Katsu router issues - base keeps jamming/scratching router

UKworkshop.co.uk

Help Support UKworkshop.co.uk:

reddragon105

New member
Joined
15 Feb 2021
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
London
Like a lot of people I was in the market for a trimmer router and was eyeing the Makita RT0700C when I saw this Katsu router that's a cheaper alternative - by all accounts a fairly decent clone of the Makita, not bad at all for £30-40.

So I bought one just before Christmas, just going for the standard base, not plunge or tilt or anything fancy, and was only on my second job with it when I ran into this issue - I could insert the router body into the base and move it down using the little wheel/knob, but then I couldn't get the base back off again, at least not using the knob as it was completely jammed (and yes, I had the locking clasp undone!). I ended up having to just pull at the base with my hands until it came off, leaving a scratch down the metal shaft of the router.

I spent ages looking at it, trying to figure out what I'd done wrong - had I put the base on the wrong way round or twisted somehow? No - it's really obvious that the little cog/wheel on the base goes into the ladder on the shaft of the router, and there's also a little metal peg on the inside of the base that goes into a groove on the router, so that's not possible. Was there another lock somewhere that I hadn't undone? No, just the clasp on the front. Had it been knocked or twisted somehow? Did it look damaged anywhere? No and no.

So I very carefully put the base back on, adjusted the router down slightly with the wheel, and it got stuck again. No apparent reason except the base seemed too tight even when it wasn't locked closed, so it was scraping against the router shaft.

I thought maybe I'd just got a duff unit, so I ordered a new one and arranged to send it back. The new one arrived before I returned the first one, so I compared them and couldn't see a difference - the first one wasn't broken and I couldn't see any manufacturing errors.

The second one lasted a bit longer - I've done maybe 3-4 jobs with it - but yesterday I got the same issue with it. It's not impossible to use, it just means I have to adjust the router down to the required depth and I can't raise the bit without taking the base off completely and putting it back on again, scratching the router further each time.

I tried Googling to see if anyone else has had this issue, but can't find any reports of it. So I thought I'd make a post to ask and see if anyone can advise - did I get two bad units in a row, are they all like this, or am I doing something wrong that I'm missing?
 
Last edited:

Beanwood

Established Member
Joined
15 May 2012
Messages
224
Reaction score
52
Location
Bristol
I had that issue - but bought mine 'cheap' as it had been returned.
Solved the issue by a little emery cloth where it was scratching - it's been fine since.
Had I paid full price, yes, I'd have sent it back.
 

reddragon105

New member
Joined
15 Feb 2021
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
London
I had that issue - but bought mine 'cheap' as it had been returned.
Solved the issue by a little emery cloth where it was scratching - it's been fine since.
Had I paid full price, yes, I'd have sent it back.
Thanks for replying - that makes me feel a little better!

Did you use the emery cloth on the router or the base? I might try that, but I did get it new from Amazon so they owe me a working one...
 

Droogs

Is that chisel shar ... Ow
Joined
14 Mar 2013
Messages
5,423
Reaction score
2,389
Location
Edinburgh
you have been unlucky in regard to tolerences. give the inside of the base body a going over with a bit of 240 and then 320 and yo should have no probs.
 

dizjasta

Established Member
Joined
28 Sep 2016
Messages
90
Reaction score
33
Location
southport
The base that comes with a Katsu router is intended for edge trimming and not for plunging routing. If plunge routing is needed the operation is safer with the correct 2 column plunge base.
 

Beanwood

Established Member
Joined
15 May 2012
Messages
224
Reaction score
52
Location
Bristol
Thanks for replying - that makes me feel a little better!

Did you use the emery cloth on the router or the base? I might try that, but I did get it new from Amazon so they owe me a working one...
A bit of both actually - the router body was quite deeply scratched - lord knows what by - but that needed flatting back, before the base was also eased slightly.
It works well now, and I was marvelling just today how much easier it is to use for small jobs than a 'full size' router, as I cur some 6mm slots.
 

skeetstar

Established Member
Joined
7 Sep 2014
Messages
320
Reaction score
48
Location
southam, warwickshire
I've got the makita one, sounds exactly the same base as you have. The makita base does have adjustment via a thread and nut, so you can make the base looser or tighter... does yours have such an adjustment, and if it does, would it help?
 

stevek

Established Member
Joined
27 Oct 2012
Messages
78
Reaction score
15
Location
Hampshire UK
Hi, was using my Katsu on some oak just yesterday, its my go too router if I can mage with the small size. Im far from expert but I think your problem is trying to plunge at all, these are Im sure fixed base routers, like the american style ones, you set whatever depth you require and gently tip it into the work, trying to plunge it would be a disaster. I think the little Katsu is a great router, mines about 3 yrs old now but even with setting the depth you have to hold it sympathetically and gentyly turn the knob, this adjustment is by its nature just too crude to be used in the way you seem to be describing.
Steve
 

Essex Barn Workshop

Established Member
Joined
11 Jul 2020
Messages
270
Reaction score
292
Location
Loughton, Essex
Hi,
I think you answer your own problem:
just going for the standard base, not plunge or tilt or anything fancy
You are trying to use the depth adjustment as a plunge base. I have the exact same router and am considering adding the plunge base to it.
 

novocaine

Established Member
Joined
21 Jul 2014
Messages
2,720
Reaction score
457
Location
Warrington
wrong tool for the job.
I have to admit to doing it very very occasionally but I will only ever plunge 1-2, never full depth and it's normally because I'm doing something like cleaning out a door liner on the hinge side for a new let in piece so in fairly soft wood. I have the clamp just nipped up when I do it but again, it's not really the right tool for the job and a plunge base should be used.
buy doing it this way you are allowing the router body to spin in the base, forcing the sides of the adjustment gear and the pin into the fairly soft body. without pictures it's impossible to say, but I'd guess that you've spun the body enough that one of the pins has scored the body.

either buy the correct tool for the job or be very very careful using the wrong tool.
 

reddragon105

New member
Joined
15 Feb 2021
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
London
The base that comes with a Katsu router is intended for edge trimming and not for plunging routing. If plunge routing is needed the operation is safer with the correct 2 column plunge base.

Hi, was using my Katsu on some oak just yesterday, its my go too router if I can mage with the small size. Im far from expert but I think your problem is trying to plunge at all, these are Im sure fixed base routers, like the american style ones, you set whatever depth you require and gently tip it into the work, trying to plunge it would be a disaster. I think the little Katsu is a great router, mines about 3 yrs old now but even with setting the depth you have to hold it sympathetically and gentyly turn the knob, this adjustment is by its nature just too crude to be used in the way you seem to be describing.
Steve
Hi,
I think you answer your own problem:
just going for the standard base, not plunge or tilt or anything fancy
You are trying to use the depth adjustment as a plunge base. I have the exact same router and am considering adding the plunge base to it.
wrong tool for the job.
I have to admit to doing it very very occasionally but I will only ever plunge 1-2, never full depth and it's normally because I'm doing something like cleaning out a door liner on the hinge side for a new let in piece so in fairly soft wood. I have the clamp just nipped up when I do it but again, it's not really the right tool for the job and a plunge base should be used.
buy doing it this way you are allowing the router body to spin in the base, forcing the sides of the adjustment gear and the pin into the fairly soft body. without pictures it's impossible to say, but I'd guess that you've spun the body enough that one of the pins has scored the body.

either buy the correct tool for the job or be very very careful using the wrong tool.
Ah, no, sorry if I was unclear but by "plunge" I just meant plunging the router body down into the base, not plunging the cutting bit down into wood while cutting. I'm well aware that it's not meant to be used for that - and I already have a decent plunge router so I wouldn't need to use the trimmer for that. I just meant adjusting the router down/base up. So this has happened despite only moving the wheel while the router was switched off.

I'll go edit the first post for clarity...



I've got the makita one, sounds exactly the same base as you have. The makita base does have adjustment via a thread and nut, so you can make the base looser or tighter... does yours have such an adjustment, and if it does, would it help?
Yes, it has, and I have tried adjusting it but it didn't help - in fact even with the adjustment/locking mechanism completely removed, so the base is as loose as it can get, it's still too tight for the router.


you have been unlucky in regard to tolerences. give the inside of the base body a going over with a bit of 240 and then 320 and yo should have no probs.
I feel like that might be the case, it's just odd that it worked as it should for 2-3 jobs before it started sticking. But I'll give this a go today and see if it helps.
 

novocaine

Established Member
Joined
21 Jul 2014
Messages
2,720
Reaction score
457
Location
Warrington
ohhhhhhhhhh, ok, in which case I'll shut up. :) I haven't had this issue with my little Katsu (which is a fantastic tool for what it is and my go to router these days)
 

Droogs

Is that chisel shar ... Ow
Joined
14 Mar 2013
Messages
5,423
Reaction score
2,389
Location
Edinburgh
had a thought, it may be that the body of the router is expanding due to heat slightly in use, do you use extraction on it?
 

stevek

Established Member
Joined
27 Oct 2012
Messages
78
Reaction score
15
Location
Hampshire UK
Hi,,my Katsu has a definate machined pattern on the alloy body, its only slight and looks like turning marks, but maybe they are there to help the base get a grip on the body when clamped up? Anyway, as I said earlier, I do have to cradle the body and base in my hand when I want to adjust it otherwise it will jamb, the pinion can run off the edge of the rack and its all quite floppy and imprecise and winding the base in and out you can hear the edge of the base running across the machine marks,,but even with this I just love using it compared to my big Makita or old Elu MOF.
Ive never picked up the makita version, is it any better?
Steve.
 

reddragon105

New member
Joined
15 Feb 2021
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
London
had a thought, it may be that the body of the router is expanding due to heat slightly in use, do you use extraction on it?
I had the same thought but the base sticks even before use when the router is stone cold. Perhaps that was the original cause though...
 

Droogs

Is that chisel shar ... Ow
Joined
14 Mar 2013
Messages
5,423
Reaction score
2,389
Location
Edinburgh
@stevek A nicer more positive speed selector and slightly more robust motor but not £120 better, if you get my drift
 
Top