Author Topic: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router  (Read 581 times)

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Offline Sourwould

  • Posts: 73
Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« on: November 21, 2019, 06:43 PM »
I want to get a new giant router. I have an old (like made in Japan old) Ryobi, but the poles are a little sloppy. I'd love a Festool, but can't spend more on a router than a pick up truck. I've been looking around for older Makitas, but they aren't much cheaper than a new one when I find them. Anyone got the big 3 horse Makita and want to share your thoughts? I've been pretty disappointed with the quality of some of the newer Makita tools I've bought, but the big Makita is supposed to be made in Japan.

PS. There's also the question of variable speed. Never had it before, so I'm not sure that I'd miss it. I think it's a $100 difference with the veriable speed and non variable speed Makitas. I don't plan on turning any large diameter bits.

Thanks!

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Offline Dick Mahany

  • Posts: 547
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #1 on: November 21, 2019, 06:54 PM »
I had the older 3HP (3612BR) Makita in a dedicated router table for quite a few years and it was one solid workhorse and problem free.  It didn't have speed control so I used an aftermarket speed controller that I believe may have limited the capabilities somewhat.  I sold that setup when I built a new router table and decided to go with the 3-1/4 hp Milwaukee 5625 in a dedicated PRLV2 lift and it is even better in my experience.  On a big router like that variable speed is very important if you will be spinning larger bits such as panel raising bits or matched set cope and stick bits for doors.

EDIT:  My personal preference for hand held routing is to use a 2-1/4 hp or a smaller trim router.. The large routers are a lot to handle and I prefer those in dedicated tables.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2019, 08:58 AM by Dick Mahany »

Offline Svar

  • Posts: 1910
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #2 on: November 21, 2019, 07:07 PM »
For me router speed control is a must. Even if not spinning particularly large bits.

Offline Sourwould

  • Posts: 73
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #3 on: November 21, 2019, 07:45 PM »
I do everything hand held or with a guide/stick. The Makita is appealing with the track adapter. This would be pretty much just for dados/rabbets and some patterns. I have a trimmer sized router for roundovers and such.

Is the spacing on the festool edge guide poles special? I have the Makita edge guide for the small router and its kind of janky.

Offline tomp

  • Posts: 101
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #4 on: November 21, 2019, 08:29 PM »
Take a look at the Triton 3-1/4 HP variable speed router - less than $250 on Amazon. Other than some comments about the safety interlock, never heard a negative comment on it. Big and heavy, but supposedly excellent in a router table, and it allows adjustment from on top of the table.

Offline Dick Mahany

  • Posts: 547
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #5 on: November 21, 2019, 08:30 PM »
Snip ............
Is the spacing on the festool edge guide poles special? I have the Makita edge guide for the small router and its kind of janky.

Not quite sure what you are referring to as Festool Edge Guide, but modifications can easily be made to adapt other routers for track use.  Note that in the attached pic, the Festool guides are being used in an over constrained manner for stability.  (The fine adjust feature is defeated in this configuration)

While the Festool "system" in general has been pretty well thought out, I often need to adapt tool brands that I have, to do to what I need to accomplish.



BTW, I could easily rotate the assembly on the track 180° and have an even shorter offset to the router bit from the track.
« Last Edit: November 21, 2019, 08:33 PM by Dick Mahany »

Offline RussellS

  • Posts: 278
Re: Opinions on the big honky tonkin' Makita Router
« Reply #6 on: November 22, 2019, 12:59 AM »
I kind of get the idea this thread is about which big router is recommended.  And I say the Porter Cable 7539 3hp variable speed plunge router.  I've used it handheld and table mounted.  Works perfectly.  And mine has a label on the top saying "Proudly Made in the USA".  Sadly its no longer made.  eBay has a couple at $175 and $195.