Wood Routers: How to decide on just one - Part 5
They say that you can't please all of the people all of the time. I know from personal experience that even good companies can get bad reviews at times. You probably will never find a company who has only good wood working router reviews. If you did, I would feel highly suspicious that one, they are new or two, they are less than honest in their reporting! Nothing and no-one is perfect after all - but even in the major players there are some facts that tend to stand out over time and trends that can be seen in three or more complaints.
Customer complaints and warranty returns can give you an idea of the performance trends for wood router manufacturers.
Perhaps an even bigger consideration, however, is the warranty. Even more important is how likely you may need to use it! Having a lifetime warranty is worthless if your tool spends all of its life going back and forth to the service center while you sit idly waiting for a resolution to a problem. Even some great plunge or fixed base routers from known suppliers can have on-going issues. For instance, reports seem to indicate that the Bosch 1617EVSPK, a great router by anyone's reports, tend to have recurring issues with the switch brakes. This may never happen to you and even if it does it may not cause much of a problem - but it goes to show how no brand is perfect and even the best of companies can have design flaws. What were looking for here are things that indicate performace trends.
No single manufacturer is 'good' while another is 'bad' but two in particular, Bosch and Porter-Cable do seen to have more complaints than others. Why is this? It's hard to say how many complaints are due to their having a large market share (and more units out there to fail) versus how much are due to quality or customer service issues. In any case, while a warranty can provide an assurance that your tool can be fixed if it breaks within a certain period, the real key is not to need it at all. &
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