Important Features

Easy bit changing. With a spindle lock and a self-ejecting collet, bit changing is a breeze on the Bosch. A clear guard folds down for easy access.

Built-in dust collection. DeWalt's unique dust extraction design lets your shop vacuum pull chips up through an oversize plunge post.

Upside-down adjustments. The Craftsman's built-in post adjuster makes it easier to adjust the height of the bit, even in a router table.

Variable speed. Reducing or increasing rpm on the DeWalt is easy with its built-in speed dial. Speed choices range from 8,000 to 24,000.

Plunge action. Smooth, controllable plunge action will give you greater precision when routing mortises and making stopped cuts. The DeWalt delivered the best performance in this category.

Balance and feel. Comfortable handles, light weight, and a low center of gravity all play a part in the balance and feel equation. We also factored the router's baseplate into this rating, looking for a flat, smooth surface. The DeWalt came out on top with an "excellent" feel rating, while the Bosch and Porter-Cable routers were rated "very good."

Controls. This rating is based on several important factors. We looked for on/off switches and plunge locks that were accessible and easy to use. We also considered bit height adjustment and the operation of plunge stops and plunge depth adjustments. The "Controls" rating is a good indication of how convenient the router is to use, day in and day out. The DeWalt, Porter-Cable, and Bosch earned "very good" ratings for controls.

Bit changing. Two features contribute to bit-changing ease: spindle locks and sclf-cjccting collets. Spindle locks enable you

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