mid size router for router table- without using a lift

I currently have a 3HP PC router in a Jessem lift. Works great other than occasionally i have to take it out of the lift and clean the dust out of the threads.

For my shop at my vacation home I am wanting a mid sized router that I can use both in a table and hand held if needed. I don't want  to buy a lift.

Which mid sized router can you recommend? i also have a DW cordless router which will do most of the hand held routing.

I have  a Bosch 1617 in the home shop and am thinking about one for table use? Or what about the newer Bosch MRC23EVSK. Which of these would be better in a table?

Will I be disappointed using one without a lift? I am used to the precision that I can get with the Jessem lift.

I used a small laboratory grade scissor jack as a router lift.  It cost $30.00 and works well.  I could not justify the expense of a router lift.


I have two Porter-Cable 690 routers and they are solid and reliable and have been around for a long time.  But when I looked at Amazon.com it appears that they are out of production now.  Sad.  They were an excellent value.  I think I paid about $100.00 for mine.

Dewalt's compact router is handy and capable of most of my work.  The smaller size is helpful.


Note:  I see that the scissor jack is now $35.00.  But a nice piece of equipment, and it works well.
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The Bosch 1617 is a good choice. The RA1161 base is set up for above the table adjustment with an allen wrench. I have an extra base without handles, if you're interested shoot me a PM.

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I second the Bosch 1617. The fixed base is used in table, can be adjusted from up top--but lock is loosened by reaching below. By using the fixed base in the table (most "kits" use the plunge base in table mount) the plunge base is ready for handheld use. Handheld, the plunge base can do anything a handheld fixed base can do--but not the other way around. Another Bosch 16517 advantage is that while the factory base plates use 4 hole mounting, the fixed base is tapped also with the PC 690 triangular pattern--so one can use sub base accessories drilled for the 1617 or the PC 690. I love my 1617's!!
(11-07-2019, 05:22 PM)shoottmx Wrote: The Bosch 1617 is a good choice. The RA1161 base is set up for above the table adjustment with an allen wrench. I have an extra base without handles, if you're interested shoot me a PM.


I have the same setup in my router table.  I bored the router plate for above the table adjustment, tried it a couple of times, then went back to the old way.  You have to unlock it from below anyway.  

The Bosch 1617 has lots of accessories available and has one of the largest openings available in the fixed base, so you can spin 2-1/2" panel raising bits if desired.  For hobbiest use it has enough power for my needs and the speed control is very good.  

I'm a PC fan. 690's are available, just have to search.
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The Revos apparently are designed to clamp railroad ties and pull together horrifically prepared joints
WaterlooMark 02/9/2020

To each his own. I have the original Woodpecker PRL lift with a PC 7518 in it; had it for 15-20 years now. Can't imagine going back.

I'd say if you have the 1617 try it out...should do just fine. If not then consider alternatives.
I started with absolutely nothing. Now, thanks to years of hard work, careful planning, and perseverance, I find I still have most of it left.
The triton 2-1/4 hp router is a great dual use router.  It has a switch that turns the height adjustment so you can use it handheld or under the table.  It comes crank to use when router is used under the table.  Plus it includes a complete set of guide bushings and multi use fence.
Thanks for the responses.

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