If you’re into woodcutting, specifically wood-routing, chances are you’ve come across Bosch and DeWalt, which are the two of the biggest and most trusted brands in the power tools industry today.
Both have top-selling products that professionals use in woodworking, and we’re comparing them in this article to give you the best option between the two: DeWalt 618 VS Bosch 1617.
As we go along, you’ll discover the difference between these wood routers based on certain factors, and find our final verdict that would help you decide which wood router to buy. Let’s get started!
Things to Consider
Both the routers from DeWalt and Bosch are robust and expertly designed for woodworking purposes; however, which model would make your work much easier?
The DeWalt 618 router provides a better grip, with its two rubber-molded handles attached to the router, angled in a way that the control point is much closer to the base plate. The handle gives excellent ergonomics to this model because your hands would feel more secure and comfortable when holding the equipment. The device is also designed to be very compact and lightweight at 7.2 lbs, which allows you to maneuver it across the wood easily.
The Bosch 1617 router, on the other hand, has wooden handles attached on either side of the router. While the hardwood material gives off a premium and modern accent, the hand can easily slip off the control when using the device. The router is also slightly heavier than DW618 at 8.3 lbs, making it harder to move around.
Winner: DeWalt 618
When it comes to the motor power, the DeWalt 618 and the Bosch 1617 are on the same page because both have a peak HP motor of 2.25. That means that the routers are suitable to be used on a wide variety of woodwork.
Both of these routers have a soft-start, which is responsible for reducing the stress on the motor while in use. This feature lessens the torque and the power load on start-ups and complicated wood pieces. On much simpler terms, you won’t have to worry about the immediate full speed of a router once you turn it on. This way, you’ll be able to handle the device with ease and security as you build up your strength and confidence to control it.
The Bosch and DeWalt routers have a variable speed feature; this means that you can use different bits with these models. The factor that differentiates the two devices is the RPM each has.
The model from DeWalt has an RPM of 24000, and because of its variable speed function, you can modify this router’s speed according to the kind of project and type of wood that you’re working on. The speed dial that DW618 comes with has up to 6 levels of settings that allow you to gauge the speed that you’re going for. The dials from 1 to 3 make the machine rotate anywhere from 8000 to 14000 RPM; this is perfect for working with cutters and bits that are large in diameter. For the dials from 4 to 6, the router would give you RPM rates between 18000 and 24000 to allow you to work with bits in smaller diameters and lighter materials such as softwoods and laminates.
The same goes for the Bosch wood router for its speed dial features; however, the unit’s motor speed reaches up to 25000 RPM. We know that the difference is only 1000 RPM, but this minor factor allows the router to handle a slightly wider range of bits and wood project types. The dials between 1 and 3, you’ll get a speed range from 8000 to 16500 RPM; the remaining 4 to 6 dials are for 20000 to 25000 RPM. Additionally, this machine also has a built-in Constant Response Circuitry function, which lets you sustain the router’s speed until you finish cutting.
Winner: Bosch 1617
As for this factor, both wood routers are proven to have high precision and accuracy for routing on a fixed depth. The DeWalt 618 and Bosch 1617 have a system for micro-fine depth adjustment to allow the users to manage the bit depth and adjust it quickly and with ease. The micro-fine adjustment that these machines come with provides an accurate 1/64 precision and a general range of 1-inch. With this feature, you can expect neat and clean cuts from a stable routing process.
Router Table Usability and General Project Flexibility
We had to include this factor to check on how the units are ready to be used on a router table for other wood projects.
The DeWalt 618 model is designed to have a split base, which works by using a clamp to arrange the unit’s walls and enclose the motor. As you adjust the tightness of the clamp, the motor tends to move slightly upward or downward.
The fixed base of the Bosch 1617, on the other hand, has threaded holes that are specifically for mounting the machine on a routing table. It also has an advanced bit-height adjustment system, which lets you move the bit height, even on top of the table; keep in mind that other fixed-base routers that don’t have this need to make adjustments from below.
Winner: Bosch 1617
The price difference between the routers from DeWalt and Bosch is quite small, with it being hardly more than a handful of dollars; however, what we measure in this section is the features you get from what you pay.
The DeWalt 618 provides better ergonomics and has the same motor power and precision as Bosch’s, but it lost to the factors on its motor speed and router table compatibility.
The Bosch 1617 is less expensive, but it lacks ergonomic features. Though it certainly makes up for that with its speed and routing table compatibility.
Winner: Bosch 1617
So, which one is worth buying? Both of these units are quite reliable and convenient for wood-routing; however, based on our considered factors, we find Bosch 1617 as the ultimate winner. This wood router provides impressive routing performance in terms of speed, power, precision, and routing table compatibility. It’s also slightly less expensive than its rival.
While DeWalt routers are on the more expensive side, we still think that its features and overall performance give justice to its price.