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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
As I've mentioned in other posts, I'm trying to build a very small workshop. Prior to today I had purchased a Foredom TX and a Foredom LX for powercarving. I also got a day or two ago, a Fein Turbo II HEPA for dust control. I ordered a Dust-Deputy Deluxe kit to attach to it.

So, today was the last day of a pretty interesting sale at a local hardware store that seems to specialize in woodworking tools.

I picked up:

(After speaking to the reps for Milwaukee, Dewalt, Bosch, and Makita about cordless tools)
Makita cordless set:
LXPH01Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless 1/2” Hammer Driver-Drill
LXDT04Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Impact Driver
824812-5
Makita Model 824812-5 Hard Case for above two tools
+
BSS611Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless 6-1/2" Circular Saw
BJR182Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Reciprocating Saw
BML185 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Flashlight
DC18RA 18V LXT Lithium Ion Rapid Battery Charger
2x BL1830 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Battery
Makita Model 831284-7 Contractor Bag

(After speaking with Dewalt and Makita reps regarding track saws... I wanted to talk to the Festool rep but I couldn't find him... and I also asked for input from the store staff regarding which they would buy if it was for them)
Makita SP6000K1 "Track Saw" AKA 6-1/2" Plunge Circular Saw with 55" Guide Rail, clamp set, and hard case.

(After speaking with Porter Cable aka Dewalt rep and Bosch rep regarding routers)
Bosch 1617EVS 2.25HP Fixed Base Variable Speed Router

This was a tough one for me. I know the Bosch has to be modified via an adapter to work with most templates/guides, so I was tempted to go with a Porter Cable, but this one had a full half HP (or maybe even more) than the Porter Cable that I was looking at, and when I focused on the fact that it's really only going to be used as a dedicated router for a planing/skarfing/etc. sled setup it made sense given the price.

I want a slightly stronger (but doesn't have to be much stronger) router for a router table - which I'm debating whether to buy or build, and I want a good plunge router, probably a Porter Cable, for hand work.

The two cordless saws are really just for use at the lumber yard. I don't want to use the yard's "hasn't been sharpened in 10 years" hand saw ever again. :laughing:

I feel like I got a good deal accomplished today towards putting together a set of tools - and eventually putting it all together as a mini shop. I still need a lot of stuff though! A ton of clamps for the glue ups I need to do to build my worktable for example. Maybe a jigsaw since I can't fit a bandsaw here. A good attachment for a makeshift drill press too. I know it won't be as good as my drill press or even my mini drill press (both in FL) but there has to be something better than the "General" brand one. I tried it a few months ago when working on a piece that was too big for the drill press and it jumped and wobbled horribly.

Anyways, how did I do today? Was the Bosch a mistake?

Update: 3/5/2013 Added a few more
 

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I have the exact same router and it works very well for me. I got the adapter from highland woodworking for about $8 and now I can use PC guides
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Have you tried the plunge base for it? It looks like I can order just the base and then I'd leave the fixed base permanently mounted for the sled and pull out the motor to put in the plunge base (or even just another fixed base) for handheld/manual use.

Oh also, I forgot to mention, as for the tracksaw, the Dewalt rep was emphasizing how the Dewalt can be reversed direction-wise without reversing the track. That was apparently a selling point. The Makita rep pointed out what I was wondering myself: why does that matter?... why would you need to do that? I couldn't think of a reason. There must be one though.
 

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Have you tried the plunge base for it? It looks like I can order just the base and then I'd leave the fixed base permanently mounted for the sled and pull out the motor to put in the plunge base (or even just another fixed base) for handheld/manual use.

Oh also, I forgot to mention, as for the tracksaw, the Dewalt rep was emphasizing how the Dewalt can be reversed direction-wise without reversing the track. That was apparently a selling point. The Makita rep pointed out what I was wondering myself: why does that matter?... why would you need to do that? I couldn't think of a reason. There must be one though.
I have the plunge base also, and I probably use it 90% of the time. Very accurate and has a fine adjustment knob that works well. I've thought about getting a second fixed base myself
 

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Holy cow you did good! I like your call on the Makita tools. Many people have the Bosch router and like it. I don't think you will have a problem. Suh-weet!
 

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:eek:Yikes - what a nice haul... I'm really jealous of your Makita inventory.

Track saw - why a 55" track? I would be inclined to go 100" or so. Seems like the primary purpose would be to break down sheet goods an 55" only gets you half way there.
I'd also grab the Bosch router any day over the Porter Cable. If you do go to PC, make sure you get a variable speed unit. They seem to be pushing single speed 690's these days. I also think the Bosch has a better bushing system. The threaded bushing system Porter Cable uses can come loose on you in the middle of a run. Unfortunately, you need to be able to accomodate it as most aftermarket stuff that includes a special bushing, uses that system. Another point is that a router that does not require an adapter for PC style bushings, will also not be able to take a bit the size of a 3/8" roundover (1¼" in diameter or larger). :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter #7
:eek:Yikes - what a nice haul... I'm really jealous of your Makita inventory.

Track saw - why a 55" track? I would be inclined to go 100" or so. Seems like the primary purpose would be to break down sheet goods an 55" only gets you half way there.
I'd also grab the Bosch router any day over the Porter Cable. If you do go to PC, make sure you get a variable speed unit. They seem to be pushing single speed 690's these days. I also think the Bosch has a better bushing system. The threaded bushing system Porter Cable uses can come loose on you in the middle of a run. Unfortunately, you need to be able to accomodate it as most aftermarket stuff that includes a special bushing, uses that system. Another point is that a router that does not require an adapter for PC style bushings, will also not be able to take a bit the size of a 3/8" roundover (1¼" in diameter or larger). :smile:
Thanks for the router info. Maybe for a handheld router I'll get another Bosch. Looking at the price of buying just the plunge base for the one I bought today - it doesn't seem really worth it when for ~$70 I can get the whole shebang, motor and all. The 1619EVS looks interesting. I'll have to read some reviews. Variable speed is non-negotiable for me (gotta have it), and soft-start is fairly important to me as well. I'll look around.

As for the length of the track - there's a couple reasons I went with 55":
1. I don't have room to store a 118" track. I have an extra high ceiling and even it's 10" too low to store it vertically. :eek:
2. I can connect 2 55" tracks. It was demonstrated and it looked like it maintained the accuracy. BUT, even if not:
3. I actually am not using this initially for sheet goods. I got it for dead-on straight and clean - no jointer required - cuts on hardwood. I don't have the room for a table saw, so this is basically the closest I can get.
4. I do plan to purchase a second 55" track though, just in case. Maybe I'll use it for sheet goods at some point. I just don't have that need now.
5. And a big reason: The sale special was for the saw, the clamp set, and a 55" track.
;)

In a year and a couple months, when I move out of this apartment and have a bigger place, I might have more room, at which time I could possibly store a 118" track. Hopefully, at that point I'll merge everything that I buy for this second (mini) shop with the tools in my other shop and put them all in a bigger location where I can really have BIG tools (I've been dreaming of having the space for a giant lathe for years). :laughing:
 

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Is your local hardware store called Seven Corners Hardware? This used to be a big online source of tools called Tool Crib of the North, until they sold the internet side to Amazon some years ago.

I have the Bosch1617 installed in a Woodpecker router lift in my router table. I purchased the top from Woodpecker and made my own frame.

The 1617 has been in use perhaps since 2003. I purchased it to install in the router table. It has enough power for all the operations I have used so far. I believe in many small passes, but still some bit have a lot of area.

The only maintenance has been replacement of a bearing. Sealed for life does not mean it will last forever, just that it is sealed for as long as it works. ;)

I like the soft start, but in a router table you will hardly notice the soft start since the router plate/table take up any starting torque.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Is your local hardware store called Seven Corners Hardware? This used to be a big online source of tools called Tool Crib of the North, until they sold the internet side to Amazon some years ago.

I have the Bosch1617 installed in a Woodpecker router lift in my router table. I purchased the top from Woodpecker and made my own frame.

The 1617 has been in use perhaps since 2003. I purchased it to install in the router table. It has enough power for all the operations I have used so far. I believe in many small passes, but still some bit have a lot of area.

The only maintenance has been replacement of a bearing. Sealed for life does not mean it will last forever, just that it is sealed for as long as it works. ;)

I like the soft start, but in a router table you will hardly notice the soft start since the router plate/table take up any starting torque.
Seven Corners Ace Hardware. Yep. Didn't know they had a history. Interesting. They have a website though, where you can order everything in the store. Did this previous online operation have even more than they have now? Also, does this mean that there is an Amazon.com shipping warehouse with tools somewhere nearby?
 

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Seven Corners Ace Hardware. Yep. Didn't know they had a history. Interesting. They have a website though, where you can order everything in the store. Did this previous online operation have even more than they have now? Also, does this mean that there is an Amazon.com shipping warehouse with tools somewhere nearby?
I think they just sold the web site and name to Amazon. I expect Amazon has their own warehouse somewhere.

I think Seven Corners has some non-compete agreement which expired. They did not have an on-line presence for a number of years.

Happy to see they are now back on-line.

I purchased a number of tools from them back when they owned Tool Crib of the North.

I do not know the comparison of the original offerings vs todays offerings. Many of the tools have changed, some no longer made, lots of new ones.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Update: More Stuff

Dave Paine - are you sure it's Seven Corners that used to be "Tool Crib of the North"? I found this article:
http://www.popularwoodworking.com/article/tool-crib-of-the-north-is-back-as-acme-tools

It would seem that Acme Tools (http://www.acmetools.com/), rather than Seven Corners Ace Hardware was formerly this entity? The upside of my finding this information, is that there is an Acme tools not too far from me. I'll check it out this weekend if I can. :)

In other news, I went ahead and pulled the trigger on a few more items:

2x Makita 9557PBX1 4.5" Angle Grinder w/ Aluminum Case
and for them
Arbortech Industrial Wood Carving Wheel
and
Arbortech Turbo Plane

The Arbortechs were planned over a month ago. What was debatable was what angle grinder to go with. I wanted to go cordless, but somebody (possibly on this forum) pointed out that the number of batteries I'd go through would make it impractical unless I had unlimited cash for cordless tool batteries and chargers. The Makita 9557 I had heard good things about, particularly when it came to the Arbortech carving wheels. Buying 2 sets me up for one dedicated to each wheel, and the cost puts the aluminum case plus a bunch of metal grinding wheels (which will eventually come in handy) at about $15-$20 extra which I felt was worth it.

I'm about to order the Foredom angle grinder attachment for my Foredom TX. That's something I planned on when I bought the Foredom TX, but never got around to ordering.

At this point, all I need to get started building my shop bench are a bunch of clamps, some Titebond III, and some sandpaper. At my other shop I came to love the Irwin XP heavy duty clamps for glue ups. Given that at some point everything I buy now will merge with all of my other tools, I'm tempted to stick with the Irwin XP series.... BUT I'm completely open to suggestions.

Oh, and also I might want to get a pocket-hole jig. I was thinking of using pocket holes to join certain parts on the table. Not sure if that's a bad idea.Typically for a work-bench I like to use metal angle brackets and dowel joints - used generously. In the past, this let me build incredibly strong workbenches (one has had over 1,000 lbs on it continuously for 3 years). I kind of would like to try building one more aesthetically pleasing though. The aesthetics don't really matter that much to me, I just want to do something different. A workbench that looks as good as home furniture, but is still tough as nails.
 

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Dave Paine - are you sure it's Seven Corners that used to be "Tool Crib of the North"? I found this article:
http://www.popularwoodworking.com/article/tool-crib-of-the-north-is-back-as-acme-tools

It would seem that Acme Tools (http://www.acmetools.com/), rather than Seven Corners Ace Hardware was formerly this entity? The upside of my finding this information, is that there is an Acme tools not too far from me. I'll check it out this weekend if I can. :)
I am glad I was not betting on Seven Corners being the old TCN. :laughing:

Happy that you found the article though. :thumbsup:
 

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I have that angle grinder and it's awesome. Don't recommend pocket screws. IMHO there are much better traditional joinery methods. If you haven't seen Christopher Schwartz' workbench books or videos take a look.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I have that angle grinder and it's awesome. Don't recommend pocket screws. IMHO there are much better traditional joinery methods. If you haven't seen Christopher Schwartz' workbench books or videos take a look.
No pocket holes huh? Oh well. I keep looking for an excuse to buy a pocket hole jig. Now I can't justify it. THANKS A LOT!!! :furious:

jk. :laughing:

I'll look up those reference materials you mentioned. Thanks.
 

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Some day I am going to photo all the little projects around the shop and house where I have used a Kreg Jig. Not necessarily building/assembling items like tables, cabinets, desks, benches, etc., but stuff like making repairs to chairs, sofas, attaching a "floating" shelf to a wall, taking a piece of scrap wood and attaching it to a garage wall for a coat hook without using a backing plate or brackets. With a pocket hole Kreg Jig you can think "outside the box".

My wife is getting tired of hearing me say "I couldn't have done this without the Kreg Jig".
But imho, you have to have at least the K4 ($99.99) jig, not the $39.99 one.
 
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