Use Router after bit damage?


A bit worked loose out of my 1/4" router as it was going. Fortunately it didn't fly out, but it did tear up the wood quite a bit. Now I've clean up the router however I question the safetyness of it. Although bits fit in the collet and seem to tighten securly is the router safe to use after this mishap. I can see events where the bit seems secure and goes flying out again, this time with very dramatic results and a trip to the emergency room.
So can I use it safely or should I pitch it? TIA Just call me 'shorty'.
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Clean the shank and the collet thoroughly with acetone or alcohol. Insert it just about completely into the collet, and check it a lot whilst using, Shorty. Tom
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tom wrote:

I can't even keep my eyes focused on our ceiling fans, when they are on "high". :)
dave
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Dave wrote: Gee, I've never been able to focus too well on a bit turning 18,000 RPM. I can't even keep my eyes focused on our ceiling fans, when they are
on "high". :) That's why we were those glasses. At least our eyes will be protected. Tom
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Better put on a kevlar apron to protect your jewelery.
This was a concern when I built a router table. The front edge has a thick maple block on the underside to catch anything that might fly out from that direction. Of course, that protection isn't available if it somehow flys apart and the pieces exit across the top. Again, kevlar apron to the rescue.
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com wrote:

point, you have to presume that your tools are safe unless you have evidence to the contrary. Having a bit loosen up and tear up some wood isn't sufficient cause to pitch it. I had a kickback on my Makita 12" slider. I didn't pitch the blade. :)
Dave
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com said:

This is my opinion, other's may differ. If it is a quality bit, I would see no problem in using it if there was no damage to the carbide and the shaft wasn't damaged. Quality means a Whiteside, Amana, Bosch, etc. If is a no-name Chinese router bit - I'd toss it.
Keep in mind that the bit should not be totally inserted the full depth of the router shaft hole. This can result in the bit loosening itself over time. Make sure the collet is clean, and the shaft of the bit is clean. Insert fully, and retract 1/8" or so, then tighten the collet. Conversely, make sure you have it inserted far enough.
FWIW,
Greg G.
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com wrote:

Do you have any idea why this happened? If it was user error, such as not sufficiently tightened or not properly inserted, then that is correctable - don't do it a gain. If the bit has an undersized shank - chuck it, if the collet is worn - replace it. Is it an old router? Is it of good quality?
I always wonder to myself how do I know how much I should tighten the chuck. Anyone have any rules of thumb?
MB
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I had that happen and sold it on ebay. I am pretty sure I put it in properly, so if it happened once it can happen again. I wasn't so much worried about it flying out, as ruining another project. It happened to be a craftsman that is notorious for the problem; yours might not be.
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Sears Craftsman router? This was a common problem with those.
I did get a lot of use out of my 1/4" Craftsman router even though it did exhibit this automatic adjustment feature, but I also finally replaced the router because of it. You can minimize how often this occurs by keeping the collet clean, clean the shanks of your bits with alcohol before using them the first time, and by running a fine sandpaper around the shank from time to time. The sandpaper will roughen up the shank surface a bit and give it some tooth. That will help the otherwise weak collet design hold the bit more securely. You don't need to make the shank look like a hole rasp - just a slight abrasion is enough.
Beyond that - my only recommendation is to double check the bit height often during the time you're using the router, and don't push it too hard. I found that the harder I pushed the router, the more likely I was to suffer this automatic adjustment feature.
--

-Mike-
snipped-for-privacy@alltel.net
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Are you using a craftsman router by chance? They have had a lot of these types of problems. Search the archives http://groups.google.com/groups?hl=en&group=rec.woodworking using 'automatic random height adjustment' and you will get the idea.
Frank
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com wrote:

As otheres said, clean collet and use it. _______________

So the bit is spinning away at 18-25K rpm. What's going to happen if you had an "instant open" collet and opened it? Bit will drop straight down.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com wrote:

Just an FYI...
Down shear bits can be pulled down if you take too big a bite. Especially if it is a hard wood.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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wrote:

Apart from the other suggestions, check that this isn't a 6mm bit. They'll fit into a 1/4" collet, but they work loose or wobble at speed.
(I don't allow 6mm bits in the workshop - too easily confused)
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I make a motion that 6mm shank router bits be marked clearly and disposed of in shops where there are only 1/4 and 1/2" router chucks.
I have disposed of a few flea market bits and sets after getting home and having one escape my P.C. 690 VS. I thought it was my fault, maybe not tight enough. Then I tried to re-install the bit,after tightening, I could turn the bit with my bare hand while holding the collet with a wrench! I checked all of my bits with a drill gauge and threw away anything that didn't show a full 1/4". 3 or 4 bits did not measure up.
Be careful out there, Tom
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snipped-for-privacy@none.com wrote:

Like others have said, perhaps it is the "automatic random height adustment" feature of your router. My first router was a B&D 1/4 shank. It had this same feature when routing dovetails in maple. After examining the collet, I discovered the collet just had one slit in it. I assume the problem was than when you tighten down the collet nut, it has too hard of a time to squeeze the collet around the shank tightly. I ended up throwing away that router and getting a real router (PC). Examination of the collet on the PC showed that it has (I think) 4 staggered slits in it, much easier for the collet to squeeze down around the shank. Never had a random height adjustment problem since then.
Ken
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