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Going deep with a router.

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Forum topic by richgreer posted 01-31-2012 06:47 PM 2745 views 0 times favorited 31 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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richgreer

4524 posts in 1728 days


01-31-2012 06:47 PM

I need to go deep with a router bit. The question is my mind is how shallow can one go in the collet without taking any inappropriate risk.

My intuition says that I need to go at least 1” into the collet. I’ve never heard any “official” rule about this.

It is probably germane to say that I will be making multiple passes and only lowering the bit about 1/4” with each pass to minimize the stress on the bit.

Any thoughts?

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.


31 replies so far

#1 posted 01-31-2012 07:03 PM

Rich,
In my experience, the cost of a long shank bit is well worth the price.
ddwwb

-- Will trade wife's yarn for tools.

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KnickKnack

982 posts in 2219 days


#2 posted 01-31-2012 07:06 PM

Interesting question – I’ve wondered this myself whenever I’ve needed to not push all the shank in, which is usually.
For what it may be worth, Trend, my supplier of bits, has this to say...

Always insert as much of the Shank as possible into the collet, and at least three quarters of the shank length as a minimum, to decrease the chances of deflection of cutter when under load.

Ummm, I often don’t get them much in.

-- "Do not speak – unless it improves on silence." --- "Following the rules and protecting the regulations is binding oneself without rope."

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404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 1622 days


#3 posted 01-31-2012 07:12 PM

Rich, maybe you should think about a collet extension. It’s one of those things “that you think you’ll never use but now can’t live without”.
Especially useful on a router table.

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HerbC

1166 posts in 1512 days


#4 posted 01-31-2012 07:13 PM

You could invest in a collet extension…

Herb

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!" http://lumberjocks.com/HerbC/blog/17090

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bugz

773 posts in 1317 days


#5 posted 01-31-2012 07:13 PM

Rich, I have had a bit come out from not being deep enough in collet. It came up under my featherboad and scared me, Iwas lucky I had the feather board on or It may have got me. I got on computer that night and ordered some longer bits, and of those i have used all but one. I saw a picture in a mag. awhill back of a fellow with a ding in his forehead from a loose bit. So be careful. I have seen the bit extenders, they scare me also, if bit grabs as it has to most of us.

-- Bob, Lewistown, Montana. Kindness is the Language the blind can see and deaf can hear. - Mark Twain

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richgreer

4524 posts in 1728 days


#6 posted 01-31-2012 07:15 PM

Don’s point is well taken. My problem is that I am working on a project that I must complete by Friday, which means I need a router bit today and I already own the longest bit available locally.

I cannot afford to wait even a day for a longer bit to be sent to me.

Did I tell you how much I hate deadlines?

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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moment

2123 posts in 1334 days


#7 posted 01-31-2012 07:16 PM

I would suggest not cutting more than 1/8 inch depth per pass if you are using a 1 1/2 horse power router or less horsepower than 1 1/2 h.p. . The less increased depth per pass equals less tear-out and burning and maybe worse .

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404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 1622 days


#8 posted 01-31-2012 07:18 PM

What is it exactly you are routing so deep? If you tell us what it is we should be able help you…

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jmos

681 posts in 1023 days


#9 posted 01-31-2012 07:40 PM

The collet of my PC has jaws that are about 1-1/4”, I can push the bit further than that to bottom it out, but the end would be past the jaws. As the collet grips by wedging the leading edge of the collet onto the shaft, thus pinching the collet around the bit, I would be hesitant to insert the bit less than 1-1/4”. You could probably run it out slightly (say an 1/8”) but too far and tightening the collet would tend to close the gap in the collet fully before actually tightening down on the shaft. It may seem hand tight, but under load it could slip, or worse, come out.

As Renners asked, what’s the application, maybe someone can come up with a work around?

-- John

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Loren

7550 posts in 2301 days


#10 posted 01-31-2012 08:38 PM

What happens if the collet releases is the bit falls out and doesn’t
do much damage. I have had it happen a few times. In the
milliseconds as the bit comes out the end of the cutter may
wobble and mess up the work.

In terms of breaking your router or wrecking the bit, the
danger isn’t too great. I would look at the collet and make
a mark on your bit shank and leave the bit 100% inserted
in the collet proper. What happens if the bit is pulled
farther out, I believe, is the collet can get distorted.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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richgreer

4524 posts in 1728 days


#11 posted 01-31-2012 09:21 PM

In response to “What is it exactly you are routing so deep?”

I’m routing mortises for a critical joint on some chairs. The mortise pal jig takes some depth away and I feel I need to get at least an inch of depth in the mortise. My horizontal travel is only about an inch. To avoid too much horizontal stress on the collet, I am doing more up and down motion that wide ways morion and only going sideways to clean up.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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DrDirt

2445 posts in 2395 days


#12 posted 01-31-2012 10:12 PM

I use a 3/8 HSS mill.
I had to get an adaptor for my 1/2 inch router from Lee Valley – but it has the length.
Stay away from a 4 flute mill as those cannot plunge cut.

I got this set-up when Michael Fortune gave a weekend seminar at the Tulsa Woodworking guild meeting 2 years ago. He shared the plans for his mortising set up (also in FWW 197)

Best prices are at wholesale tool
www.wttool.com – hss bits are ~5 bucks.

-- "If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astonish ourselves." Edison

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404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 1622 days


#13 posted 01-31-2012 10:22 PM

If you are using a plunging motion to nibble the waste out instead of pushing the router, I think you are ok leaving just 1/2” in the collet, you could even clean up with a chisel. Is the router used on the jig with the pheonolic base on? Could you gain a couple of mm by taking the router base off? (Plunge router I’m thinking off).
Can you use your mortise jig to get as much depth as possible, take router off and then go deeper using the fence for alignment/take more out with mortiser? What width mortise are we talking here and are you using a 1/4” router?
How many mortises, if it’s only 1 chair could you do it by hand? What about shallower mortises but pinning/fox wedging the tenon.

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Loren

7550 posts in 2301 days


#14 posted 01-31-2012 10:32 PM

If you have mortise chisels, I’d recommend establishing the
geometry with your router jig and then having at it with chisels.

Even if you don’t have mortise chisels, the sides of a shallow
plunged mortise can act as a guide for drilling with forstner
or brad point bits. Then clean out with regular bench
chisels. Goes pretty quick.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

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TheDane

3775 posts in 2316 days


#15 posted 01-31-2012 10:55 PM

Rich—Without a collet extension, I wouldn’t do this with a router. I would either go to the drill press and waste out as much as I could then finish with a chisel, or find a buddy with a hollow chisel mortiser.

—Gerry

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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