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Re: This discussion is getting interesting

Derek Cohen (in Perth, Australia)
The combination of handles and weight distribution affects my perception of control. A lot of my routing is by "feel" and I loose feel if the router is not compact with a low center of gravity.

Bill, you know I agree about feel and feedback since I have written so much about this with hand planes. Especially about a low centre of gravity.

As I visualise it, a fixed-base router is best used for edges as you can start the machine with the bit off the edge, and then bring it inwards. You do this with a plunge router as well. I agree that some plunge routers are top-heavy and feel clumsy and cumbersome. There are others, however, that are very well balanced when in plunge mode .... which, of course, drops the centre of gravity. The centre router in the group of three (in my first picture) is the Elu OF97E. It has a wonderful balance and really excellent dust control. It is my favourite of the three.

As an aside, you are probably aware that Elu was the forerunner of the DeWalt range (Elu was purchased by Black and Decker in 1984). The large Elu 177e (in the photo) is the forerunner of the DeWalt 625.

What I struggle to visualise is how a fixed-base router can be used inside a board, such as along a straight edge routing a dado or mortice? Morticing with a plunge router is just so easy. What type of gyrations does one do with a fixed-based machine?

Regards from Perth

Derek

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