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  1. #1
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    Mar 2015
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    Default Round Body 1800watt Router Motor

    Hi guys,

    Just wondering if anyone has experience with the round body router-motors available in Australia and sold under various names eg. Sherwood, Swiss-tec, AUK Tools etc.

    First question - they all appear identical, just with different color schemes and names. Does anyone know if they are actually identical or if they are made in different factories / have different designs. I remember speaking with someone from Greg-Mach a few years ago and they were having a HEAP of warranty returns on their round-body router motors and needed to go through a long and expensive design-improvement process with their supplier to fix the underlying issue(s). I don't recall what the problem/fix was, but the rate of returns was massive. I wonder if this design-change was applied to all of the round-body motors, or just to the exact model that Greg-Mach sells.

    Second question - is this motor(s) sufficiently powerful to do stuff like door and window mouldings, raised panels etc? For example, would it have any difficult with a door coping set like this from CMT? CMT ENTRY AND INTERIOR DOOR ROUTER BIT SET - CarbaTec

    Cheers,

    Dom

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  3. #2
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    Default

    The problem was the speed controller was the wrong design, something about Hall Effect control IIRC. They disappeared from the market for about a year then re-appeared, Wood Pixel bought one IIRC when they re-appeared so a PM may get a user experience. I know of one of the later ones which appeared to have the same speed control fault as well. Gregory Machinery, Woodworking & Woodworking Professionals were two retailers of the first one and WWP was where WP bought his from.

  4. #3
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    Default

    I am not familiar with the basic bodies to which you are referring so I can't comment on them other than to ask why you are looking at them. They are normally used in conjunction with CNC machines. Is that your intended usage.

    My take on routers and large cutters is to buy the most powerful (and reliable) machine you can. It will have to be variable speed as the larger cutters in that set may need to run at around 12,000 rpm. I think those cutters are right on the limit of what a router can handle well and you may also have to take multiple passes particularly as the timber density increases.

    This is the type of work for a spindle moulder in a home workshop situation. I do have these router cutters myself but have never used them so again I can't say whether my comments are absolutely true as I am basing my estimation on the performance of other large cutters. All this is OK if you are just going to be making a couple of windows: It just takes a little longer with multiple passes. If you are making a house full it might absorb all your annual leave at one hit .

    I should add that this work is not for the hand held router. A table mounted machine is essential, but again I assume this is what you are contemplating. My suggestion would be to at least compare large proprietary (3HP) machines to your 2 1/2HP body. Just as an example and without any particular recommendation, a large Makita ( I have an old one but it lacks variable speed, which is essential for those cutters) would be a similar price I think. My table router is a 3 1/4HP Triton.

    I would be interested to know the purpose you intend for this router and if it is half as interesting as your shed build I will be following it.

    Regards
    Paul
    Bushmiller;

    "Power tends to corrupt. Absolute power corrupts, absolutely!"

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
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    Canberra
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    Default

    These motors are BEASTS. I've direct experience with the AUK motor and controller.

    I did a bit of a write up a while ago on their various qualities and can highly recommend one based on my own experiences.

    Experience has taught me these few tricks....

    -- Use a compressor occasionally to blow dust out of the insides
    -- If its run at slow speeds for a long time it *tends* to get a bit of dust on the commutator which makes it "razzy". A quick blat with the speed controller to pump a few revs through it solves that quick smart
    -- Use under table dust extraction. It *really* loves it. Motor stays cool too, which is no-doubt good
    -- Keep the collet clean

    Second question first - absolutely. The motor is a beast.

    First question - based on hearsay and what I "know" is V1 of these motors were ALL made in the same place with various UK-based name badges. A few suffered from dust getting onto an optical speed sensor and they spun themselves up into an explosion. There was (is?) a plastic dust fan attached to the shaft which detonated.... bad!

    The problem was all but instantly recognised and the manufacturer pulled them from market. Version 2 was made in conjunction with a few "beta testers". The new version uses a hall sensor for RPM control and the plastic fan was made much meatier.

    From then on I've not heard a single bad word about them.

    They are all Porter Cable PC7518 replicas, with added newness.

    The AUK tools one with the variable speed remote and illuminated NVR buttons is great. I'd 100% buy again.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bushmiller View Post
    I am not familiar with the basic bodies to which you are referring so I can't comment on them other than to ask why you are looking at them. They are normally used in conjunction with CNC machines. Is that your intended usage.

    My take on routers and large cutters is to buy the most powerful (and reliable) machine you can. It will have to be variable speed as the larger cutters in that set may need to run at around 12,000 rpm. I think those cutters are right on the limit of what a router can handle well and you may also have to take multiple passes particularly as the timber density increases.

    This is the type of work for a spindle moulder in a home workshop situation. I do have these router cutters myself but have never used them so again I can't say whether my comments are absolutely true as I am basing my estimation on the performance of other large cutters. All this is OK if you are just going to be making a couple of windows: It just takes a little longer with multiple passes. If you are making a house full it might absorb all your annual leave at one hit .

    I should add that this work is not for the hand held router. A table mounted machine is essential, but again I assume this is what you are contemplating. My suggestion would be to at least compare large proprietary (3HP) machines to your 2 1/2HP body. Just as an example and without any particular recommendation, a large Makita ( I have an old one but it lacks variable speed, which is essential for those cutters) would be a similar price I think. My table router is a 3 1/4HP Triton.

    I would be interested to know the purpose you intend for this router and if it is half as interesting as your shed build I will be following it.

    Regards
    Paul
    Hi Paul,

    I'm looking at these because they are the only router motors that work with the Jessem/Incra router lifts and i'm currently thinking of going that route.

    I was considering either a spindle moulder or router table and am leaning towards router table at the moment provided I can still at least do mouldings and coping cuts for doors etc. I don't have space for both and am planning on using the router table as an outfeed for the table saw when not used as a router table to economise on space.

    If I go spindle moulder i'd be looking at something like a Hammer F3 so that the quality is decent and so i can still use router bits, but that gets expensive. Older spindle moulders are generally too large and heavy and require 415v. Plus they don't have collet spindles for router bits.

    I am planning on using it for some three panel bifold doors and some windows for the rear of that garage i'm making. When I built the front doors (in another thread) i realised coping the window rails/stiles would save a lot of time over mitring all the moulding. Plus tongue and groove would be faster than by hand! I'll likely use Sapele for the doors.

    Cheers, Dom

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
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    Melbourne, Vic, Australia
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by woodPixel View Post
    These motors are BEASTS. I've direct experience with the AUK motor and controller.

    I did a bit of a write up a while ago on their various qualities and can highly recommend one based on my own experiences.

    Experience has taught me these few tricks....

    -- Use a compressor occasionally to blow dust out of the insides
    -- If its run at slow speeds for a long time it *tends* to get a bit of dust on the commutator which makes it "razzy". A quick blat with the speed controller to pump a few revs through it solves that quick smart
    -- Use under table dust extraction. It *really* loves it. Motor stays cool too, which is no-doubt good
    -- Keep the collet clean

    Second question first - absolutely. The motor is a beast.

    First question - based on hearsay and what I "know" is V1 of these motors were ALL made in the same place with various UK-based name badges. A few suffered from dust getting onto an optical speed sensor and they spun themselves up into an explosion. There was (is?) a plastic dust fan attached to the shaft which detonated.... bad!

    The problem was all but instantly recognised and the manufacturer pulled them from market. Version 2 was made in conjunction with a few "beta testers". The new version uses a hall sensor for RPM control and the plastic fan was made much meatier.

    From then on I've not heard a single bad word about them.

    They are all Porter Cable PC7518 replicas, with added newness.

    The AUK tools one with the variable speed remote and illuminated NVR buttons is great. I'd 100% buy again.
    Thanks mate. Sounds like the motor will be powerful enough. I will be running good dust collection.

    So I guess any of the motors should be as good as any other?

    Cheers, Dom

  8. #7
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    Dec 2003
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    Default

    Hi All

    You are correct the only manufacturer of 240 volt versions of the Fixed Base Router is in China, that said, they do vary the specs to meet the needs of their customers i.e. PWS, Gregory etc.

    We own the AUK brand in partnership with Woodworker Workshop in the UK, over 5 or so years we have specified numerous upgrades to the router motor, thus ensuring that every batch we order has the latest electronics and premium versions of other components.

    it would be a lot less work for us if the likes of Porter Cable, Makita etc. would make a 240 volt versions of their FB motors, but alas the 230 - 240 volt market is small compared to the 110 volt US market. We do now believe that the latest AUK routers are equal to the US routers in both quality and performance.

    BTW, WoodPixel is right, all power tools need care, keeping the router motor clean is of utmost importance.

    I hope this clarifies the situation.

    Regards

    Grahame

  9. #8
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    Default

    Thanks guys, and thank you Grahame for your direct input. It's good to hear that the quality of the motors has been improved and that your AUK ones are top-spec.

    Prior to seeing your reply I already went ahead with an order for the Swiss-Tec from Gergories Machinery and I'm hoping that they have indeed made the same/similar specification enhancements that ensure reliability.

    I ended up with the motor, Jessem Mast-r-lift II, Jessem TA fence, and stock guides. Also picked up a cast iron top this morning along with the CMT Entry Door router set (holy cow that tenon-cutting bit is large for a router bit - though obviously not compared with spindle moulder cutters) and tongue and groove set. Hopefully the 2.5hp motor is up to the challenge.

    I initially wanted to go a spindle moulder, then decided to start with a cheap router table setup first, then somehow talked myself up to buying Incra stuff, then decided that the orientation and length of the fence system wouldn't work for me and landed on the Jessem and cast-iron top setup for about the same money (somehow lost track of my initial intentions haha!). Not sure if I will be happy with this seeming middle-ground in terms of cost and capacity - effectively half way to a Hammer F3 Spindle moulder and possibly a no-mans-land of too much invested in a router table without going far enough to get the heavy-duty capacity and capability of a proper spindle moulder! We'll see.

    Cheers,

    Dom

  10. #9
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    Got the Jessem stuff delivered and I have to say that I'm very impressed with both the quality and also apparent robustness of all the parts. The fence is super beefy, the fit and finish is excellent and everything is either anodised aluminium or steel.

    I was a little worried about the Mite-r-slide II coping/crosscut fence but I needn't have - it too appears vertly robust, well made and has zero perceptible slop yet slides smoothly and easily on the TA fence. Very happy.

    Also, aside from the inserts, the lift, fence, stock guides and coping fence are all made in Canada - someone on another forum indicated they were made in China but this doesn't appear to be the case.

    Just need to design and build the cabinet!

    Cheers, Dom

  11. #10
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    Newcastle
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    Jessem do seem to make good stuff. I have their table saw guides (bought direct) and they're very well made. When I get doing a decent router table I suspect I'll pick them over incra, so good to hear you like them.

  12. #11
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    Melb
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    How do these routers go for noise?

    Obviously a water cooled spindle/VFD combo is at the quiet end, but are these screaming banshees or reasonable with noise?

    cheers, Ian

  13. #12
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    They are beasts.

    The Triton TRA001 was astoundingly noisy. The PWS router is nice and quiet - surprisingly so.

  14. #13
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    That's good, I see PWS have the V3 AUK one for $529:

    AUKTools - Fixed Base Router V3 - 240V woodworksupplies.com.au

    But Timbecon have a different coloured one (ver 2 model?) on special for $354:

    https://www.timbecon.com.au/round-body-router-motor


    Hmm...I just rang Timbecon to see what ver the one on special is and they weren't aware of any different version models, but did mention they get still a lot of returns due to the speed controller, so i'm guessing it's the ver 1?

    Bit of a toss up going with a 2.2kW spindle/VFD or the PWS one, each works around the same cost but I think the spindle/VFD would be better in the long run, even though the PWS is fairly quiet as mentioned.

  15. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by aarggh View Post
    How do these routers go for noise?

    Obviously a water cooled spindle/VFD combo is at the quiet end, but are these screaming banshees or reasonable with noise?

    cheers, Ian

    Hi

    A fixed base router is usually slightly noisier than a plunge router, mainly due to the lack of body work (housings, handles etc.). common in plunge routers.

    Our AUK V3 routers have several design upgrades, including new electronics (speed control) and high performance SKF bearings. There are also some cosmetic improvements.

    As these are specifically for Router Table use, they're generally in a dust collection cabinet where the noise isn't significantly different to say a Triton TRA001.

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