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The saw’s motor is built by Emerson Electric who used to build Craftsman motors back in the day. It is a contractor’s saw with the motor hanging out the back and the cabinet open, so dust collection can be a problem. Since I may have to rout and rip moldings, I also have an auxiliary router table top that I can set up on a Black and Decker Workmate so I can dedicate a station to each task. Hmmm, is it held on to a fixed post off the back of the saw with a fitting secured with a set thumb screw?
I spent a few hours cleaning up my saw and doing routine maintenance today and found the blade and fence alignment to be super easy once you get the hang of it.
Having looked at other more expensive and feature rich saws the one place I would argue that needs improvement is the rip fence. The only other issue I see which has been resolved in the newer model of this saw is that the miter slots are not t-track. The plans were all kinda done on the fly – basically, I have aluminum angle around the three sides that meet with the table and rails, and I ground the heads of some bolts down to fit inside the rail track. I epoxied two pieces of plywood around the table cutout, and screwed a diagonal brace from the stand to a point near where the router sets in. I could take some shots, but just Google “Router Table Ridgid table saw) and there are all sorts of jury-rigged plans out there. Christopher Schwarz has helped many of us solve some pretty frustrating problems over the years. Also, can anyone tell me what the significant difference between Bosch’s 1617EVSPK and the MRC23EVSK? Again, whether you choose Dewalt, Porter Cable, or Bosch…it comes down to what feels good in your hands.
Avoid the dewalt dw618 kit; the plunge base is the best in the business, but the motors are very unreliable. The bosch 1617 kit is excellent and would be a strong contender for a new router kit if I needed one.
A couple of months ago I found this Ridgid 2hp 11amp Dual base router on sale at Home Depot for $179. All I can say is I own Rigid, (The twin pack that Horizontal Mike owns), Boschs, Porter Cable 690 combo, one Harbor Freight, and a Dewalt, and my go-to routers on a daily basis are Bosch, Bosch, and Bosch in both my table and hand-held plunge.


Personally, I don’t think you can do any better than the Bosch 1617 without spending a lot of money. Yes, you do end up having to get adapters for guides and things like that, but it feels well-built and has enough power to do anything I ask of it. You can purchase the adapter through most places that sell the Bosch router, but I think Bosch was supplying it at one point with the 1617 (I have not confirmed that). Before you pick up those woodworking tools, take the time to ensure your safety in the shop!
If you are selling your work, then you have entered a woodworking dimension with added complexity and stress.
DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. Rather than unbolting the entire trunnion assembly and wrenching it the very small distance to get the blade parallel with the fence, you simply loosen a bolt where the manual tells you to, and you can inch everything into alignment – no fuss, no muss.
I really have nothing to compare it to since this is my first table saw but overall I am very pleased with the performance so far. There are so many t-track miter accessories available that would sure be nice to use but alas. Well I went to purchase a delta after market fence and while looking at it and the $150 purchase price I decided to get a little more use out of the old fence.
I wish it a had a different splitter, mine tends to get loose and I have to retight it all the time. A trim router was introduced about one year ago, but this is the one we’ve been waiting for. The base is set up for use in a router table and includes a through-the-base adjustment mechanism. I don’t know too much about the other Bosch you mention other than it gets great reviews on other forums.
Obviously, you can’t use a splitter when you dado or rabbet, so it has to be removed for these operations. Well besides the factory miter sled which is terrible cheap and like you I replaced mine as well with one I made from some plans.
I also do not care for the rip fence’s requirement to clamp onto the back rail which makes it much more difficult to add on an extension table.


I had always sort of ignored the fence as useless due to it’s flimsy appearance and all of my t-track hardware did not work with it so I assumed it was non standard t-track that I could not really take advantage of without buying some accessory kit from rigid. One upgrade might be to have indicator marks on the wrench and the base to gauge the changes in bit height in a router table.
The routers available these days sure are a lot nicer than those of 20 years ago…good luck with your decision.
I have considered replacing the rip fence and front rail with an after market fence to eliminate this problem. When I got home and started playing around with it and looking at the t-track it dawned on me that I could use standard #18 hex head bolts and after about 1 minute of searching I found one and lo-and-behold it works perfectly. The newer bosch kit looks nice, but too expensive for what you get IMHO; the same goes for the porter cable 890 kits. All of those times I wanted to use the t-track on that fence have now come rushing back to me and I see unlimited potential in what I can do with some #18 bolts and the existing fence.
The quick bypass on the depth adjustment is nice, allowing fast adjustments with or without the fine-adjust mechanism in play. I put the wooden angle brace on the table and bolted it to the saw base so there would be no sag. I appreciate this little extra as I find uses for both methods during different routing operations. The plunge base was smooth during use, but I thought the plunge lock flipped too far to the center of the router, making it a reach for my hands to grab while I was  holding on to the handles.
I appreciated the addition of a dust-collection-attachment accessory for the plunge base, but with shorter bits the hole in the accessory was too small to allow the collet to reach far enough to make the cut.
I’d still like to see a micro adjust that works on one of these two-base plunge router kits.



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