Hitachi TR6 Trim Router - God’s Gift To the Luthier

This is the second most important tool in our shop, just behind the table saw.

This cheesy looking little router is excellent for removing old binding and cutting rebates for new purfling and binding. It can cut a infinite variety of binding and purfling rabbet dimensions. (That’s rebate for those of the British persuasion.) Instead of buying a rabbet or slotting bit and a set of different sized bearings, the TR6 can cut any sized rabbet needed. It is adjustable in very tiny increments so as to creep up to the desired rabbet width and depth.

We have six of these set to every rabbet size imaginable on a Harmony Sovereign. Four of these are never changed as they are set perfectly for a particular cut.

See that little silver colored roller next to the red router bit? A red arrow points to it. That is a height and depth adjustable guide bearing. This router does not need a roller guide bearing bit to control slot depth. That little roller controls cut depth which equates to the thickness of binding or purfling we need to install.

A blue arrow points to a black knob. This clamps down on to a black frame which adjusts the router base up or down. That controls depth of cut. This equates to the width of the binding or the depth or thickness of the purfling we are installing.

I realize the big shops have super high-tech binding rabbet cutting machines or CNC equipment to cut binding slots. But we are working on a cost-plus budget in an old cabinet shop. No CNC tools for us.