The wood router is essential among woodworking tools because it adds ornamental detail that enhances and defines the final appearance of your woodworking project. Used correctly, this tool is to the woodworker what a fine paintbrush is to an artist. It’s all in the details. The router is a versatile woodworking tool that can be used for a variety of tasks including rabbeting and making dado grooves.
Presently there are four, basic types of wood routers on the market today: layered trimmers, lightweight or low-powered routers in the 7/8 to 1 1/2 HP range, medium-powered routers in the one and three-quarters to two and one-quarter HEWLETT PACKARD range and high-powered routers in the 3-4 HEWLETT PACKARD range. Each has the use and I have owned all of them at the same time. The laminate trimmers do what their name implies as well as other light-weight tasks such as making hinge mortises. They are only suited to small router bits nonetheless they are easily maneuverable and fit nicely right in your palm best woodworking tools.
If you need more horsepower but still like the ease of a lightweight router, the 7/8 to 1/12 HP routers will do a fine job of spinning router bits up to a half-inch radius round-over parts. Every shop should have one of these convenient for bench-top work. These people are somewhat small for router table use. 2 and one-quarter HP woodworking routers have sufficient power to spin large router bits through hardwood and yet they are still light enough to be manageable as bench-top wood routers.
While any wooden router over 2 HORSEPOWER can be used in a router table, I prefer the high run ones for that software because there is no need to worry about how precisely heavy they are and you might as well have as much power convenient as you may need. Most, but not all, of these greater routers are plunge routers. The high horsepower is necessary to plunge large bits deep into wood to make mortises and so on.
If I could only afford one wood router, it will be the two and one-quarter HP variety because it is light enough for most bench-top work and can be used in a router table. When I could afford two routers, I would probably have a 7/8 to 1 1/2 HP machine for bench-top work and a 3 1/2 HP wood router under my router table. I don’t like mounting and dismounting routers under my router stand, so having a lighter wood router on hands close to the bench always really speeds things up.
Let me make a few observations about routers. First, We suggest you consider utilizing only high-quality carbide-tipped router parts in these woodworking tools whenever possible. They can be re-sharpened often and they usually don’t burn and load up if they are kept sharp. High-speed steel bits may last long, they are not worth sharpening and they dull quickly, losing your work piece as they soon load upward and turn black from burning up. Sometimes, however, the little bit profile you require may only be available in a top speed steel bit: This is the exception rather than the rule.
Second, as hand-held power woodworking tools, heavy and/or top-heavy routers are hard to manage. Not only will you be struggling with them all day, they tend to idea easily which can often ruin a cut or leave an incomplete slice. If a smaller, low-profile wood router could have spun that bit, then that is the tool you need to have been using. On the other hand, an under-powered wood router will not perform a good job and might not exactly be safe. Likewise, make certain to check the weight of any wood router you could be considering, in case it is to be hand-held. Heavy woodworking tools are tiring and clumsy to use the whole day. A pound or two less can make a major difference.