Different Types Of Woodworking Routers

Different Types Of Woodworking Routers | Woodworking Tools Guide

Different Types Of Woodworking Routers

Routers are the fundamental power tools used to hollow out an area of wood or plastic material; this process is routing. These power tools are commonly used in woodworking projects like making cabinets; these smoothen the produced angles formed due to hinges and joints.

When searching for routers available in the market, you will come across many different types of wood routers. Your decision to buy a router should depend on the quality, the router’s cost, and the work you need it for.

There are three main classes of routers:

  1. Plunge routers.
  2. Fixed-based routers.
  3. Combo router kits.
  4. Compact router.

What are the different types of routers used for woodworking?

1. Fixed-Based Routers

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In fixed-based routers, the body and base are joined together and do not have any plunging action. These types of routers can’t perform cutting inside the surfaces of materials. It starts thinning from the edges only. After the cutting height is adjusted and it starts missing, the cutting height cannot be changed by the woodworker afterward

Fixed-based routers are the most commonly used routers by those who have just started woodworking tasks. It is most suitable for a beginner because of its easy handling. For a project that demands precise straight lines, a fixed-based router is the best choice.

This router performs different tasks like molding and edge cutting and is used for Diy projects. Let us take a look at its pros and cons.

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  • A fixed-base router is light in weight.
  • Easier to use.
  • This router requires less maintenance.
  • You can set the depth of the blades according to the need of the project.


  • It can perform over-cutting because of the fixed base
  • This router is not versatile

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2. Plunge Routers

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The router that lets you perform more tasks as compared to fixed-base routers is a plunge router. It is like the next step to do routing. A skilled woodworker can use this router to perform more advanced tasks.

It is used to make deep holes or cuts in a few minutes. These routers are also able to perform cuts for cabinets, putting dado, or even engraving in materials. Its core elements are similar to that of a fixed-base router.

If you need to cut deep through your piece, then a plunge router is the best option you have.

Let’s get to know its advantages and disadvantages.


  • It is used to cut deep into the materials.
  • It can perform routing on the above surfaces.
  • Plunge routers are durable.


  • These routers are more expensive as compared to other routers.
  • Before using a plunge router, you should have more knowledge about using routers for woodwork.
  • These are heavier in weight and hence hard to use for beginners.

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3.Combo-Router Kits

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As the name suggests, a combo-router is a combination of a fixed-based and plunge router.

This router can perform both a fixed and plunge router tasks without maintaining an area for the two routers. If you want to complete projects that need versatile equipment for routing, then this router will turn out to be helpful for you.


  • Amongst all routers, this router is considered more cost-efficient by woodworkers.
  • It costs less than the actual combined cost of the two routers.
  • You can use many add-ons with this router.


  • It isn’t easy to replace it if you don’t have enough knowledge about his router.

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4.Compact Router

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A compact wood router, also known as a palm router, stands out amongst other routers because of its easy-to-use quality. It can be handled and operated efficiently.

If you want to do challenging tasks or long tasks, this router is your better option; because of its lightweight and small size.

Although it is pretty easy to handle these routers, these routers are weak in terms of horsepower. The sizes of collets offered by these routers are different according to the brand and model. The most significant advantage that these routers have is their portability.

What Kind of Router Should You Buy for Woodworking?

Before buying a wood router, you should think about the jobs you will be doing with it. You see, a router is a pretty simple thing; it is a motor having two handles that spins very fast. Look for the features that you need in a wood router. Here are some of the elements to consider,

  • Variable Speed

Many routers have variable speed control options, which help you use a single router for different tasks. For small bits cut, you need to have a medium to high speed. And for large cuts, you need to use a lower rate.

  • Electronic Response Circuitry

The router’s circuitry will notice the load present and provide the speed needed for the particular load. This process is called the electronic feedback circuitry of a router. It lets the router keep up with the task which is performed.

  • Spindle-Lock

A spindle lock makes the process of changing a router’s bits simpler and prevents the worker from looking all over for how to lock the motors.

  • Soft Start

If your router has a soft start, then it will not blast up to full speed after being switched on.

With soft-start, there will be a pause after the router is turned on.

  • Table Adjustment

You should buy a router that lets you adjust the height of the cuts from over the table, with a handle or knob. Look for the router to increase the collet over the table to change bits without elevating the machine. This way, you don’t have to bend to change the depth setting.

Why do you need to Buy a Wood Router for Woodworking?

A beginner needs to buy handy tools like wood routers to start with their projects. The routers should have many features to make the work easier and successful.

So before purchasing one, you should have an understanding of how to utilize it. Woodworkers are mostly interested in creating flat and smooth edges when they perform molding. The creation of objects and cutting them is also a common task done by woodworkers. A router can cut any wood piece and use a router to smoothen the edges or refine them.

Suppose a woodworker has good quality routers and knowledge. In that case, there should be no issues in making shelves or cabinets with smooth edges.

Which is the Best Router for a Beginner?

To find the best Wood router, you have to consider the tasks you have to perform with it. The router that perfectly suits your job is the best option for you.

If you want to compare, then a plunge wood router will be a great addition if you’re going to take your router in your hand while performing a task. When intending to keep the router on the table, you should go for a fixed-base router.

To invest in a versatile router and to avail the qualities of both the fixed-base and plunge router, you should opt for a combo wood router.

Find here all the best wood routers for the beginner here


Our guide is an excellent way to start your woodwork process; you should try to use different routers to find the one that suits your work or projects. When you do, you will be able to perform fantastic routing jobs with accuracy.