|Bosch PR20EVSK Router Ratings||Click here to view on Amazon|
The Bosch PR20EVSK is Bosch’s excellent entry in the 1.0 hp trim router (laminate trimmer) market. With its light weight and superb ergonomics plus variable speed motor with soft start, it sets the standard for small routers. The term laminate trimmer does not do this new breed of small routers justice as they are versatile and easy to use and are not limited to simply trimming laminate as the early models used to be, but can be used for a variety of furniture-making tasks such as rounding over edges, routing hinge mortises, trimming veneer and many other jobs.
The Bosch PR20EVSK’s small size and light weight (3.8 lbs) means it is very agile and easy to control, and can even be used one handed allowing you to hold the workpiece with the other hand. This saves time as you don’t have to continually clamp and re-clamp the workpiece as you rout round it. The Bosch PR20EVSK offers the perfect balance of power, precision and control, and once you start using it you’ll find yourself using it for more and more jobs.
With a lot of small tasks, you quite often find that it’s not really worth getting out and setting up your full-size router, and that’s where the Bosch PR20EVSK really shines.
THE small size and light weight mean it’s very agile and easy to control, and can even be used one handed, giving you the perfect mix of power, precision and control 😀
What to look for when buying a Router
Of all the woodworking tools available, a router is probably one of the most versatile. Due to its incredible versatility, every wood worker, including beginners, will have a need for a router at some time, and many have more than one. However, with the huge range available, it’s not easy to choose the one that’s best suited to your needs, and the choice seems to get better every day. So, what should you be looking at in order to decide?
Powerful, Variable-Speed Motor with Soft Start
When looking at routers, one of the most important feature to look for is the horsepower rating of the motor, and this applies equally to a small, palm router like the PR20. The Bosch PR20EVSK has a 1.0-hp, 5.6-amp motor and although that doesn’t sound particularly powerful, in use it provided enough power for all the jobs it was used for without bogging down. It also has variable speed of 16,000 to 35,000 rpm which is useful because, even though you are unlikely to use really large bits in this router, it’s still the case that the larger the bit, the slower the cutting speed needs to be. The PR20’s variable speed dial easily allows you to set the optimal speed for the routing task and material.
The motor has a soft-start feature, which makes for easier handling on start-up which is particularly useful if you’re using it one handed, and the soft start also results in reduced strain and wear and tear on the motor itself, leading to longer motor life.
Router bit size
The bit shank size of the router is another important factor in deciding on a router. The two most common bit shank sizes are 1/4″ and 1/2″ and you should consider the projects you want to complete and the availability of bit sizes you need for these projects. The Bosch PR20 has a 1/4″ collet which is the best size for a palm router not designed for heavy duty work requiring large cutters (although it will take bits with a surprising maximum diameter of 1-5/16 inches). Generally this router will be bought by woodworkers who already have a larger, heavy duty router and are looking for a small, lightweight (3.8 pounds) machine that’s versaltile and easy to use for smaller jobs and the ease of use and lack of set-up time required for this router means that you will probably find yourself using it for more and more projects.
Bit changing is easy and can either be done by using the front spindle lock on the motor with one wrench, or if you prefer, a shaft wrench is also included if you want to use two wrenches.
Accurate Depth Settings
All routers, whether fixed base or plunge, need to have a means of accurately adjusting bit depth. By definition, trim routers are used for small scale work and so accurate depth adjustment becomes even more important where being a few thousands of an inch out can spell disaster. Depth adjustment on the Bosch PR20EVSK is incredibly easy. Initial adjustment is simply a case of opening the clamping lever, adjusting the motor and re-clamping. Fine adjustments are then made using the wheel on the back of the router’s base.
Comfort & ergonomics
The Bosch PR20EVSK is very comfortable to hold due to the palm-shaped, rubber over-molded grip, which, with its light weight, means that stable, one-handed operation is absolutely perfect. With the aluminum base, it is also bottom heavy which makes it well-balanced and helps with stability. As a result it balances easily on edges and narrow workpieces, and since the base itself is square, it is very easy to use with a straightedge.
How much should you expect to pay?
This little router is incredible value – you can get it on the web for around $120
What’s in the box?
Includes everything you need to get going on all those little jobs that previously you might not have got your bigger router out for:
- PR20EVSK palm router
- Straight edge guide
- Fixed base
- 1/4-inch self-releasing collet
- Carrying case, shaft wrenches and instruction manual
What are other people saying?
A lot of users consider this router to be an essential item in your tool chest and use it for more and more jobs. It’s just so easy to use:
- “I wouldn’t be without it”
- “A tool arsenel must”
- “Down size to an upgrade!”
- “Buy this tool and you can not go wrong”
- “Wonderful Tool – Must Buy”
The only bad reviews we could find all date back a number of years – the one complaint that we saw mentioned a couple of times in these earlier reviews was that the depth setting tended to shift off the mark as it was locked in place, although this problem seems to have been sorted out now and recent reviews are overwhelmingly positive.
What kind of warranty is there?
The PR20EVSK comes with a one-year warranty.
The Bosch PR20EVSK is Bosch’s excellent entry in the 1.0 hp trim router market. With its light weight, superb ergonomics and variable-speed motor, it sets the standard for small routers. The small size and light weight means it’s very agile and easy to control, and can even be used one handed, offering the perfect balance of power, precision and control. Once you start using it you’ll find yourself using it for more and more jobs.