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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My wife just bought me a new Craftsman Router, it's model is 320.27683. It is a kit with plunge base and a fixed base, it is variable speed, by dial not trigger, 12 amp, and max of 2 HP. If I may ask for other people's input on this router, for a beginner, and just for basic hobby use. Thanks
 

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Sawdust Creator
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You should be quite happy with it for a beginner. I have the craftsman pro version, and have for a few years now. With pretty heavy use, its been a solid performer. You'll find that the bits you buy have more to do with the performance of the router than the router itself often.
 

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Those recent Cman routers made by Chervon Power get mainly positive reviews for solid value at their price point. They're much better than the older Cman routers made by Ryobi. Good choice for a beginning hobbyist IMHO.
 

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John
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My wife just bought me a new Craftsman Router, it's model is 320.27683. It is a kit with plunge base and a fixed base, it is variable speed, by dial not trigger, 12 amp, and max of 2 HP. If I may ask for other people's input on this router, for a beginner, and just for basic hobby use. Thanks
I'm sure you will be happy with that little router as a starter. I picked one up a couple of months ago and have been very impressed. Extremely soft start and the LED work lights provide excellent visibility.
That said, nothing is perfect, but this is close. Likely the first frustration you will run into is the hole in the base plate is quite small and will limit the diameter of bits you can use. This is by design as the OEM base plate is designed to accept Porter Cable style guide bushings which limits the through hole size to 1-3/16". Sears has a fix (naturally), they sell an assortment of base plates with larger holes. A more cost effective solution, IMO anyway, would be to pick up one of these aftermarket base plates:
Milescraft 1211 Base Plate Metal-Nose Bushing Set for Routers - Amazon.com

The advantage here is the kit is about the same money as the Craftsman option baseplate set plus you get a reasonably good selection of guide bushings as well a plate usable with a larger variety of bits.
Good Luck and congratulations.:smile:
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, thank you everyone for the feed back on the router itself. It looks like I have a pretty decent router. Now if I can ask another question? What about router bits? I have a 24 piece set from Harbor Freight and I know what that is! So if I could please ask for people input on what brand I should get? I'll be playing with hard and soft wood so I guess that 1/4" shank would be fine. Thanks for your input once again.
 

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I only buy 1/2 shanks anymore. I have a selection of frued, Bosch and craftsman pro (which you can only get online). I've found that the more you spend, usually does mean better quality here
 

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I have that same basic router kit - 320. something or other so it's the same manufacturer's prefix. Probably an earlier version of yours that I got a 2-3 years ago. It works great and I've had no problems with it.

As far as router bits, I think MLCS offers great bang for the buck. I'd advise going with 1/2" shanks as I think you'll have less bit breakage.

BTW - Knotscott: I always wondered who made the 320 prefix Sears tools. You solved the mystery! I never heard of Chervon but looked up their web site and they're legit (Though Chinese like most power tools).

Bill
 

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John
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Well, thank you everyone for the feed back on the router itself. It looks like I have a pretty decent router. Now if I can ask another question? What about router bits? I have a 24 piece set from Harbor Freight and I know what that is! So if I could please ask for people input on what brand I should get? I'll be playing with hard and soft wood so I guess that 1/4" shank would be fine. Thanks for your input once again.
hehehe, router bits, that's another topic that can get pretty lively. Start with 1/4" vs. 1/2" shanks. You will likely end up with a selection of both simply because some profiles won't be available in both shank sizes. For cutting diameters of less than 3/8" I prefer 1/4" shanks simply because the shank blocks a lot of visibility around the cut area. For cutting diameters of 3/4" or larger, I like the 1/2" shanks because they are obviously sturdier and, more importantly, are able to conduct more heat away from the cutter faster. Between 3/8" and 3/4" cutting diameter, either will work well and, in my case, I have a lot of duplication because I use my Colt a lot and it will only take 1/4" shanks.
As far as brands go; Infinity, Whiteside, Amana, EagleAmerica, CMT, Freud, Onsrud and Katana (from MLCS) are some of the best. For budget bits of reasonably good quality most of the bigger wood working supply places have a house brand that work pretty well. MLCS, Stone Mountain (Peachtree), Wood River (Woodcraft). I have also found a couple of eBay sellers, Super Carbide tools and Precision bits, to be of a reasonable price/quality value. If you try to fill your entire bit inventory with top end bits, you can tie an awful lot of money up in one fell swoop. I will go with the budget bits for ones that have limited uses, ie, ogee's architectural, etc. For high usage bits, straight bits, roundovers, coves, etc. I upgrade to the high end. Price difference between 1/4" and 1/2" shanks is minimal.
Hope this helps:smile:
 
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My wife just bought me a new Craftsman Router, it's model is 320.27683. It is a kit with plunge base and a fixed base, it is variable speed, by dial not trigger, 12 amp, and max of 2 HP. If I may ask for other people's input on this router, for a beginner, and just for basic hobby use. Thanks
i'm curious about which model you actually got. sears model numbers are nine digits long: 3 digits, then a "period" and then 6 digits.
 

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If your wife bought it for you, love it, use it and thank her every day. It will only lead to more tools later.:laughing:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
toolguy1000 said:
i'm curious about which model you actually got. sears model numbers are nine digits long: 3 digits, then a "period" and then 6 digits.
That is the model number on the instructions and on the router. This is the link to Sears website that shows the router

http://www.sears.com/craftsman-12-a...p-00927683000P?prdNo=2&blockNo=2&blockType=G2

On the website the drop the 320 and call it Model #27683

This is the PDF file on it. http://www.managemylife.com/mmh/lis_pdf/OWNM/1108238L.pdf
 

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My input is this: If the wife bought it, then it is the greatest router ever made bar none. It is the easiest to handle, cuts the best, quiet as a mouse, most durable, supremely accurate, most versatile, extremely efficient, and best looking.....just like you, Honey.
 

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I think you will be very happy with that router, and not even as a starter. It will probably do most of what you want throughout your woodworking career.
 

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i'm curious about which model you actually got. sears model numbers are nine digits long: 3 digits, then a "period" and then 6 digits.
They only need 5 digits, the 6th often denotes small changes or updates to the same model.
 

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My wife just bought me a new Craftsman Router, it's model is 320.27683. It is a kit with plunge base and a fixed base, it is variable speed, by dial not trigger, 12 amp, and max of 2 HP. If I may ask for other people's input on this router, for a beginner, and just for basic hobby use. Thanks
I recently bought that same router. So far I have used both fixed and plunge bases and they work well. Love the soft start feature. I am next going to try using it in my router table.
Over all I have yet to find a down side.
Charlie
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
ChipperOfWood said:
I recently bought that same router. So far I have used both fixed and plunge bases and they work well. Love the soft start feature. I am next going to try using it in my router table.
Over all I have yet to find a down side.
Charlie
Which Router table do you have? Mine is the 171.28140, AKA 9.28140, by Craftsman. I got it as a Christmas gift from my in laws, but have not tried it or even put he router on it yet.
 

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Which Router table do you have? Mine is the 171.28140, AKA 9.28140, by Craftsman. I got it as a Christmas gift from my in laws, but have not tried it or even put he router on it yet.
I'm building my own table and lift system. I will be posting pictures in the next week or so.
 
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