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Old 01-12-2008, 12:12 PM   #16
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If you are doing raised panel, or using very large bits .... you are going to need a much larger router than 1.75 HP as the model 690. Thats when you get into variable speed preferances.
The std 690 at $99.00 is still a great deal.

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Old 01-12-2008, 12:13 PM   #17
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I own a 1 3/4 HP Porter Cable router that comes with the fixed and plunge router base. It also came with 1/4" and 1/2" collets. It was purchased a couple years back for around $200. I know that's more middle of the road, but I've used both bases for projects through out the years.
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Old 01-12-2008, 07:54 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by JGarth View Post
When it comes to routers....the Porter Cable 690 is the standard.
Amazon has them on sale for $99.00, free shipping and both collets.
That is a great buy....
That is a great price for that machine, actually bought another for myself.
Just be aware that this is the single speed model, not the newer variable speed. If you plan on using any bits larger than 1 1/2" diameter, I would spend the extra $50 and get the variable speed model.

Second you on that opening line, the PC's are absolute work horses, I have five of them, including the monster 3 1/2 hp. A perfect example of simple being better.
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Old 01-13-2008, 12:25 AM   #19
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You need variable speed (and higher HP as well) if you are using larger size bits for purposes such as raising panels. Basically, the larger the bit, the slower the speed.
Personally I think a small router doesn't need VS. If you're spinning really big pattern shaping bits, or a panel raising bit, you'd be wise to use a larger router, and that of course should be VS.

I guess if you're only going to own one router, and might try using a panel-raising bit in it, the VS might make sense, but I wouldn't let that stop you from picking up the 690 for less than $100.
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Old 01-13-2008, 05:29 PM   #20
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[quote=NateHanson;87949]Personally I think a small router doesn't need VS. If you're spinning really big pattern shaping bits, or a panel raising bit, you'd be wise to use a larger router, and that of course should be VS.

I agree that it is not a good idea to even use a big 3" or 3 1/2" panel raising bit in a 1.5 hp range router, but I was not even referring to that large in my answer. I use the small 2 and 2 1/4" panel bits often for edge profiling drawer fronts or casework nosings, or spin a slot cutter for installing splines. These are well within the capability of a professional grade tool like the PC, but anything over 1 1/2" diameter really needs to be slowed down. Just the sound of that bigger bit will convince you of that. If that doesn't , consider this. The tip speed of a three inch bit spinning at full rpm is more than 200 miles per hour.

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