Thinking of getting a new router table/lift/router. I am currently thinking of the jesson master lift II. I noticed they sell the plate in either a 8 1/4 X 11 3/4 or a 9 1/4 X 11 3/4. Is there any advantage, disadvantage to either size? The reason I ask as one review I read was blasting the kreg table for using the larger size and said it was an older system.
Also has anyone had any issues with an MDF router table? Looking at online at reviews I occasionally see complaints of the table warping. Would it be money well spent to spring for the cast iron top from bench dog?
I plan on putting in the Porter cable 7518 or the Milwaukee equivalent. Was leaning towards the porter cable until I read a number of poor reviews online relating to the collet and speed control.
Recommendations are welcome and appreciated. Budget is around a grand more or less.
Almost forgot fence recommendations
The 9 1/4 x 11 3/4 is by far the more common size. The 8 1/4 x 11 3/4 is most commonly seen with Rockler products and their in-house Bench Dog brand. The reviewer is wrong.
The lift comes with my highest recommendations.
I use the Porter Cable 7518 in my lift, donít have to change speeds that often, and Iíve never had a problem with the router. There are many good routers however and itís rare you will have problems with any of them so long as you use them appropriately.
My guess is that most of us donít use a cast iron router top. One can easily make a router top as good as anything else out there, built with your setup in mind with reinforcements in the base to assure the top doesnít sage. I laminate 3/4 plywood to 1/2 Mdf, cover the edges with hard wood, then cover both sides with plastic laminate before cutting the hole for the router lift.
If you are going to use your fence for basic routing then you will be happy with whatever you get, and should probably get the fence that comes from the same manufacturer as your router top. they are all work basically the same except for Incra.
If you want to do small boxes, or fancy drawers, or just want to have an extremely high degree of control over your router fence, then you should spend a few minutes on YouTube checking out the Incra fence. If you buy an Incra fence, you will want to buy or make a bigger than usual router table.
In woodworking there is always more then one way to accomplish something.