Fixed-Base 2-1/4-hp Router 1617EVS - Fine Woodworking Tool Review
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Fixed-Base 2-1/4-hp Router 1617EVS

Bosch - Fixed-Base 2-1/4-hp Router 1617EVS

Bosch’s 2-1/4-hp fixed-base router features a variable-speed motor with soft-start and a built-in router lift.

$180 (As of 8/1/2001)

(4 user reviews) Write a Review

Editor's Review:

by Tom Begnal

review date: August 1, 2001

From FWW #243 (Nov./Dec. 2014)
by Marc Adams

Power: 12 amps
Street price: $170
Cut quality: Excellent
Router accuracy: Very good
Control and handling: Good
Cut visibility: Good
Ease of bit changes: Good

This router has a great soft start, is very well balanced, made very smooth cuts, and has an accurate micro-adjust scale on its rack-and-pinion depth system. It has two wrenches, and the base comes off easily for bit changes. On the other hand, the ball-shaped grips are slippery and the baseplate is black, which can hamper visibility.

From FWW #189 (Jan./Feb. 2007)
by Roland Johnson

The Bosch 1617EVS router is one in a new class of routers that features an integrated router lift that makes it ideal for use in a router table. We tested similar routers from seven manufacturers. Our tests included checking runout with a dial indicator and inspected how each router worked by testing it with a tall moulding bit.

The Bosch is nearly identical to the Craftsman 1617-12 and like that other tool makes bit-changing and height adjustment inconvenient. The problem is that the collet doesn't extend above the table when mounted in a router table and there is no spindle lock for changing bits. As a result, you have to reach under the table to make the adjustment or remove the router altogether. A plunge-base is included but that accessory lacks a built-in router lift.

From FWW #150 (July/Aug. 2001)
by Tom Begnal

For all-around shop use, midsize routers make sense. At 2 hp to 2-1/4 hp, they have enough testosterone to handle most cuts without the bulk that can make bigger versions a chore to run freehand. I gathered all of the midsize fixed-base routers on the market and tested them in the Fine Woodworking shop. The test had three main parts. First, I considered the ergonomics of the routers, using them by hand and in a router table. Then I checked them for noise, runout, and vibration. And finally, I gave them a handheld run to see how effectively they plowed through wood.

This Bosch router can accept large bits, and bit changing is a snap. The micro-adjust features work well, and the housing locks are rated as the best (tied with Makita). It scores well in the vibration category, and it has soft-start and variable-seed options. The 1617EVS has the most comfortable of the knob-type handles. This model did well in the runout test, although it is a little noisier than average.

Editor Test Results:

Bit Changing Fair; Double wrench
Base Changing N/A
Plunge/Height Adjustment Good
Runout 0.003 in.
Quality of Cut N/A
Vibration at Handles Good
Router Table Suitability Good
Noise Rating 95 db (no load)

Manufacturer Specifications

Manufacturer Bosch
Manufacturer's Web Site
Manufacturer's Phone Number 877-267-2499
Opening at Base 2-1/16 in.
Built-in Dust Collection No
Horsepower 2-1/4 HP
Amps 12 amps
Watts N/A
Volts 120 v
Speed Variable: 8,000 rpm to 25,000 rpm
Collet Size 1/4 in., 1/2 in.
Maximum Plunge/Height N/A
Tilting Base N/A
Special Features Soft start motor; built-in router lift
Product Warranty N/A

Decent router. Very ergonomic.


As far as a multi-base router this one takes the cake. It has smooth power and great soft starting, in addition to excellent speed control.

Overall the router performs well, especially in this price category. One item of note should be carefully considered, however! Bosch uses a proprietary Templet guide system that is not intercangeable with most routers. In order to use guides from other tool manufacturers, you must purchase an adapter which cost $15.00 at the local dealer. Online vendors sold the adapter for much less, but it never arrived! So, beware of the issue before you buy a Bosch router and try to use it in a jig!

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