that I knew nothing about and learnt a few things from the guys here.

    I was not totally unhappy with my PC 2&1/4 unit in my router table except that the rack that is used to rachet the router up and down is held in place by two very small length screws and these rely on the wall thickness of the base to retain themselves. They are under force as the lift is operated and in my case just wiggled loose all the time and eventually the holes stripped. It was never a happy arrangement. Does it work, yes but that is only so the marketing guys are not accused of lying.

    Later i was sent a copy of Carols book and have read it over and over and still refer to it.

    Then a day came when i wanted to do something with a better handle on the router and the weight of the current incumbents was not conducive to it. So i was researching the Bosch Colt and ended up being given one as a gift by a good friend who spoils me now and then. This is a wonderful little router and i use it a lot, but it only takes 1/4" shank bits

    Then i decided if i was going to mess with routers i wanted it to be safe and it needed stability and accuracy. I could get by with what i had but not with a pleasure or quick setup.

    So a new table was in order and so too the lift and i decided a bigger no question asked router was needed and purchase my Milwaukee 3.5hp to use on the table as a dedicated unit. I want to be able to swing a raised panel bit without worrying about anything else.

    I also do not want to be taking my router in and out of my lift. BTDT got the T shirt it gets stale and the rack got worse as i did this.

    So now i have a bunch of routers and you can see the history of how they came to be.

    I had thought that after my B&D Borg experience i would get away with the original Porter Cable 890 kit, it has the power, it has two bases (plunge and fixed) but it did not work out the way i had hoped.

    I hope others chime in to tell their multi router story and i hope this helps someone make better informed decisions.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Kansas City, Missouri
    I've mostly gotten by with one router, but I do mostly round-overs and chamfers, not heavy cutting. I bought the rockler aluminum base and the PC690 fixed base for it years ago and it gets used on my table saw extension. I wish I had a second pc690 as the biggest pain is just getting it out of the case to put on the other base. That is only because I use it on the plunge base more often and undoing that set screw on the plunge base is a pain.

    I also own a rotozip with a router base attachment for trim routing and several dremals. I would like one with more HP for doing dados and the heavy cutting, but have just considered getting a shaper instead. My FIL has one though and it scares the life out of me just thinking about using it with the large blades spinning and thinking about the kickbacks it would give, so will probably stick with getting a larger HP router.

    To a small child, the perfect granddad is unafraid of big dogs and fierce storms but absolutely terrified of the word “boo.” – Robert Brault

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Escondido, CA
    You must have missed my argument about plunge routers in tables, Rob. The plunge router was not designed to be fitted to a table. So we have to make the compromises necessary to make it so. But that isn't addressing the problem. I think that ease of bit adjustment up and down is the goal of plunge routers in a table but that is the very thing it does least well. That's why lifts have been designed and offered. The easiest router I have to do depth adjustment is the PC690. If it is an adjustment you need to return to, all you need is the original profile and a sense of touch. No numbers required.

    Had an old-timer tell me many years ago that numbers in the shop will get us in trouble every time. His question was, "What are you trying to build to, a number or fit?"

    Sometimes we forget about the original alligator we were fighting.

    As to the number of routers I have, I really don't know. I haven seen them in a while. Maybe a dozen. How did I come by them? Some I bought. Some were given to me. I have had as many as 4 dozen. I thinned the herd ten years ago. But then when it comes to routers, I ain't your average bear.

    Some say the land of milk and honey; others say the land of fruits and nuts. All together my sort of heaven.

    Power is not taken. It is given. Who have you given yours to? Hmmmm?

    Carol Reed

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Carol I did not know of you or your book at the time i purchased. Thats why i am wising up. Your positive influence.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Billings Missouri near Springfield Mo
    I had 6 of the 3 1/2 hp PC at one time I used 2 of them at a time on a CNC mill that we rigged up to hold them instead of using the spindle. I had them set up to cut Cap Rack stick ( by the Thousands) and I had 2 in router tables. Also a couple of 690's and a Hitachi 3.5 plunge and a Hitachi laminate trimmer.
    I am down to 4 now but looking at adding another one or 2 ( I hate setting up routers ). I still have 2 of the large PC and the 2 Hitachi routers now.
    A Turn N Time
    Components for John Smith Organs and the Hobby Organ Builder

    Frog Pond Guitars

    Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!
    I have a Bosch Colt with the plunge base and fixed base. I have about a half a dozen (?) Milwaukees of various types. I thought maybe one or two ought-a do it
    Last edited by glenn bradley; 04-03-2014 at 05:03 PM.
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Constantine, MI

    How many Routers do you have and how many did you originally think was enough

    I have the big Milwaukee in my router table attached to A lift. It has soft start and oodles of power and adjustable rpm. I also have a 690 with two bases. It's my all around work horse for dove tails, profiles etc. though it feels a bit like over kill for some tasks. I have a DeWalt laminate trimmer I use for small profiles. I have a 1/8" round over in it all the time ready to use.

    I have had my eye on the new DeWalt small router kit with 2 bases. It has gotten good reviews and seems like it would fill the gap between the 690 and the trimmer nicely.
    Host of the 2017 Family Woodworking Gathering - Sunken Wood

    “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Thomasville, GA
    At last count:

    1 PC 7518 motor mounted on an Incra lift in my table (both purchased last year).

    3 Bosch 1617EVS with 3 fixed bases and 1 plunge base.

    1 Hitachi M12V (available for sale).

    1 Craftsman 1.5hp I inherited from my father.

    1 PC trim router

    2 HF trim routers
    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member and Member of Mensa
    My Weather Underground station

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    East Freeetown, Massachusetts
    I don't consider myself to be a "router collector".

    My first router was bought from a guy at work. It's an old Rockwell - equivelent to a PC890. NICE router

    Second router is a M12V Hitachi. I bought this specifically for my router table/

    Third PC690 - at a woodworking show - great show price - couldn't resist. I then bought a used plunge base for it.

    ALL - my hand held work is done on this stuff.

    The 690 - is my goto router.

    THEN - I have the CNC router - it has a 2hp 220v Perske Spindle.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    DSM, IA
    I'm no help with routers, but I too have the B&D plunge router. My dad gave it to me one christmas and I've used the heck out of it. For what I've done in the past it works great, but I'm gonna be adding a router wing on the TS and also flattening some slabs sometime this summer so will probably get a 690, sounds like they are workhorses.

    Also have a Ryobi router table...not that great and a HF trim router that has a round over bit in it all the time.
    A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone. -Henry David Thoreau
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