Worktop router bits. Cheap or expensive ones?


Is it worth buying the cheaper router bits if I am cutting just one joint with them?
Am thinking of picking some cheap ones up on ebay, but wondered whether they will f**k up my work surface or not?
Anyone had any experience of using the cheap brands like Marksman, Blackspur or Silverline?
--
Cordless Crazy

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While I have never used those router bits I have used some Tool Shop bits my brother-in-law got me with mixed results. They worked OK, but I will not be buying anymore more of them. If you are spending a lot of money and time on a project I would hate to ruine it with a cheap bit.
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Is it an important joint? Do you really need it to be smooth for a glue surface? If it's not a big deal and you don't mind sanding after you rout to smooth it off, or if you're painting over exposed routed surfaces, el cheapos are OK. I have friends who use those exclusively, and they are functional. On the other hand, if you're only buying one or two bits, why not spend an extra few bucks to get something from MLCS? Good prices ($8-15 each for basic bits), decent quality, and free shipping on everything (to the US). Not top of the line like you'd get from $30-50 per bit brands like Amana or CMT, but definitely several steps above the $1/bit ebay specials. I've used all three of these "levels" of bits, and for my occasional hobby use, I've found MLCS is usually a good balance between price and quality. mlcswoodworking.com Hope this helps, Andy
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Typically cheap bits don't last. For a one or two time need I would go cheap. If you use it often, replace it with a quality bit.
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On Mon, 6 Feb 2006 16:10:12 +0000, Cordless Crazy

I just don't think its worth the money to buy a cheap router bit. If you give safety a thought you can justify buying at least a well-known brand--even Craftsman is okay.
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There is cheap, and there is cheap. I wouldn't get near anything I bought on Ebay when it was doing 22,000 rpm.
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Really? That's too bad. I've bought a lot of good stuff off of Ebay. I presume you have some evidence that Ebay purchases are junk? Or is it just that you wanted to do the wreck thing and make a nebulous statement about something doing 22,000 rpm. Nah - it must be the former because the latter would only have made you look foolish.
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There are CMT, Whiteside, Freud and many other top quality bits that I would not get near when spinning 22,000 rpm either.
I have has more supposedly good quality bits come apart than the cheap ones.
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Leon wrote:

Come apart? Do I need to wear any armor when i start routing?
--
Thank you,



"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
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You do not want to spin large bits much over 15,000 rpm. I have had chunks of carbide come off of Freud bits with no apparent reason.
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Could that be because you just don't use cheap bits? :)

ones.
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LOL. I have some cheepies that I have had for 20 plus years and I still use them. And speaking of CHEAP, I bought a set of B&D about 28 years ago that had interchangeable cutters. The cutters were stamped steel and fit in a slot on the shank. The pilot screwed on to the shank and tightened the forked shank on to the cutter. Those bits never failed. LOL. I have an Amana 1/8" radius round over that is about to spin the bearing and it is not too old.
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My set is off ebay.. The 1/4" didn't live long.
The Roman Ogee bit is pretty decent, made a nice edge on cherry.
The straight bit and the dovetail bit both fuzz.
That is what I find in the cheap bits, is fuzzing at the uncut edge. You then have to spend time getting rid of the fuzz, which means chisel or sandpaper, either of which can take a while to fix.
I think it is woodcraft that does a whiteside bit a month on sale.
Alan
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I've bought and used some of the $5 bit from Woodcraft. For the money, they are darned good. No, they are not as good as a $25 bit with a brand name.
Depends on the use. I never recommend cheap tools, but if all you ever plan to do is cut a few feet of wood with that profile, , I'd give it a try. Cut some scrap wood first to be sure there is no major problem and if acceptable, go ahead with the good wood.
For bits I'm planning to use on a more regular basis, they are Infinity, Whiteside, etc.
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On Mon, 6 Feb 2006 16:10:12 +0000, Cordless Crazy

If your talking about straight cutting bits, look for 1/2 inch end mills for metal working machines. They work great on wood routers, usually high quality and very cheap to buy.
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