Best Wood Routers in the UK

Review & Comparison, Last Update June 28, 2018
If you have a predilection for carpentry, you won't go far without a wood router, a tool designed to help you add decorations and accents to any wood projects. Read on our comparison to find the tool best suited for your tasks. ...Read more ...Read less
BEST 2018
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
Type
Power
No-load speed
Collet capacity
Plunge stroke
Convenience features
Weight
Warranty
 
PROS

SDS™ (SpecialDirectSystem) allows switching template guides swiftly and easily without any additional tools.

CONS

Quite noisy.

OUR VERDICT

The Bosch POF 1400 ACE wood router is an innovative tool that will come in useful in the industrial manufacture and assembly of furniture. Thanks to a Dust Extraction Port, using it is maximum convenient and mess-free. 

detailed parameters
Type

Plunge

Power

1400 Watts

No-load speed

Up to 28000 RPM

Collet capacity

6 mm

Plunge stroke

Up to 55 mm

Convenience features

Variable speed control, Constant Electronic system, Bosch SDS™ system, Integrated work light, Dust Extraction Port

Weight

3.5 kg

Warranty

3 years (product registration required)

PROS

Two-layer insulation consisting of working and additional layers increases work safety by totally excluding risks of electric shocks.

CONS

The combined switch and handle is somewhat inconvenient.

OUR VERDICT

With this model you can become a true professional in edge forming, grooving in wood, shaping, straight routing and many other complex woodwork tasks.

detailed parameters
Type

Plunge

Power

900 Watts

No-load speed

Up to 27000 RPM

Collet capacity

6 mm, 8 mm, 10 mm

Plunge stroke

Up to 35 mm

Convenience features

Variable speed control, Double Insulation, Scale level for adjusting depth of routing, carry case included

Weight

2.7 kg

Warranty

3 years

PROS

The powerful built-in light eases operation of the device so there is no need for additional lighting. Moreover, the LED-light consumes little energy, so it practically does not drain the battery.

CONS

The battery and charger are not included.

OUR VERDICT

This cordless wood router by Ryobi is an essential tool for workshops that have limited access to an outlet. Moreover, from a single charge, it allows for trimming up to 22 metres of pine, which is definitely impressive for the tool at this price. 

detailed parameters
Type

Plunge

Power

1600 Watts

No-load speed

Up to 29000 RPM

Collet capacity

6 mm, 6.35 mm

Plunge stroke

Up to 38 mm

Convenience features

Variable speed control, Cordless operation, built-in LED light

Weight

1.3 kg (without battery)

Warranty

3 years (product registration required)

PROS

The maximum revolutions per minute reach almost 32,000 which makes it perfect for working comfortably with wood species of any hardness.

CONS

The carry bag is short-lived - it wears out quickly.

OUR VERDICT

This set includes a functional plunge and trimmer, which allows you to do almost all kinds of woodworking at home, regardless of their complexity.

detailed parameters
Type

Fixed-base / Plunge

Power

580 Watts

No-load speed

Up to 32000 RPM

Collet capacity

6 mm, 10 mm

Plunge stroke

Up to 25 mm

Convenience features

Variable speed control, Scale Level for adjusting depth of routing, carry bag included

Weight

4.9 kg

Warranty

2 years (product registration required)

PROS

The electronic speed control ensures a stable number of revolutions, and thus allows achieving a perfectly flat edging.

CONS

The durability of the plastic base leaves something to be desired.

OUR VERDICT

With this device, you will get an identical and good quality replica of the same model by Makita, but at a significantly lower price. In addition, most of the spare parts (including motor) are compatible with wood routers of other famous brands.

detailed parameters
Type

Fixed-base

Power

710 Watts

No-load speed

Up to 30000 RPM

Collet capacity

6 mm

Plunge stroke

Fixed-base

Convenience features

Variable speed control

Weight

2.56 kg

Warranty

1 year

Bosch POF 1400 ACE

When Quality Matters

Let’s take a look at the wood router from Bosch, the POF 1400 ACE. This tool is a perfect choice for DIYers who want to make edge profiles, special mouldings or grooves. It has two large ergonomic handles with a convenient soft grip, designed for long and comfortable use. Its SDS™ system allows a tool-free insertion of the template guides and that is a useful feature if you do not want to waste valuable time. In addition, the POF 1400 ACE ensures optimal cut quality and keeps the selected speed constant, regardless of the load.

Moreover, this Bosch router has a Dust Extraction Port, which you can connect to your vacuum cleaner to keep the workplace clean during the woodworking process. The 1400W motor is the "heart" of this device and can deliver up to 28,000 RPM. This makes it a great instrument for demanding tasks for all kinds of woodwork and wood hardness types. Nevertheless, such a powerful generator can be quite noisy at high speeds, but it is a small price to pay, considering the amazing results you can achieve with this Bosch plunge router.

This model is suitable for both hobbyists and professionals that wish to achieve stunning results working with thick wood. It is a heavy and large beast but it will last long once you get the hang of it.

Review of Bosch POF 1400 ACE Router

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Makita RP0900X

Device for Complex Woodwork

The RP0900X Makita plunge router combines speed and power. Its 8A motor makes spindle spin at speed of up to 27,000 RPM. The plunge depth of up to 35mm makes penetration into the workpiece easy. This model can be connected to a Dust Extraction System (which must be purchased separately) or directly to a vacuum cleaner bag. The built-in switch on the handle makes the router hard to hold at times, depending on the positioning. Nonetheless, the oversized design of the ball bearing ensures a longer service life of the tool. What is more, this small tool has a plunge depth lever with three preset depth slots and easy to read depth scales that offer additional precision.

The special double layered insulation prevents the risk of electric shock and adds extra safety. Additionally, the router’s flat top design makes it convenient to change bits and can be placed upside down if you need to replace the accessories. Finally, this particular toolset includes a carry case, 2 wrenches, and a collet cone.

Made with a distinct Makita quality, this router can become an excellent addition to your DIY tools. Engineered for detailed routing tasks, the users may find it suitable for decorative finishing jobs and other complex woodwork projects.

Review of Makita RP0900X Plunge Router

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

Ryobi R18TR-0

Small but Capable

Next on the list is the R18TR-0 from RYOBI, the lightest yet the most powerful of all five routers. This trimmer is a valuable item for edges trimming, surface grooving or objects shaping. Its cordless design and light weight make it a versatile, powerful, and easy-to-use tool. It is very convenient to have such an instrument when you have to work at a workplace with limited outlet access or outdoors.

If you already have RYOBI tools you will be pleased to know that this palm router is compatible with ONE+ tool family batteries. Otherwise, we recommend purchasing 18V Lithium+ 5.0Ah Battery because the device comes without battery or charger. With a fully charged 5Ah battery, you will be able to trim up to 22 metres of pine at a maximum of 29,000 RPM. Moreover, the tool features a micro-adjustment lever for precise depth control. Also, we would like to highlight the quick release lever that helps to adjust the depth of the cut with ease. In addition, this palm router comes with a built-in LED light that increases cutting visibility and a GRIPZONE over mold with microtexture that gives an optimal grip and comfort for both left and right-hand use.

The R18TR-0 is truly one of the easiest-to-use wood routers on the market and suitable for both entry-level and experienced woodworkers.

Review of Ryobi R18TR-0 Cordless Trim Router

Additional Info

User Manual     Manufacturer


 

VonHaus 15/302

Precision and Control

The VonHaus 15/302 is a combination of fixed-base and plunge wood router. You will be surprised to know that its seemingly weak 580 Watt motor with variable speed control is capable to spin the saw up to stunning 32,000 RPM. Complete with 2 bases - plunge and trimmer - the tool is fully portable and engineered for routing, grooving, making precise holes and cutouts.

This router saw can be used for various tasks on laminates, plastic, metal, and wood. With this set of functional plunge and trimmer, you would be able to do almost all kinds of the woodwork at home, regardless of their complexity. It is ideal for small work-pieces profiling due to good visibility of the surface and cutter. Furthermore, the tool is small and comfortable enough for prolonged one-handed use.

If you seek exceptional precision and control over your woodworking process this tool is an invaluable choice thanks to Scale Level that adjusts the depth of routing. Additionally, the router is supplied with two Chuck Collets (1/4", 3/8", respectively) and a carry bag, but the only downside of it is that the bag material wears out pretty quickly.

This VonHaus router is a go-to pick for all keen woodworkers.

Review of VonHaus 15/302 Compact Deluxe Palm Router Saw

Additional Info

    Manufacturer


 

Katsu 101748

A Versatile Helper

The Katsu 101748 is not just a great little router but a very well-thought-out device. Its excellent design allows changing bits with ease. Because it is a copy of a more famous model from Makita the spare parts are compatible with other brands, and thus can be purchased and changed without any difficulties. Its 710 Watt motor is able to rotate the spindle to a maximum of 30,000 RPM. This router tool offers a remarkable range of speeds, which allows you to use small and big bits. Moreover, the electronic speed control ensures a constantly stable number of revolutions per minute and ensures a perfectly flat edging under any load. Also, the tool has a flat top for additional stability when changing bits.

The device body housing is made of aluminum in order to achieve higher accuracy and durability. During a prolonged use, the body of the tool can get somewhat hot. To avoid motor overload you should do several runs to make deeper cuts. Although this cracking little machine is well built, the material of the base is less durable than the one used in the original. Despite that, it is a real pleasure to use freehand because it is easier to hold than an average-sized router.

Perfect for trimming and laminating, the Katsu 101748 is capable of performing a wide range of woodworking tasks. If you need to remove a fair bit of material this little helper will not break a sweat.

Review of Katsu 101748 Electric Hand Trimmer

 

What Is a Wood Router?

Every joiner knows that carving, chamfering, and rabbeting in wooden pieces is unreal without wood routers. This tool can help you make an intricate table from the wooden frame and can turn a few slats into the adorned casket for jewellery that will certainly be appreciated by your other half.

Simply put, a wood router consists of an electric motor that is directly connected to a spindle and, thus, provides a high rotating speed. The spindle is connected to a collet that holds a bit. Owing to a high speed, a wood router is able to rabbet and cove, bead edges, engrave, and a lot more. By the way, wood routers are able to handle not only wood but also plastics, acrylic glass, and even nonferrous metals. Below, we will consider the main parameters worth your attention when choosing a wood router.

Before processing a piece of wood with a router, its surface should be flattened with a hand planer. Also, consider buying one of the electric sanders to make workpieces perfectly smooth.

What Features to Compare

Type

To date, there are several types of wood routers, yet fixed-base, plunge, and fixed-base/plunge tools are the most common. The first type models can edge pieces and have non-adjustable bases. Such tools are great for people who manufacture simple woodwork, such as table tops, doors, shelves, etc, that is the goods that need plain machining. Nevertheless, some routers can not just chamfer and cove but cut out frets and rabbets. These capabilities are possible thanks to extra features we will describe below. As for the plunge routers, their bases are movable up and down along the guides. Such design allows changing the cutting depth while running. Plunge routers are more versatile and are designed for making fretwork, legends, sculptures, frescoes, etc. So, if you decide to set out in making decorated articles or furniture with balusters and veiny elements, you can pick a plunger router right away. Finally, some routers come with both fixed and plunge bases; they serve for a wider range of tasks and are pricier than others.

Specifications

Having decided on the type of a wood router, you should find out its specifications. First of all, you need to consider the router power; the higher it is, the better the machine drives large bits. In other words, powerful routers perform better while deep cuts and get hot slowlier than low-power models. The routers may feature a variable speed that doesn't depend on motors. Here, the wider the speed range, the better. That's because a wider speed range allows using larger bits for cutting a wider range of materials. Therefore, resolve which bits you will use, the big-diameter bits are better for routers delivering RPM. Small bits for cutting into softwood, polymers or organic glass are suitable for wood routers of 16,000 - 27,000 RPM and the models with the constant speed. If you pick a plunge model, take a close look at the base travel. The longer a base goes, the deeper cuts can be made. Also, don't forget to check which bits are compatible with a collet of your router.

Extras & Conveniences

Any tool should be not just powerful but comfortable as well. If a hand tool is in question, its weight is crucial for usability. The fixed-base models usually weigh 4-6 lbs, while plunge and fixed-base/plunge models can weigh over 10 lbs. Then, we'd like you to consider the speed adjustment. Some routers may feature smooth speed control, while the speed of others can be changed stepwise. In any case, a variable speed is an advantage. A smooth motor start and overload protection are also nice-to-have features, as they extend the lifespan of your router. The extra features of a wood router may include the adapter for connecting a vacuum and keeping the cutting spot clean. Lastly, we'd like to note that any router can be fitted with additional props and guides. These accessories help you work more accurate and efficient.

Sources:

1. Woodworking Router Buying Guide, eBay. January 6, 2016.

2. How to Select a Wood Router Tool, Home Depot.

3. Tips on Choosing the Right Router, DIY Network.

4. Router Buying Guide: Find the Perfect Router for You, Craftsy.

5. How to Choose A Router, Acme Tools. May 9, 2016.

6. Router (woodworking), Wikipedia. March 10, 2017.

7. Mitch Roberson Router Buying Guide: Find the Perfect Router for You, Craftsy. January 2, 2015.

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Publish Date: 2018-03-15 10:46:11