Best Wood Routers for Woodworking 2020 – Reviews & Guide

Have you started woodworking and looking for the best wood router?

If you are searching for a unique tool that can effortlessly perform most of your woodwork tasks, then a wood router provides the solution to all of your problems. The name router is assigned to this instrument because it is used for routing or hollowing out hefty wooden blocks.

Best Wood Router

Did I tell you that a wood router is a handy tool?

Wood Routers can be used to carry out precise shaping, delicate designing, leveling out the edges, and much more. Its extensive features have become a vital tool not only for professional workers but also for home-based tasks. However, there is a large variety of wood routers available, and finding an ideal one for your kit might be an immensely difficult task. Wood Routers differ much based on power, speed, productivity, effectiveness, and ease of operation. In addition to that, they are classified based on the ability of small and large routers. Small routers are suitable for simple domestic projects and large routers for big jobs.

IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS Check Price
Bosch 1617EVSPK 1.88Hp Wood Router
  • Voltage: 127 volts
  • Weight: 9.9 pounds
  • Horsepower: 1.88
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DEWALT DWP611PK 1.25 Hp Wood Router
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Weight: 8 pounds
  • Horsepower: 1.25
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PORTER-CABLE 690L 1-3/4 HpWood Router
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Weight: 9.4 pounds
  • Horsepower: 1-3/4
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TRITON TRA001 3-1/4 Hp Wood Router
  • Voltage: 110-120V
  • Weight: 19.5 pounds
  • Horsepower: 3 1/4
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BOSCH PR20EVSK 1.0 HP Wood Router
  • Voltage: 120 volts
  • Weight: 9 pounds
  • Horsepower: 1.0
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The Best Wood Routers (Review) In 2020

Read the reviews on the 10 best wood router for woodworking with useful features like a variable or fixed speed and compact design at an affordable.

1- Bosch 1617EVSPK 1.88 Hp Combination Wood Router

Bosch 1617EVSPK Wood Router

BOSCH 1617EVS has an incredibly sleek and lightweight structure made up of high-grade aluminum. It comes in a case that cushions the machine, thus protecting it from sudden blows and collapses. With a case and ultra-fine body, it can be easily carried around for projects. Since it’s a hand tool, the minimalist and light body ensures an easy-to-fit hand and smooth movement on wood during operation.

It has two handles extending outwards from the body. The wood-based ergonomic design makes them suitable for hand use. The use of the model is extremely uncomplicated and user friendly. Bit height can be adjusted through a knob attached to the side, which allows microfine adjustment.

The height can also be altered as per desire through the coarse lever, and you can further finely control it through micro-fine regulators. Bosch 1617EVS is provided with both fixed and plunge bases that can easily be interchanged. The fixed base is transparent and allows you to keep a check on progress during routing while the plunge base is for detailed and intricate cuts.

One of the most prominent features of BOSCH 1617EVS is its 12 amp rated and 2.25HP motor with speed ranging from 8,000rpm-25,000rpm. The speed control dial is mounted on the front to adjust the required speed. With the help of a soft start feature, the durability of the motor is greatly increased. Upon switching on, the motor slowly heats up and reaches the set speed. It is a great technology in terms of the safety of the user and the machine.

Moreover, while using a plunge base, you can maintain persistent speed to work on heavy loads. In addition to that, this model can fit every router bit present as it is installed with chucks of ¼’ and ½.’ On the bottom, a chip deflector installed. As the name indicates, it enhances visibility by deflecting the small pieces.

Pros
  • The clamp system allows quick base change.
  • Smoother and quiet operation.
  • Sleek and compact design.
  • Adjustable speed function.
  • Soft start feature.

Cons
  • A bit Expensive

2- DEWALT DWP611PK 1.25 Hp Compact Wood Router

DEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router

Along with the usual features, DEWALT DWP611PK has LED lights positioned at the base that gives it an edge over all the other routers. These lights ensure the focused illumination of the target and allow you to work in dim conditions or cloudy weather.

It is not only preferred for professional use but also starters because of user-friendly features. It is compact enough to fit in your palm but doesn’t be dismayed by its small size. Despite that, it is equally effective for heavy jobs. The ergonomically designed body gives you controlled operation, thus mounting the overall performance.

It has a 1.25 HP motor with 16,000 to 27,000 of the speed range. Different bits size operate better at different speeds. Small bits work better at high speed. Dial located on the machine permits you to regulate the speed depending on the bit, material, or job. The power control switch is protected through the plastic coating to avoid clogging of dust.

You might find it surprising, but with all of the versatility, DEWALT DWP611PK is exceptionally budget-friendly. Two hands extend in an outer direction from the center to control the movements of the machine. In the kit, you are provided with both a plunge and fix base. Shifting from one base to another is uncomplicated and can be done by a level lock.

Height can be easily managed with a lever and micro-adjustment ring. The plunge router provides smooth and neat cuts without any tripping. Depth can be explicitly regulated by a dial fixed on the machine. The sub-base is shaped as the D alphabet, which imparts sturdiness
DEWALT DWP611PK cannot fit a variety of bits as it has only ¼” collets that are suitable for simple jobs. For complex and heavy tasks ½,” collet is required.

Pros
  • LED Lights.
  • Adjustable speed function.
  • Soft Start.
  • Palm-sized.
  • It comes with both bases.

Cons
  • ½” collet is not available.

3- PORTER-CABLE 690L 1.75 Hp Fixed-base Wood Router

PORTER CABLE 690LR Wood Router

This tool marks the beginning of routers as it was launched years ago and still makes it to the top list of routers. Though being old, it competes with the design and operation of modern-day routers.

On purchase, the product comes with a warranty of three years and full money return in case of dissatisfaction and complaint. Two handles can manage the mobility, and the use of aluminum in construction makes it lightweight and hardwearing. The ball bearings have been integrated into the build that protects the machines from issues like rusting.

Unlike other routers, the handles of PORTER-CABLE 690L are molded in appearance that makes it effortlessly fit into hand. Other routers may trip during functioning, but this model is installed with an under-table stop that keeps it firm and sturdy during use. The collet change is automatic and does not require any additional tool.

Speed of 27,000rpm and 11 amp motor with 1.25HP makes it appropriate for complex tasks, but a single speed might be inconvenient for most of the users. Fixed speed puts a limitation on its versatility and confines it only under fixed speed wood routers.
The cam lock provides you with precise height adjustments during application. It is preferable for all types of jobs since it integrates both ½” and ¼” collets. Additionally, some of the main parts of the machine and control switch are sealed under protective coatings to protect them from dust and debris released during routing.

Apart from all these qualities, PORTER-CABLE 690L lacks some safety measures. The main switch of the machine is located on the body rather than in insulated handles. In case a machine has a current that may pose a threat to the user upon touching the switch.

Pros
  • Reasonable.
  • Compact.
  • Powerful motor.
  • Sturdy and stable.

Cons
  • No variable speed option.
  • Isn’t enclosed in a case.
  • Unsuitable position of the switch.

4- TRITON TRA001 3-1/4 Hp Plunge Wood Router

Triton TRA001 Wood Router

With quality characteristics, TRITON TRA001 is a moderately priced wooden router present in the market. It has some advanced technological features like micro winder and vent system. This model is suitable for working in all weather conditions.

Your sweaty hands might cause slipping in summer, but its rubberized handle significantly absorbs the sweat and retains friction between hand and grips. Unlike other routers, where there are levers or knobs for height adjustment in this model, you have twist and turn handles to control the peak.

To get to the desired depth, you have to use a micro winder for that purpose. It has a guide with precise calibrations. The kit is supplied with a fixed and plunge base. The bases can be changed without any complication by pressing a single button stationed on the router.

Dust emitted as a result of routing can block your tool or settle in your lungs via inhaling. To eliminate this risk, a vent system is installed. These vents are fixed on the sides of the machine and collect the debris and waste.
With a plunge base, the collets can be removed steadily with only a single wrench. Also, there is a fence system that guides you when working across edges and cutting of different shapes, especially circles.

Along with micro winder for height and depth control, there are three marking for readily adjusting depth not related to delicate work.
It is installed with yan extremely powerful motor of 3.25 HP and an optimal speed of 8,000-21,000rpm. The soft-start feature makes it safe to use in the home and workplace. Along with being sealed in a protective layer, the switch is neon and shows the power supply even in sunlight.

Pros
  • Optimal speed control
  • Neon switch.
  • Micro winder.
  • Fence and Vent System.
  • Desired depth adjustment.

Cons
  • Excessive vibration.

5- BOSCH PR20EVSK 1.0 HP Variable Speed Wood Router

BOSCH PR20EVSK Wood Router

Bosch is a highly trusted company because of its noteworthy power tools. Compactness is one of the most dominant features in the first look of the tool. It means it can be easily moved around, feels less heavy to hand, and is comfortable to hold.

The plunge base of BOSCH PR20EVSK is classified as the best of all time with matchless precision. It is not the lightest router to exist but not heavy to handle as well. Bits can be replaced in seconds through a spindle lock attached at the base. With an aluminum built body, it is highly sure that it is long-lasting.

Unlike other routers, it doesn’t have handles. Instead, it has grip spaces for fingers and can be used single-handedly. Apart from providing a solid grasp, the grips also block the vibrations reaching in the arm. Therefore, it can be continuously used for long hours.
On purchase, you are guaranteed a warranty of one year, which makes it super desirable for buying. This model has a 1HP motor best suited for its size. It is a perfect fit for neat trimming and clean cutting tasks.

Considering the low price, the power is more than enough. Speed can be set between 16,000 to 35,000 rpm by a speed dial located at the back, and it can also perform extraordinarily at a constant speed. For hardwood material, low speed is generally preferred, and high speed is suggested for softwood materials. In case you want to maintain the speed constant, it can be set through the dial. The tool is supplied only with the fixed base and accepts ¼” collets.

Moreover, it has no versatile collet capacity because it is well suited for delicate work only. Depth adjustment is performed through a wrench that comes in a kit. The fixed base is easy to remove or reposition.

Pros
  • Single hand product.
  • Air vents are present.
  • Soft start.
  • Optimal speed control.

Cons
  • Lack of side handles.
  • Overheating.
  • Less powerful motor.

6- MAKITA RT0701C 1.25 HP Corded-electric Wood Router

Makita RT0701CX7 Wood Router

One of the most notable features in MAKITA RT0701C is its slim and sleek appearance. Aluminum structure, thin body, and ergonomic design make it perfect for application. The body has a silver sheen to it giving it an elegant yet simple look.

The motor is also enclosed in an aluminum body, which prevents overheating. The base is see-through for focused vision and overviewing the progress.
This router can be bought in different combinations, like with only the desired base or both the bases, so it solely depends on your choice. Depending on your budget, you can purchase the wanted combination. This makes it extremely cost-effective and reachable to all people.

Router lifts can be easily mounted on MAKITA RT0701C. The switching of bases has become extremely smooth with the help of a cam lock. Accuracy of up to 1-3/8″ can be achieved through depth adjustment. Desired depth can be set in a matter of seconds. It can only fit a collet of ¼” thus making it appropriate for general tasks of wood routing.

The plunge base is most desirable for routing. It gives exact and errors free output. This base comes with a handle for convenient use. Furthermore, it is a fit for specific cuts and leveling out. The fixed base can be detached from the router through the cam lock.
Now it is all ready to be used with a router lift. MAKITA RT0701C has the most extensive speed range from 10,000rpm to 30,000 rpm. Electronic speed dial can be used for consistent speed.

In case you are looking for a tool for heavy load work, this model might not be your ideal choice as It is supplied with a satisfactory motor of 1.25HP only. It has decent power capacity, but you may face the issue of tripping and inaccurate cuts.

Pros
  • Slim design.
  • Soft start.
  • Wide speed range.
  • Small base.
  • Affordable.
Cons
  • No LED Lights.
  • The power switch is not sealed.
  • Low power motor.

7- MAKITA RP1800 Carpentry Router

MAKITA RP1800 Carpentry Router

Well known for its performance and quality, MAKITA RP1800 is a trusted product of thousands of professional users. It is installed with the new technology of shaft lock, which makes a bit changing even more steady and rapid.

Upon purchasing the product, you are provided with a warranty of one year and full assurance of money return upon delivering the product back within 30 days. Along with all the notable features, a chip deflector is mounted in the base to avoid waste from getting into eyes or blurring the vision.
Also, protecting the tool from dust is an inbuilt fan which is connected with the power. It works only when the tool is one, thus preventing any dust settling. It is a handheld tool and cannot be used as a router table like other routers.

Mainly when changing the router bits, the tool becomes unsteady due to unbalanced tops. But MAKITA RP1800 has a flat top, which makes bits changing a plain and simple task. It can fit both ½” and ¼” collets thus making it versatile in making joints, furniture, tabletops, decorative products, and much more.

Ball bearings have also been used in its construction that ensures trouble-free application. The router has a detailed system for depth adjustment. It has not only micro-adjustments but also presets. The depth can be controlled accurately to 2-¾’. The machine has two handles that give you control. The right handle has a trigger and trigger lock.

Furthermore, if you need a router to be used on specific materials, only MAKITA RP1800 can fit your standards. Its motor can operate at a speed of 20,000rpm that can easily cut through solid wooden blocks.

Pros
  • Slim design.
  • Soft start.
  • Wide speed range.
  • Small base.
  • Affordable.
Cons
  • Heavy.

8- HITACHI KM12VC 2.25 HP Wood Router

HITACHI KM12VC Wood Router

Hitachi K12VC has made it into the best routers by impressing everyone with its qualities and output. The company has not excelled its feature but also made it the quietest router available in the market.

Although it is known that while working around power and high-performance machines, you will definitely need earbuds. But in this case, the level of sound is below 79.5 decibels. This not only creates a calmer environment but also increases your concentration level during the job. Also, the tool is vibration-free.

There is no automatic system or lock for a bit change, but you need two wrenches. Also, the wide varieties of accessories are provided on a purchase like both bases, wrenches, and collets. Instead of wooden or rubber handles, it has elastic handles for easy control. A plunge router is famous for its ease of operation. The depth can be adjusted with the knob and additional turret for more accuracy.

While using a fixed base in a router depth can be controlled through a ring. For easy control, it has been specially designed to have a lightweight body. The 2.25 HP of the motor can easily work through wood, plastic, and metals with any desired speed from 8,000 to 24,000rpm. It is incredibly portable, which makes not only mobility easy but also movement across woodblocks.

Pros
  • Highly powerful motor.
  • Bit depth adjustment with ease.
  • Extremely portable.
  • Smooth and quiet operation.
Cons
  • Bit change is difficult.

9- DEWALT DW618PK 2.25 HP Wood Router Kit

DEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router

Another product from Dewalt equally competed to make it to the top router’s list, reflecting the product quality. A perfectly sound base of the router geometrically increases the stability and avoids jerking during functioning.

It comes with a power cord, so it’s not a portable or cordless device. DEWALT DW618PK can be classified as the best wood router for professional use and amateurs and beginners. It is also suited for people with woodwork as a hobby.

Up to 1/64,” micro-adjustment can be easily obtained with this tool. It is equipped with a spindle lock through which bits can be changed only with a single wrench. The system for dust collection is also installed in the machine to make it durable. Usually, working routers can cause discomfort to hand either because of weight or vibrations. DEWALT DW618PK not only prevents fatigue through its ergonomic design but also provides more grasp on the tool.

An excellent warranty of three years is provided on purchase. Upon looking at the tool, you will observe that the design doesn’t have a slim approach. It’s rather extensive, which lowers the center of gravity. As scientifically said, instruments with a lower center of gravity are more stable.
It is capable of supporting both ½” and ¼” collets. The 2.25 HP motor offers speed from 8,000rpm-24,000rpm. Also, on a purchase, you are provided with a variety of accessories at an affordable price.

Pros
  • Dust collection system.
  • Low center of gravity.
  • Reasonable price.
  • Easy bit change.
  • Easy depth adjustment.
Cons
  • Not cordless.

10- MAKITA XTR01Z 18V Bare Tool

MAKITA XTR01Z Wood Router

Cordless routers have entered the mainstream list of wood routers due to ease of application. You can work without any fear of cord damage, the cord being stuck, and cords being touched by children. So, having a chord is a safety concern.

As with cordless customers are also inclined towards brushless motors due to exceeded output. MAKITA XTR01Z is not only cordless but is also installed with a brushless motor.

It provides speed between 10,000rpm to 30,000rpm. For optimal speed setting, you can use speed dial. The power supply can be controlled through a power button mounted on the machine. For depth control, it employs rack and pinion, but it lacks specificity when in a vertical position.
LED lights are installed additionally to enhance the visibility on target. The hand control part has been designed with rubber while the rest of the body is aluminum-based.

Furthermore, in the kit, you are provided with a straight guide to ensure straight cutting during use. Additionally, there is an edge guide to work around edges and a circle guide. Two wrenches are also included in the accessories. In order to clean the dust, a dust nozzle is designed at the base through which dust can be evacuated through the use of a vacuum or dust collector.

Also, its base can be changed to be replaced with other bases. The battery is exceptionally long-lasting.

Pros
  • Cordless.
  • Brushless motor.
  • LED Lights.
  • Power Buttons.
Cons
  • The straight guide needs to be more accurate.
  • Does not comes with the carrying case.

How to Choose the Best Wood Router? Buyer’s Guide

Your choice of Best wood routers solely depends on your requirements and your budget. Routers can vary from being the size of the palm to bigger sized with versatility in power, speed, dust collection mechanisms, depth adjustments, and much more.
Certain qualities and standards different can be explored in detail before buying the best router:

Choose the one that suits you

If you want to work in a quiet environment, you should opt for the routers with brushless motors. They are smooth and quiet in functioning yet giving the maximum output.

Routers from 1HP to 3HP motors are available. Depending on your use, you can go for a variety of options. Low power motors are suited for home-based jobs and less complicated tasks, while powerful motors are generally preferred for heavy load jobs.

The optimal speed regulation is a handy feature. It gives you the ability to regulate the speed depending on your requirements. Single-speed routers can only be used on specific materials.

Find Perfect Size with Useful Options

Routers that integrate ½” and ¼” collets can fit a variety of bits. This means increased versatility of the tool. The more variety of bits that can be attached, the more intricate designs can be created.

Routers should also have dust collection mechanisms. With the release of sawdust and chips during routing, there is a chance that it might settle in a machine that may obstruct its functions.

Routers should not be a source of fatigue or discomfort to hand. So you should wisely choose one that stops vibrations and easily fits in your hand. It should be user and starters friendly.

The controls that let you adjust the fine depth and depth at macro-level enhance convenience. Adjusting the fine-depth with the dial will impart precision and accuracy in your work, especially when carving a design. Swift adjustments can be made through macro-depth dial when you are shifting in between the tasks.

Safety Features to Look for

When buying a wood router, check whether the router is equipped with safety features or not. Finger barriers and spindle lock are the standard safety measures, so they must be there in the router.

If you want to have an illuminated target, then routers with LED lights installed at the base can be your ideal choice. Your work will not be interrupted by dim light or unclear days.

Some routers have electric brakes. Through this, you can stop the router in the blink of an eye. It can also be useful in situations when you have to stop the router immediately to avoid any accidents.

Routers are power tools. So they may slip from your hand when started because of intense vibrations. So you should likely choose the one that has a slow start feature. It gains speed gradually rather than abruptly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best router wood for a beginner?

If you have just started out woodworking, then DEWALT DW618PK might be a great choice for you as it is easy to operate.

How do I choose a wood router?

While choosing the wood router, make sure that it has your required features such as led lights, finger barriers, slow start feature, spindle lock, mico-depth dial, and other similar features.

What is the best wood router for home use?

You can use any small size wood router for home as they have safety measure and are usually convenient to handle.

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