2 flute straight bit into endgrain

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Forum topic by ScottKaye posted 04-13-2017 03:40 PM 531 views 0 times favorited 9 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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605 posts in 1889 days

04-13-2017 03:40 PM

I’m looking into using a 1/2” – 2 flute straight bit to cut the mortises for the bed rail hardware I’m installing into the rails and posts of the bed I’m building for a friend. My question is what kind of a cut will I get using the 2 flute straight bit into the end grain of the rails (soft maple)? I suspect its a bad idea and will lead to wild tear out. (though I could be wrong!) Id rather not have to go out and buy a spiral down cut bit but is that really my only choice to get ‘crisp’ edges around the mortise?



-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

9 replies so far

View CharlieK's profile


550 posts in 3729 days

#1 posted 04-13-2017 03:43 PM

Not sure. Do you have some scrap that you can make a few test cuts on?

-- Adjustable Height Workbench Plans

View HokieKen's profile


4669 posts in 1074 days

#2 posted 04-13-2017 03:49 PM

You might consider cutting a saw kerf or scoring a knife wall around the mortise shoulder prior to doing the routing. That might be sufficient to leave a clean edge at the shoulders.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View ScottKaye's profile


605 posts in 1889 days

#3 posted 04-13-2017 03:49 PM

I left the rails long so I could practice cutting the mortises. I’m cutting them by hand (so to speak) with a 2 1/4 hp Bosch EVS23 plunge router and the Bosch micro adjustable fence so I suppose I get to test the bit too :)

Scott.. Ill let everyone know how it turned out

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View ScottKaye's profile


605 posts in 1889 days

#4 posted 04-13-2017 03:51 PM

+1 @ Kenny. Good idea

-- "Nothing happens until you build it"

View Rich's profile


2481 posts in 525 days

#5 posted 04-13-2017 07:20 PM

You could try using a drill to remove much of the waste, then use the router to clean up.

-- No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery.

View AandCstyle's profile


3006 posts in 2193 days

#6 posted 04-13-2017 08:33 PM

Hey, Scott, I have a Whiteside RU 5200 if you want to borrow it.

-- Art

View Andre's profile


1723 posts in 1742 days

#7 posted 04-14-2017 01:26 AM

I use mill ends on my Horizontal mortiser without any problems, just go in slow!

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View runswithscissors's profile


2696 posts in 1961 days

#8 posted 04-14-2017 01:45 AM

I would think the spiral bit would work better, but I’d choose an up spiral. The down spiral will pack chips into the bottom of the mortise and bog it down. Unless you are planning on a through mortise?

-- I admit to being an adrenaline junky; fortunately, I'm very easily frightened

View SawduztJunky's profile


71 posts in 1094 days

#9 posted 04-14-2017 04:12 AM

I have done a few, I had to hog out the bulk with the ½” straight bit, come behind with the MUCH cheaper ¼” DOWN SPIRAL bit. Why a down spiral? It tends to minimize surface blowout (a common and aggravating occurrence with maple) and leaves a decent looking ⅛” radius corner. Or a chisel and a hammer works pretty good if you need squared corners.

-- I don't think I'm ever more "aware" than I am right after I hit my thumb with a hammer. Questions about solid surface? Just ask.

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