The Best Wood Routers for 2019

Best Wood Routers of 2019 - Top Picks, Reviews & Complete Buying Guide

Since the first router appeared in 1915, the principle on which the router functions has not changed.

A router is of fundamental importance in any woodshop as can be used to shape edges, drill holes, cut rabbets, and make joints.

It can come with a set of bits which are used to create details and decorations on your woodwork.

If you are looking for a router for yourself, then you should go through all the possible advantages and drawback of the available routers on the market.

You would certainly want to buy the best wood router, but that would not be an easy task.

In order to save you time needed for research, we are offering you top 5 picks to choose from.

Spoiler Alert - Check out my top choice here >>

Top Rated Wood Routers for 2019

Model Rating Buy Now
Bosch 1617EVSPK Wood RouterBosch 1617EVSPK Wood Router
4.3
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DEWALT DWP611PK Wood RouterDEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router
4.6
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DEWALT DW618PK Wood Router KitDEWALT DW618PK Wood Router Kit
3.8
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Bosch MRC23EVSK Wood Router PackBosch MRC23EVSK Wood Router Pack
4.3
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PORTER-CABLE 690LR Wood RouterPORTER-CABLE 690LR Wood Router
4.5
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* Ratings are based on Editor's own opinion.

5 Best Wood Routers Reviewed

#1. Bosch 1617EVSPK Wood Router

Top Pick
Bosch 1617EVSPK Wood Router
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Among the top five routers, there is one that rightfully deserves the first place and that is the Bosch 1617EVSPK.

It boasts with 1.9 hp motor which has an impressive torque of 1.27 pound-feet at 8000 RPM and 0.41 pound-feet at 25000 RPM.

As there is the 6-position dial, the right RPM can be easily selected according to the material you are routing.

Its trademark Constant Response™ technology is there to prevent RPM fluctuations. The great feature is that there is both a fixed base which allows you to cut up to 1.625 inches and plunge base, with which you can cut up to 2.25 inches deep.

The additional amazing characteristic of this model is the fine adjustment mechanism by which you set your depth in increments of 1/256th of an inch.

This level of precision is not reached by any other model.

Bits of 1/4”, 3/8”, 1/2”, and 8 mm are accepted by this device.

However, there is an important drawback related to this model – the warranty period.

It is only one year time, while other products boast very attractive warranty periods.

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Pros

  • Motor
  • Six speed setting
  • Depth adjustment
  • Variety of bits accepted

Cons

  • Short warranty period
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#2. DEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router

DEWALT DWP611PK Wood Router
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If you do not have so much money to pay for the first and the best on our list, there is a solution for you.

You should look for the economical DEWALT DWP611PK model.

This is the best wood router that you can get for that amount of money, being that its price is 20 percent lower than the Bosch 1617EVSPK’s one.

However, you cannot expect the same level of performance.

This is a 1.13 hp machine and its bit rotation ranges from 16000 RPM to 27000 RPM.

You can either set it on its lowest speed so as to produce 0.37 pound-feet of torque, or you can set it to its maximum RPM and get 0.22 pound-feet of torque.

If we compare it to the Bosch 1617EVSPK, we can see that there is a 70 percent decrease in minimum torque and 45 percent decrease in maximum torque.

This proves the fact that the DWP611PK is not designed for cutting hardwood and you should stick to small routing bits in order not to burn your workpiece.

The DWP611PK has both a fixed base which allows you to cut up to 1.5 inches deep and plunge base which will allow you cut up to 2 inches deep.

On the other hand, the first weakness of this model is that the fine adjustment mechanism would allow you to set the depth in increments of 1/64th of an inch which is not as precise as with the 1617EVSPK.

The positive thing about the DWP611PK is that its producers offer a 3 year warranty period, proving the fact that they believe in this product.

Furthermore, the users get free service for one year and a 90-day money back guarantee.

Check current price on Amazon >>

Pros

  • Price
  • Both fixed and plunge base
  • Great warranty period
  • One year free service
  • 90-day guarantee

Cons

  • Motor has low torque
  • Adjustment is limited to 1/64-inch increment
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#3. DEWALT DW618PK Wood Router Kit

DEWALT DW618PK Wood Router Kit
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The third on our list is the DEWALT DW618PK Wood Router Kit.

As it is produced by the same manufacturer as our top pick it can compete against it very well.

Its accuracy is 1/64th of an inch, the torque of the DW618PKB is equal to the 1617EVSPK’s one.

This means that cutting force behind the bit is the same in both DeWalt’s models

This producer thought about further characteristics and also made them almost the same.

Those are the maximum depth for both fixed and plunge mode.

Now, the difference has to exist between these two models.

It is in the accuracy of depth adjustment.

The fine adjustment knob on the DEWALT DW618PK Wood Router Kit is not as sensitive as the one on our top model.

Additional features are a collet diameter of 1/2 inch and 1/4 inch, the 3-year warranty, free service during the first year of usage and 90-day money back guarantee if you happen to be dissatisfied with the device.

The machine operates both at low RPM ranges and high RPM ranges, it is possible to use bits of every size and type on this machine.

Check current price on Amazon >>

Pros

  • High torque
  • Six speed setting
  • Warranty
  • Service
  • 90-day money back period

Cons

  • Not designed for precise work
  • Affordability
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#4. Bosch MRC23EVSK Wood Router Pack

Bosch MRC23EVSK Wood Router Pack
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It is true that we put it on the fourth place of our list, but the Bosch MRC23EVSK is definitely among the best ones to be considered worth buying.

It is a heavy-duty router and its motor produces 25 percent more power than the two that are above on the list.

The positive side of this might not be noticeable at low RPM ranges, while at high RPM ranges, this machine achieves more torque than the device on the top of our list .

Being that the torque boost at high RPM is great, it means that you can work on harder wood with this excellent machine.

The drawback is that at high RPMs, you can only use bits with a small diameter.

The decision which manufacturer’s product to choose depends a lot on the routing operations you are planning to do with the wood router.

If they are limited to less than 1 inch, the MRC23EVSK would be ideal for any type of wood.

It is important to say that this model is designed for those who do routing at more advanced levels and if you are planning to use the wood router at home, you should definitely consider buying another device.

Check current price on Amazon >>

Pros

  • High torque
  • Both plunge and fixed base
  • Precision
  • Features that save time

Cons

  • Price
  • Warranty period
  • For commercial woodworking
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#5. PORTER-CABLE 690LR Wood Router

PORTER-CABLE 690LR Wood Router
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The last on our list is the router ideal for beginner level woodworkers, who are trying to learn routing.

The Porter Cable 690LR is a low-cost product which will offer you everything that is necessary for the beginning of your wood routing work.

As the price is quite lower than the one of the above mentioned wood routers, you should not expect to get the router with amazing features.

The Porter Cable 690LR model is an affordable, single speed router which can be bought for around $130.

The 690LR has a 1.77 hp motor which can produce a torque of 0.34 pound-feet at a fixed speed of 27500 RPM.

The weakness is the fact that this router is limited to this RPM and it cannot be changed.

Being that the RPM is limited, the size of the bits you can use is limited as well and you are not advised to use it for bits beyond 1 inch.

The great advantage is that this device has accuracy up to 1/128th of an inch making it more precise than the DEWALT routers.

This router has only a fixed base with the possibility of adding the plunge base if you buy it separately.

The model is also very attractive due to its three-year warranty period.

Check current price on Amazon >>

Pros

  • Price
  • Great for the beginners
  • Accuracy
  • High torque
  • Warranty period

Cons

  • Lacks plunge base
  • Motor has a single speed
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Wood Routers: The Ultimate Buying Guide

If you are working with wood, you definitely know the significance of possessing a wood router.

By using different kinds of bits you will be able to achieve perfection in your work and it would be easier for you to do your job.

With a good wood router, you decorations will be astonishing in a matter of minutes.

Now, as you are reading this, you are probably trying to find the best router on the market.

Considering the fact that it is a tool that every woodworker must have, there are numerous brands offering their products and selecting an ideal router can be troublesome.

Why is the torque of greater importance than the horsepower or RPM?

When you are looking for a good wood router and you go through the reviews of both satisfied and unsatisfied users, you come across a lot of talking about torque, horsepower, and RPM.

It is reasonable that you have questions related to this.

These three characteristics of a wood router actually show capability of the machines. The horsepower represents how much force the motor produces and this should not be taken as something of vital importance as it does not affect the cutting power.

It can be best explained in an example of the Bosch MRC23EVSK model which has a 2.41 hp motor and the Bosch 1617EVSPK model which has a 1.93 hp motor.

The first thought that comes into our mind is that the MRC23 is better than the 1617EV due to more horsepower.

But, that is not the case, and here is the explanation why – at its minimum speed, which is 10000 RPM, the MRC23 would produces 1.27 pound-feet of torque while the 1617EV produces the same amount of torque at its minimum speed, which is 8000 RPM. The conclusion is that the two machines have the same cutting force.

Now, the difference comes into play when the maximum speed is in question.

The maximum speed of the MRC23 is 25000 RPM and it would produce 0.51 pound-feet of torque.

Nevertheless, the maximum speed of the 1617EV is 25000 RPM and it will produce only 0.41 pound-feet of torque.

This proves the fact that all three parameters have to be taken into consideration together so as to be able to determine the capability of the machine.

Wood router

The majority of the manufacturers provide only the RPM. How can I get the horsepower and torque from RPM?

There is the possibility that manufacturers do not provide the hp rating for the machine.

Then, the best way to find it out is to look at the voltage rating and the current rating.

This will help you determine the horsepower rating – Horsepower = (current rating x voltage rating) / 745.699

In case there is the horsepower available, you can use this method to determine the real output of the machine.

Furthermore, as you have determined the horsepower, you can easily calculate the torque using this – Torque = (horsepower x 5252) / RPM

The conclusion is that torque increases with an increase in horsepower and it decreases with an increase in RPM.

How is the routing affected by the torque and RPM?

Let’s first discuss the usage of these two features and that way we will get to their importance.

Torque is a measure of the cutting force behind the bit and it indicates the routers ability to cut materials which vary in hardness.

The harder the material is, more torque is required.

So, the routing is affected by torque and you need to know whether you will work only with softwood or you will be using the router for hardwood as well before choosing to buy one.

RPM is there to limit the diameter of the bit you use on the router.

You are the one who sets the machine’s RPM, which means that you determine how fast the machine’s shaft will be rotating.

This feature highly depends on whether you want to use a large bit or not.

For large bits, it is advisable to buy a machine with low RPM ranges.

You can find this data on the specification page as every bit manufacturer provides the RPM range for their bits.

We now get how is the routing affected by these two features.

Wood Router

Are cut depth and accuracy important?

When looking for a good wood router, you do not need to worry so much about maximum depth of cut.

If the difference between the models is less than a half inch, that is not a huge difference and you can choose whichever you think is better due to some other qualities.

You can always run multiple passes to achieve the depth you want.

On the other hand, it is of great importance to pay attention to the quality of the adjustment mechanism.

Depending on the accuracy with which you want to work you can determine whether you need a high level of accuracy router or not.

For example, if the router is used only for dressing up the edges, the accuracy of 1/64th of an inch would do the job perfectly.

Make sure not to pay too much for a high accuracy model if you do not need it.

I think I got it, what are my options?

As we have chosen those routers that are famous for their high quality and capability, maybe they are not the ones that suit your needs, so you can check out some other models on the producer’s websites.

The best manufacturers whose routers you can take into consideration are Black+Decker, Makita,  DEWALT, Bosch, and Porter Cable.

Conclusion

As you can see from this article, it is difficult to find the ideal wood router which will both has excellent performance and quality as well as be affordable.

The first thing you should do before choosing one is to measure a router’s capability – horsepower, torque, and RPM.

That way you will know whether you need low RPM ranges for working with large bits or that is not important to you as you will be working with bits smaller than an inch.

The wood you are planning to cut has also a major role when deciding about the right router.

The cutting of hardwood requires a machine that yields high torque in the RPM.

By having in mind all these steps, you can find a router that fits your requirement.

It is important to pay attention to other features of this device such as warranty, material quality, and brand reputation.

As the technology has advanced, routers became more powerful and safer versatile tools and you need to have the right knowledge and guidance when purchasing it so as to make the right decision.


I hope you liked my article about Wood Routers, if so, please share, rate or comment.

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