Stuck router bit!

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Forum topic by Neodogg posted 06-20-2009 10:53 PM 2280 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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94 posts in 3363 days

06-20-2009 10:53 PM

Ok, so I’ve tried the conventional methods (at least I think I have, I’m no router master), but I can’t get my bit out! is it broke by chance? Any help would be greatly appreciated.


-- If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem!

20 replies so far

View patron's profile


13598 posts in 3277 days

#1 posted 06-20-2009 11:00 PM

tap it back and forth , ( not on cutter knife ) as you turn it .

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

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117032 posts in 3513 days

#2 posted 06-20-2009 11:13 PM

I’m with Dave just tap it with a peice of wood on the side(s)

-- wood crafting & classes

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94 posts in 3363 days

#3 posted 06-21-2009 01:03 AM

is this a common thing to happen?

-- If you can't fix it with a hammer, you've got an electrical problem!

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13598 posts in 3277 days

#4 posted 06-21-2009 01:22 AM

looks like it got some sap in it , or if it sits awhile it can pick up moisture from the air and rust toghether .
when you get it out just clean things and lightly sand , and you should be good to go !

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Karson's profile


35108 posts in 4336 days

#5 posted 06-21-2009 01:26 AM

If the bit is broken. Screw the bit in a vise and then lightly tap the collet. If you have a chunk of brass, it would be a great piece to tap, otherwise maybe a dowel of a block of wood.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View BTKS's profile


1986 posts in 3400 days

#6 posted 06-21-2009 03:07 AM

Hit with penetrating oil and let sit for a couple hours. Tap as directed above. May help to bump the collet insert out then you can sit the bottom of the bit on a block of wood then tap the insert from above with something non-marring, wood, brass, leather hammer etc. Bits usually get stuck because they are bottomed out in the collet then tightened. Always pull the bit up and 1/8 inch or so before tightening. Good luck, BTKS

-- "Man's ingenuity has outrun his intelligence" (Joseph Wood Krutch)

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10874 posts in 3494 days

#7 posted 06-21-2009 03:46 AM

I’ll ditto BTKS and do not overtighten. This also causes collets to stick like that one.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3244 days

#8 posted 06-21-2009 05:49 AM

When I get a bit that is difficult to remove I take the collet off and tap the bottom of the bit with a wooden dowel. This has always worked for me. I also use “O” rings on the router bit shaft to keep them from seating too deep. You can buy 1/2” and 1/4” inside diameter o rings from the big box stores plumbing department for about $2 for about 20 O rings.

View FirehouseWoodworking's profile


704 posts in 3209 days

#9 posted 06-21-2009 07:44 AM

If the above suggestions do not work, clamp a 1/4” open end wrench in a vise. Remove the bit and collet and slip the bit’s shank (bit facing down) onto the wrench. Take a (flat) 3/16” or 1/4” punch and insert it through the bottom of the collet until it contacts the base of the bit’s shank. Tap gently with a hammer until the bit drops out.

Good luck.

-- Dave; Lansing, Kansas

View Kjuly's profile


308 posts in 3221 days

#10 posted 06-21-2009 11:13 PM

Hi Neodogg,

A frozen bit is usually caused by one of two things. Corrosion or a burr that has formed on the shank of the bit.
If you leave your bit in the router for an extended length of time, the pitch, dirt or sawdust can cause the bit and/or collet to rust making it difficult to get them apart.
A burr is usally formed by a worn collet. A worn collet will not hold the bit securely, allowing the router bit to spin in the collet and causing a burr to form.
So look closely at your bit shank and collet after you get them apart.

-- Keith, Charlotte, MI

View PatentNonsense's profile


28 posts in 3302 days

#11 posted 06-22-2009 03:12 AM

Another way is to put the spindle nut back on, put a wrench head or two betweein the spindle nut and the bottom of the bit, then unscrew the nut to apply upward pressure (while holding the shaft of course).

View Chris Wright's profile

Chris Wright

540 posts in 3417 days

#12 posted 06-22-2009 03:56 AM

Try spraying some lubricant (teflon would probably best) then tap the collet. Once you do get it out, be sure to clean the collet and inside the spindle really well to help prevent it from getting stuck a second time. If the bit is stuck in the collet, simply put it in a vice and tap the bottom of the shank with a punch and mallet.

-- "At its best, life is completely unpredictable." - Christopher Walken

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3521 days

#13 posted 06-22-2009 08:05 AM

I had exactly the same problem with an old router I had.I eventually heated it with a hot air gun paint stripper type .Theres no need for flames etc just warm it up the expansion will cause it to free .Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

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Chris Cunanan

339 posts in 3416 days

#14 posted 06-22-2009 09:27 AM

sorry for the off-topic comment, but i am a dog lover (and more specifically a boston lover! i have one, he is my baby lol) and i just had to say, that is one gorgeous boston….champion sired i assume? would like to see more pics of the little guy if you have em =)

as for the thread topic, i’ve had it happen a bunch of times…these guys all give great advice and i don’t have anything i can add on…hope you get it worked out! i know how much it sux to try and work but you can’t use your tools! ahhh, it’s the worst! even more than having all the tools ‘n not doing anything with them i think….lol

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57 posts in 3335 days

#15 posted 06-22-2009 01:04 PM

A trick I use with the old abused routers at work it to leave the above mentioned gap. I go a little more than the above 1/8th of an inch. When I simply can not get the bit out of the collet, the I carefully hit the bit down into the collet. 9 out of 10 times this does the trick.

-- P.O.C.

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