Cleaning router bits

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Forum topic by live4ever posted 07-12-2011 09:18 AM 1772 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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983 posts in 3036 days

07-12-2011 09:18 AM

Topic tags/keywords: router bit cleaning question wd40 simple green

Normally I use WD40 to get gunk off my router bits. In cases of extremely hard pitch build-up, I use Simple Green, but I don’t soak the bits.

I’ve noticed that on my [unnamed brand] bits, the colored coating is separating and chipping off from the carbide where the two meet. This isn’t a problem on my other bits, but they are more expensive and don’t have a colored coating. I was just wondering whether I’m doing something wrong using either WD40 or Simple Green. Note that this is occurring on bits that haven’t been used much at all – just once or twice. I know the coating coming off can be a problem with cheaper bits, just wanted to see whether I’m accelerating it by using an iffy cleaning method.

As an aside, is using bits with the coating detaching from the carbide edges a safety hazard?

-- Optimists are usually disappointed. Pessimists are either right or pleasantly surprised. I tend to be a disappointed pessimist.

4 replies so far

View lew's profile


12102 posts in 3781 days

#1 posted 07-12-2011 04:26 PM

I think the coating is more “eye candy” than anything. It probably helps slow down some pitch/gunk build up but I don’t think it adds to the structural integrity of the bit. I use Simple Green or some of the stuff Woodcraft sells to clean saw blades.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2716 days

#2 posted 07-13-2011 04:13 AM

I soak my router bits every time they are removed from router. I use bug and tar remover from the auto parts store in a baby food jar. I dont change the remover, just add to it as needed to cover the bits. I dont think the paint chipping/flaking is a problem at all.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View AlexB's profile


10 posts in 2941 days

#3 posted 07-29-2011 01:50 AM

I’ve had good results cleaning my bits with denatured alcohol. I’ve heard WD40 isn’t a good thing to be using on bits.


View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3094 days

#4 posted 07-29-2011 04:17 AM

I use Simple Green after removing the guide bearing. I don’t want to wash the lube out of it.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

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