Getting rid of a bad tool is super easy. You find some other fool to sell it to. You donate it. You give it away. You throw it in the trash. If it isn’t worthy to reside in your shop, you get rid of it.
Good tools, on the other hand, are much harder to let go of. They are old friends who are companions on your journey. My oldest companions are my first Ryobi One+ tools, the original set that really doesn’t factor in anymore in my woodworking. My first pure woodworking tool was a router, a Craftsman 17543. So named is the friend who left.
A router is a fantastic entry to woodworking. Most of the other tools needed to accomplish rudimentary woodworking is probably already on hand – hammer, drill, saws, etc. it’s when you get a router that the world really opens up. Take a picture frame, for example. Easily built with a saw and a steady hand. But a lot more difficult to finish off without a good way to create a rabbet. The task that I needed it for was to install an interior door, specifically to create the mortises for the hinges. I didn’t realize that a chisel would have been as good and a lot cheaper, but I was off on my journey into woodworking.
The 17543 is a great router, and superb bang for the buck. Soft start, 2HP, LED lights, two bases, and etc, etc. served me for quite awhile as my primary, then got shuffled to table use after about 12-18 months (I’d have to verify dates) when I got my second, the 28084 three base. When I bought the Triton 3.25HP router for dedicated table use, I really didn’t have much of a need for it except perhaps once, needing a second table setup. I recently acquired a Festool 1400, which made the old Craftsman completely superfluous.
it is, however, in a good home. The friend I made the rustic table for would like to put a round over on parts of the table, probably among other things. The small amount I asked for it will jump start the shop replacement fund. It saves me just a little bit of space, considering I really don’t need three table-mounted routing solutions.
So, safe travels old friend. Others will join you in time as the shop replacement fund desires to grow. You may have not been my most used or favorite woodworking tool, but you were the first, and you handles every single task I ever asked of you. I couldn’t ask for anything more than that.