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Router recommendations for Newbie

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New Contributor

Router recommendations for Newbie

I'm looking at purchasing my first plunge router.  Primarily I'll be using it connected to a router table.  

I've been looking at the two entry level routers at Bunnings.

 

https://www.bunnings.com.au/ryobi-1600w-plunge-router_p6210608

https://www.bunnings.com.au/makita-900w-plunge-router_p6240072

 

Is either of these better than the other for use on a router table, or would you recommend a completely different machine.

I find it difficult to compare the tools when I'm not sure what features I need.

 

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Trusted Contributor

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

I would recommend for a router table - triton TRA001 

Router tables not so clear cut a choice, I have a kreg precision router table system on castors.

incra router table fences-ls super sys has a lot of repeatable and easy to set template positions but at a price.

Ready 2 rout when your budget is unlimited Double the price of the best Incra and then you have to buy a table as well on top!

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Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

Welcome to the community @teamwalrus.

 

I see you have already received some great advice form @Brad

 

Some specifications which would affect the machine in use would be the power, depth of cut, variable speed and if you were going to hook up dust extraction.

 

The Ryobi has more power at 1600w (Makita is 900w), has a larger depth cut capacity of 55mm (Makita is 35mm), is variable speed (Makita has no variable speed) and has a port for dust extraction (Makita has no port). Having a look at that, the options of the Ryobi far exceed those of the Makita. The Makita is still a nice tool, but feature-wise the Ryobi is superior and would be my recommendation.

 

If you have further questions or need advice, please let me know.

 

Mitchell

 

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Budding Contributor

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

I've got a 1200W Ryobi plunge router that must be 10-15 years old, and it's been a great tool.  It's done a fair bit of work in that time, and has been rock solid and reliable.  Prior to this I'd had two Ozito routers that died while still under warranty, so when the second went, I paid the difference and upgraded to the Ryobi.  Definitely don't regret it at all.  So although the new Ryobi looks completely different, I think that'd be my choice.  1600w vs 900w too, more power is good.  I like the Ryobi's soft start feature, which means the torque doesn't try to wrench the tool out of your hands when you turn it on.  The depth setting mechanism on this modern version looks greatly improved from my older version, which could sometimes slip if not set carefully.

 

My one question though, is whether a plunge router is the right tool at all?  They're relatively bulky, heavy tools.  So if you're mainly doing round-overs and edge details, where you're working on the edge of your timber, that can be an issue.  I've been doing these with my plunge router for years, and produced good results, but it's awkward and you've got to be very careful.  Recently I bought a Ryobi trim router which I find much lighter and easier to handle than the plunge router. Clearly not as powerful, if I was hogging out a deep groove in a piece of timber I'd still use my plunge router.  But for small rebates, round overs and edge details it's plenty powerful enough.  It also feels like you're fighting against the spring in the base of a plunge router all the time which was annoying.  So think about what you're going to be doing most often, and maybe a smaller trim router might be a good choice?  I will note though that all of my routing I do free hand, I don't use a router table at all, not sure how much that might change things.

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New Contributor

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

Updated: I ended purchasing the Ryobi router and unfortunately its not fit for purpose.  It doesn't have a on/off switch.  It has a trigger which constantly has to be held on for the unit to run.  That's not going to work for a table unit (when its fixed upside down under the table).

 

There has been some good recommendations about getting a smaller router so I'm gong to get one of those to attach to the table.  And keep the Ryobi for non-table work.  Two tools are better than one right?  Don't tell the wife.

 

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Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

Hi @teamwalrus,

 

I apologise that the machine recommended was not suitable for the task. There was a miscommunication as to whether the secondary thumb safety switch was indeed a locking function enabling the unit to be run in a table configuration.

 

As with all our products, we are more than happy to return it, as it was not suitable for the purpose it was recommended for.

 

On the topic of power switches and table routers, you'll need a second easily accessible switch within arms reach which is visible at all times. Mounting an HPM 10 Amp 4 Outlet Switched Powerboard on the side of the table could be an option to quickly stop power in an emergency situation.

 

Mitchell

 

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New Contributor

Re: Router recommendations for Newbie

Thanks Mitchell.  As I mentioned I'll probably keep it anyway, just not table mounted.  One thing I do find quite bad about Ryobi is their manuals.  They've gone all graphic instructuctions and from that its hard to find out how the device works; the fact its trigger run wasn't clear at all.  Maybe its a problem with all manufacturers, I've just had experience with Ryobi lately.

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