Source: TOOLS OF THE TRADE Magazine
Publication date: November 2, 2005
By Section Editor: Mark Clement
Sometimes combination tools have to make too many compromises to perform their numerous functions. Fortunately, that's not the case with Hitachi's new KM 12VC router combination kit. This smartly designed, solidly constructed, and well-outfitted tool fulfills its promises as a fixed-base and plunge-base router. And, at $180 you've got a tool that pulls its weight without asking much in return.
Power. The 2-1/4-hp rating with electronic motor control keeps the rpm constant under varying loads. Variable speed combined with a nice soft-start feature enabled me to work effectively with small or large bits and on numerous materials. I easily plowed 3/4-inch dadoes and made massive 3/4-inch radius round-over cuts in hard maple.
Standard Accessories. The kit includes the bases, 1/4- and 1/2-inch collets (with wrenches), a large hole sub-base for oversized bits, a template guide adapter with centering gauge, and seven template guides that mount without tools. (Note: I had problems with my very early production 1/4-inch collet. Hitachi says the collet is now manufactured to improved specs. I advise simply getting a warranted replacement if any of the old versions inadvertently made it to market.)
Touching the Bases
Fixed Base. There is no combination-tool sacrifice in the fixed-base configuration. The base threads onto the motor, and depth is adjusted by twisting the motor.
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