It’s no surprise that one of the goals of Skil is to provide tools that offer a high level of value for the DIY user. This involves trade-offs and compromise, but hopefully at points that the non-professional user can understand and make good use of. Skil’s new line of routers, bearing the model numbers of 1817, 1827 and 1830 are designed to accomplish a host of at-home jobs for the do-it-yourselfer.
New Skil Routers
In particular, Skil designed the new routers to be easier to use, more comfortable, and even less daunting for the home user. Since routers are inherently aggressive – with an exposed bit and a typically loud motor – Skil started there. The first change was to incorporate Soft Start technology, where there is less kickback to the starting-up of the tool and the motor gently glides up to its maximum speed. Soft Start also extends the life of the tool by decreasing the wear and tear on the motor due to sudden starting over the course of its life.
Another problem most users have – especially in the area of consumer-level tools, is depth adjustment. Entry-level routers typically have a real deficiency when it comes to setting a truly precise depth and they typically do not do well to include features to light up the workspace. Skil has now added micro-fine adjustment for precise depth measurements and an LED “SiteLight” for improved visibility and to let you know the tool is plugged in and ready for use. The tool also has a 1/2-inch collet capacity with for larger profile applications, but also includes a 1/4-inch adapter to handle all your smaller collet bits. Finally, they utilized a two position on/off switch and included some soft grip handles to make the tool easier to handle and maneuver.
Here are how the tools break down in terms of differences among the models:
- Model No. 1817
1-3/4 HP Fixed Based Router with quick-release lever for easy motor adjustments and removal. This is Skil’s newest entry-level router.
- Model No. 1827
2 HP Router with Plunge Base also has the quick-clamp release lever for easy motor adjustments and removal, but adds a depth rod and adjustable turret for repeatable plunge routing applications. This tool also has a variable speed dial.
- Model No. 1830 Kit
2-1/4 HP Combo Router Kit has the highest power motor for tougher projects. The tool comes with both aluminum fixed and plunge bases. It too has the quick-clamp release lever for easy adjustments and removal, depth rod and adjustable turret for repeatable plunge routing applications and a variable speed dial.
A router edge guide (91800) is also available for all three routers and can be used to facilitate smooth/straight edges. A dust hood accessory (RAS131) attaches to the entry level router (1817) and the RAS132 dust hood works with the 1827 & 1830 models.
Both the 1817 and 1830 model routers are going to be sold at Lowe’s and online beginning in April 2011 with an MSRP of $69.99 and $109.99 respectively. The 1827 router will be available at the same time at other retailers (and via online) with an MSRP of $89.99.