A router base is essential for any large or small wood workshop. Fine furniture manufacturing requires precision cutting and trimming. A woodworker can finely cut or trim when he or she has the right tools. This precision is impossible without router bases. We at Woodsmith have carefully shortlisted the below router base options for you. We created this shortlist after reviewing the best router bases available on the market in 2021 to help you flesh out your original woodwork ideas.
These shortlisted router bases range from a complete router package, with router motor and all its router base types, to only the fixed router bases. You can select the one that fits your needs closely. These options have great user reviews and sellers with a strong market presence with excellent reviews offer these at great prices.
To help you select the best router base available in the market in 2021, our team has prepared the following guide. You should first decide on at least a few critical elements of your routing solution before committing to one of the options above. Here is a list and brief description of the thinking points that we think you should consider:
You should select the product with a good safety rating and features. We suggest that you value the live tool indicator, the soft start option, and the RPM display offered by the seller.
Choose the Router Base Type That Fits Your Needs.
When in doubt, you can buy the whole combo that provides all four types of router bases. If you have a specific requirement, then you can choose any of the four types or a combination of them. A brief description of these types is as follows:
A fixed router base is used to make smooth cutting quickly. This is the simplest of all operations that router bases can do.
Tilt router bases, as the name suggests, can be tilted at varying angles ranging from -30-degree to 45-degree angle. This tilt makes it easier to operate the router base with one hand.
Offset router bases are used only in specific, hard-to-reach areas such as near the walls and narrow corners.
Plunge router bases are used for a flexible depth of cutting. You can adjust the depth of processing easily.
There are more types of router bases, but we have defined the popular ones above. As you might have already gone through the Bosch under-table router base, it is also an innovative solution. You can also categorize it as a fixed router base.
Do You Already Have a Routing Motor?
If you have a fully functioning routing motor that, in your assessment, can stay in good shape for at least 2 years, then you should only look for routing bases compatible with it. All routing bases have compatibility issues because the manufacturer has to achieve a perfect fit with the routing motors of their own company. This perfect fit is important to achieve the precision required for fine furniture manufacturing.
The Type of Materials That You Will Be Trimming
If you are going to trim hardened materials, then you should select the router base for a power motor having the capacity to deliver more than 2 HP.
Routing Motors and Accessories Included in the Package
Routing bases are usually listed as a combo or packaged with routing motors and even tables. If you already have your workshop set up, then you may not need the whole routing solution. Some examples of accessories included in the package are router bits, an edge guide, a roller guide, dust extraction parts, wrenches, a bag, and user manuals. If you are counting on receiving the parts required for the setup of the router base, then you should ensure that it is included by the seller before ordering the router base.
Depth Adjustment System on the Router Base for Fine Cutting
Router bases usually come with a metric rack-and-pinion system for accurate depth adjustment. Once set up, there is a locking system that ensures that the desired depth does not change until further adjustment by the user. If you are already familiar with a certain locking system or depth adjustment system, then you can consider it while exploring your options.
Router bases are available from $50 to $150 as a standalone product. When bought as a combo, the price will multiply. The more the accessories, the higher the price will be.
Most router bases are being sold as a package with compatible routing motors. You can explore the product specifications or the “what’s inside” section to ensure that you’re buying exactly what you need to avoid overspending.
Golpus store is offering one of the best router bases available on the market. It comes as a complete package with a lot of accessories targeting the requirements of a professional woodworker. It has a 1.25HP pure copper router motor. Router bases in this combo kit come with the whole package, namely with a fixed base, tilt base, offset base, and plunge base. Its router motor offers variable speed for changing woodworking needs. There are different buying options as well to suit the needs and budget of the buyer. You can choose the package that fits your needs in the best manner.
It comes with four router bases to achieve varying cutting needs.
It features variable speed, ranging from 10,000 RPM to 32,000 RPM, for cutting of changing materials.
These router bases are made of aluminum. Aluminum is lightweight and more durable and gives these tools a long life.
Warranty and after-sale services are not included in the package.
This router base is only compatible with DEWALT router numbers DW616 and DW618. It is one of the best plunge router bases in the market. This professional-level tool, made of die-cast aluminum for longer life and excellent precision, is a noble companion in the workshop. It has a through-the-column dust collection system that can get 95 percent of the dust. This system enhances visibility while cutting and keeps the workspace clear. You can adjust the depth of the cut as low as 5/128-inch per turn on the plunge base. DEWALT offers the best after-sale services for this router base, which means you’re buying a routing solution for at least three years.
DEWALT is offering amazing after-sale services. 90-day money-back guarantee, 1-year free service contract, and 3-year warranty is as good as it gets.
The 5/128-inch precision settings for the depth of the cut give you ultimate precision control.
Easy to reach plunge lever on the router base for precision control and comfort.
Compatible with only two DEWALT router motors of larger size.
Makita is offering a router base that is a compact tilt-base router designed for operation with one hand. Makita has designed it to cut thin materials and laminated boards. It offers market standard negative 30 degrees to positive 45 degrees of tilt. Although it is only compatible with Makita routers, we highly recommended it for light usage. You can make the best use of it with lithium-ion battery-based cordless router models from Makita. This router base is ideal for trimming the laminated board because its lightweight body will help you maneuver the edges efficiently.
Very lightweight, weighing only 1.19 pounds, it makes it easy to carry around the workshop.
Ideal for cutting thin materials.
You cannot use it to cut hardwood or thick boards.
Compatibility issues. Only compatible with Makita’s range of compact routers.
We found AVID POWER’s fixed router base one of the best in 2021. It comes with a powerful motor that can deliver up to 1.25 horsepower using a 6.5-Amp router motor. It is an excellent compact router option with 5 Trim Router Bits and Variable Speed for varying woodworking applications. It has a dust hood that keeps the workspace clean and maximizes visibility. It has an ergonomic design for comfort and longer life through rubber-covered handles and a quick locking system. Its dual bright LED lights illuminate dark working areas on the workspace and reduce strain on the eyes.
This router base has dual bright LED lights.
It features variable speed control ranging from 10,000 RPM to 32,000 RPM.
Its aluminum body ensures enhanced durability.
You can only use fixed router bases for simple woodworking and cabinetry.
SKIL router base model is the most powerful router on our list featuring 14 Amp router with a combo of fixed and plunge router bases. This base and motor combo can deliver a massive 2.5 HP for cutting hard and thick materials. It has a live tool safety indicator that enhances the safety of this product. It helps the user to be more careful when plugged in and ready to use. LCD on the motor at the top is very helpful to maintain the desired speed down to the nearest RPM. It has a built-in electronic feedback system to deliver a stable RPM set by the user. Ergonomic and rubberized handles ensure less fatigue during long work hours.
It has an LCD on top to control speed settings. It also has three LEDs at the bottom to light up the workspace.
It features a soft start from 0 RPM to 25,000 RPM to avoid jerk at the initiation. It also has variable speed control.
It is a heavy tool weighing 14.33 pounds that makes it harder to handle on finer designs.
BOSCH has a new and improved successor to the RA1164 router base. It is compatible with the 1617 and 1618 router series. Although it is an under-table router base, you can adjust the depth of the router from above the table. It has a convenient rubberized grip for comfortable use. This option may look unconventional and hard to set up, but you can set this up on virtually any router table. It has a quick-clamp system to fix the motor for ease of use. In addition to a quick clamp, it has two additional devices that prevent the motor from dropping down on the floor once the quick-clamp is released.
It has a tool-free system to change the base, using a quick-clamp locking system.
You can use larger bits with this router base because of the wide 3-3/4 base opening.
Compatible with several Bosch routers.
Can only be used for simpler routing only.
Router Base FAQ
Q: Will it fit on my router table?
A: Most router bases can be set up on any standard router table unless mentioned otherwise.
Q: Will it work with my router motor if it is of the same brand?
A: You should not assume compatibility with the router motor because router bases are made specifically for router motors. Seller always provides the list of compatible motors for the router base. Even when the same brand is offering the router base, it does not automatically mean that all router motors of that brand are compatible with the given router base.
Q: Do all router bases come with a warranty?
A: No. Each manufacturer has its policy for the warranty and claim process. Furthermore, there can be conditions limiting the rights of the customer. For example, Bosch requires the customer to register the product within 8 weeks of purchase, otherwise, the warranty cannot be claimed.
Q: How deep a cut does my selected router base support?
A: It depends on the router base you have selected. Every router base is different and supports different depths of cuts. Also, the supported router motors should be considered since they are part of the routing package. This information is always mentioned in the product description.
The Woodsmith Review Team’s product reviews and in-depth guides are here to help you choose the best tools and gear to build great-looking projects confidently. The content is created by The Woodsmith Review Team. Woodsmith’s editorial staff is not involved. Woodsmith is reader-supported: When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.