The 6 Best Wood Routers: Buying Guide and Reviews

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q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00004TKHV&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US Bosch 1617EVS 2.25 HP Electronic Fixed-Base Router 4.8/5 More Details
q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00D8WJDC8&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US DEWALT Router, Fixed/Plunge Base Kit 4.7/5 More Details
q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B082CKWGXK&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US SKIL 14 Amp Plunge and Fixed-Base Router Combo 4.7/5 More Details
q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00006JKXB&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US DEWALT Router, Fixed Base, Variable Speed 4.6/5 More Details
q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B08516959K&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US Hammerhead 10-Amp Variable Speed Plunge Woodworking Router Kit 4.4/5 More Details
q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B092VDLJQZ&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US Elikliv Compact Wood Router Tool 4.4/5 More Details

Buying a wood router can be an intimidating task for anyone, but it doesn’t have to be. There are many factors that need to be considered when choosing the best wood router, and this guide will walk you through them all.

You’ll learn about what features make one model better than another, how important safety is when using power tools, and why you should always choose a variable speed model. We also offer reviews of some of the best wood routers on the market today, so you’ll know exactly which one to buy!

What Is Wood Router?

A wood router is a tool that uses rotating cutters to remove material from the surface of a piece of wood. Wood Router and wood planer are similar, but there are some differences between both tools.

Most routers are electrically powered, and some can be connected directly to an edge guide on your table saw for increased accuracy when cutting grooves or dados into boards. There are three types of wood routers: fixed-base, plunge-base, and D-handle.

Fixed-base

Fixed-base is the most common type. They’re easy to use and provide maximum control when cutting or shaping wood, but give you less flexibility in where you place the router bit than a plunge-base model.

Plunge-base

Plunge-base routers allow for even greater flexibility by allowing you to lower the base of your tool into any position along an edge guide track on your table saw. This gives you the ability to rout in either direction or cut stopped dados and grooves without having to reposition your router.

D-handle

D-handle routers are smaller than fixed-base models, which makes them easier for fine work, like attaching hinges with mortises on small pieces of wood. The downside is that they lack the speed and power of larger models.

What Are The Advantages Of Using Wood Router?

There are many advantages to using wood routers, but here are some of our favorites:

More Control

When cutting grooves or dados into boards with a router table set up on your saw, you can much more easily control how deep the cut is by changing your router depth setting instead of moving a table saw blade up and down.

Easier To Make Props And Models

For woodworkers who do a lot of work with plywood or just want to ensure that their projects have perfect symmetry, routers are invaluable for making quick, precise cuts at angles that would be nearly impossible with a table saw.

Greater Accuracy  

By using edge guides on your router, you can make cuts that are much more precise than if they were cut by hand or machine-guided through your table saw’s miter gauge track. This is especially beneficial when cutting molding for furniture projects like cabinets and bookshelves.

Less Dust

Routers produce much less dust than a table saw, or miter saw, which means you don’t have to clean up the mess every time. This is especially important if your work station has limited space, like in an apartment building where everyone shares one large shop room. It’s also good for keeping everything clear of dust long enough to finish a project.

What Is The Best Wood Router?

You can’t go wrong with any of the models we review below:

1. Bosch 1617EVS 2.25 HP Electronic Fixed-Base Router

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00004TKHV&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

The Bosch 1617EVS is an advanced fixed-base router that’s perfect for any custom milling or routing project. It combines ample power with adjustable speed settings, allowing users to glide along cutlines. 

Plus, the fixed base has threaded holes for easy mounting it to a router table positioned in a common 3-hole pattern (with a 2″ sub-base opening). No detail was overlooked when designing this tool; now including RA1161 fixed base with a system for adjusting bit height from above a router table. Adjust height without changing your grip on the tool!

Pros
  • Adjustable
  • Works well
  • Good for any type of project
  • Sturdy
  • Affordable
  • High-quality
Cons
  • Some buyers say that the aluminum can be scratch easily

2. DEWALT Router, Fixed/Plunge Base Kit

q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00D8WJDC8&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

With the power to rout smoothly through the toughest hardwoods with starting torque, DEWALT manufactures this router complete with variable speed control and dust collection. If you’re in need of depth adjustments when routing tough materials, the adjustable steel motor cam lock is just what you’ll need without any hassle or change needed beforehand. 

Simple but powerful design that will never let your customers down when they need versatility out on job sites, DEWALT is one of the top names in the game when it comes to routers!

Pros
  • Adjustable
  • Detachable
  • Reliable
Cons

    3. SKIL 14 Amp Plunge and Fixed-Base Router Combo

    q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B082CKWGXK&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

    Enjoy the precise power of the SKIL plunge and fixed base router combo. The speed control LCD display lets you select bit type and material for suggested speed settings based on the task at hand, while electronic feedback ensures the motor maintains RPM during routing. 

    A live tool indicator light up on the plunge router when it is connected to power allowing surges of electricity to flow flawlessly. Keep your workspace safe with this sturdy mounting plate that also features a depth gauge to make precise cuts-included!

    Pros
    • Works perfectly
    • Easy to use
    • Built well
    • Affordable
    Cons

      4. DEWALT Router, Fixed Base, Variable Speed

      q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00006JKXB&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

      Take control of router depth positions with DEWALT’s new Fixed Base Variable Speed Router that provides electronic variable speed from 8,000-24,000 rpm and soft start to reduce start-up torque for enhanced control. 

      Lock the motor cam into an adjustable one for a constant switch location as well as straighter cuts. The micro-fine depth adjustment ring allows you to dial in fixed base depths accurately from 1/64-inch increments all around so you can save time on calibration jobs or prep ahead of a cut without any surprises. 

      The Quick Release Motor Latches give fast bit changes and quick removal so swapping out bits is a one-hand operation. No screws are required!

      Pros
      • Adjustable
      • Durable
      • Great price
      • Easy to set-up
      Cons

        5. Hammerhead 10-Amp Variable Speed Plunge Woodworking Router Kit 

        q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B08516959K&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

        This is the fastest, most efficient, and easiest-to-use plunge router kit on the market. This versatile tool features an integrated spindle lock and a mounted wrench for fast bit changes plus an adjustable turret stop to control depth settings. 

        With its powerful 10AMP variable speed motor and micro Fine adjustment, you can control it in any plunge setting for accurate and precise results. 

        The vacuum adaptor allows you to connect this amazing machine to your shop vac or other dust collection system, making cleanup easy while improving visibility. Featuring all of the power of a professional woodworking tool at a lower cost than comparable models from competitors, get yours today!

        Pros
        • powerful
        • Adjustable
        • Great product
        Cons

          6. Elikliv Compact Wood Router Tool

          q? encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B092VDLJQZ&Format= SL160 &ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=captaintool 20&language=en US More Details

          The Elikliv Compact Wood Router Tool may be small, but it packs a punch. With its 800W motor and 30000 RPMs, you can take on those most difficult of applications, no problem! Careful though, the all-copper design of the motor unit will work at high temperatures without overheating and extend your router’s lifespan as result.

          The rubber handles are comfortable on the hands for extended use. It’s equipped with non-slip pads, which increase comfort while using it. This product makes the precision operation requirements of woodworkers easy to be met with its transparent adjustable base made of resin measuring board.

          Tired of carrying around heavier tools? This compact tool is lightweight compared to many others, making it easier to carry around without tiring too quickly or straining your back.

          Pros
          • Reliable
          • Good product
          • It works well
          Cons

            Choosing The Right Wood Router For Your Project

            In choosing the best wood router, you need to consider the following:

            Purpose

            What do you need the router for? Do you want a wood, metal, and plastic cutting tool or just one that cuts through woods? Why are you choosing this specific tool over others on the market?

            Type of power source

            There are corded and cordless wood routers, with the former requiring power from a wall outlet. The latter is more portable but may have shorter battery life per charge or less time between charges when in use.

            Size of bits

            The size of the router bit you choose for your project is also important. Some small bits are ideal for making cuts on detailed carvings while larger bits are better for cutting through harder woods.

            Special features

            There may be specific attachments or accessories you need to consider before purchasing a particular wood router, such as a dust port attachment that keeps the work surface and air around it clean from debris. If you’re going to be using your router in an enclosed space this is a must.

            Price

            Finally, consider the price of a wood router and how much you’re willing to spend on it before making your final purchase. With a better understanding of all these factors, you’ll be able to choose from one of the best routers available for sale today!

            Wood Router FAQ’s

            How much horsepower should a wood router have?

            This will depend on how much material you plan to remove and the density of that wood. Different materials require different amounts of horsepower, but as a rule, stronger routers produce less heat when cutting through dense woods like oak or maple.


            How many bits should I store in my router?

            This depends on your router and what you plan to use it for. Most standard-sized routers will contain a collet that allows you to change the bits as needed, but some smaller models may require an additional purchase of a drill chuck or bit holder in order to accommodate more than one type of tool at once.


            How much should I expect to spend on a wood router?

            Wood routers can cost anywhere from $30 all the way up to several hundred dollars depending on what features you need and which brand you choose, but most models fall between $100-$200 when it comes to price range.

            The best wood router for your needs is based entirely on personal preference, but you can’t go wrong with a high-quality product from a trusted brand.

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