What we discovered in Part I is that common mistakes, such as buying the wrong router table or components, can keep your work behind and lead you to spend double on the same products. Here we take a closer look at some more mistakes people make when they buy router tables. We still consider them all important and so we don’t prioritize them by their significance but offer small solutions to help you face problems and make a smart choice when it comes to buying a router table and accessories.
Product reviews are essential because they help potential buyers of the same product to form an idea about the durability and capacities of a particular router table. People don’t always share their experience with the router table, but the vendor. If they were not pleased with the vendor or packaging, they keep talking about it. Although this is useful information to someone interested in buying from the same vendor, this is not a product review. So try to read between the lines and take notice of the people, who wrote a review before using the machine or complaining about problems without having read the instructions. What you care to read is comments by people, who already use a specific router table, and learn more about the machine and/or potential problems which could not be foreseen. It’s also important to see if anyone writes about the support they had by the company – should parts are damaged in shipping.
People might spend a lot on router tables but would think twice before buying a dust collector. Some accessories are very important and dust collectors make your job easier. If you want to use your own shop vacuum, just get an adaptor to fit in your router table. There are a lot of dust collection hose sizes and it’s not to the interest of manufacturers to make one-size-fits-all ones. It’s best to buy a dust port adaptor and custom cut it to fit in your own machine. If you find a dust collector, which was made to be used for your router table, it’s best to get this one. You will definitely need it because it will cut down from the cleaning work later on, keep the place clean and help you stay healthy.
There is no need to blow your whole budget on router table accessories in one visit to a store. You might regret it, especially if you are a beginner and don’t really know what you need. It’s best to get the router table and give yourself some time to get adjusted to the machine, watch some online videos and see which accessories you could be using for some projects. In a different case, you will keep accessories that will hardly be used and that will be a waste of money. If you know which accessories will be useful to projects, go ahead and get them. But if you are not sure, give it sometime. If you want to buy something extra, invest in a set of router bits and a dust collector. They are both very useful to everyone.
If you have reasons for moving from a small bench top model to a full size router table, that’s one thing. But if you have no reasons and simply want to get something better, consider that many bench top models have as many features as full size tables. As long as they have the expected fence and inserts, you can also create in-feed and out-feed extensions to enlarge the working area and save a large amount of money. You will spend less by getting a bench top model and attach it to your table. You can make your own stand to fit at your workshop and so you will have a flexible router table without having spent much.
You would be amazed by how many people don’t read directions before they try to assemble and use their router table. They get upset and try to get hold of customer support to ask questions when the answers to everything they need are handed to them. Their frustration increases when they have trouble assembling the router table, but they still don’t bother to read the instructions. The manual might say, “Fits Bosch routers” and the customer might call the company to ask if the product fits a Bosch router. Manufacturers ship their products with clear instructions and most of them post them online too. Sometimes, the manual is missing and not included in the box, but that’s another thing. If you get the router table with directions, use them. They are written for your convenience.