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If you use your router table a lot, it would make sense to get yourself a router lift. It has endless benefits including being able to maximize the functionality of your router. Install a variable speed router over it and you now have a router system that has efficiency and convenience to boast of. Check out which of the router lifts out there we highly recommend.
Best Router Lift 2020 Reviews
Out of all the router lifts in the market, these are the ones that stood out because of their excellent performance:
- JessEm Mast-R-Lift II Router Lift
- Kreg PRS5000 Precision Router Lift
- Rockler Router Lift FX
- Bosch Under-Table Router Base
Delve deeper into the features and functionalities of these router lifts:
1. JessEm Mast-R-Lift II Router Lift
There is a reason why the Mast-R-Lift II is one of the most popular router lifts out there. It is compatible with most fixed base routers that is due to its clamping block system that is completely adjustable. If you already have a router, there is a big chance, you will be able to use it here.
The manufacturing company even made installation and setup easy. There is a locking mechanism found at the top of the table. It can be used for small projects but if you need one for heavy-duty projects, simply turn the same handle and you are great to go. All the components of this product are CNC machined and the non-wearing parts have undergone anodization to prevent them from corroding or wearing out easily.
You might be spending more money with this router lift but you get what you pay for because this thing can last for a long time. It has double-sealed ball bearings which ensure smooth rotation all the time. This reduces wears on the internal mechanisms, so even if you are using a heavy router, it will not buckle under the pressure. The hard anodized material also protects internal functions from corrosion.
Backlash is minimized through its patented tension.
It can accommodate bigger projects with ease. The same handle that you use for raising and lowering the lift can be used to accommodate heavy-duty projects.
It is compatible with most fixed-base routers out there. Since it comes with a clamping block system that has adjustable features, you can fit most standard routers out there including those from Porter Cable, Bosch, Dewalt, Makita, Hitachi, Milwaukee, Craftsman, Rigid and many other brands.
The exterior coating is resistant to wear and tear. The coating protects the tool from scratches.
The mount itself is durable and can accommodate heavier loads because of its unique design. This one has a shaft mount attached at the top plate. This allows for more even distribution of lateral load.
If you need to make bit changes, that can be done with ease. You don’t need to use separate wrenches. Its tool-less functionality makes this a great choice if you want to work without interruptions.
This router lift is backed by a 1-year warranty.
Many people said this was a cinch to set up. You also don’t need to figure out how to use it for a long time as it is easy to use.
There were those who needed levelers for this router lift but couldn’t get it because the manufacturer doesn’t distribute the levelers to the US.
2. Kreg PRS5000 Precision Router Lift
True to its name, this router lift from Kreg really brings precision to the table. It makes room for easy and precise table-mounted router changes. Accessing collets and bits is also easier and can be done above-table. This tool is compatible with different sizes and brands of routers. The router lift itself also works in standard router tables.
Durability is also its strong suit. Made from hard-anodized aluminum plate, you can rest easy knowing that your router lift won’t sag or get scratched up easily. Every operation runs smoothly because the carriage is guided by bearings.
You get the best control over this router lift. Use this to replace the insert plates used in most router tables. With this, you can change your router setup with ease. Simply lower or raise it above your table, whatever your needs are.
Everything is controlled above the table. There is no need to get under the table to make adjustments. It accommodates both large and small adjustments well.
It has a built-in micro-adjustment scale to the get the most precise height you need for the bits. It makes 1/16-inch adjustments each time you adjust the crank, so you can find the best size suitable for your needs. You no longer need to rotate the router body anymore.
This product comes with a 90-day warranty.
It fits many different routers to perfection. Additionally, you don’t need extra tools to install your router.
It also lifts up fairly smoothly. There are no snags or erratic motions.
This tool has excellent workmanship. You can tell it is built to last because all the parts feel solid. There are no parts that feel loose.
Users did not have trouble installing it. They were also able to mount their routers easily. It locks in place without problems.
There were those who were able to fit their router but not without some tweaking. Some said it was a tight fit and they needed to make the adjustments.
3. Rockler Router Lift FX
If you like the durability of the first product, you will also like this one as it has been manufactured by JessEm but distributed by Rockler. The material used are some of the most durable. You can also tell it has excellent workmanship from the way everything works.
Mounting your router over it is easy as it uses just one lever. It also comes with a locking mechanism that allows you to adjust it to fit the router’s motor precisely. It also accommodates a wide range of router motor because you can tweak it and allow it go up or down the lift’s mounting rings. That way, it can accommodate both the short bits and the long bits.
This tool is built like a tank. It is made from a thick phenolic material that can withstand wear and tear. It can resist the damaging effects of heavier loads. It doesn’t sag easily even when using heavier routers.
The manufacturing company promises a flatter plate and they have managed to achieve that. The surface is really flat and does not snag because it is covered by a laminate material. Wood materials do not catch on the surface but glides on it instead.
You can install the router motor in different positions or in such a way that the switch and the speed setting are easily accessed. The clamping rings can be secured to the motor precisely.
It has a very simple design that is easy to understand even by those using this tool for the first time. There are very few parts that need to be figured out before using it.
Changing bits is easy since everything can be done above the table. It also has a threaded shaft handle that accommodates various height changes. This also has a good stabilizing effect.
You can reposition the scale rings. It also allows for minimal height changes, so you can get the most accuracy. It also comes with an adjustable handle that allows small height changes.
For its features, it has a comparatively low price. If you like the features and the build of the previous models but don’t like to spend a lot of money, this product is a good choice.
Some said they had difficulty locking the height adjustment in place.
4. Bosch Under-Table Router Base
If you don’t need most of the features above and you just want a basic router lift, you definitely should get this under table router lift from Bosch. It is similar to the fixed base from Bosch but has an above-table bit height adjustment feature. It is compatible with most surfaces and tables and includes everything you need for mounting.
This product enables base changes without the need for extra tools. It has a built-in clamp system that allows users to move the motor easily. The motor is also heavily secured with protective devices that keep the motor from falling right to the floor once you release the clamp.
This has a simpler mechanism compared to the other router lifts. It also comes with guides that help newbies learn how to use this.
Users did not have issues assembling it. They were able to mount their routers in less than an hour. Make sure you identify all the parts and lay them all out to make it easier to assemble. It helps that it comes with a manual that makes installation easier.
It is one of the most heavy-duty router lifts out there. It really accommodates heavier loads and can withstand regular usage. The top is made from a metal material for added durability.
It is heavily equipped with safety features.
It is not finicky when it comes to adjustments. You can make miniscule adjustments with minimal effort. You can also access it from above the table to make necessary bit height adjustments.
You can use larger bits with this as it has a wider base opening.
You can position the motor any way you want with its quick clamp system.
This tool is compatible with a lot of routers.
It is not as expensive as other routers out there.
Some said the aluminum fence tends to have burrs that need to be filed down as well.
Which Router Lift Should You Get?
If You Want Durability: JessEm Mast-R-Lift II Router Lift. Many have said it before, and we will say it again. This router lift is built like a tank. It really is one of the best when it comes to durable construction and heavy-duty internal mechanisms. It can accommodate a variety of routers and it can handle even the heavier ones with no issues. If you are looking for reliability, you should spend a bit more money to get this one. It also comes complete with features that will help you adjust its features to accommodate your personal needs.
If You Want More Control: Kreg PRS5000 Precision Router Lift. Not all the router lifts out there have excellent control. You can easily find the right size for your bit since it has small adjustment increments. It also lifts smoothly for the most excellent experience in using this. If control is what you want, control is what you will get with this. This is also a durable router lift that will serve you well for a long time.
If You Like Customizable Settings: Rockler Router Lift FX. This is a router that allows you to make changes to the setup as much as you want. There is a lot of room for customization, which can help you get the best settings that will work for your needs. And since the company that manufactured this is also JessEm, you know you are getting a router lift that is built to last. It has good workmanship that will make sure you will be able to get your money’s worth.
If You Don’t Want to Spend a Lot of Money: Bosch Under-Table Router Base. This is the router lift to get if you want something more affordable. It is inexpensive but has good features that can still give those more expensive ones a run for their money. It also has a good construction and has materials that can last for a long time. It has a simple mechanism and adjustable functions, so if you don’t want a setup that is too complex, this is for you.
Aside from a router lift, there are many other woodworking tools that you can rely on to make your work easier. Check out our homepage for more information on other woodworking products that you can add to your arsenal.