A Wood Router is just a spinning device OR Is IT ? It is much more than a simple spinning device. It is a very very powerful tool to give wings to your creativity and along with the use of various types of bits ( will come to it later ), this tool in itself is capable is of giving shape to your ideas.
There are four major parts of a Wood Router. Most important is the motor. The motor used in a router is a universal motor. it is different from the motors used in the joiner and saws ( these use induction motors ). Other than the motor, there is collet, base and the baseplate.
Tips to choose the best wood router
The most important tool in this whole set is the Bit or the cutter ( it is the tool which actually cuts the wood ). There are tons of types of bits/cutters available in the market and these bits are capable of giving shape to almost any design in your mind.Interesting thing is you can have your customized bits made if you want. The Collet is a simple piece of metal used to hold the bit so that the wood router motor is able to rotate the bit.
The Router base is what holds the machine inside. The base usually comes with the handles on both sides for easy grip on the router. The base’s depth of cut mechanism is one of the most critical elements of the router. There are mainly two types of bases. The Fixed Base and the Plunge Base. There are different uses of the types of these bases. The baseplate is a plate on the sole of the router. it allows router to move smoothly across the body of work.
Most of the manufacturers usually display the horsepower of the router motor as the sign of power of the motor, which though is an indicator of the power of the motor, a much better and accurate indicator of the motor strength is the Amperage rating. The amperage rating of each tool is assigned by Underwriters Laboratories (UL). It is the maximum amount of current the tool can draw in continuous use without overheating and. eventually, buming out. (Overheating is defined as raising its temperature more than 1600 Celsius above ambient temperature).
Whereas the horsepower ratings are given by the manufacturers themselves. Keep in mind that the horsepower reported for a universal motor i.e. the type which is used in the wood router is the peak horsepower and not the average horsepower. The logic is that since these type of motors are going to be used for intermittent, short power busts and will not be in continuous use, peak horsepower is a better indicator of the power.
An 8- to 10-amp router has power enough to drive any bits up to 2 inches in diameter. It will be adequate for trimming cuts 1/2 inch at a pass. A larger bit or a heavier cut will require more amperage.
Your choice of router will also depend on the kind of use you are going to put your router to. Well there is a lot of difference in the type of the materials used in the wood routers in a professional router and in a consumer router.
Major difference comes from the element used in the winding of the motor. Both Copper and aluminum are conductors of electricity. The difference is in the efficiency. Copper is much efficient than aluminum and therefore costlier. Also, more power usually means more use of the metal, which adds to the weight of the router. Therefore, the weight of the router is also one other indicator of the power of the power of the motor.
Another major difference in the routers is the measures taken to dissipate heat efficiently and quickly. Heat is the biggest enemy of your router. Professional grade routers have high grade aluminum fans or high tech plastic fans where as mostly commercial grade routers simply use the mass produce steel fans, though these are much cheaper, these affect the life of your router tremendously. Therefore, this is one element you should not overlook while looking for a router.
Other than that there are other elements which make a complete router and there are many small details which can ruin your experience of the woodworking, if not attended to properly while selecting your router.
One is the kind of handles available in the router. Since these handles will be used to guide the router across the wood while chipping, make sure that the quality of plastic used in the handles is of high quality.
There is nothing called a best wood router. There are tons of options out there for the wood routers. There are cheap wood routers and there are really costly wood routers. You can use the buttons on the sides to check the routers for various price levels.
Wood Router is something, i personally believe, one of the most important tools in your woodshop. You should not cringe on money while buying one. More important is how you are planning to use it. Well, you can use a laminate router on heavy wood. i mean technically you can but you will not be able to use that router again ever. That’s why there are so many varieties of so many routers available in the market.