Introduction To The Best Compact Palm | Wood Routers:
A wood router is an essential element for any woodworking project. Routers are used to hollow out specific parts of a wood surface. They are used in making decorative edges, correcting edges, creating concealed joins, producing crown moldings, and any number of projects requiring areas of wood to be routed out.
The router bits, which are interchangeable and come a huge variety, determine what shape and diameter of the cut to be made in the wood. Considering the type of router bits that will be used is one aspect of selecting a router.
One option for routers is a tabletop router which allows the wood to be passed over the router to create the desired cuts in the wood. The router is bolted to a stable surface and fixed in place. However, due to their permanent placement, they obviously present drawbacks. They are not easily portable and certainly would be difficult to fit into a toolbox. In addition, they can pose an issue when attempting to work with a particularly large piece of wood. Sometimes you need mobility and portability. What is the solution?
Wood routers are the solution. Wood routers give their users the flexibility to use the router at any job site or location, making them essential for professionals as well as woodworking hobbyists. They are essential for any job for which a tabletop router is not the best choice.
When selecting a wood router, many factors should be considered. Durability and power are considerations, as are weight and warranty provided. Palm routers may be cordless (battery-powered) or corded and require an outlet. The accessories sold with the palm router also vary from model to model and must be considered. Speed, startup, noise level, and depth of cut are elements that might be important for the user, as well as features such as LED lighting to illuminate the workspace and comfortable handles and grips to reduce user fatigue.
Let’s Take a Look at Some of The Best Compact Wood Routers With Reviews
# 1 Bosch 1-HP Variable Speed
The Bosch 1-HP Variable Speed has a 5.6-amp motor capable of producing 15,000 to 30,000 RPM. This router has a lot of design features that make it a user favorite, such as finger pockets that increase stability and easy router bit changeability. The Bosch comes with a 10-foot cord which is a great length to allow for a lot of maneuverability. A bonus feature of this cord is its angled exit, which keeps it out of the way of the user.
This router comes with a 1-year warranty and an aluminum base for stability. It also features both macro and micro adjustment capabilities which increases versatility. The Bosch also offers a soft start up that reduces workshop or work site noise.
# 2 Craftsman Fixed/Plunge Base Router
The Craftsman Fixed/Plunge Base Router features a powerful 2.5 HP motor providing 15,000 to 25,000 RPM. This router weighs a bit more than others at 13 pounds and requires two hands to operate. However, it can operate in fixed or plunge mode which provides options and freedom for the user.
This router offers additional features to increase usability such as LED lights to illuminate the work and windows that increase the user’s visibility of the cut. With six variable speeds, this router is ready to work with a wide range of materials. It also features 12 amps and a 1-year warranty with free replacement. Chip deflectors are an added safety and convenience for the user.
# 3 DeWalt DWP611PK
The DeWalt DWP611PK is a compact palm router, weighing on 5.5 pounds and giving the user the ability to keep working for a long period without fatigue. This compact frame houses 1.25 horsepower motor and 7 amps of power. Best of all, it fits easily in the palm of your hand. The DeWalt reaches depths of up to 2 inches with a depth scale integrated onto the router for convenience. Heavy duty rubber handles make this tool easier and more comfortable to control.
Dual LED lights provide increased visibility of the work and the excellent 3-year warranty is an added benefit. Depth changes can be controlled to 1/64 inch to provide extremely precise cuts. No information is provided on the RPMs produced by this tool, but user reviews are largely positive with regard to the power and speed generated by this compact tool. In addition, no information is provided about cord length, so further research would be required if that is a consideration.
# 4 Grizzly G7913
The Grizzly G7913 is specifically designed to be used as a laminate trimmer as it has specific features that reduce the chance of the material splitting as might happen with a traditional router. It is useful for both veneers and plastic laminates. This tool, from a company based in Spain, comes with a limited 1-year warranty. A metal bracket firmly prevents the guide fence from slipping.
At 3.5 pounds, the Grizzly is a breeze to hold and use for long periods. Cuts can be adjusted down to a micrometer and additional accessories and bits are available to make an almost endless variety of cuts. This tool also features a ruler along the front in both metric measurements and standard inches to assist with measurement.
# 5 Hitachi KM12VC Router
The Hitachi KM12VC is another fixed and plunge-based router, giving the user options. Fixed base weight is 7.3 pounds, while plunge-based weight is 9.9 pounds. This router boasts a 2.25 horsepower, 11-amp motor for plenty of power. This model also leads its class in noise reduction, if keeping a quieter environment is an important consideration for the user.
Capable of speeds from 8,000-24,000 RPM, the Hitachi is powerful enough for any job. The manufacturer states that depth adjustments are both quick and easy. Another impressive feature is the awesome 5-year warranty Hitachi provides which provides a lot of security for the investment in this tool. No information was located as to cord length. However, this model comes with more accessories than the average palm router, which is an added value.
# 6 Makita RT0701CX7 Router
The Makita RT0701CX7 features variable speed control from 10,000 to 30,000 RPM. Those numbers place this router at one of the highest speeds in its class. The 1.25 horsepower, 6.5-amp motor is housed in the tool that only weighs 3.9 pounds. In addition to the 1-year warranty, Makita offers a 30-day replacement period, where they will replace a defective model free of charge. The manufacturer and reviewers both state that this model is tough and rugged, increasing its durability.
The Makita boasts a soft start feature that ensures a smooth startup in addition to electronic speed control which enables the user to maintain constant speed under varied loads. The design allows for high visibility of the cut which is an important feature for user convenience, as is the easy to read depth scale.
# 7 PORTER-CABLE 450PK Router
The PORTER-CABLE 450PK has a 1.25 horsepower, 7-amp motor and weighs in at 4.1 pounds, offering big performance in a small package, although the exact RPM speed is not listed. This tool features both a fixed base and a plunge base for versatility and convenience, capable of reaching a 2-inch depth with the plunge base. Depth settings can be controlled to 1/64 inch allowing for precise cuts.
The electronic feedback feature on this model reduces the twisting that can occur with a palm router, making cuts smoother. An integrated ruler built onto the router is a convenience feature that also assists with accuracy. The molded rubber handle is provided for maximum user comfort during long jobs.
The motor housing is made of aluminum for protection and the tool comes with a 1-year warranty and an adjustable turret. In addition, the manufacturer states that the bits can be changed quickly and easily. Cord length was not easily located. If this feature is an important element, further research would be required.
# 8 Ridgid R2401
The Ridgid R2401 is capable of reaching speeds of 20,000-30,000 RPM with its 1.6 horsepower, 5.5-amp motor. Weighing only 3 pounds, this tool packs a lot of power in a small design. LED lights illuminate the work area for added convenience and precision. The Ridgid comes with both round and square bases for added versatility.
The manufacturer states the model is equipped with an easy access micro-adjustment dial, but does not specify how precise or small the adjustments are. Overfold on top of the router prevents the work surface from being marred during the cutting. The router has a flat top which allows it to lie flat on a work surface while changing bits, a surprisingly handy feature! Also, a lighted plug on the cord provides a safety indicator of whether the tool is live.
This model features a quick release lever to separate the motor from the base and allow changes. Ridgid also offers an impressive 3-year warranty with a 90-day money-back satisfaction guarantee, giving the user peace of mind with this purchase.