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  • Product Review: Triton TRI-TRA001B Router

Product Review: Triton TRI-TRA001B Router

TRI-TRA001B Triton Router Review

Triton has directly addressed the difficulties in using a product upside down that has been primarily designed to be used right side up. The Triton TRI-TRA001B Router fulfils its design brief and really adds something special to your workshop.I use a shop-made router table to cut a lot of my joinery but I have never been entirely happy with any of the routers that I have fitted to it. They were all good quality, but they were primarily designed to be used upright or hand-held. Using them in a table always involved a good deal of hassle when changing bits and when precision was needed in the set-up of particular cutters. However, you work with what you have and make allowances for its shortcomings. Until now!

I have been testing the Triton TRI-TRA001B in the Triton Router Table System and am quite in awe of its features. I can't believe what I have been missing out on. It is obviously designed primarily to be used in a router table and solves most of the age-old problems associated with this. To begin with, the cooling vents are side-mounted to reduce the amount of sawdust that falls into the powerful 2400 watts (3-1/4hp) motor. There is no sign of the motor wavering at all under load. It has a soft start and electronic variable speed that ranges between 8,000-21,000 RPM. This means router bits of all sizes can be safely used. It's important to remember that large diameter router bits such as panel raising bits or lock mitre bits should always be used in a router table and on a slower speed setting. There are two removable collets (one 1/4" and one 1/4"), so there is no need to use spacer collets unless you want to use 8mm router bits such as Leigh make.

One of the best features of the TRI-TRA001B is its Dual Mode operation. A push of a button allows you to operate it as a standard plunge router when using it hand-held, or a fixed base router with a hand cranked rack and pinion height adjustment when table mounted. The plunge spring can be easily removed to allow effortless and smooth height adjustment either with a crank handle extension arm that comes through the table top for easy access or with the micro-adjust knob.

Gone are the days of having to be a contortionist to set your router bit to the correct height. Changing router bits couldn't be easier. When the crank handle is turned all the way home a spindle lock is engaged. The router collet protrudes through the top allowing easy access with the spanner to change the bits. There is an added safety feature that ensures the spindle lock can only be engaged when the safety cover is over the switch and this will only work when the router is switched off. This safety feature also prevents the router from being switched back on while the spindle is locked. Because spanner access is from the base and not the side of the router there is a highly effective blade guard system and dust extraction outlet, not just the token attempt that you often see that still needs to allow side access. This does not however, obscure visibility when using the router in an upright position.

The fence is a triumph although on first sight this may not be the impression that one gets. It consists of two components, a large plate that is attached to the router base plate via two spring-loaded pins that slide positively into keyhole slots. The fence itself connects to this plate. What I like a lot about this system is the enormous amount of surface area and support it gives you. It is perfect for large area hand-held work such as cutting rebates, trenches or sliding dovetails in panels. The weight of the router works with you to keep it stable and flat and the soft start reduces the chance of kickback or catching the material. The plate also gives you a nice safe position to place your hand for stabilising and supporting your router when working close to an edge.

Being a router of considerable size and weight, the Triton TRI-TRA001B may prove to be a little heavy for some dovetail jigs that require you to hand hold it and move it across the top the comb. If you are using a Leigh jig, the Vacuum and Router Support will compensate for the weight and size, giving you much more stability. The KL-15 dovetail jig would be best used upside down on your router table as the comb is fairly narrow. If you are going to fit this router to a router table, consider going for the Triton Precision Router Table System.

 
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