Router lifts

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Spectric

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I am still working on a new modular workbench that will incorporate a router and now seem to be re-visiting components and ideas that I thought I had already decided upon and were fixed. Originaly I was looking at using my Triton router in a Jessem prestige lift, but when you look at the cost involved I now think a better option will be to eventually sell my Kreg table setup as a going concern and use the AUK spindle motor instead in a lift which then opens up more choices which is where I am looking for your feedback.

So looking at the Incra and Jessem products , INCRA Mast-R-Lift II (Metric) with AUKTools 2400W Fixed Base Router and JessEm Mast-R-Lift II (Metric) with AUKTools 2400W Fixed Base Router

You have to say that they do look very similar in design, this I believe would be even more evident if they were the same color and I would find a much easier decision if I had them both in front of me but with no woodworking shows for some time then not so easy. My initial thoughts are I do like the magnetic insert rings, be nice to move away from the twist lock concept I have on the Kreg. Both of these lifts look to be the same level of engineering so it will come down to the little things. I am also thinking along the lines of a muscle chuck rather than the two spanner approach and I have a muscle chuck on a Dewalt 625 in my woodrat which is really easy to use but again your thoughts please. So likes and dislikes, good and bad and which one do you have or would prefer?
 

Hornbeam

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I have had the jessem set up for a couple of years and generally very pleased. I went for it as I liked the plastic insert rings and no issue if contacted by a cutter.
A couple of minor niggles b ut this is true for both systems
No spindle lock so have to mess about with 2 spanners unless using a muscle chuck
Because of the location of the depth adjuster it isnt possible to plunge cut so for stopped cuts you have to drop the piece on
The router adjustment is only as good as the fence so you have to make or buy an easily adjustable accurate fence
Ian
 

MikeK

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I have the Incra version that includes the remote speed control and NVR. As Sporky stated, JessEm makes the Incra lift, and I think the only difference is the Incra version uses the MagnaLOCK insert rings. My router table setup also has the six-piece CleanSweep rings, and I couldn't be happier with them.

I needed the remote speed and power control because my router motor is enclosed in a CleanSweep housing that is also enclosed in the router table. I modified my router by replacing the mains cable with one that has a Schuko plug (I had several from other projects) and adding two sets of connectors between the control box and the motor so I could remove the lift or the router top without disassembling the rest of my table.

In my opinion, the Musclechuck is not needed with the AUKTools router and Incra lift. The collet is easily accessible when the motor is raised and I haven't noticed any problems when using both wrenches to change cutters. If I had a router such as the Triton TRA001, where the only way to change a cutter was to raise the arbor until the internal lock engages, then I would consider the Musclechuck.
 

Ollie78

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I have a very similar one in blue cost about £300 from rutlands years ago.

I suspect it might not have the level of quality control etc but it has an identical motor and a side cranked adjuster which is usable for fine tuning safely when the router is on.
The two spanner method is annoying but the collets are decent.

Now they are doing electric ones for full lazines by bolting a stepper and some kind of controller on it.
Router Lifts | Next Day Delivery

You could just get one of these
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And get busy creating your own, this way you can use a separate plate with inserts of your prefered style and pretty much any motor as well.

Ollie
 

Spectric

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So both made by the same OEM, I suppose Incra makes there own plate as they use the mag lock insert rings, but why would Jessem supply Incra with something completely identical as it would be in direct competition with theirs unless it was a way to get into the American market or something. I think I am swayed towards Incra but are they the same in use, do they feel the same and is where I would love to do a competative teardown on them.

The router adjustment is only as good as the fence so you have to make or buy an easily adjustable accurate fence

Yes I am already working on using an Incra positioner and that is really the only option if you want to have the same level of precision as the lift.
 

Hornbeam

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While the infra is definitely a solution you can make your own fence with 1/10mm fine adjustment for less than £20
 

Woodernhift

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Like MikeK I have the Incra version of the Jessem lift with the AUK router, slotted inserts and the Clean Sweep. Very pleased with is the set up really keeps dust to a minimum.
I asked Woodworkers Workshop about lubrication for the threaded spindl, they checked with Incra and were recommended dry moly spray. So far this appears to work well but early days as I’ve only used the router table once since applying the moly (Rocol).
 
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Hornbeam

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Hi Spectric. Already shared his a couple of times
The fence is made of 2 pieces. A standard fence which locks in position with a knob at each end. A back bar connected to the fence with a 6mm threaded rod at each end with brass thumb screws.
For fine adjustment, lock the back bar in place, then adjust the front fence by tightening/loosening the thumb screws. I turn of the thumbscrew equates to 1mm travel. Once adjusted lock the front fence in position
The device with the Bristol locking levers was to allow quick change of teh frontfence as I have 2 different ones
 
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Sporky McGuffin

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I've got the Axminster (the older blue one) and a new Incra. Bought the latter because the Axi won't fit an Incra table and I wanted the positioner stuff.

The Axi doesn't have the height lock but I never had issues with movement. It has a much nicer crank handle - the Incra one is downright nasty.

I'm not sure there's much in it in use.
 

Peter Sefton

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JessEm invented the original router lift and over the years made various versions for other companies, I believe including the the blue Axi one and the older Woodpecker Unilift.
JessEm still make their own lifts in Canada and those under the Incra branding, whilst the other companies have taken some of the older JessEm designs to be manufactured in the far east which are now sold for a higher price than JessEm :confused:

We had a customer review come in a couple of days ago on our set of ten JessEm Tab-Loc Insert Rings which was a surprise to us.

"Nice complete set of router inset rings which are better value than the UJK ones and they fit the UKJ Router elevator. Would recommend."

Cheers

Peter
 
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