Qx - How to Clean Up a Routed Inlet


Botched a quicky piece this weekend and trying to figure out if there's a fix.
Is there a router bit that acts like a sander, that is, not real aggressive, but can be used on sides of a cut to clean them up? Cuts are only about 3/8 deep and I've tried sanding by hand and scraping with my gunsmithing scrapers, but to no avail.
Reason for asking:
Wandered by my local purveyor of curly wood Saturday. Searching through the scrap pile when one of the folks working there guided me to three hunks (flitches) of maple. Seems he was a fiddle/guitar maker. He said these 24" X 6-8" X 1" would finish up really nice for small work. WTH, $10 for 3 pieces.
Planed off one Sunday AM and he was right - pretty wood. Decided a quick rout to make a free hand nut tray would work. Only carbide straight bit I had was a ?? old 1/2 incher from Sears. Not burned - but.
Results of free hand rout are at
http://web2.airmail.net/xleanone/index.html/Tray /
The images are 250 - 400 KB, so if you're on dial up you may want to pass.
Last 2 pics are bottom of tray, just planed. All wiped with mineral spirits to show figure, color balance adjusted to 5250 to reduce flash effect.
All the cut sides are burned pretty badly.Bad technique and maybe a questionable bit.
BTW, the wood is really pretty. Big Leaf maple and great figure, but boy, what a PITA to plane! Ron Knight has my 50 degree smoother on order (at 1/2 price!) for this kind of stuff!
Any suggestions appreciated.
Regards.
Tom
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Tom Banes wrote:

G'day Tom, I would suggest that you try a small sanding drum, preferably in a dremel type machine if you have one, if not a cordless drill with the drum should do the trick. Just use a slow speed and take your time. You can pick up the drums and sleeves pretty cheaply. All the best John
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I would try a little bleach .

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Sanding drum in drill press? the DP will keep the drum vertical, preventing the edge of the sleeve from gouging the piece.
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woodworker88 wrote:

As an alternate, you can use a 60 grit flap wheel in either a drill press or a hand held drill motor.
Lew
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woodworker88 wrote:

Duh, Why didn't I think of that ;) John
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On Mon, 01 Aug 2005 21:02:12 -0500, Tom Banes

Nice drive-by gloat.

FWIW, that's a nice enough hunk of maple that it may be worth it to just buy another, higher-quality bit and just carefully take a little more off with that. If it was some kind of oddball bit, it might not be worthwhile, but a straight one is always useful. You could sand it, I'm sure, but it'd be tough and not likely to look as good as a really nice finishing pass with the router.
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Prometheus wrote:

my thought was that the next bit would be a ball nose carbide end mill (core box bit style), 1/4" diameter, in the laminate trimmer, with a base that rides on the floor of the tray and limits the horizontal depth of cut to the radius of the bit. this will give you a rounded inside corner as it cleans up the burn marks.
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Thanks to all for the ideas.
Last night I combined a couple and used a Dremel with a sanding drum (1/4" size) and a Dremel drill press that has been taking up space without use for years (SWMBO wanted one for some craft project that never got started ~ ). Working at lowest speed on the Dremel seemed OK, but still not what I wanted. I can't get the horizontal/vertical interface cleaned up without the drum hitting the bottom and burnining it.
Next step is to try the ball nose bit suggestion from prometheus. Question I have is about the base to limit depth of cut. Horizontal I can figure - flush trim style. The part that has me lost is the "base that rides on the floor". Is this something that a laminate trimmer has that a router doesn't? Sorry, I've never seen a laminate trimmer and don't know.
Regards.
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Tom Banes wrote:

Prometheus wrote:

bridger wrote:

Tom Banes wrote:

that was me, not Prometheus. here's what the bit looks like: <http://www.american-carbide.com/EndMills/LLBEM.aspx?SubCategoryID=4&selection=3&Cat=1 the sub-base is something you'll build yourself. it goes like this... get a piece of stuff- plywood or melamine or something like it that is about the size of your router/trimmer base and slightly thicker than your tray is deep. drill a hole near the corner of the piece, the size of your ball nose bit(1/4"). mount the ball nose bit in the router and adjust it so the bit extends below the base a little. with the router unplugged and the factory sub-base removed slip the bit into the hole you drilled. find a location where it seems like you will be able to handle the router comfortably and reach the switch easily or whatever and mark the mounting hole locations for the base on the new sub-base. drill the holes in the sub-base and mount it to the router. try the bit through the hole. if it binds you may need to adjust the hole a bit. now, flip the router upside down and with the bit protruding a little below the sub-base, lay a ruler flat on the sub-base and mark out a line tangent to the bit, clipping the corner, between the bit and the corner. now retract the bit into the router and mark out a second line parallel to the first to the amount of horizontal bite you want the cutter to take. if you want the resulting fillet cut to fair out smoothly with the bottom of your tray, that amount would be 1/8" remove the sub-base, cut the second line, remount the sub-base.
so you now have a chunk of plywood screwed to the bottom of your router. it has a corner cut off. the corner cut also removed part of the hole where the router bit sticks out. if you adjust the bit depth so that the tip of the ball end just barely or even not quite reaches the bottom surface of your sub-base, the only cutting it can do is from the side, and the amount of that cut is limited by the corner cut surface of the sub-base. if you are cutting into concave curves (you are) you may need that corner cut to be rounded rather than straight. just be sure that the amount of bit left exposed doesn't exceed the cut you wish to take.

nope. see above.

a laminate trimmer is just a small router. meant for one handed use, they take only 1/4" bits, run at extra high RPMs and until recently came only in single speed models. here's what mine looks like: <http://www.portercable.com/index.asp?e 7&t=p&p(36>
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<<< SNIP >>>
Thanks Bridger, sorry I lost the thread and blamed Prometheus.
Reading your explanation, I've go the idea. Kinda neat. I may give it a whirl this weekend.
Once again, many thanks.
Regards.
Tom
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