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The Best Power Feeder For Saws and Routers

Updated: August 5, 2023
Every router table or shaper needs a power feeder to make it work better. But choosing the best power feeder for your machine requires understanding horsepower, feed rates and reach of the head.
Best Power Feeders for Routers, Table Saws and Shapers
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The Best Power Feeder For Saws and Routers


1/4-HP Power Feeder









Power feeders take your woodworking tools and projects to another level.

Because pushing hundreds of sticks of wood through any machine is fatigue-inducing, it also impacts the quality of your work. 

But when a power feeder is combined with a cabinet or contract table saw, shaper, or floor router table, you’ll free your back and shoulders to focus on cut quality. And improve safety as your hands are further from the action.

In this article, we’ll cover these features:

  • Power options, including standard single and three-phase
  • Three sizes of power feeders (baby, standard, industrial)
  • Feet per minute and why it matters
  • Roller count on feeders
  • Weight from portable feeders to fixed
  • And lastly, the two types of arms used to adjust feeders

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

What is a Power Feeder?

Power Feeder for Router, Shaper or Table Saw

If you’ve ever tried to feed dozens or hundreds of strips of wood through a router, shaper, or table saw manually, you know a few things go wrong:

  • Pause marks in the stock as you re-position your hands to push the wood through
  • Sore shoulders and fingers due to the constant pressure required to keep the wood down and against the fence
  • Risk of injury as your hands are more exposed to the moving bits or blades

Sure, you can use feather blocks to keep the pressure on (I have, and I do use them for small jobs). 

But a power feeder is a significant upgrade that allows for the following:

  • Constant down pressure and speed of wood versus the bit or blade
  • Improved safety as the nylon rubbers are close to the danger, not your fingers
  • Faster production as you aren’t the power behind the feed

A power feeder works by attaching to your machine’s tabletop, swivels in place while in use, and swivels back out of business when not in use. It works using three or four nylon rollers that create down pressure against the table, pulling the wood through the blade or bit. And angling the feeder slightly toward the fence will keep the stock firmly in the right place as the stock is machined.

Best Power Feeder for Shapers, Table Saws and Router Tables

Let’s start with categorizing power feeders as they fall into three broad groups by size and power needs:

Baby Power Feeders for Router Tables

I can’t think of another tool in the woodworking shop that is called a baby.

But baby power feeders are anything but childish as they have all the basics for converting a table saw or router table into a production machine for turning out high-quality projects.

If you’re shopping on price, the Shop Fox gets my nod with a 2-year warranty, and most are compatible with the Steelex clamp-on base

However, the Powermatic PF-33-Jr is the top line if you want the best performance. For a few hundred dollars more, it features the standard “post” design, making the feeder easier to use and adjust. And, it is my choice for use on table saws with its extra horizontal reach.

Powermatic PF-33-Jr Small Power Feeder

Powermatic PF033 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Powermatic PF-33-JR 


While categorized with the baby power feeders, the Powermatic PF-33-Jr almost ages out of the group into the standard power feeder category.

However, because it weighs in at a manageable 71 pounds (vs. 134 for the PF-33), it is excellent for solo installation and removal on a table saw. 

Key Features

  • 1HP 3 Phase motor (for industrial shops)
  • Four feed speeds (13, 26, 33, 66 FPM)
  • Four rollers with 3/4″ suspension
  • Roller height: 8-1/2″
  • Vertical movement: 9-3/4″
  • Horizontal movement: 18-1/16″
  • Weight: 71 pounds

Grizzly G4173 Baby Power Feeder

Grizzly G4173 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Grizzly G4173 


Grizzly is an established brand in power tools, and their baby power feeder is similar in function to others of its (essential) design.

Note the difference in the post design. This is replicated across other baby feeders, giving them lighter weight and lower cost.

But, as a tradeoff,  you will lose some ease of adjustment as a “z-axis” tilt takes some getting used to.

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″
  • Maximum vertical distance: 10-1/4″
  • Maximum horizontal distance: 10-1/4″
  • Weight: 27 pounds (shipping)

Shop Fox W1764 Baby Power Feeder

Baby Power Feeders - Shop Fox W1764

See on Amazon: Shop Fox W1764 


The Shop Fox is nearly identical to the Grizzly baby power feeder. 

But, in this small class, it features two essential features that make it the “best baby power feeder”:

  • First, if you want to move it around between a router table and table saw, it has one thing the Grizzly doesn’t: clamp on base plate from Steelex
  • And second, it features a broader range of vertical and horizontal movement that might be important for your sized router table or table saw.

Key Features:

  • CSA certified, meets UL standards, made in an ISO 9001 factory
  • Motor: 1/8 HP, 120V, single-phase, 1.2A
  • Variable speed
  • Rollers: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-1/8″ W x 3″ Dia.
  • Rotation: forward and reverse
  • Maximum height of rollers: 13″
  • Maximum vertical distance: 13″
  • Maximum horizontal distance: 11″

Standard Power Feeders for Table Saws and Shapers

Moving up a class of power feeders to what I call “standard” power feeders takes us to feeders with a more extended reach, more horsepower, and a build for continuous duty.

But one thing this class doesn’t have? Three-phase power. And that’s intentional, as most smaller workshops looking at this power feeder use standard single-phase 120V or 240V wiring.

Powermatic PF-31 Power Feeder - 3 Roller, 1HP

Powermatic PF-31 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Powermatic PF-31 

Key Features:

  • 1HP 120V motor (standard electricity)
  • Four feed speeds (13, 26, 33, 66 FPM)
  • Four rollers with 3/4″ suspension
  • Roller height: 8-1/2″
  • Vertical movement: 9-3/4″
  • Horizontal movement: 18-1/16″
  • Weight: 143 pounds

Grizzly G4176 Power Feeder - 3 Roller, 1/4HP

Grizzly G4176 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Grizzly G4176 

Key Features:

  • Motor: 1/4 HP, 120V, single-phase, 1.2A
  • Speeds: 4 (20, 26, 33, 43 FPM)
  • Rollers: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-3/16″ W x 3″ Dia.
  • Rotation: forward and reverse
  • Maximum height of rollers: 6″
  • Vertical movement 6-1/2″, horizontal movement 10″
  • Shipping weight: 79 pounds

Shop Fox W1765 Power Feeder - 3 Roller, 1/4HP

Shop Fox W1765 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Shop Fox W1765 

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.
  • Maximum height of rollers: 5″
  • Vertical movement 6-3/4″, horizontal movement 9-3/4″
  • Rotation: forward & reverse

Shop Fox W1766 - 3 Roller, 1/2HP

Shop Fox W1766 Power Feeder

See on AmazonShop Fox W1766 

Key Features:

  • Motor: 1/2 HP, 120V, 4 Amp
  • Number of speeds: 4 (9.5, 15, 25, 38 FPM)
  • Wheels: 3, synthetic rubber, 1-1/8 W x 3-1/16-inch Dia.
  • Rotation: forward & reverse
  • Range of motion: 7-inch roller height, 9-inch vertical and 16-inch horizontal

Industrial Power Feeders

For production workshops where the feeder will run all day you’ll have the choice between 4-roller units with 3-phase power or 3-roller units with 3-phase or standard 120V power.

What to look for in an industrial feeder? While Powermatic is an old brand in this category of power feeders, Shop Fox and Grizzly are well established brands as well.

Powermatic PF-41 - Best Power Feeder for Shapers and Table Saws

Powermatic PF41 Power Feeder

See on Amazon Powermatic PF-41 

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

Shop Fox W1769 Power Feeder

SHopFox W1769 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Shop Fox W1769 

Key Features:

  • 1HP 3 Phase motor (for industrial shops)
  • Four feed speeds
  • Four rollers with 3/4″ suspension
  • Roller height: 7″
  • Vertical movement: 9″
  • Horizontal movement: 17″
  • Shipping weight: 187 pounds

Grizzly G1096 Power Feeder

Grizzly G1096 Power Feeder

See on Amazon: Grizzly G1096 

Key Features:

  • CSA certified
  • 1HP 3 Phase motor (NOTE: 3 phase motors are for industrial shops)
  • Four feed speeds
  • Four rollers with 3/4″ suspension
  • Vertical movement: 9-1/2″
  • Horizontal movement: 24-1/2″
  • Shipping weight: 150 pounds

Alternatives to a Power Feeder

JessEm Stock guide

While you can guess there aren’t motorized alternatives to a power feeder, there are a few innovative solutions if these aren’t in your budget:

  • JessEm has professional grade STOCK GUIDES that attach to your table saw and apply both the down and in pressure that you need for consistent cut quality.
  • Kreg and many others, FEATHERBOARDS that will hold your stock tight to the fence.

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 typical 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 do high volumes of long stock, a three-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, many “mini” power feeders are explicitly made 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 pushing the wood against the fence and pushing the material forward steadily. 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.


While it’s easy to put off an investment in a power feeder, it’s one investment I have always remembered. When a tool can improve safety and quality and reduce strain, it makes woodworking more enjoyable.


  • About the Author
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Eric Trion
( Woodworker )

Eric has been a professional woodworker for over thirty years and has worked in small cabinet shops making everything from kitchen cabinets to hand-made furniture. Now working from a home woodworking shop Eric is sharing his passion for woodworking, tool advice and how-to knowledge from his Minnesota-based woodshop.

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