I have always said, a router is simply one of the most powerful and versatile tools in your workshop. For any woodworker, having a good router is right up there with having a good table saw, it is pure necessity. Bosch is easily one of my favorite tool companies for tools like a router where you need consistent and powerful performance. Today we are going to check out an impressive Router from Bosch in the Bosch 1617EVS Router Review.
Bosch 1617EVS Router Review Overview
Routers come in all shapes and sizes. Plunge routers, palm routers, fixed base routers and more. There are a huge variety of accessories and tools that can take even those options to the next level. Build a jig and you can use your plunge router to make large circles. Use a router table and your fixed base router has unlimited potential. Things like complex joinery like mortise and tenons and dovetails become fairly simple with a bit of practice. You can even use your router to joint wood edges, or trim edges. It truly is a limitless tool.
Despite all of that, one of the most well-known router uses comes from their ability to add designs to wood edges and making profiles for things like furniture or cabinet doors. You would be hard-pressed to ignore the little bit of something extra a beautiful cove or roman ogee profile can lend a finished piece. Want to take your woodworking to the next level? Well, outside of the table saw, a router is definitely an investment you don’t want to skip.
What sets this router apart from most is that Bosch added in design features that allow it to work even better with my beloved Bosch Router Table. This Router Table is well loved by both hobbyists and professionals, and while I had great success with my existing DeWalt Router in it, I wanted to open up those last few features and see how this combination could improve my shop a bit more.
Bosch 1617EVS Router Review Features
The Bosch 1617EVS runs on a 12 amp motor with a standard 6-ft cord. The motor also features constant response circuitry to help regulate the start of the router and allow it to maintain consistent speed during use. The double insulated motor provides additional protection as well as the dust-sealed power switch.
The Router can be used with the switch on the right or left for user preference.
Adjustable speed settings allow you to control the speed of the bits rotations, from 8000 to 25000 RPMs. This is easily adjusted based on material and bit type.
For handheld use, the Router includes a base with two hardwood handles that are very comfortable to grip.
As well Bosch includes the alternate fixed base that is designed to be used when mounting, specifically in the Bosch Router Table to allow adjustments using the T-handle wrench above the table.
Bosch included a microfine bit-depth adjustment to give better control to bit height, something imperative, especially when using the router for operations like joints where every small degree of measure makes a large impact.
The coarse adjustment lever allows you to set the desired height quickly, and fine-tune the bit height with the microfine adjustment.
The Router has a common three-hole base pattern to allow mounting to most standard router tables.
Bosch includes both standard-sized chucks, 1/4-inch, and 1/2-inch. Additionally, the 2-inch sub-base opening allows a wide variety of bits to be used with this router.
Bosch manufactures several optional accessories for this router, included was a chip deflector, 2 chucks, wrenches for the bit and collet changes, and the extended T handle wrench for above table adjustments. You can purchase accessories like alternate bases, template guides, and other optional products to enhance your routers functionality.
Bosch 1617EVS Router Review Performance
For me, I quickly installed this router into my Bosch Router Table. One of the biggest things I noticed right off the bat is just how quiet this router is. I have a huge amount of love for my DeWalt 1618 but this Router is significantly quieter. It was easy to install right to the router table, something that made a good initial impression.
I appreciate that they included a well-made hand-held base as well. Safety is key, and good solid handles are important to maintain grip and stability when using a router like this hand-held. Switching between the two bases takes only a matter of seconds which keeps the Router versatile for users who want to use it both in the table and hand-held.
Adjusting the Router is fairly simple, whether coarse or fine the adjustment controls are fairly intuitive. The micro-fine adjustments are incredibly useful when using with the Router table as being able to do the fine adjustments above the table is helpful. I would say one additional tool I would purchase to make the use of this router with its table just a bit better, would be a set of the Bosch offset wrenches. They make a huge difference in how much you have to shift the router to be able to access the chuck. When the goal is to simplify and speed production, every little bit helps.
I had great results with this Router overall. The Router runs incredibly smooth both handheld and mounted in the table. I felt it did excellent on hardwoods as well as softwoods, and combined with the Freud Router Bits, you had a match made in heaven. It performed exactly like I thought it would as it is a well-regarded router from Bosch. The combination of the Router, when used with the Bosch Router Table, is hard to beat. While so many are making the transition to cordless routers, there is still a significant space in your lineup for a solid corded router like this one from Bosch.
Bosch 1617EVS Router Review Value
Bosch is known for well-loved professional Power Tools. This Router is no exception to their stellar reputation, and the price is hard to beat too. This Router comes in at $149.00 on Amazon. I would have expected to pay in the mid-200-dollar range for a Router of this caliber and performance so for me I can’t see a single thing to complain about cost wise.
Bosch 1617EVS Router Review Final Thoughts
Bosch is easily one of my favorite power tool manufacturers. While no one brand gets it perfect every time, I have yet to be disappointed by the big blue. The Bosch 1617EVS Router combines everything you could want in a router. Excellent features, more than enough power, easy customization to suit your needs and stellar performance. The best bonus though is this Router is a particularly good value for the performance and features you receive. I know for me, I bought this Router to be mounted in my router table, but I loved it standalone too. All in all, this Router is a great option for those looking for a variety of uses and want to get the performance they need for the tough jobs you may encounter in a woodshop.
I originally bought the MRC23EVSK and the Bosch RA1181 table and couldn’t get the holes in the mounting plate to line up with the 3 holes in the fixed base of the router. So I googled my issue and found the 1617 is much more table friendly so I found one refurbished on eBay and will use the MRC23EVSK as a standalone in the plunge base. I make my own furniture and just graduated from the Ryobi series where the depth adjustment would jam up every time.
I have looked everywhere and cannot find the country of manufacture anywhere.
Bosch is obviously trying to hide the country of origin so this means – RED CHINESE!