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Old 9th February 2007, 12:56 AM   #1
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Cal Weldon's Avatar
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Location: Near Vancouver
Default When buying a plunge router...

Should I get 1/4" or 1/2"?

I'm using it for speakers three to four times a year, nothing more. I want to do holes, recesses and roundovers on 3/4" material.
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Old 9th February 2007, 12:59 AM   #2
agent.5 is offline agent.5  United States
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1/2 inch
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Old 9th February 2007, 01:02 AM   #3
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Default Router size

To paraphrase a well-known source...

"Big routers are better than little routers"... ;-)

I've got a smaller panel trimmer I use for detail work and such, but if I were choosing between the two bigger is better, since the shank is beefier and, as with other things in life, sometimes size does matter. Less rattling around, heftier motor and more mass makes control cuts easier to manage.

Of course, all this is with the caveat... ymmv

John L.
"I've forgotten more than I care to remember" The Last Conspirators
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Old 9th February 2007, 01:13 AM   #4
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I know you didn't ask for a recomendation, what the heck...

Its good, there are better, you could pay a lot more for worse

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Old 9th February 2007, 01:23 AM   #5
Bob2 is offline Bob2  Canada
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You want a 1/2". If you ever want to expand your use of the router, 1/2" opens up a whole new world of bits to use.

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Old 9th February 2007, 01:50 AM   #6
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OK, thanks guys, I am hearing you. No girlie router for Cal.

That $59 1/4" off-shore unit caught my eye though. I guess it's the same old^2.

1/2" it is then.

Nice looking unit there EL.
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Old 9th February 2007, 03:40 AM   #7
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Location: Toronto
Thumbs up Bosch 1614EVS

I purchased a Bosch 1614EVS plunge router second hand for $100. A thing about second hand routers; many of them are sold because the owner never used it much; just like the low frequency use you plan CW.

The 1614 has variable RPM with smooth plunge action and it has a really nice depth setting guide that actually works well and a fine tuning depth adjustment that works and is useful. It also has a slow start feature that also works well and really nice handles to hold it firm in your grip. I have used it and abused it over and over again. I have used it for speakers, custom moldings and even on aluminum. I made a mounting plate to mount it upside down in a Black and Decker work bench with an adjustable fence to profile long wood stock for onsite installations. You can do almost anything with a router.

I made a few cutting guides from mdf and if you plan on many circular cuts you could make your own guides from lexan or Plexiglas for longer life and greater accuracy over time.

Just as the other folks have said, If you can find a unit that allows the use of 1/4" & 1/2" collets then all the better and you will be able to use a wider range of bits. I think the 1614 is limited to a 1/4" collet. I don't know if you could get your hands on a 1614 anymore but you may through eBay and such but I just wanted you to know which one I have been using.


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Old 9th February 2007, 04:42 AM   #8
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Even if you are an ardent wood worker routers are seldom used . I have two ,both Craftsmen and both 1/4". One is a plunge model the other is a plane old 3/4 hp model which I use more than the plunge model. To buy a Porter Cable or a Bosch is overkill as they are meant for heavy every day use. Most router cuts for speaker building are less than 1/4" deep and are made in MDF which when cut ,quickly turns to dust. My bits were bought on Ebay and still work fine . They are no name carbide and have a 1/4" shank and cost less than $20.

Speaker building is an expensive hobby!! Put your money where it counts. Sounds from ANY router cant compare to a Good Speaker System.
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Old 9th February 2007, 08:33 AM   #9
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Originally posted by sandstorm33
Even if you are an ardent wood worker routers are seldom used
I disagree completely. The more you use them, the more uses you find for them. I would say that, in fact, you can build excellent speakers with a router as your only power tool.
Rick: Oh Cliff / Sometimes it must be difficult not to feel as if / You really are a cliff / when fascists keep trying to push you over it! / Are they the lemmings / Or are you, Cliff? / Or are you Cliff?
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Old 9th February 2007, 08:54 AM   #10
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In fact in the most recent pair of cabinets I made, the wood was cut by the merchant and my router was the ONLY tool I used. For edge rebating (easier joint assembly), flush trimming, hole cutting and edge rounding. Routers are ace.
www.readresearch.co.uk my website for UK diy audio people - designs, PCBs, modules and more.
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