Best Power Feeder for Router Shaper

Best Power Feeder for a Table Saw, Shaper and Router

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Looking for a power feeder for your woodworking tools? Not sure what’s best for your router table – or maybe if you’ll even need this? In this article learn about the various sizes of power feeders (and why it’s a must for serious woodworkers).

It’s not often one power tool makes another power tool work better. 

But when a power feeder is combined with a table saw, shaper or router table that is exactly what happens.

What’s so special with a power feeder? Well consider these benefits:

  • Improved Safety – feeding wood against a large shaper or router bit is dangerous. A power feeder eliminates the need to have your fingers near the bit.
  • Better Quality – pushing long sticks of wood through a shaper or router can create stop/start and chatter marks in the wood. With a power feeder this is eliminated.
  • Reduced Fatigue – for large kitchen or trim projects it’s both tiring and hard on the shoulders to feed stock continuously. The power feeder doesn’t care, and can run hours while you simply feed stock in one side and catch out the other.

After using professional size feeders on a shaper to installing a baby feeder on my own router table, I know this is a tool I couldn’t make cabinets without.

Editor Choice
Powermatic – Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,…
Best Mid-size Shops
SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
Router tables
Grizzly Industrial G4173 – Baby Power Feeder
Powermatic - Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,...
SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
Grizzly Industrial G4173 - Baby Power Feeder
Variable speed
Forward/Reverse
Number of rollers
4
3
3
Best for
Shapers, table saws
Larger router tables, table saw
Router tables
Rating
Reviews
4 Reviews
15 Reviews
10 Reviews
Shipping
Editor Choice
Powermatic – Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,…
Powermatic - Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,...
Variable speed
Forward/Reverse
Number of rollers
4
Best for
Shapers, table saws
Rating
Reviews
4 Reviews
Shipping
Best Mid-size Shops
SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
Variable speed
Forward/Reverse
Number of rollers
3
Best for
Larger router tables, table saw
Rating
Reviews
15 Reviews
Shipping
Router tables
Grizzly Industrial G4173 – Baby Power Feeder
Grizzly Industrial G4173 - Baby Power Feeder
Variable speed
Forward/Reverse
Number of rollers
3
Best for
Router tables
Rating
Reviews
10 Reviews
Shipping

Last update on 2020-10-27 at 05:03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Best Power Feeder for Shapers, Table Saws and Router Tables

Based on my experience here’s my list of the best power feeders:

1. Full Size Power Feeder - Powermatic PF-41

Powermatic - Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,...
4 Reviews
Powermatic – Power Feeders, PF-41 Power Feeder,…
  • Made To Withstand Even The Toughest Jobs
  • Meeting Or Exceeding All Required And Standardized Testing
  • Fit To Match The Needs Of The Shop, At Home Or In The Field
  • Proven And Tested For Durability And Function In Real World Conditions

Last update on 2020-10-27 at 05:03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Key Features:

  • Roller chain and sprockets provide positive feeding for a variety of work
  • Support column is fully adjustable for horizontal, vertical or angled feeder position
  • Feeder body, column base and joints are cast iron for heavy duty operation
  • Rollers can be changed out easily and quickly
  • 1 horsepower, four large wheels, optionally available in 3 phase power, roller chain drive for durability

Note: at 158 pounds this feeder is best for shapers and table saws. 

2. Shop Fox W1765 for Fixed Saws and Shapers

SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
15 Reviews
SHOP FOX W1765 1/4 HP Power Feeder
  • Motor: 1/4 HP, 120V, 2.5 Amp
  • Number of speeds: 4
  • Range of speeds: 20, 26, 33, 43 FPM
  • Wheels: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-1/8 W x 3-1/16-inch Dia.

Last update on 2020-10-27 at 05:03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Key Features:

  • Motor: 1/4 HP, 120V, 2.5 Amp
  • Number of speeds: 4
  • Range of speeds: 20, 26, 33, 43 FPM
  • Wheels: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-1/8 W x 3-1/16-inch Dia.
  • Rotation: forward & reverse

3. "Baby power Feeder" - Grizzly G4173 for ROuter Tables and Table Saws

Grizzly Industrial G4173 - Baby Power Feeder
10 Reviews
Grizzly Industrial G4173 – Baby Power Feeder
  • If you do any kind of production ripping or milling you know what a big…
  • For those of you who want to increase production upgrade or add on an extra…
  • CSA certified meeting CSA C22

Last update on 2020-10-27 at 05:03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Key Features:

  • Motor: 1/8 HP, 120V, single-phase, 1.2A
  • Variable speed range: 6-1/2 – 39 FPM
  • Rollers: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-3/16″ W x 3″ Dia.
  • Rotation: forward and reverse
  • Maximum height of rollers: 6″

At only 27 pounds (shipping weight) this baby power feeder is perfect for router tables.

Power Feeder Buyers Guide

What size feeder do I need?

I look at these feeders in three categories:

  1. Industrial use with 3-phase motors and continuous duty rating for running 8-10 hours a day.
  2. Serious hobbyist or small cabinet shop where 3-4 hour sessions are common during the week (table saws and shapers).
  3. Router table grade for the “baby feeders”.

Chances are you’re looking at a “baby feeder” and the Shop Fox W1764 is a great option.

Three rollers or four?

Unless you are doing high volumes of long stock a 3 roller configuration will work fine. And the extra weight of a four roller configuration must be considered.

Frequently Asked Questions for Power Feeders

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I install a power feeder on a router table?

Yes there are many “mini” power feeders made specifically for router tables. These feeders perform well for router tables with smaller wheels and retain key features like forward/reverse.

What is a power feeder?

A power feeder for shapers and router tables automates the task of pushing the wood against the fence and pushing the material forward at a steady pace. This improves overall quality as starts/stops aren’t made in longer material that can cause uneven marks in the wood.

What is the best power feeder for a shaper?

The answer depends on your use. For industrial duty the Powermatic brand is built for durability and all day use with options for 3-phase power. For hobby use a smaller motor with fewer rollers will do the job for most.

Summary

While it’s easy to put off an investment in a power feeder it’s one investment I have never regretted. When a tool can improve safety, quality and reduce strain it just makes woodworking more enjoyable.

References

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