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Leigh jigs and DeWalt routers

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Amos Starkadder09/06/2014 10:54:06
25 forum posts
1 photos

A cautionary tale. I replaced my trusty ELU Mof 96 with a DeWalt 621 a little while ago. A great router but it's poor on jigs and in particular fails on my Leigh finger template jig.

The reason is the huge aperture in the base of the DW621, this opening extends into a keyhole shape to encompass the dust extraction port. This means that amount of contact that the base makes with the top surface of the finger template is very small when working on the left hand side of the Leigh jig, so much so that its centre of gravity means that it tips towards you rather than sitting flat on the template.

I've tried reversing the router to improve baseplate/jig contact area (the dust extraction hole sits over the finger template now, and there's a lot more contact area) but it's hard to operate the switches using just the left palm (and probably dangerous too).

Leigh were real helpful (but understandably won't comment on any router manufacturers) but DeWalt are pretty well uncontactable, everything sending you towards irrelevant FAQs, USA-only enquiry forms that don't work in the UK or UK dealers. A modified baseplate might work, perhaps if I can obtain some of that bakelite/type material screwed to the DW621.

In the meantime I think I'll have to hunt around for another router, palm routers I could justify on other grounds but it seems they won't work with the Leigh jig, the DW618 looks good but it's not sold in the UK.

I'll be sorry to lose the DW621 but it looks as though its got to go, not fit for my purpose.

Big Al09/06/2014 13:02:59
1596 forum posts
73 photos

Have you considered a trend unibase? It may solve your problem. Click here for more details.


Amos Starkadder25/06/2014 18:29:02
25 forum posts
1 photos

Thanks for that idea, your link actually shows a baseplate similar to mine and illustrates the problem well.

I enlisted Axminster's help for this as I happened to be in the area. Got their own brand baseplate and a set of Trend fixing screws.

Then I hit another problem:


Shown here is the DW621 baseplate with the thin base sheet removed. The Axminster sub-base plate (in background) needs to be affixed - only two fixings are available for this - as shown. The two bolts (from a Trend pack) are longer than those one would actually use for this purpose, I chose long ones just for this picture to illustrate the problem. On my DeWalt base the rear thread has been tapped at an angle (those bolts are just hand-tightened and it's the first time I've needed to use them - no I didn't cross-thread them). Bolts of the correct length cannot be screwed down into this twisted hole, they catch the edge of the slot on the Axminster sub-base due to the angle and don't screw down far enough, they jam after a couple of turns.

That's a manufacturing fault on my DeWalt DW621. I phoned them at 01753 567055 and they were unable to assist me with this fault (out of warranty - but that doesn't matter, it's not "fit for purpose" and passed me on to PowerToolsPlus in Nottingham who could offer service and spare parts (£90 for a replacement tbase, it looks a tough job so you can add labour and post to that.) For double that figure I get an additional router, they suggested the DW615 or Trend T5 for jig work

I think my best option is the T5, the Leigh adaptor I bought with the Axminster sub-base will fit it perfectly, centring it around the cutter will be a breeze and there'll be no need for my sub-base. I'm wary of DeWalt stuff now and totally unimpressed by their service regarding faulty equipment. Many thanks to the guys at Axminster, Leigh and PowerToolsPlus.

Edited By Amos Starkadder on 25/06/2014 19:11:29

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