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I'm looking to replace my ryobi router. It does ok for light routing, but i want a router with a little more power. I have been looking at Ridgid and porter Cable. Any suggestions on what brands to look at or stay away from?

thanks

Derrick Williams

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I'm happy with my PC.  It came with both plunge and regular base.

I'm a big Bosch fan. Their newest routers look great. Having the on off switch in the handle is a BIG plus. They also have lights in it. I would like to have that feature.

 I also prefer their template guides over the Porter Cable style.  Push a lever, drop in the template guide, release and your done. Don't have to screw it together or have it loosen on you when you're in a middle of a cut. I used a Porter Cable type once and routed the inside of it because it came loose. Thank God it was brass...LOL

 

If you go with any of the quality routers out there, I'm sure you won't go wrong. Porter Cable, Bosch, Dewalt, Ridgid, Titan, ETC. They all make good routers and have many satisfied customers. Just look for features you like/need. Like having lights that make it easier to see what your routing (VERY important if you have aging eyes).  They type of template guides that you prefer. dust collection for it. If it comes with extra base that you can mount in a table. That way you can remove the router and put it in a seconday base, it's quicker and less agravating than having to unscrew it from the table every time you need it for hand use (been there, done it).  My bosch came with a standard base and a plunge base. I mounted the standard base in the table and used the plunge base for handheld work.  worked really good for me.

 

As you learned , stay away from cheap and look for options you want, and you will be happy.

 

 

You won't find a better table mounted router than a PC 7518. If your an avid woodworker and buy anything else, in time you will end up with the PC. As far as handheld and plunge, it really depends on how it feels to you but stay with 2 hp.

PC is pretty much the standard in routers for sure.  I have an 891 and it's great but I actually prefer my Milwaukee 5615.  One of these fine days I plan on springing for the big-boy Milwaukee 5625 (similar specs to the PC 7518).  And for a handheld I find myself reaching for my little Bosch Colt more than any other unless I need the bigger base on the 5615.
I have a milwaukee 5625 in my router table that I love and for a handheld I have a hitachi that is ok.  I have been looking at the Ridgids and I think that's what I'm going to replace the Hitachi with.  They have a hookup for dust collection for edge routing etc. that comes with it, but I do agree with everyone else though, I have owned Dewalt and PC routers and been happy with them too. I only opted for the Milwaukee for my table because of the power it has.
For the most part all the current major brands are fine. I have eleven routers at last count several PC, two dewalts, a Bosch set with three bases, an old black & decker, ect. The most important thing is to find one that is comfortable to hold and use. I have a large Triton for heavy stock, its way to heavy for most work and the handles are mounted high, I like the handles mounted low near the base. I'm using a Bosch 1617 for most work it fits my hands well. For dovetails I use a PC and an omnijig. If I were to buy only one router I would opt for a combination plunge & fixed base set like the Bosch 1617EVSPK, or the Porter Cable 895PK. Try them on find one that fits your hands well and that you are comfortable with. Two plus horse power is a good starting point, and I would opt for one with both 1/4" an 1/2" collets as most come with now. If you are planning to use a router table get one with a through table height adjustment. Good luck and happy shopping.
Don't pass of Craftsman routers. I have a couple, no complaints. Price wise there about 1/2 of the top brands, especially the plunge router. It depends on how heavy use u plan.
Go Porter Cable. I have a 3 1/2 hp on my router bench, and 2 3/4 hp plunge router for use by hand. I like the fact that both can use one quarter and half-inch bits. They never seem to bog down no matter what the situation. I have owned these routers for well over 10 years and have enjoyed them immensely.
I went with the Milwaukee 2 1/4 hp router.  I like the 5 year warranty.  I do suggest that in selecting a router, if you plan to use it in a router table, make sure that when you look a routers in the store, flip them over and see if you are satisfied with the position of the controls.  Also, the Milwaukee came with a dust collection bezel that collects some of the dust but it's useless if you are using 2 piece router bit sets where you have to switch bit A with bit B.  You won't be able to loosen the collet unless you change the height which defeats the purpose of the 2 piece bit.  Also, I don't see much use in being able to adjust the bit height from the top of the table since you have to get under the table to loosen the router motor from the base anyway.  I kind of like having my eye at table top level to check and set the bit heights.  I don't think you can go wrong with most any brand.  Pick a known brand and you should be fine.
ok, thanks to all who have responded. I think i'm gonna go with Porter Cable 895. Its has alot of good reviews. I am looking at purchasing it from Woodcraft. Anyone ever had any bad luck with them? never bought anything from them. I also plan on buying some bits..maybe freud ..not sure yet

Woodcraft has been a good supplier for me. Lately though, their website has become maddeningly slow. I suspect it because of all the photos they put in there.

895 should make a decent table router, I believe the newer ones have above table height adjustments and above table bit changes. You will still need to go underneath for speed settings but those aren't (supposed to be) done dynamically. As has been stated, there are many, many good routers out there. I use a Freud 1700 in a portable table and a Freud 3000 in a large table.

As for router bits, I suggest you look at finewoodworking.com.  They conducted tests on a bunch of bits and results showed Whiteside and Eagle as the best performers.  I've been using Whiteside bits and after searching the web for good prices, I setteled on woodworkersworld.net.  It's a small company in PA and they deliver quickly; 2-3 days.  Whiteside bits are made in the USA and they have a tech support line that is actually at the factory and the guy I spoke with actually does woodwork.  Just don't call on Monday morning.

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