What are the benefits of router tables as opposed to those of shapers?
Carol Reed: Router tables and router bits are less expensive. The router can be removed and used handheld — its original purpose. Think handheld shaper. That said, don’t confuse the two. Shapers are powerful enough to only require one pass while router bits in a table often require multiple passes to yield the same cut. Shaper RPM’s are considerably lower. Routers spin much, much faster. That limits the diameter of the cutters. They each have their place, but comparing them is as unfair as comparing apples and oranges.
Mark Hensley: I was a advocate of shapers for many, many years. Recently I set up my router table. The main difference is speed of the cutter. The shapers spinning much larger router bits need to be slower, while I use my router table for using router bits at a much higher speed.