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2M4A0619Although introduced at the International Woodworking Fair in Atlanta in 2012, there has been relatively few published articles or blog posts written about the Excalibur Deluxe Router Table Kit from General International since its release. I, however, think this kit is well worth a close look. Why? It has many of the features I feel make a better router table setup.

The number one feature is the availability of a cast iron top. To my mind, this is perfect. It’s the choice on other important machines in the shop, such as the table saw top and band saw table, and it’s what is used for jointer and planer beds. And if you’ve had an MDF router table top for more than a few years, check the table flatness. Under LiftBe careful because you may not be happy about what you find.

A second powerful feature for me is the router lift. By itself, a lift is the heart of your router table setup. The Excalibur lift is way cool. In the right-hand photo, take a look at the posts used to raise and lower the router. Count them out loud. One, two, three, four. That’s right – there are four corner lift screws instead of the two posts (and single lift screw) found on many other lifts. And those posts are driven by a chain; movement has to be smooth and easy.

2M4A0621Another great feature with the Deluxe Router Table Kit is dust collection. It begins with a workable fence system. I write “workable” because many of the fences I’ve used on router tables are clunky and difficult to properly adjust. This fence is simple. It has a built-in 2 1/2″ dust port that feeds into a standard 4″ diameter port that is attached to the rear of a steel box that wraps around the router motor. That box – and the adjustable vent which is dialed-in to work in conjunction with your dust collector’s size and abilities – also adds to the collection efficiency. All in all, if you properly set up this router table for dust collection, little dust is left in the box and even less shows up on the tabletop.

One last feature, and this is without a doubt why router lifts have become so popular, is the ease in changing router bits. The Excalibur lift allows above-the-table bit changes. This makes switching bits for compound profiles too easy to pass up. Check out the short video below.

— Glen D. Huey

If you’re just getting started with routers, here are two great DVDs: “Getting Started with Routers,” by David Thiel and “Router Joinery & Techniques.” The second DVD is hosted by me.

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Showing 13 comments
  • Tom K

    Is it just poor video quality, or did i see lots of wobble as the router was raised and lowered?
    I’ve had a JessEm table for several years: the phenolic top sags, the toothed belt binds up inexplicably, and the gargantuan crank on the front is after my manhood. The castiron top, chain drive, dust containment box, and the top mounted adjuster on this one is tempting…but, oh wait, it’s General.

  • jwinko

    Router tables are great when they are small and can be tucked under the tablesaw extension, or you are working out of a really small shop. Why not buy a shaper with a router bit adapter? You have an easily adjustable router table, a more powerful motor and a shaper when you need it and it takes up the same floor space?

  • dreamcatcher

    This is ridiculous!

    What you are telling us is that General International is offering a router table for $1100 and it doesn’t even come with a router?!?!

    Just for comparison sake you could go out an get a General Woodworking Machinery 40-250 M1 3 HP Wood Spindle Shaper for $1600. If you consider that a 3hp variable speed router will set you back about $350 then the final price difference is only $150 more. Plus the shaper will give you a better overall motor, more spindle travel than a router adjustment plate, a full cabinet base instead of a cheap-o light gauge angle base, integrated dust collection, cast iron top, and better efficiency at 220v.

    Even if you were still stuck on owning a router table you could go over to MLCS and order a “heavyweight” cast iron router table, a “U-Turn” router lift, and a 3HP router for less than $900.

    For the record, router tables in general are a peeve of mine. Why no power tool companies currently offer a fully integrated and outfitted router table is beyond me.

    Imagine if this article was about a table saw kit…. cast iron table, open leg base, blade height (height only) adjuster, fence that adjusts via a couple of t-nuts and plastic knobs, and of course NO MOTOR so you’d still have to go out and buy a portable circular saw to bolt to the thing. All for $1100, Wow, what a deal!

    Now consider that for $1200 General offers a 50-200RM1 2HP 230V Left Tilt Hybrid Cabinet Saw PLUS Riving Knife. Yeah, it cost $100 more but it does offer a few improvements over the hypothetical kit. You would surely laugh at the idea of a $1100 table saw kit yet for some reason you praise it as a router table kit.

    The point is that you’d be a fool to buy a $1100 router-less router table.

  • slotteo

    Where do I find out more about it??

  • bbrown

    How much?

  • MichaelPSU1

    Mr. Huey,
    Thank you so much for highlighting this router table! It looks incredible and as soon as I saw this article this morning, (and before I read any other email), I IMMEDIATELY tried to find out where I could purchase one as I am looking for the “Ultimate Router Table” right now!

    BUT, and it’s a huge “But”, THIS IS DISCONTINUED!!!!! And that is according to their own site! I am so disappointed because the price honestly did not matter…..I just WANT one! Does ANYBODY out there know where they might still have these in stock to sell? If so, PLEASE respond……

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