Best Router Tables

  • weight : 85 Pounds
  • Dimensions : 41 x 32.25 x 24
  • Manufacturer : PORTER-CABLE
  • weight : 7 Pounds
  • Dimensions : 11.5” x 15.5” Table
  • Manufacturer : ROCKLER
great
  • weight : 40 Pounds
  • Dimensions : 19.75” x 16.75” Top
  • Manufacturer : Kreg
best router table

source: sympathink.com

What is a Router Table?

Router tables are super handy pieces of equipment that go great in any garage or shop. You can find either a free-standing router table or a benchtop model, with free-standing units being larger and sturdier. Benchtop tables are smaller and lighter, and better for portable work.

Router tables are typically used for one purpose, and that is routing through a dense material such as wood or plastic. The router cutter protrudes through a small hole in the surface of the table and is used for installing grooves, forming edge profiles, and much more. A router table makes it easy to shape and cut wood with incredible precision.

You can always use a handheld router, but it’s much easier to use a router table because it’s a hands-free process. If you don’t have a router table, you need to hold the router with one hand, and this can be less accurate. When you use a router table, you can concentrate 100% on the shape that you are trying to mold. Router tables are safer, they cause less accidents, and if you’re professional then a router table is an absolute must.

While extremely large workpieces are a bit challenging for a router table, and you would probably end up using hand router, there are still a lot of great things you can do with the table. You can make grooves, stop cuts, box joinery. You can use the table for edge trimming and template work, for making raised panel doors, for dovetail, and you can use the router table as a jointer.

Anyone who does precision woodwork should definitely consider investing in a router table. There are lots of accessories that give the table a massive amount of versatility. If you’re crafting pieces of furniture, doing indoor cabinetry, or just woodworking as a hobby, a router table is critical.

Top 10 Best Router Tables

1. Kreg PRS1040 Precision Router Table System

Kreg PRS1040 Precision Router Table System

Kreg always makes the best tools. This router table system is a premium, high-end model that features a fully enclosed fence to give you complete use of your miter slot with small adjustments on the fly. The MDF table reduces vibration and noise, and it comes with a high-pressure laminate ‘Easy-Slide Micro-Dot’ skin, which makes it very simple to slide workpieces across the surface without any friction. The table also boasts a very sturdy insert plate built from a durable phenolic material.

The entire table system weighs only about 85 pounds. You can mount any router to the system without extra work. And there are bottom-up levelers that come with 8 individual contact points so that you have complete level accuracy. There are also dual reducing rings which provide even more convenience. And if you needed even more flexibility, there are independent fence faces that allow the table to work as a vertical jointer as well.

Pros

  • Strong Aluminum Fence
  • Flexible Steel Stand
  • MDF Top for Vibration Absorption
  • Simplistic Yet Functional
  • Maximum Precision
  • : 41 x 32.25 x 24
  • : Full Dust Collection
  • : 85 Pounds
  • : Precise Insert Plate
  • : Steel Stand w/ Phenolic Insert

2. Rockler Trim Router Table

Rockler Trim Router Table

The Rockler Trim Router Table is a unique DIY router table that you can attach to almost any surface. This isn’t a mega router table that you can do all kinds of work on, but it is great for any home office or for simple jobs while on site. It costs under $100, which is a major steel for any rider table. The materials are OK, but considering the price and the major portability, you get exactly what you expect.

It comes included with a 11.5” x 15.5” table, made from vinyl wrapped MDF. It has pre-drilled holes on the back so that you can easily attach a clamping strip and use it quickly on the edge of a bench, a single piece of plywood, or your table. You can even hook this thing to the tailgate of your truck.

Pros

  • Majorly Cheap
  • Can Attach to Anything
  • Durable Vinyl Wrapped MDF
  • Small & Portable
  • Quick Setup on Any Surface
  • : 11.5” x 15.5” Table
  • : Compatible w/ Router table Dust Port
  • : 7 Pounds
  • : Thick Acrylic Base
  • : Pre-Drilled Holes for Attaching

3. Porter Cable 698 Bench Top Router Table

Porter Cable 698 Bench Top Router Table

Porter Cable always make solid tools, and this is no exception. It’s a straightforward benchtop router table with a generous workspace machined from aluminum. It has multiple starting pin locations and a smart design with independently adjustable halves. If you’re looking for a medium-grade router table with sturdy legs, a reliable design, and just enough features that you can feel satisfied, definitely put this on the top of your list. It is an extremely fair purchase for the price. It could use more accessories, but it does its job very well.

Pros

  • Solid Legs
  • Quick-Adjust Split-Fence Design
  • High-Quality Table
  • Aluminum Top w/ Multiple Pin Locations
  • Easy to Mount
  • : 19.75” x 16.75” Top
  • : Included w/ Table & Miter Gauge
  • : 40 Pounds
  • : Machined Aluminum
  • : 3/4” Miter Gauge Slot

4. SKIL RA2900 Router Table

SKIL RA2900 Router Table

This is a great budget router table from SKIL. It comes pre-assembled with an accessory storage bag and a laminated MDF top. At only around $150, you really get what you pay for with this unit. It comes included with a guard, a featherboard, the miter gauge, and bit inserts. It also has a tall fence with adjustable MDF faces.

You can definitely get router tables that are higher in quality, but if you want something lightweight, cheap, and that works well enough for the occasional hobby project, this is a reliable solution. It’s probably not going to survive forever, but for the price it’s definitely going to get you through your project. Plus, it folds very easily for transport, making it small enough to fit into any work vehicle

Pros

  • Easy Bit Changes
  • Lightweight & Portable
  • Accessory Storage Containers
  • Two Feather Boards
  • Super Cheap Product
  • : 28” x 17.5” Table
  • : Folding Design
  • : 30 Pounds
  • : Quick-Release Router Mount
  • : Tall Fence

5. Dremel 231 Portable Router Table

Dremel 231 Portable Router Table

This is a very cool portable router table that you can use on any surface. It allows you to immediately convert your Dremel rotary tool into a light-duty would shaper mounted to any bench. With this little compact router table, you can easily slot, edge, and groove items into any shape you want.

The portable table will work on any tabletop workspace, it’s super easy to store when you’re not using it, it comes with an adjustable fence, and it has a large 8” x 6” workspace. While it’s only good for light-duty projects, it is super portable and can be used anywhere, making it ideal for woodworkers on the go.

Pros

  • Fully Portable & Inexpensive
  • Easily Mounts to any Table
  • Converts Hand Rotary Tool for Bench-Mounted
  • Adjustable Fence
  • Compact& Lightweight
  • : 8” x 6” Table
  • : Includes Attachments
  • : 1-Year Warranty
  • : Compatible w/ Dremel Cordless Tools
  • : 2 Pounds

6. Kreg PRS2100 Bench Top Router Table

Kreg PRS2100 Bench Top Router Table

This is another great table from Kreg. It has all the features you needin a portable package. This is one of the better router tables that you can take to a job site or use in a shop. It has a rugged tabletop made from MDF to lower noise and vibration. The MDF top also features Easy Slide Micro-Dot skin for easier sliding of materials.

One of the best features is the heavy-duty aluminum fence. It comes with quarter-turn locking levers so that you get instantaneous fence adjustments that you can be confident with. The fence also comes with independent sliding faces for increased support. This is also one of the quieter tables you can use, and it even tests quieter than other router tables that are enclosed.

Pros

  • Industrial Quality
  • Precision Plate Levelers
  • MDF Table Top w/ Easy Slide
  • Full-Sized Router Insert
  • Good Dust Collection
  • : XL 16” x 24” Table
  • : Anodized Aluminum Fence -
  • : Rubber Feet
  • : Steel Stand
  • : 30 Pounds

7. Bench Dog Tools 40-102 ProMax Cast Iron Router Table Extension

Bench Dog Tools 40-102 ProMax Cast Iron Router Table Extension

By using this great cast iron router table extension, you can add a whole lot more horizontal workspace to any contractor-grade table saw or right-tilt table saw, so long as they have at least a 27” deep by 1.5” thick cast iron table. Basically, forget buying a full router table when you can just add on this industrial-grade extension.

It includes all the mounting hardware and pieces you’ll need, and it even comes with provided J-hooks so that you can quickly dismount the extension and hang it on the side of your tablesaw when you don’t need it. It’s super affordable, extremely high in quality, and it’s a major life saver in any personal shop.

Pros

  • Limited Lifetime Warranty
  • Quick Dismount
  • Fantastic Product w/ Excellent Design
  • Fits Almost All Contract Table Saws
  • Ideal for Small Workshops
  • : Cast Iron
  • : 28” ProFence
  • : Adds Horizontal Workspace
  • : Provided J-Hooks
  • : Includes Mounting Hardware

8. Kreg Precision Router Table System PRS1045

Kreg Precision Router Table System PRS1045

This is an awesome router table system from Kreg. It’s a bit more expensive than the Bosch units, but it is also a bit better in terms of quality. It also comes with an adjustable steel stand that you can raise from 31 inches to 39 inches in height. This is an awesome feature that every router table should have.

The outfeed anchor has been totally redesigned to give you more table space, the table fence features a micro-adjust wheel so that you can get precision in all your setups, and the entire system is pretty basic. It’s designed to work easily for you without any nonsense. It even has a router insert plate with three high-quality Level-Loc reducing rings.

Pros

  • Adjustable Steel Stand
  • Redesigned Outfeed Anchor
  • Reliable Unit w/ Good Ratings
  • Great Design w/ Good Durability
  • Includes Everything You Need
  • : 36” T-Square Fence
  • : 70 Pounds
  • : 24” x 32” Table
  • : 31” – 39” Height
  • : Two Independent Fence Face

9. Bosch RA1171 Cabinet Style Router Table

Bosch RA1171 Cabinet Style Router Table

Another great router table from Bosch, but this time cabinet style. This unit is super functional, it gives precise material support, and it comes included with a dual outlet switch that makes it the perfect solution for any woodworker looking for a quality benchtop router table for their personal shop. The rigid aluminum router mounting plate stays flat and true, while the laminated work surface is smooth and dependable.

If you’re looking for a reasonably priced cabinet style router table, definitely put this unit on the top of your list. It’s not as impressive as some more expensive models, but it does have hundreds of positive ratings online from other satisfied customers!

Pros

  • Dual Outlet Switch
  • Rigid Mounting Plate
  • Ergonomic Design
  • Tall Aluminum Fence
  • Super Easy Assembly
  • : Max Throat Opening 3.625”
  • : Adjustable Featherboards
  • : Laminated Work Surface
  • : 42 Pounds
  • : 25.5” x 14.5” x 15.875” Table

10. Bosch Benchtop Router Table RA1181

Bosch Benchtop Router Table RA1181

First on our list is an awesome benchtop router table from Bosch. The table has a large worksurface to give you maximum precision and versatility. The top is made from aluminum, and it’s designed to be both portable and durable. It’s also designed to fit with a variety of different routers, giving you lots of options to choose from.

As a budget item, you can pick this unit up at a pretty low price. But you’re going to exchange quality for savings. The table is relatively lightweight, it has a rigid aluminum router mounting plate, the dust collection is sufficient, and the benchtop router comes included with lots of useful mounting hardware, such as a tall aluminum fence and adjustable MDF faceplates.

Pros

  • Large Aluminum Top
  • Easy to Use & Affordable
  • Rigid Aluminum Mounting Plate
  • Dedicated Ports for Dust Collection
  • Accepts Featherboards
  • : Adjustable Featherboards
  • : Cabinet Storage
  • : 30 Pounds
  • : Top Dimensions 27” x 18”
  • : Aluminum Fence

Router Table Buyer’s Guide

There are a few key aspects when picking out your router table. Regardless if you’re a professional or an amateur, you should still know what to look for in a quality piece of equipment. The surface of the table needs to be perfect, the fence needs to be easily adjustable, the machine should come with a decent dust collector, and then there are some safety features that you also need to consider.

The Surface

The surface is super important. As with any worktable, the surface is going to be your top priority when choosing a new unit. You want the surface area to be rigid, flat, and extremely powerful. It should be able to hold up well against all kinds of punishment.

When checking the tool, always ensure there are no bumps or other issues with the top surface. It needs to be completely smooth and rigid so that you have a proper environment for the precision cutting and routing that you’ll be doing.

The best we can recommend is finding a top that is made from MDF. This will always enhance the table’s durability. If you end up picking up a cheaper table, you can always surface the top with MDF yourself or with a special high-pressure laminate. High-pressure laminate can be extremely expensive, but it’s worth it if you’re using the table a lot.

And finally, one of the more expensive methods is going with a cast iron top. The advantage with having the surface made of cast iron is that you won’t ever need to worry about vibrations throwing off your precise cutting. Cast iron is definitely at the top end of premium.

The Fence

The second most important part is the fence. It’s a critical part of any router table and must be easy to adjust. Making easy adjustments is going to save you lots of time during a project. There is nothing worse than fighting and fidgeting with your fence when all you want to do is cut your piece.

It doesn’t even need to be overly strong and rigid. It just needs to give quick, easy, and accurate adjustments. But the fence does need to stay in place after it’s been adjusted. The whole point is that you can make an adjustment and leave the fence in place and it’s not going to move.

Most router tables will offer either a one-piece fence or a two-piece fence, and so you will have to choose which one you prefer for the type of work you do. Basically, the number of fences will depend on how much control you need when handling specific boards.

The Dust Collector

The dust collector is super important. Imagine trying to work while sawdust is exploding up into your face. That would not be an ideal situation. And so, you want to have a solid dust collector that is going to keep your work area clean and keep your eyes focused.

Not only can a good dust collector help you breathe, but it will save you clean-up time after the day is done. There are a lot of different dust collectors that come with these types of machines, and some work better than others. It really comes down to quality of the build, so always check reviews for how the dust collector handles itself before making a purchase.

The Base

Next is the base. You should always have a strong and reliable base for your router table. You are going to be applying a ton of pressure while routing. Even if you don’t realize it, you are putting a lot of pressure on that table. For this reason alone, you need a strong base that isn’t going to collapse under the weight of all that pressure.

When choosing the base for the tool, you want to stick with either aluminum or cast iron. These are the two most durable materials that are going to handle the most amount of punishment.

The Size

As with everything, size matters. And yes, router tables come in a variety of different sizes. You definitely need to choose a table that has enough surface area for you to work creatively and freely without feeling like you’re standing on a bucket. If you purchase a table that’s too small, it’s going to be more stress than it’s worth.

At the same time, you don’t want a table that’s too big. This is especially true if you need the router table to be portable. If the table is too heavy, cumbersome, and way too big for your current projects, it’s going to be difficult to take it anywhere with you.

If you’re looking for a router table to take with you to jobs so that you can use it on site, you’re definitely going to want to get a smaller and lighter unit so that you can throw it in the van and move it around easily. There are some tiny router tables that are only 30 pounds, but then you can get giant cabinet tables that are upwards of 200 pounds.

Whatever you do, don’t let the pictures fool you. They may look identical in the photos if you’re shopping online, but there is a significant difference and you always need to check the measurements.

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