The first thing that strikes one when just looking at this router is huge yellow “D” shaped handle. The DEWALT DW618D is a bit unique looking but was specifically designed for easy in accomplishing certain jobs. The large “D” shaped handle which includes the on/off swithch (which can also be locked in the On position). For anyone doing hand routing jobs, this unit is an edge above most others when it comes to actually holding the router. Lets not minimize that role. Imagine if you doing an edge job on a counter and trimming laminate or rounding an edge, it is VERY simple to make an imperfect cut, especially if you don’t have a good grip on your tool. DeWalt makes it easy with this tool by providing a large, easy to hang on to handle, AND an opposing smaller black round grip to make the woodworker will have all the gripping power needed.
Lets talk a bit about the tool it’self. The version we tested was a fixed base unit, which means the depth control is set manually for each cut. We liked the idea of the micro adjustment which even gave us control of 1/64 inch adjustment. This will accommodate even the most fussy woodworker. Changing the bits in this tool means lifting the motor from the base, which, with the quick release clips made the job quick and easy. We also liked that the spindle “locked” into position so we could change bits with just one wrench.
Another important point on this router is that it does come with both ¼ inch and ½ inch collets, further the collets are what we call eight finger collets which means better grip on router bits.
We did not try this unit it a router table, DEWALT has other routers more suited to table use, not that this unit could not be used in a table but it has been specifically designed for “job site” work and that is how we tested it.
The DW618W is a 12 amp router, rated at 2 ¼ horsepower (at maximum load, which is how all router manufactures are now rating their tools). At over 8 pounds, this router is a good solid tool because typically you do want some weight in a router to perform smoother cuts.
All in all we found this a good solid router, not outstanding just a good solid tool for anyone doing a lot reno or job-site work.