All router collets, regardless of size and length, are designed to do one thing: to hold the router bit securely during operation. This is an important part of the router, which means you need to choose one that you can truly rely on.
If you plan to own a router, it is best that you take the time to understand how these small precise equipment work. They may be small in size, but they are crucial to the efficient operation of your router.
Just like with other reviews, we will take a look at some brands that have different features that make them stand out from the rest. This is a good reference to help you with your first purchase.
Top 5 Router Collet Reviews
We will be looking at various features that are crucial to choosing a collet. You have to take note of the difference between the sizes and features of each one and see which one will fit your router.
Collets come in a variety of shapes and lengths. This one, in particular, is a standard ¼-inch collet but in a self-releasing form, meaning it’s both easy to install and remove.
One thing that you have to take note of when using a router is the almost tedious installation of the bit. There are a few things to consider and some tools needed.
This collet does away with most tools because of the self-releasing feature. Just tighten down the router, and then it will automatically lock the bit in place. And when you want to release the bit, just reverse it, and it will release the router bit.
As an OEM authorized part, you can expect the same quality from the original Porter-Cable brand. It is made for ¼-inch shank router bits.
It locks the shank properly and easily. Make sure to install it with a slight relief at the bottom for the best grip on the router bit shank.
690, 691, 692, 7518, 7519, 7529, 7537, 7538, and 7539 Series Routers
- Fits Porter-Cable routers as well as other brands with the same size
- Locks down the ¼-inch shank properly
- Durable materials
- Made in the USA
- Some people don’t trust OEM parts
Collets are important parts of the router, and they have to have a strong grip for efficient and safe operation. This collet is all that and more.
Being made with micro-grain carbide and going through heat treatment, this collet will last a long time. It is able to handle ½-inch shanks with ease. The proper installation of this, as well as the bit, will ensure precision and safety when using your router.
If your router has a ¼-inch collet, then this will be a great addition to your accessories. Some professionals recommend bits with larger shanks for better grip and reduced vibration on the router.
Although it lists down some compatible brands, it is also able to fit most standard-sized routers. The only downside of this is that you need an additional tool to install and remove it. For your reference, it has M20-1 threads, which needs a 24mm wrench.
Bosch 1617, 1617EVS, 1617EVSPK, 1618, 1618EVS, 1613, 1613EVS, 1613AEVS, 1619EVS, MRF23EVS, MRP23EVS, and MRC23EVSK Routers.
- From a reputable brand
- Made with micro-grain carbide
- Fits most ½-inch shanks
- Has a firm grip on router bits
- Need an extra wrench to install and remove
Anyone with experience with a router knows how tedious replacing a collet can be, so with a self-releasing feature, removing and installing this is a breeze. You don’t need a lot of tools to do it; just the right size wrench will be fine.
This will hold any ½-inch router bit in place. The self-releasing feature will save you a bit of time and effort when you need different bits for one job. You can change the bit without fuss with the collet.
Router collets work with friction to secure the shank of the bit in place. It has slots on the side that get compressed when you use the bolt to secure it in place.
The good thing about having a self-releasing feature aside from the simple assembly and disassembly is that you don’t risk losing the right bolt for the collet. It is always intact and ready to go whenever you need it.
While collets are rather low maintenance parts of the router, you should give careful attention to these ones because they may pick up sawdust from use.
Give it a quick wipe or cleanup before and after use, and you’re good to go. Also, make sure to use the appropriate speed so that it can perform efficiently when carving wood.
Hitachi: 325-199, 323-421
Dewalt: 326286-03, DW621, Plunge Router DW616D, DW621-220, DW621, DW618PKB, D-Handle Router DW616, DW618, Fixed Base Router DW616M, DW616P, DW616S, DW618B3, DW618P, DW621, DW618M, Router Kit DW618B3E, DW618D
Combo Kit Router Fxd Bosch: 1617, 1617EVS, 1618, 1618EVS, 1613, 1613EVS, 1613AEVS, 1619EVS, MRC23EVSK, MRF23EVS, MRP23EVS, 2610906284
- Self-releasing design is a handy feature
- Holds ½-inch router bits
- Great replacement for many brands of router
- Reasonable price
- Has shown issue on the grip when used on high speeds
You may find it hard to find a ⅜-inch collet because there aren’t many router bits with this diameter of shank around. But if you have one, this is the perfect router collet for this.
There are not many ⅜-inch shanks available, which makes it difficult to find a collet for them. Using adapters will have some negative effect on the performance of the router. So it is recommended to use the right size collet for the shank of the router bit you are using.
When operating the router, use the recommended speed for your router to perform optimally. While some will want to use the maximum setting on their router, this is not always best in all situations.
If not installed properly, a collet may loosen its grip when used at a high-speed setting. So make sure to properly install the collet and bit, and operate at a moderate speed for safety and efficient performance.
- Fits rare ⅜-inch shanks
- Holds the router bits well
- Made with carbide material
- Great price
- Might not be useful if you don’t have a ⅜-inch shank
Last but not least, in this review is an adapter that will let you use a ¼-inch shank for a ½-inch router.
This adapter just slides into the 1/2” collet, you insert the 1/4” shank router bit, and then tighten it down to use. It’s a simple adapter that can prove to be useful in many instances.
Made from premium quality carbide materials, you can be sure that this will last a long time and even with everyday use. It will hold down the ¼-inch shank tightly for security and efficiency in operation.
For people who own a router that only allows ½-inch shanks, this is a great adaptor. It holds smaller size routers in place securely.
To top it off, this is a bit more inexpensive than an actual ¼-inch router collet. So if you’re deciding between the two and have a limited budget, this may be your winning choice.
- Made with premium carbide materials
- Holds the router bit shank securely
- Precision machined for high-speed operation
- Fits most brands of routers
- Prone to rusting
What to Look for in a Router Collet?
Router collets are fairly simple. They hold the router bit in place using a segmented steel sleeve. Collets are machined to match the end of the shaft and to hold a router bit. It leaves just enough clearance to adjust the bit lose.
In this section of the review, you will find out what to consider when buying a collet.
One collet doesn’t fit all. So you have to check with the manufacturer if your router matches their collet. If you don’t check this, you might have a too big or too loose of a collet which renders it useless.
There is much information available before you purchase, so make sure to find out if you can use the collet for your router before buying.
Some newer router collets have this feature that allows for easier and faster install and removal. This includes a collet that is built in a bolt. Different manufacturers have iterations for each of these features, such as a removable collet for different sizes.
Beginners, newbies, and even professionals can appreciate this feature as it reduces the time for you to put on a bit of clean up the router.
Type of Collet
There are some choices to make when picking the collet for your router.
Split spines are machined directly onto the end of the shaft. The holding pressure is only applied to the part of the shank.
Split Shaft with Sleeve Adapters
The adapter can make a ½-inch collet hold a ¼-inch shaft. While these seem like a good choice, seasoned professionals still prefer dedicated collets without sleeves.
Tapered Shaft with Single Slit
Most common arrangements in routers. Because of the single split, you can only use this for the dedicated size.
Tapered Shaft with Multi-Slit
Allows pressure on the whole of the inserter shaft for more efficient performance.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Are router collets interchangeable?
Yes. You have to check the size and the proper fit for your router. Also, you can use an adapter to use a dedicated ½-inch router for a ¼-inch shank.
- What is a collet used for?
It is used to hold the shank of the router bit when operating.
- What is a collet adapter?
A collet adapter helps you use a different size for your dedicated router. Most of the time, these will come in ¼-inch sizes for routers that only accommodate ½-inch shanks.
These are usually metal sleeves with one slit that compresses when inserted inside the collet.
- What can you do with a router?
A router is generally used for carving. It is a tool used for cutting a hollow into the wood, metal, or plastic. Moreover, it can be used to cut out edges, grooves, and patterns. It is mostly utilized by furniture makers, specifically for cabinetry and decorative moldings.
If you have a router, it is best to stock up on router collets of the same size. No matter how long one collet will last you, it pays well to have one in storage if that happens.
Include in your inventory different sizes of adapters so that you don’t need to postpone a job just to look for the right part for your router.
Take a look at various router collet reviews and choose the ones that have the function and features that appeal best to you.