need router to go with old ofishl jig/bits

I was given an old Ofishl jig with the special router bits for cutting out 1/2" and 3/4" Futures fin boxes by a very cool local shaper who has moved on to the modern Futures set-up. The jig he gave me appears to be somewhat adjustable to accept different router plate diameters (i.e 5" - 7") . It’s all there except now I need a router (1/2" shank to fit these special bits he gave me) to use with this complete set-up. Budget is a major concern for me and I won’t pony up $200 for the whole rig especially now that I have this perfectly acceptable jig for my couple-boards-a-year output.

I’ll shop around for bargains but I know nothing about routers…do a need a plunge type?


I’ve used O’Fish’L old style skegs and “grenade” router bit. I made my own router jig, it’s easy - lemme get some images for ya …

any plunge router with a centered base will work for that ofishal jig, Im assuming its the one that adjusts with the wing-nuts. You can look on EBAY for a good used branded one.Or try this model from harbor freight if you are only doing limited usage.

We have one in my shop that we dont use to much but its effective every once in a while, If you get more production you will begin to feel like its a piece of crap and want to move on to a more professional router like dewalt or porter cable.

You want a plunge router because you need to do the stringer in shorter depth passes as not to wreck your bits.

here are some ebay ones of interest:

Stay away from those blue ones on Ebay, they say wholesale and contractors etc…

I used a Porter-Cable Speedmatic 1/2" router with my O’Fish’L skeg box bit - that’s pretty much overkill, IMO. Eventually I had a local machine shop take the bit’s 1/2" shank down to 1/4". I’ve used that modded bit to rout out a few dozen box holes with no problems.

THANKS! $49 I can live with. The only question I have about that Harbour Freight router in your link is wouldn’t that squareish attachment to the plate have to be removed? The ofishl jig has plates that are adjustable, but require a round plate as far as i can tell…

Here’s my O’Fish’L router setup. The wooden base is just a 1/2" poplar board and the alum L’s form the router rails (to center the router). I set a 50# elevator weight on the top of the jib platform as an anchor while routing - won’t budge a millimeter. Notice the shank on the bit is 1/4", not 1/2". You can see where I narrowed the outside rails from a 7" width (P-C Speedmatic router) to 6" for the cheapo Skil router. Hey, it all works extremely well.

Yeah that piece is just a guide, its not even attached to the routher out of the box. We also took the baseplate off as well so its just the metal base.

Harbor freight ships free if you order over 50.00 the router is 49.99 so do yourself a favor and find something else you need.

That skil router is great not very powerful though, Our shapers both have 1. It only has a 1/4 inch collet though. so it wont accept those 1/2 ofishl bits.

That skil router is great not very powerful though, Our shapers both have 1. It only has a 1/4 inch collet though. so it wont accept those 1/2 ofishl bits.

The Skil router is more than powerful enuf to cut low density foam … heck, I use it rout 3/8" roundovers on pine dovetail joints. I took my 1/2" O’Fish’L box bit to a machine shop and had the shank reduced to 1/4". As stated b4, it works just fine - and has been going strong like that for nearly 4 years and lots of fin box installs.

As always, YMMV.