The package arrived unannounced and, curiously, it appeared to be a router made by RIDGID! (This is one of the really cool things about being an editor of a woodworking magazine: tools appear as if by magic.) The box copy spoke of a diversity of features, so I opened it up to do a little investigating. The box did not lie.
This new offering from RIDGID is everything you’ve come to expect in the 2 ¼ horsepower category. It is smooth, powerful and feature-rich. The soft-start EVS motor is very quiet, and the RIDGID literature claims that the shaft (connected to the armature) is every bit as good as the best in the industry. I have no argument, as the amount of vibration I experienced during use was negligible.
Here is what you get with this package:
- 2 ¼, 12 Amp, EVS with variable speed router motor
- Fixed router base
- Plunge router base
- Two collet wrenches
- T-handle above-the-table base adjuster
- ¼” collet
- ½” collet
- Centering tool
- Vacuum Adaptors
- Chip shield
- And a groovy carrying bag
I really liked the LED lights at built into the router motor. Not that I plan to do woodworking in the dark, but a little illumination at the point of contact is always welcome. I would like to have found a power switch that I could activate with both hands on the handles & not a big deal, more of a personal preference. One thing that I really appreciate in any router (and this one has it) is a flat top that allows you to turn the tool upside-down and easily change the bit. This is no small thing to me. Other items on the plus side: the 12-foot power cord (Velcro” cord wrap attached) with the tool icon on the plug. (The icon lights up when it is plugged in & a nice touch) The spindle lock & even though RIDGID provided two nicely made wrenches (not the stamped metal type).
All in all, it is a well-conceived and executed tool. As with all RIDGID products, it will be available at Home Depot stores. Its street price is around $199.00, and it will be arriving on Depot’s shelves in the mid- to late March time frame.