Draper Half-Inch Router
Wednesday 16 July 2008
Peter Brett says this one offers great routing possibilities at a realistic price
Compared to the feeble 1/4in router I bought for a small fortune 25 years ago, today's machines are fantastic. This Draper model offers versatility and power with all the features one needs.
On testGreat to handle with its rubberised handles, easy-to-use switchgear and light plunge action, this router has oodles of power and the variable speed allowed it to be used on a variety of materials with small or large-diameter bits.
Noise levels were surprisingly acceptable and I didn't bother with the ear protectors for small runs. The case contains almost everything necessary for a huge variety of routing jobs. I like the long and strong trammel bars, and the cast alloy fence is really robust with adjustable plastic facings. Depth adjustment was quick and precise with a multi-stop turret and micro-adjustable height adjustment allowing minute changes. It is a huge advantage to have the option of three sizes of collet to choose from and my only disappointment was with the chip collection system because it interfered with some of the larger-diameter bits used for edge moulding. In my experience no manufacturer has a perfect system, and this did do a good job of whisking most of the chips away, but be prepared for the bit to make the hole in the chip collector a bit bigger or invest in long-shank bits.