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I picked up a cheap $29 Harbor Freight trim router to cut grooves for splines in miter joints.  I was thoroughly disappointed when the 1/8" splines were extremely loose within the grooves.  The grooves ended up measuring .168 inches using a .125" bit.  Since then, I looked at the compact router offerings from Bosch, DeWalt & Porter Cable.

All were 1.25 HP, had 1/4" collets, came in a package that included a plunge base and were highly rated by their users. I chose the DeWalt because it was similar to my DW618 and it had the LED lighting in the base that lights up the work area .  For my aging eyes, every bit of light helps.

The small size of the router makes it easy to grab and control for doing round overs on edges or edge trimming. The small size also makes it less stable than a full size router.  

The variable speed is set via dial on the top of the housing.  The dial is numbered so an exact speed is an estimate at best.  According to DeWalt, the speed ranges from 16K - 27K rpm.  The power switch for the router sits opposite the speed control at the top, and is my only complaint.  It is small and shrouded with a dust cover and is a little difficult to turn on.  This is especially true if wearing gloves. Although not easy to bump, if the switch is bumped, the router will turn off.  

I haven't used the plunge base that comes with the "PK" yet, but it is similar in operation to its big brother for my DW618.  In my opinion, it is much easier to set the depth than that of the Bosch (the P-C depth setting is similar to the DW). 

With only 1.25HP and 1/4" collet, the router is not meant for deep cuts or large bits.  I did check the run out using an .125 inch straight bit, and the cut width measured .126 inch. That is close enough for me. 

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Comment by hank Mayberry on February 22, 2016 at 9:26am

I too bought the DWP611KP router and love it for quick router jobs. I also have the DW618 , a powerful smooth router. When I got my Kreg router table I mounted it (DW618) in my table. I wanted something to use for the times I don't want to use the table for routing and need something small and lighter. Both are awesome tools!

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