raised panel # passes


I understand now why it's important for raised panel bit to have bearings, to be able to do the cruves. Plus CMT comes with two size, bigger one for first pass, and a smaller final size.
Since I been into routering lately, I tend to do three passes on straight. My question is I wonder if it would be easier on the carbide if I do a less pass (do two passes instead of three)? So, doing three passes would be easier to work with, but two passes would prolong the life of router bit? This is regarding straight passes (no choice for curves, only two passes).
Chuck
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| I understand now why it's important for raised panel bit to have bearings, | to be able to do the cruves. Plus CMT comes with two size, bigger one for | first pass, and a smaller final size. | | Since I been into routering lately, I tend to do three passes on straight. | My question is I wonder if it would be easier on the carbide if I do a less | pass (do two passes instead of three)? So, doing three passes would be | easier to work with, but two passes would prolong the life of router bit? | This is regarding straight passes (no choice for curves, only two passes). | | Chuck
The more one hogs out in any 1 pass the harder it is on the bit as a whole.
-- PDQ
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Could you rephrase the reply please?
Chuck

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Regardless of how many passes you take you are still removing the same amount of wood. Fewer passes ='s more strain on the bit and carbide. More strain on the carbide will increase the chance of breaking the carbide.
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CNT wrote:

"hogs out" ==> force cut
I don't <quite> agree w/ these responses, however. Yes, if one over feeds by pushing the material through faster than the cutter is able to take it there is a chance of doing physical damage to the cutter. For a good quality bit that is rarely an issue if it isn't forced, however. They are designed to remove wood. The advantage of multiple passes is essentially achieving a smoother finish at the expense of longer time to make the piece.
The wear on the carbide is essentially directly proportional to the linear feet cut---every pass is essentially the same--the tip cuts the same material every time.
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Snip
The advantage of multiple passes is

Well it can help with a smoother finish but you can make 2 passes and have just as smooth of finish as if you take 6 passes. It all boils down to how thin the LAST pass is. Up until that point you are simply removing wood. Multiple passes saves hard wear on the equipment.
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Leon wrote:

Not necessarily--some woods (such as red oak, in particular) tend to splinter and one can end up w/ chunks removed that aren't fully eliminated on a final pass...
As for the "wear and tear", if the equipment is sized for the job, it's simply normal usage, not abuse.
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.
Your are right. Oddly I just got finished making 24 raised panel doors out of Red Oak. I find that a light pass to create the extent of width to establish a crisp line followed by a more aggressive cut eliminates the chunks being torn out. Not totally unlike the principal of back cutting to prevent tear out. Then I finish with a thin finish cut.
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Leon wrote:

If the profile allows it, I try to trim a angled cut on the tablesaw to eliminate as much waste as possible.
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In my (not so humble) opinion. If you are doing so many panels that you are worried about wearing out a router bit, I would be more worried about the router itself and maybe you should have a shaper.
If you are a hobbiest then go with the number of passes it takes to get the nicest finish. This might vary with material.
If you are doing this for profit, do it the fastest way you can get a good finish and buy a new bit when needed. Labor is a much bigger percentage of your cost than router bits will ever be.
BW
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