Rocky 30 Trim Router - 3/8" Collet?

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My Rocky 30 Trim Router kit arrived yesterday. MLCS SKU 9060. It's not yet viewable on their website, but the SKU can be ordered on the Quick order page.
It's my first trim router, so I don't have anything to compare it to, but it seems like a nice little unit.
I wish it came with some sort of carrying case, but I guess I'll have to pick one up at HF or HD. There's no LED or micro-adjust, but at under $100 for the router and plunge base, I'm not complaining.
I did a quick round-over on a short piece of 1 x 6 and it was nice to be able to use one hand for the router and one hand to hold the board. The plunge base seems to work, but I haven't really tested it yet.
Here's my question:
In with the accessories was a 3/8" collet. As shown in the link below, the 3/8" collet (on the left) is just a conical sleeve with a single slot. The more standard 1/4" four-slot collet is on the right.
https://imgur.com/Y36uHMM
I was not aware that router bits came with 3/8" shanks, so I called MLCS. When I asked about the 3/8" collet, the tech support guy said:
"Yeah, they throw that in at the factory. You won't get much use out of it since there aren't too many 3/8" shank routers bits available."
Is that true? Obviously the larger the shank the better, so I wouldn't mind springing for a couple of 3/8" shank bits if they were available. On the other hand, the fact that the 3/8" collet is much more "basic" than a standard four-slot router collet, it almost seems like it's not meant to be used full time.
Your thoughts and opinions are most welcome.
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I haven't seen a 3/8" router bit in stores and haven't looked elsewhere. There's two very usable standard sizes, why throw in a third?
You'll be able to find 3/8" tooling by looking at end mills, but they're usually just straight. There's some with round ends, "clipped" corners and a couple different configurations. An end mill will cut wood just fine, I've done it.
Puckdropper
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On Friday, July 22, 2016 at 1:22:45 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@googlegroups.com wrote:

Well, the only reason I can think of is the standard "the bigger the shank, the lesser the vibration." Since the Rocky 30 seems to be able to handle the 3/8" shank, it would be nice if bits were actually available.

Thanks for the info on end mills. I assume that they are more expensive than 1/4" shank router bits. Probably not worth the extra cost for my needs.
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On 7/22/2016 12:54 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Actually end mill bits are pretty inexpensive by comparison, they are HHS. As I pointed out to Puckdropper they outlasted carbide bits many times over.
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On 7/22/2016 12:54 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

Perhaps, if it's a trim router and you probably won't be doing plunge cuts with it.
However, I use end mills exclusively as bits for my Multi-Router for cutting mortises'.
The advantage is the lower lengths available with end mills, as opposed to router "bits".
It often a challenge to find a router bit long enough to cut to the mortise depth you need when chucked safely in the router, and you must also go through the thickness of the "table" of a router "jig" to cut the mortise.
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On 7/22/2016 5:00 PM, Swingman wrote:

Damned stick keys ...
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On Friday, July 22, 2016 at 6:00:23 PM UTC-4, Swingman wrote:

That's a very good point re: the length.
I just bought the trim router with the plunge base. I don't have a plunge base for my full size PC router.
The trim router with the plunge base is going to be perfect for some of the stuff I need to do for the bed project, such as the mortises for the rail hardware and the brackets for the slats.
It'll also be a lot easier to do all the round-overs than with the PC.
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On 7/22/2016 9:08 PM, DerbyDad03 wrote:

I order end mills online from Travers Tool.
This is the 3/8" one I use the most for mortise work, both in my plunge router and Multi-Router. I also keep the same style in 1/4" on hand:
http://www.travers.com/4-flute-micrograin-long-length-solid-carbide-single-end-mill/p/20-501-170/
If you have any questions about use (which end mill/configuration works best for a particular application/material) their customer service has always been very knowledgeable when I've called.
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On Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 8:03:01 AM UTC-5, Swingman wrote:


e-end-mill/p/20-501-170/


Additionally, to Karl's offer....
Some years ago, while vacationing in NC, I bought a cache (I stopped counti ng at 400 bits) of assorted bits, from one of the auction sites. Among th em were 3/8" shank bits router bits and I suppose CNC router bits.
If you'd like to try some, I can send you 1 or 2 dozen. The black ones ar e clockwise spin and the orange ones are counter-clockwise spin. Their ti ps are either flat or pointed. There are some straight bits and spiral on es. None seem to be very long, mostly short, and there are no profile bit s. About the only time I've used these 3/8" bits are for hogging out a hol e, of some sort, using a hand held drill, as I don't have a 3/8" collet for my routers. There are several 3/8" collets in the cache, but they are pr obably for a CNC router. I wouldn't try to install them in any hand held router.
In the 4th pic, the green coated group, of 5, are 1/2" shank dovetail bits. Their cut is about 3/8" wide, also. I have lots of them, so I can thro w in some of these, as well.
Anyway, if you'd like to check these out, try them, email me your address t o cedarsonny at aye oh el dot com and I'll send some.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/43836144@N04/?
Sonny
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On Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 9:49:21 AM UTC-4, Sonny wrote:


gle-end-mill/p/20-501-170/



ting at 400 bits) of assorted bits, from one of the auction sites. Among them were 3/8" shank bits router bits and I suppose CNC router bits.

are clockwise spin and the orange ones are counter-clockwise spin. Their tips are either flat or pointed. There are some straight bits and spiral ones. None seem to be very long, mostly short, and there are no profile b its. About the only time I've used these 3/8" bits are for hogging out a h ole, of some sort, using a hand held drill, as I don't have a 3/8" collet f or my routers. There are several 3/8" collets in the cache, but they are probably for a CNC router. I wouldn't try to install them in any hand hel d router.

s. Their cut is about 3/8" wide, also. I have lots of them, so I can th row in some of these, as well.

to cedarsonny at aye oh el dot com and I'll send some.

Thanks! I may take you up on that offer. Let me play with the router a bit and see how I do with what I have.
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On Saturday, July 23, 2016 at 9:03:01 AM UTC-4, Swingman wrote:

Thanks for the link!
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For really shallow mortises, like to inlay hardware, it should be fine. If it's like most trim routers, tho, it's not going to have the oats to do a deeper mortise.
John
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Mortise Pal sold some really nice, long, solid carbide up-spiral bits. Unfortunately, they seem to be no more.
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On 7/22/2016 12:22 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

For the most part .25 and .5 covers the normal needs. To go a bit farther, LeighJigs used to offer 8 mm shank bits, I have a few 8mm DT bits. These bits were better when you really needed more than a 1/4" shank bit and when a 1/2" shank bit and bushing would not fit between closely spaced fingers on the jig.

Heck yeah an end mill will cut wood. If you remember Steve Knight, I used to cut mouth blocks for his hand planes, I made a few thousand. I used carbide tip bits to plunge twin 3/8" wide by 2" long through slots through 1/4" thick Ipe. After about 200 slots the bit was pretty much toast. I finally ended up using a 4 flute end mill bit and probably cut 1200~1400 slots with it and it is still pretty darn sharp.

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On 22 Jul 2016 17:22:42 GMT, Puckdropper

You mean like 8mm?

Sounds like it would be worthwhile just for that.
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snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote in

Yes! Just because it's metric doesn't mean the darn thing has to have no decimal point. (I realize 8mm is awful close to 5/16".) Make it 6.35mm and be done with it.

Oh! I just remembered something important: Not all end mills can be plunged into the work. Those that can are called "center cutting". Be sure to look closely at the end before buying a whole bunch of them. Generally, 2 flute EMs will be center cutting.
Puckdropper
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On 23 Jul 2016 06:45:00 GMT, Puckdropper

Sorry, I meant to answer "why a third" with, "like 8mm?" 3/8" is a forth. ;-)

Wouldn't there have to be some sort of cutter over the end?
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snipped-for-privacy@attt.bizz wrote in
*snip&trim*

The ones I've seen that weren't center cutting (and this by far does not represent any meaningful percentage of the ones out there) were sharp on the ends to the point where the 4 flutes came together. At that point, it wasn't sharp. Those EMs could be ramped down into the work, but couldn't be plunged.
Puckdropper
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On 7/23/2016 9:01 PM, Puckdropper wrote:

I have used a flat bottom end mill, 4 flute, and only used it in a plunge situation. I had it mounted in the router table router and I plynged the wood down on top of the spinning bit. When it penetrated the top side of the Ipe a small hot disk came flying out.
I often wished I had one that was pointed on the end to make penetration a bit easier.
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On 24 Jul 2016 02:01:38 GMT, Puckdropper

I was wondering how those worked. IOW, they don't plunge (they aren't a drill).
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