08:30AM | 03/08/04
Member Since: 02/24/04
8 lifetime posts
I don't currently own a router, but have some projects coming up that will require some shaping... a long shelf, some work on a bookcase, and possibly a train table for the little ones.

I DO own a Dremel... and my question is whether or not the rotary tool with a router bit, mounted on one of the Dremel router tables will be powerful enough to do the job? The wood will probably be oak for the shelf.

If not, is it easy to use a router by hand to shape in a straight line, or should I also buy a router table with a fence?

All advice appreciated... I'm a total newbie to routers, router tables, etc... but I'm going in soon....

Thanks in advance,



12:29PM | 03/08/04
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
Hello Brian,

No, the Dremel is a useful tool in some regards, but it won't "cut it" for the projects you describe.

The good news for you is that a router is actually, in my opinion, quite enjoyable to use. What a great sound it makes, too! :)

It is, actually, fairly easy to use a router by hand to shape a straight line--esp if you have self-guiding "roller bearing" bits.

I usually use my old 1/2" router, but if I were just starting out I'd get a 1/4"--esp if you don't need lots of power. They're lighter, and the bits are easy to come by and a lot cheaper than 1/2" bits. I usually use 1/4" bits anyway--which is cumbersome with the adapter required on a 1/2" router.

I've actually had good luck picking up decent carbide-tipped bits at Costco (in kits). I noticed they also have a nice little router table for under $40. Most of what I've done really doesn't need a router table (your needs, of course, may be different).

Again, I'd start with a 1/4" router. If you find you need a 1/2" down the line, you will still have (and continue to use) the 1/4"--simply because it's sometimes handy to have a couple of routers pre-loaded with different bits.

If you're not careful, the bits can end up costing way more than the router!


-k2 in CO


12:33PM | 03/08/04
Member Since: 06/06/03
1250 lifetime posts
also, you'll find that a router is directional; it works better one way than the other and you'll quickly learn which.

And--be careful with that thing! They are fun to use--but always remember that there's a sharp metal bit spinning at 25000 RPM right down there!


02:10AM | 03/09/04
Member Since: 02/24/04
8 lifetime posts
As I said, I'm totally green on routers... and I really appreciate the advice.



03:15AM | 03/12/04
Member Since: 04/10/03
116 lifetime posts


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