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Tool Test: Fixed-Base Routers, continued

Bosch 1617EVS

Bosch Power Tool 877/267-2499 http://www.boschtools.com

0503fr1
0503fr2

Motor:12 amps, 2 1/4 hp

Switch/speed: variable-speed, soft-start, 8,000-25,000 rpm

Weight: 8.1 lbs. with standard base, 9.6 lbs. in plunge base

Street price: $175; $229 for kit version (1617EVSPK)

Comments: Dual-action height adjustment: big adjustments made with spring-loaded dog, ultra-fine adjustments with knob-activated screw; lever-activated base lock; clear finish wooden grips; standard sub-base has large center hole and comes with metal template guide; available with 2-hp single-speed motor; optional edge-guide has built-in dust collection port.


DeWalt DW618

DeWalt Industrial Tool 800/433-9258 http://www.dewalt.com/us

0503fr3

Motor: 12 amps, 2 1/4 hp

Switch/speed: variable-speed, soft-start, 8,000 -24,000 rpm

Weight: 8.4 lbs. with standard base, 11.1 lbs. in plunge base

Street price: $189; $239 for kit version (DW618PK) Comments: Motor vertically raised and lowered by turning depth-adjuster ring; lever-activated base clamp; motor released from base by two spring-loaded latches; spindle-lock for single-wrench bit changing; optional plunge base has built-in dust collection and fine-adjuster screw on the depth-stop rod; comes with two sub-bases; sub-bases are clear for better visibility; also available with 1 3/4-hp single-speed motor (DW616).


Makita RF1101

Makita USA 800/462-5482 http://www.makitatools.com

0503fr5
0503fr6

Motor: 11 amps, 2 1/4 hp

Switch/speed: variable-speed, soft-start, 8,000-24,000 rpm

Weight: 8.0 lbs. with standard base, 9.9 lbs. in plunge base

Street price: $199; $259 for kit version (RF1101KIT)

Comments: Adjust height by twisting motor in base; switch on top of motor; small-diameter motor housing easy to grasp with one hand; available with standard fixed-base, plunge base (RP1101), and D-handle (RD1101); also available with single-speed motor.


Milwaukee 5615-20

Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation 877/729-3878 http://www.mil-electric-tool.com

0503fr8

Motor: 11 amps, 1 3/4 hp

Switch/speed: single-speed, 24,000 rpm

Weight: 8.7 lbs.

Street price: $154 Comments: Unique molded housing and strap make for easy one-hand use; comfortable molded knobs for two-hand use; simple screw-controlled height adjuster; motor comes out with push of a button; D-handle version available; not available with plunge base; manufacturer about to release 2 1/4-hp variable-speed version of this tool.


Milwaukee 5625-20

Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation 877/729-3878 http://www.mil-electric-tool.com

0503fr7
Motor: 15 amps, 3 1/2 hp

Switch/speed: variable-speed, soft-start, 10,000-22,000 rpm

Weight: 12.1 lbs.

Street price: $349

Comments: Very light for a 3 1/2-hp tool; easy-to-use linear height adjuster; motor comes out with push of a button; unique mechanism allows height adjustments from above a router table; comes with contoured knobs that can be installed in place of the standard grips.


Porter-Cable 690LRVS

Porter-Cable 800/487-8665 http://www.portercable.com

0503fr9
0503fr11

Motor: 11 amps, 1 3/4 hp

Switch/speed: variable-speed, soft-start, 10,000-27,500 rpm

Weight: 8.1 lbs. with standard base, 11.2 lbs. in plunge base

Street price: $155; $209 for kit version with edge guide (693VSPK)

Comments: New model in the popular 690 series; updated features include variable speed and lever-activated base clamp; height still adjusts by turning motor in base; motor fits all previous Porter-Cable bases.


Porter-Cable Speedmatic 7518

Porter-Cable 800/487-8665 http://www.portercable.com

0503fr10

Motor: 15 amps, 3 1/4 hp

Switch/speed: multi-speed, soft-start, 10,000-21,000 rpm

Weight: 16.0 lbs.

Street price: $329

Comments: Nothing fancy; a big, heavy tool with power to spare; proven durability; a top choice for production milling in a router table.