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Dado set or Router bits

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Forum topic by AtlasRook posted 10-08-2014 04:20 PM 1089 views 0 times favorited 19 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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AtlasRook

24 posts in 984 days


10-08-2014 04:20 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question tablesaw router

I’m looking to make some rabbit or dado cuts in some of my projects. I don’t have a lot of money to spend, so I don’t want to buy a dado set if I’m not going to get much use of it compared to buying a few better bits for my router.

Any thoughts or advice?


19 replies so far

View skogie1's profile

skogie1

95 posts in 825 days


#1 posted 10-08-2014 04:25 PM

I have a dado set that doesn’t get used much. I tend to use the router more for rabbets.

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CharlesA

3019 posts in 1259 days


#2 posted 10-08-2014 04:29 PM

how long, how deep, and in what are the dimensions of the pieces you’re cutting the dados in?

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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pintodeluxe

4853 posts in 2274 days


#3 posted 10-08-2014 04:32 PM

dado sets make rabbets and dados easy to cut.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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AtlasRook

24 posts in 984 days


#4 posted 10-08-2014 04:33 PM


how long, how deep, and in what are the dimensions of the pieces you re cutting the dados in?

- CharlesA

Something around 1/4” wide, by 1/2” deep, and an 10” length.

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CharlesA

3019 posts in 1259 days


#5 posted 10-08-2014 04:42 PM

I think a dado set is essential eventually because of the ability to fine tune a dado making it a few thousands of an inch wider or narrow depending on what you’re trying to fit in the dado. I will say that at that narrow a dado (1/4”), the router has some advantages. I think you can live with dado stacks only for dados easier than router bits only for dados.

-- "Man is the only animal which devours his own, for I can apply no milder term to the general prey of the rich on the poor." ~Thomas Jefferson

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Fred Hargis

3931 posts in 1954 days


#6 posted 10-08-2014 05:01 PM

I use the dado set more than the router (though the router is handy in certain instances). The adjustability Charles mentioned is important, you may find (often) that the router bits are a little more precise than the wood you’re working, even the “plywood bits” are usually off a little from today’s plywood. But think through the dado/grooves/rabbets you usually cut. If most of them can be done on the TS, I’d suggest the dado set as the first choice.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#7 posted 10-08-2014 05:21 PM

I use the dado set 90% of the time. The only time I use the router is when I’m rabbeting a large piece that would be awkward to do on the table saw.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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buildingmonkey

242 posts in 1009 days


#8 posted 10-09-2014 01:11 AM

Router bit work ok, but don’t last too long. Before long they are burning. If you are going to do a lot of grooves, the dado will last longer without sharpening. I bought a Oshlun from Carbide Processors, and a couple other blades, best prices I could find, and free shipping. Their Tenryu rip blade is fantastic. Costs about 60% of a Forrest, and just as good.

-- Jim from Kansas

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

4024 posts in 1812 days


#9 posted 10-09-2014 01:53 AM

You can get by w/ using router bits for a while, but if you cut many dadoes a dado set is much faster. I can’t really think of a project that doesn’t require some sort of dado, except turning. The only thing a dado set can’t do better and faster is cut stopped dadoes. It would depend on what you like to make, whether or not it is worth it.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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timbertailor

1591 posts in 885 days


#10 posted 10-09-2014 02:14 AM

I use the router because it is just easier to set up with my equipment and I have finer control. I also get less tear out in some materials than I would using the table saw.

Dado sets work great when the cut is wider than the dado blade combination being used or it is a particularly deep cut, they work great. But, if you need a narrow cut and the shims just do not meet your needs, they can be a headache.

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

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DrTebi

250 posts in 2728 days


#11 posted 10-09-2014 02:46 AM

If your dadoes only need to be 1/4” wide, you could also get away by just using a regular blade with FTG set, which will create a flat bottom on your dadoes. You would just have to figure out a way to precisely move the fence after the first pass, to get to the final 1/4” width. I have done this many times, it’s fairly easy.

I have the Freud LM72R010 which does a good job, and I have used one from Forrest, which was excellent. You need to call Forrest to specify the FTG tooth style when ordering.

View B4B's profile

B4B

129 posts in 819 days


#12 posted 10-09-2014 04:05 AM

I made this http://lumberjocks.com/projects/106287 using a dado set for the TS, many, many, many dado cuts that were 1/4” wide and the 2” or so long (front to back).

I thought at the time that a router would have been easier, but now that I look back at it, the miter gauge (or a crosscut sled, if you made/make onw) with the dado set did work well.

-- There's two routers in my vocab, one that moves data and one that removes wood, the latter being more relevant on this forum.

View cax's profile

cax

12 posts in 802 days


#13 posted 10-09-2014 11:14 AM

I always use the dado set more than the router.because it was time saving and more easily

View RRBOU's profile

RRBOU

136 posts in 1753 days


#14 posted 10-09-2014 11:20 AM

After making an exact width dado jig I cut them almost exclusively with the router.

-- If guns cause crime all of mine are defective Randy

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MT_Stringer

2851 posts in 2692 days


#15 posted 10-09-2014 03:50 PM


After making an exact width dado jig I cut them almost exclusively with the router.

- RRBOU

+1what he said. I use a flush trim bit in my router for cutting dados. I cut dados in 21 drawers that way. For the drawer bottoms, I used a different bit with the router mounted in the table. For long rabbits, I use a rabbiting bit in a router hand held.

I have also used a pair of 7 1/4 inch circular saw blades (and a shim or two) to rip smooth 1/4inch dados on the table saw. That made for quick work.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

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