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02-10-2019, 19:51   #1
daphil
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Router Newby

Have a plunge Router, which I never really used, but would like to give it a go now. What would be the easiest type of wood to start with ?
Edging end grain would be my target,
Dave
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03-10-2019, 08:43   #2
JayZeus
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Just get a few offcuts and start. I know that sounds simplistic but there are plenty of variables, speeds, power (kW/HP), cutter type/quality/diameters etc. So start with what you have to hand and some offcuts of whatever material you'll want to work with and then figure out what's working and what's not. You can troubleshoot specific problems as they come up and get to know what's good and what's not with the gear you have.

Generally speaking, sharp carbide or high quality HSS edged cutters and take light cuts to start with as most people go to heavy, too few RPM's and a cutter that's not sharp or dulls rapidly. On endgrain be especially careful of the cutter catching: Both hands holding the router handles, workpiece securely clamped, safety specs/hearing protection (those two, always) and be mindful that a catch can kick and swing the router up so that the cutter is spinning and exposed.

Another suggestion is to avoid plunging unless you have a suitable cutter, not all straight cutters are suitable for plunge use.
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03-10-2019, 09:59   #3
recipio
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Routing endgrain is a bit of a last resort unless you are using a template to cut out a replica shape - even then its best done on a router table.
The harder the wood the more likely it will 'catch' and fling the piece across the room ! You are also likely to tear out the grain on the exit side unless it is supported.
If you are getting into template routing consider investing in a bearing guided spiral cutter as it is much less likely to kickback and gives a nice smooth cut on endgrain.
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03-10-2019, 16:22   #4
daphil
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Routing endgrain is a bit of a last resort unless you are using a template to cut out a replica shape - even then its best done on a router table.
The harder the wood the more likely it will 'catch' and fling the piece across the room ! You are also likely to tear out the grain on the exit side unless it is supported.
If you are getting into template routing consider investing in a bearing guided spiral cutter as it is much less likely to kickback and gives a nice smooth cut on endgrain.
Thanks for replies lads. Was making a panel using an old piece of marine ply.
Internal router design was fine, but when I tried an edging router blade on an off cut, it looked terrible, even when I got the routing right.
In the end, I sanded the edges to 45 degrees and the end product was fine.
I guess marine Ply would not be the easiest thing to use, is MDF abit easier?
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Dave
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05-10-2019, 14:09   #5
recipio
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Thanks for replies lads. Was making a panel using an old piece of marine ply.
Internal router design was fine, but when I tried an edging router blade on an off cut, it looked terrible, even when I got the routing right.
In the end, I sanded the edges to 45 degrees and the end product was fine.
I guess marine Ply would not be the easiest thing to use, is MDF abit easier?
Thanks
Dave
Putting a chamfer on marine ply should be straightforward. You may however hit some 'voids' in the core and of course the layers of ply will be visible. I always start with a 'backrouting' action ( pulling the router towards you ) to get a clean cut in the top veneer and finishing with a 'push' cut as usual. As you exit the cut some breakout is inevitable unless you have a scrap piece to support it.
Reducing a section of endgrain in total is a different matter - it is very hard on cutters and that is why I like the spiral cutters - they are solid carbide.
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05-10-2019, 19:40   #6
chillyspoon
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Putting a chamfer on marine ply should be straightforward. You may however hit some 'voids' in the core and of course the layers of ply will be visible. I always start with a 'backrouting' action ( pulling the router towards you ) to get a clean cut in the top veneer and finishing with a 'push' cut as usual. As you exit the cut some breakout is inevitable unless you have a scrap piece to support it.
+1 - that's exactly how I do it, and I was doing that very thing today with 12mm marine ply (and one that's really prone to chip out at that) for a drawer front on the cabinet of a lathe stand. It can look great.

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06-10-2019, 10:17   #7
recipio
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Well done. I like the handle - what is it made of. ?
Just a tip learned by a frustrating experience. Never use MDF to make drawers as it will swell and expand in the winter months. jamming the drawers. Don't ask me how I know.
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06-10-2019, 14:38   #8
chillyspoon
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Well done. I like the handle - what is it made of. ?
Just a tip learned by a frustrating experience. Never use MDF to make drawers as it will swell and expand in the winter months. jamming the drawers. Don't ask me how I know.
The handle's made of a tiny scrap of live edge yew. Done to match the drawer handles on a previous lathe stand a made for the same guy some time back (although the drawer fronts on that one were oak rather than the same marine ply as the drawer boxes):

Original one: https://www.chillyspoon.com/blog/201...3-professional

Recent one: https://www.chillyspoon.com/blog/201...t-ac240wl-awsl

Another tip for the OP is to look at the roundovers on the 3x3 (69mm) framing stock I've used on both of those stands. It's a good way to get used to using a router and in particular the difference feel between push and pull (climbing) cuts. The latter can get away from you very quickly and should be learned when you're comfortable with the push cut.
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07-10-2019, 17:23   #9
daphil
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The handle's made of a tiny scrap of live edge yew. Done to match the drawer handles on a previous lathe stand a made for the same guy some time back (although the drawer fronts on that one were oak rather than the same marine ply as the drawer boxes):

Original one: https://www.chillyspoon.com/blog/201...3-professional

Recent one: https://www.chillyspoon.com/blog/201...t-ac240wl-awsl

Another tip for the OP is to look at the roundovers on the 3x3 (69mm) framing stock I've used on both of those stands. It's a good way to get used to using a router and in particular the difference feel between push and pull (climbing) cuts. The latter can get away from you very quickly and should be learned when you're comfortable with the push cut.
Think I will have to lie down after looking at that great job, and my father was a chippie.
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Dave
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