Solid Pilot vs. Bearing

Other than the obvious (one moves, one doesn't), what are the differences between router bits with a solid pilot and those with a bearing? For instance, are they meant to be used at different speeds or for cutting different materials perhaps? The reason I ask is that I have a 1/4" round over bit with a solid pilot, and I can't figure out for the life of me how to not burn and/or gouge the wood I am trying to shape. I tried covering the area that the pilot rides on with tape, but that just made a gooey mess in addition to burning and gouging.
-John
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Does the burning happen at the pilot bearing? If so, get the one with the bearing pilot. Its purpose is to roll along the edge rather than spin against the edge. Neither type bearing will reduce burning where the cut is.
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Try vaseline. I've used the solid bits but don't really care for them (mostly because I have to use vaseline and it's messy). I prefer the bearing trimmers with a cuppla layers of masking tape to prevent burn through. YMMV. SH
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John wrote:>Other than the obvious (one moves, one doesn't), what are the

pilot. Tom Work at your leisure!
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The ones with solid pilots are for use in projects where you don't really care about the final appearance, because they gouge and burn. The ones with bearing-guided pilots are for everything else. :-)

You can't. Not with that bit, anyway. You need one with a bearing.

Yep, they'll do that.
-- Regards, Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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Thanks to everyone for the quick replys. I've already purchased a bit with a bearing, and it works great. The burning I was experiencing was just from the pilot - I think my feed speed was fast enough.
So from what I gather, there is no advantage whatsoever to the solid pilot bits? Also, just a quick question regarding the use of vaseline (or any other lubricant, I suppose) to avoid buring at the pilot - how would you get it (the lubricant) off something particularly porous such as oak?
-John
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Actually the smaller fixed pilot bearing does have its place. I have a 3/16 radius round over with a 1/8" fixed pilot and it works just fine. The diameter is small enough that it does not burn the wood when used with a light touch and decent feed rate. The advantage to a smaller pilot is that you can get in to tighter areas.
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wrote:

not quite true. there are some pattern and edge treatment bits that use solid bearings to make possible very small diameter pilots. typically they are only used for inside corners and tight curves. you'd likely have the same profile in a larger diameter bit in another router and switch back and forth.

probably you don't. static bearings work fine with lubricant (I use paste wax) for trimming formica type laminates, but raw wood will just soak up something like vaseline.
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Mineral spirits. SH
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"John Girouard" writes:

A solid pilot will burn every time out of the box.
Lew
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As far as I know solid pilot bits are more for use in trimming laminates or plastics. Regardless of what material you're working with you need to provide some sort of lubricant to prevent material burning.
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