Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

crashn_burn
Posts: 47
Joined: Wed Jun 19, 2013 2:54 pm

Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by crashn_burn » Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:40 pm

HI all,

New shapeoko user here and I wanted to share with you all my use of the HF trim router as a spindle.

There was an old thread (http://shapeoko.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=588) that users were contemplating using this trim router as a spindle, but no one ever tried it (and reported back on that thread).

I am currently using it on my mostly stock shapeoko with very good results. It is not variable speed, so I have a speed control on the way (from HF also).

The nice thing about the HF trim router is that it nearly fits the stock spindle holder. I used the back holder (against the maker slide) and used 2 pieces of steel strapping to secure it. I did not need to purchase any additional parts, I had the steel strapping already in the shop.

Here is a picture or 2
Image

Image

WillAdams
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:27 pm

Very cool!

I've got a roll of that strapping I've never found a use for --- will have to keep that in mind.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

JuiceBox
Posts: 48
Joined: Wed May 08, 2013 3:54 pm

Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by JuiceBox » Thu Jul 25, 2013 4:34 am

I've personally considered this trim router a number of times but everytime I did, I decided against it due to its lack of power (according to the box specs). What are your experiences with this trim router? If you could post some work too that'd be great!

Edit: If you could also post a picture of that sticker on the side of the router, I'd be interested to see what that says too!

Thanks
Brian

WillAdams
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Thu Jul 25, 2013 10:33 am

Do you mean the 2.4 Amp rating?

cvoinescu puzzled out that that's likely a typo: http://www.shapeoko.com/forum/viewtopic ... 375#p14374 and it's most likey 3.4 Amps.

So according to: http://www.shapeoko.com/wiki/index.php/Spindle_Options @400 Watts, it's 2x as powerful as my Dremel 4000, but ``only'' 2/3rd the power of a DW660.

I came across an interesting page advocating running it w/o a load: http://www.benchtopwoodworkingtools.com ... er-router/
There have been some discussion of the router getting hot while using it, so here is what I did when I first used it. With no load and without a bit installed I ran the router for 5 minutes then shut it down and let it cool. Then I ran it another 5 minutes the same way. I did this 5 times before using the router. I believe that set the brushes to the commutator for a better contact which would eliminate the heat problem, anyway mine gets a little warm but not hot.
and wonder if that's reasonable or a waste of time / electricity?
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Sat Dec 21, 2013 3:34 am

Well, I bought one of these and mounted it --- you can use the stock mount by just switching in longer bolts 70--75mm.

Next up is designing a dust collection shoe / system.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
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Location: Pennsylvania --- south of the Turnpike, East of US-15
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Sat Jan 04, 2014 1:17 am

Dust shoe / mount designed and initial prototype made:
sm-tm4_mounts.png
sm-tm4_mounts.png (45.58 KiB) Viewed 7884 times
(from left to right, top mount, bottom mount top-half, bottom mount bottom-half, dust shoe --- note that the latter is now fully curved on the sides and doesn't have the flats which were interfering w/ clamping on the prototype)

The smallest circles indicate drill holes for M3 screws (20mm SCHS x 5) used to hold two pieces together (you'll also need M3 washers (x 5) and nuts (x5)), the medium size holes are counterbores for SCHS, the larger holes are for washers or magnets (I epoxied the latter in place w/ J.B.Weld. You'll want an arbor press or vice to force-fit the SCHS and magnets in place flush when epoxying the latter (wear eye protection) --- the SCHS should pull all the way down into the counterbores when tightened --- measure before committing w/ the magnets and ensure that they're fully seated and won't interfere --- be sure to match the polarities so that the dust shoe is held by the magnets and not repelled .

The fine inset areas on the vent holes in the bottom mount bottom-half should be milled down by a bit more than the thickness of a collet wrench (on the opposite side of the holes for the hardware) --- trim the surrounding material w/ a knife --- probably one should drill or cut further vent holes for the two which are occluded, but I couldn't figure out a nice-looking way to accomplish that --- or instead, one could forego that, and instead just put stacks of washers in-between the two parts --- that would address the need for venting the other-wise occluded areas, one would just need to not push the router all the way down.

Drill through holes to mount to the universal spindle mounts at the small indentations.

Hopefully all of that is obvious in the photos:

Image

Image

Cut a dust skirt out of flexible,transparent material and mount on the shoe using a Screw/band hose clamp (4 1/8 is too small, which is unfortunate, since the next size up was 4--6 1/8 --- that seems to work, but has a lot of metal hanging out, guess I'll have to cut it) --- on the bright side, it takes an 8mm (5/16") wrench, so no need to add a new tool to my set for the v1 (aside from the two collet wrenches....).

Inkscape .svg ---
sm-tm4_mounts.txt
(12.7 KiB) Downloaded 250 times
I've scrounged some old transparency film and will be cutting and mounting it presently.

Once I've finalized the design, guess I'll need to source some acrylic or aluminum to cut it out of.
Last edited by WillAdams on Wed Feb 19, 2014 2:39 pm, edited 11 times in total.
Reason: use washers instead of cutting
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Mon Jan 06, 2014 2:39 pm

One problem w/ using HDPE for the dust shoe --- it yields enough, and I found myself putting way so much pressure on it w/ the clamp that I was deforming the (empty) hole for the vacuum connection.

I guess I'll have to make some sort of bracket to make things rounder / more sturdy and screw that into place.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
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Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:11 pm
Location: Pennsylvania --- south of the Turnpike, East of US-15
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Tue Jan 07, 2014 11:39 pm

Or, I could just put it in place first, then put the clamp on and tighten it --- that worked fine.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
Posts: 8514
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:11 pm
Location: Pennsylvania --- south of the Turnpike, East of US-15
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Sun Jan 26, 2014 3:33 pm

And adding a skirt went well:

Image

I've updated the above post w/ new files. My apologies to anyone who d/l'd the earlier prototype.

Note that the hole spacing mates w/ the universal spindle mount.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

WillAdams
Posts: 8514
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:11 pm
Location: Pennsylvania --- south of the Turnpike, East of US-15
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Re: Harbor Freight (HF) Trim Router

Post by WillAdams » Thu Feb 20, 2014 2:15 am

Also, the holes are sized for 8mm diameter magnets --- I used 3mm tall, seemed to have plenty of holding power.
Shapeoko 3XL #0006 w/Makita RT0701 Router w/0.125″ and ¼″ Elaire precision collets
Nomad 883 Pro #596 (bamboo)

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