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What SHOULD be my next piece of equipment   ?   I have : Table saw, circular saw, router, miter saw, various drills and drivers,palm sander,angle grinder, jigsaw, Kreg kit and a few clamps.  My space is limited and so is my time as I still work a many as 50 hours at 56 years of age and still love what i do so no slowing down for me yet.  

   

I was thinking maybe a combination sander 4inch belt 6inch wheel type?  Bench top drill press? Going to build another heavier bench soon to use for heavier equipment operations'

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My router can go either way.  I still may purchase a fixed base router to dedicate to the table.  I also have a insert for the router base that I believe is used for patterning.  
Ken Darga said:

A router, with a fixed base, can be used for hand-held routing operations.

Depth adjustments are accomplished by the adjusting feature, that is intergral with the router base.

Just now noticed your reply.  I tend to agree.  I would prefer to have a dedicated router for the table.

I am planning on adding a router table if the weather ever warms up enough in these parts to get me going.  I am looking at the Bosch.  I would like to mount it to a mobile work station as a designated work area just for routing.   I could be wrong Rick but I think you would want to mount a fixed router to the table.   A plunge router for free hand work.  My router now is both fixed and plunge but plan on a separate heavier motor for the table.   All in good time :)

A P-C 893 router, for example, includes two bases---

a fixed base and a plunge  base.

The fixed base can be mounted in the router table and the plunge base can be used for hand-held routing operations.

It's a simple task, to open the locking mechanism, and move the router from the plunge base to the fixed base, 

and visa versa.  This permits one to have a single router for both uses.

There are various router OEM's, that offer such features.

Currently Rockler is offering a P-C 895K router kit, for $260 (reg price $290)---

and includes a $42 brass bushing kit FREE.

I think since I have a plunge router that seems to be adequate i will save a few bucks and buy a fixed base.  That way I can get a bit more quality for my money but less features.  I would dedicate it to a table.

If you are looking for a fixed base to match your plunge, I'd say keep an eye out on Ebay.

Rick said:

I think since I have a plunge router that seems to be adequate i will save a few bucks and buy a fixed base.  That way I can get a bit more quality for my money but less features.  I would dedicate it to a table.

  • Same general specs 1.75 HP  1/2 and 1/4 inch chucks,  Fixed Base,  Milwaukee or Porter Cable.   Thoughts  anyone? 

Rick,

My choice is the P-C.

P-C has been the workhorse in routers.
P-C routers have been around a long time, and have been the industry standard,
from which other routers are based.

P-C offers the largest readily available accessories.

Something to consider, for expanding your router accessories & options.

Limited accessories available for other routers, on todays market.

I've had a P-C 690, single-speed 1.75HP, fixed base hand-held router for many years.
To date, it's performed flawlessly.

An optional plunge base is available for the 690, if you chose to purchase one, at later date.

I also have the P-C 890VS (variable speed) series, the 2-3/4HP model.

NOTE: A slower speed is needed when spinning larger bits.

 Heheheehee, these conversations generally degenerate into a "which is best; red Ford, Blue Chevy or Green Dodge..... "  In this case, I have to respectfully disagree with Kens assessment of the Porter Cable product line. Black and Decker bought the P-C flag a couple of years ago and have been "repositioning" the brand in the market place. I doubt seriously that the Porter Cable of today is the same robust machine your father was able to buy 20 or so years ago. Moreover, B&D has not seen fit to upgrade much of the line, the exception being the introduction of the 450 PK, a small, 1 HP trim router with a plunge base. The prices have also stayed relatively high which, IMHO, reduces their value/$. IMO, a much better value would be the Bosch 1617 , which is a 2-1/4 HP router at least the equivalent of the 893 for roughly $100 less money. As far as pure value/$ the new line of Craftsman routers, $100 - 150 range are very hard to beat. As far as accessories go, since the P-C has been around a long time, most other router mfg have adapted their routers to accommodate most P-C compatible accessories and, in some cases improve on their use.

There are many good routers on the market. I believe the best approach is to handle as many variations as possible to find the one with the best ergonomic fit for you personally. Pay attention to the controls; plunge release, power switch location, bit height adjustment.. etc and choose the one that feels more natural to you. I have several routers of different brands and each does one type of job a little better than another.

I purchased the Milwaukee.  I have several of their tools and feel good with the brand.  The model I choose is also compatible with the bosch cabinet bench top router table I am looking at.

Congratulations, Milwaukee are great tools. I'd love to put their 5625 router in my table but the old Freud hasn't given me an excuse to. :)
 
Rick said:

I purchased the Milwaukee.  I have several of their tools and feel good with the brand.  The model I choose is also compatible with the bosch cabinet bench top router table I am looking at.

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