What’s the Best Router for Woodworking in 2017?

Let Us Help You Find the Best Wood Router After 2015

Woodworking is a lot of fun, and you get to work with your hands and truly enjoy yourself with a respectable hobby. But there are a lot of wood routers on the market today, and trying to find a model best suited to your needs can be very difficult.

DEWALT DWP611PK 1.25 HP Max Torque Variable Speed Compact Router Combo Kit with LED’s

Our favorite for 2017

Black & Decker RP250 10-Amp 2-1/4-Inch Variable Speed Plunge Router

A great value option

PORTER-CABLE 690LR 11-Amp Fixed-Base Router

A powerful and efficient router

There are just too many models to choose from.

Even if you’re an avid fan of DEWALT or Bosch, you’ll find that both companies offer so many different router models that it can be impossible to pick one without digging deeper into the models specs.

A few of the most important specs to consider are:

  • Motor: A stronger motor will allow for an easier to cutting through harder Generally, the higher the horsepower, the stronger the motor will be. Information on the motor will always be listed by the manufacturer when going to make a purchase.
  • Speed: Faster speeds, or rpms, will allow for more rapid cuts, while slower speeds can be used when trying to make delicate cuts. Keep all of this in mind so that when you start a project, you know that your router can handle it.
  • Depth Adjustments: The option to adjust the depth of the cuts you make is priceless. Most models will come with a 1/64” adjustment, which is very precise, but there are models (we list one below) that provide 1/128” adjustments, which are extremely precise.

The best wood router is one that works best for your needs. We encourage you to read all of the reviews below to make an informed decision before plunking down money on your next router.

Woodworking Router Reviews

DEWALT DWP611PK 1.25 HP Max Torque – DEWALT’s DWP611K offers a compact combo kit that allows for the utmost in versatility when woodworking. This model offers a 1.25 HP motor that is able to deliver immense power when you need it most.

Bit speed is offered via the variable speed control, with speeds ranging from 16,000 to 27,000 rpm with no load.

Soft-starting is offered as well as electronic feedback that allows the motor to work harder under a load to keep the speed normalized. Dual LEDs add to the user’s visibility, and depth changes of 1/64” are offered for refined cuts.

As a mid range unit, this is an affordable, robust router for all of your woodworking needs.

DEWALT DW618PK 12-AMP 2-1/4 HP Plunge – Another combo kit by DEWALT, this model is a plunge- and fixed-base model that offers an impressive 2.25 HP motor and 12-amp variable speeds. Users will be able to rout through the toughest wood with ease.

Improved versatility and bit retention is provided via the 1/4” and 1/2” collets.

Precise depth adjustments are provided with 1/64” increments, and all adjustments are provided tool-free for quick adjustments. There is also solid-locking for added safety.

If you  work with your router often, you’ll find that the dust collection system collects 95% of all dust, allowing for even more visibility when making cuts.

With speeds of 8,000 – 24,000 rpm, this is a must-have model for avid woodworkers.

PORTER-CABLE 690LR 11-Amp Fixed-Base Router – Porter-Cable’s 690LR offers an 11-amp motor that has a peak horsepower of 1.75. A single speed motor is able to produce fast cuts at 27,500 rpm, and the motor housing is aluminum to provide a lighter weight design.

Micrometer depth adjustments of a precise 1/128” depth are offered, making this the ideal tool for truly intricate cuts where precision is a must.

The cam-lock lever allows for coarse height adjustments, too. Fast bit removal is offered through the auto-release collet system, and molded grips are offered for an ergonomic, comfortable feel when at work.

And with its low to mid-range status, this is the go-to option for more refined cuts on a budget.

Bosch 1617EVS 2-1/4 HP Variable-Speed Router – Bosch is a brand that people know and trust, and the 1617EVS is a model that pumps out 2.25 HP with 12-amps and can maintain speeds of 8,000 – 25,000 rpm. Variable speed options are offered, or you can use match speed when needed.

Consistent performance is provided via the router’s monitoring system, which adjusts performance based on real-time feedback from the router.

Chip shields are included for added safety, and 1/4” and 1/2” collets with self-releasing function are provided, too. The above-table adjustment makes working with this model a breeze, and the grips are made of wood for added durability.

As mid to high-range model, this is a great choice for all woodworking projects.

Black & Decker RP250 10-Amp 2-1/4-Inch Router – Are you in the market for a budget router? If so, this is a good choice for you. This is a plunge router that is best suited for decorative cuts, and the 10 Amp motor provides unmatched power to be used with even the hardest woods.

Gradual start allows for an easier time controlling the unit when starting, and this adds to the precision of the cuts.

A 1/4” collet is available as well as an adjustable guide for precision when you need it most. Speeds are between 8,000 and 27,000 rpm, and a 2-year warranty backs your investment. A budget model, this is a great starter router for decorative work.

Buyer’s Guide –  How to Choose the Right Woodworking Router for You

The best routers for woodworking are available for you to purchase, but there is a problem: which model do you pick? This is a question that a lot of people ask themselves, especially if they’ve never purchased a router before and want to get started with their new hobby.

Router for Woodworking

And it’s a hard decision because a lot of the routers are similar in power and function.

The good news is that unless you’re woodworking professionally, most of the models on our list will suffice for you needs. But there are a few things to consider that will help make your decision a lot easier:

  • Price: The price will matter a lot depending on your budget. All of the models on our list have been tried and tested thoroughly from people across the world, and they all work well. If you set a budget, you’ll be able to keep within your budget and find a model that works well for you.
  • Comfort: It goes without saying that your hands need to be comfortable when woodworking. Vibrations can cause your hands to ache and hurt over time, and this isn’t the desired result. Ergonomic grips will help alleviate much of this discomfort and pain.
  • Type: Know which router type will work best for your usage. There are plunge routers which are good for through cuts and template work. And there are fixed-base routers, which are good, all-purpose options. Palm routers are available, too, which are small and allow for one hand operation and added control.

Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, read reviews and choose a model you’re confident in.



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