I did SO Google Dado blades!

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One particular project is going to require a lot of dados. I looked around the 'net and local stores and some catalogues. Most of the google info is stale.
In this application, a router wouldn't be practical, so I need a new set.
In simple terms, I would like it if you gentlemen gave me a few pointer where to look for definitive information about these things:
1) Simply the best, regardless of price. I can see that it gets real silly real quick.
2) Good performer for a decent price. (Had a Freud pack many moons ago, the chippers were nasty.)
3) A great cheapie. (There is a brand called Mibro?)
4) What to stay away from (aside from the wobblers).
I want a set to last me for some time, because I suspect that if I had a decent set, I'd use it more.
I value your opinions for which I thank you in advance.
Rob
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Well, I cannot say I'm much of an expert on dado's. I've used Freud for years but earlier this year I picked up an adjustable, shime free model from Amana Tool. I've used many of their Shaper Cutters and the Rep gave me a nice discount on the Dado. IMO, you cannot go wrong with Freud, but at the same time, I like this Amana unit very much. ...fast and accurate.
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I personally use the Forrest Dado King and it cuts perfectly. Flat bottoms and sides and no tear out.
That said, if you are going to do the same size over and over that is what I would recomend as Forrest products stay sharp for a very long time.
Freud however has a set that has an adjustable outer cutter. This does not wobble as you still stack the set but the dial on the outer cutter moves the teeth in and out a small bit at a time. Very accurate and easily repeatable settings can be made with this click detent set and NO SHIMS. Swingman has this set and we used it when we built 2 sets of kitchen cabinets this past Spring. How long the set stays sharp compared to the Forrest is yet to be determined.
As happy as I am with the Forrest, I would go with the Dial Freud set if I were to replace the set today. If I were making tons of the same sized dado's I would go again with the Forrest.
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Robatoy wrote: > One particular project is going to require a lot of dados. I looked > around the 'net and local stores and some catalogues. Most of the > google info is stale. <snip>
I have had a Freud for 10 years, it works for me.
Just bought a couple of router bits from Infinity Tool to check them out.
Haven't used them yet.
They have an 8" stacked dado.
Might be worth a look.
Think there is some Italian cutting tool expertise involved with Infinity.
Lew
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I have a Ridge Carbide set and it is excellent. If was was buying today, I'd look at Ridge Carbide, Infinity Tools, Forrest, maybe Freud.
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Reasonable people have disagreed about that here in the past. :-) I chose the Ridge Carbide "North Woods" dado set over the Forrest Dado King on the basis of quality of cut, after seeing both of them demonstrated at the Woodworking Show.

Ridge Carbide. Slightly better cut quality than the Forrest, at 60% of the price.

Is there such a thing?

Anything that says "Craftsman" on it.

Probably any of the major brands should be plenty durable.
--
Regards,
Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
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You can use any old dado stack or even multiple passes on the combo blade if you clean up all your cuts with a router and one of those bearing-guided dado cleanout bits. So if it were me I'd get a lousy $45 Vermont American or Crapsman stack and stick a $20 cleanout bit in my $50 Ryobi router and get perfect dados with no jigs. But that's just me. Most woodworkers wouldn't let their dogs use a Vermont American product.
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Twice the work just to save a few bucks. Not a good deal.

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CW wrote:

It's hardly anything to go over the dado with a bearing-guided bit, which I would almost certainly do anyway. Maybe not if I had a Forrest, but I don't know because I've never used one. For some of us, a $200 price difference is more than a few bucks. And it seems to me that lots of pros prefer cutting dados with both TS and router. They say it's the easiest way to get them really perfect.
But it's true that Freud and DeWalt make OK stacks for around $100, which really is just a few bucks more than the steel el cheapo sets.
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"boorite" wrote in message

Nonsense ... a "pro" would use good equipment and would be the last to waste the time.
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Doing it right in the least amount of time is absolutely required when profit is involved.
Personally, I think those "dado cleanup" router bits are a tad silly for the following reasons:
1. On plywood, any good dado set, including the mid-line Freud, leaves a dado bottom that's flat enough for casework.
2. On solid stock, a shoulder plane can clean a lot of ridges before the router can get set up and plugged in.
3. The biggest reason? You can simply cut the darn thing with a router from the get-go, if that's what's required! <G>
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Swingman wrote:

If it's "nonsense," then it's nonsense that Woodsmith (for example) saw fit to print (Feb. 2004, p. 10. "All About: Getting a Flat-Bottom Dado.") Their advice: "Combine the table saw and a hand-held router to get clean, perfect dadoes." I find similar advice all over the place.
If you have a different preference, then OK. But it's a tried and tested idea, not "nonsense."
Too much bluster here.
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Good advice for the guy that has a cheap dado set but, if I were doing this for a living, I would not have a cheap dado set. The time it takes to do it twice is not worth the savings on the blade. BTW, just because it is written doesn't make it right.

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CW wrote:

It may not be right, or, more aptly, one might have a different preference. But if it's widely advocated by professionals, it probably rises slightly above the level of sheer nonsense. Perhaps there is a tendency to overstate one's case on the internet.
I totally agree that if I were doing this for a living, I'd get a Forrest stack. In that case, $240 really is pocket change.
On the other hand, if I were visiting an in-law who had half a mind to slap a bookcase together, and I'd somehow forgot to bring my entire shop, I'd probably stack 3 circ saw blades on the TS and clean up the resulting mess with a router bit, and it would look great. And the poster did ask about el cheapo solutions that would actually work.
There's more than one way to get things done. Too often, what I hear on RW is that the only way is to spend top dollar on a certain brand, and any other way is simply dismissed as absurd. It's one of the reasons I'm not a frequent poster.
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Why not just rout it and skip the table saw altogether? <G>
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Yep. only reason I could see for doing it twice would be to fix a screw up.

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B A R R Y wrote:

Faster and easier to set up and rough out and repeat on the TS, I think. You don't have to make a jig and set it up for each cut.
Everyone's talking about how much extra time the cleanout bit would take. What, like 5 minutes for an entire piece's worth of dados? If that. It's a piloted bit.
Whatever.
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boorite wrote:

Piloted and pattern bits are great. The dado clean out bit is great if that's all you've got.
I think where the confusion is created is when "pro" got mentioned. <G>
A pro (or a serious hobbyist as I am) would already have some sort of reliable, reusable, quick to set up method already in place. He or she would already have a quick and easy to use dado routing guide, a GOOD dado set, a sharp shoulder plane, or even a CNC machine, so the cleanout bit and extra step is simply a waste of time.
Heck, I've got over a 100 plywood boxes out there dadoed with a $79 Freud 208 where I didn't give a crap about a few ridges in the bottom of the slot, and time has proven me right.
For a casual hobbyist, extra time is often meaningless.
What is also left out here is that a decent dado cleanout bit, ex:// Amana, is $25-30 in additional, very specialized tooling.
Nobody said it wouldn't work, or that it wouldn't work well. <G>
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That's because "Woodsmith" is often full of nonsense. <G>
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