I want to buy the premade oak stair treads (steps) and use a half inch
router to smooth the edges, will this work? The front part of the
tread is already rounded but my customer wants the sides rounded too.
People told me the router will burn the wood because oak is hard, is
there a trick to rounding without burning?
I have an oak desk and the router sits on top of it. So far, it has not
burned it at all. Where the router connects to the computer there is plenty
of space for ventilation. If you mount the router on the stairs, be sure
the is out of the way so no one trips on it.
I used a router on an oak once - I wasn't able to cut it down at all, one
heck of a big oak. I coverid it in gasoline just to soften the wood up and
then started the router back up and damn if it didn't burn it. I stay away
from oaks with my router now. I only use it on small poplars and an
| I want to buy the premade oak stair treads (steps) and use a half inch
| router to smooth the edges, will this work? The front part of the
| tread is already rounded but my customer wants the sides rounded too.
| People told me the router will burn the wood because oak is hard, is
| there a trick to rounding without burning?
Use a carbide tipped router bit or you probably will burn your stock.
Carbide is needed to prevent burning? Would you care to elaborate on that? Of
course you realize that, although it will hold an edge longer, carbide is more
difficult to sharpen, and HSS bits will often take a better edge. That at one
point, having trouble with some burning on a particular piece of cherry, I
switched from carbide to a freshly sharpened HSS bit and eliminated the
burning. And you know that the combination of speed, feed rate and depth of
cut will have the greatest influence on burning. So, given that, what's your
point on carbide?
| >| I want to buy the premade oak stair treads (steps) and use a half inch
| >| router to smooth the edges, will this work? The front part of the
| >| tread is already rounded but my customer wants the sides rounded too.
| >| People told me the router will burn the wood because oak is hard, is
| >| there a trick to rounding without burning?
| >Use a carbide tipped router bit or you probably will burn your stock.
As you said "although it (carbide) will hold an edge longer". Experience has
shown me that HSS may be as sharp as carbide, but one doesn't rout hardwood
long before the bit is dull and you're burning your stock. To me, with all
other things be equal, the longevity of a carbide edge makes it my choice
for router bits. Carbide tipped saw blades have almost completely replaced
un-tipped saw blades as the blades of choice in almost all saws today for
the same reason.
Firstly, I suggest that there are no rules that always apply. One obvious
variable is the amount of routing you intend to do. In general, I've heard it
said that carbide lasts about 5x HSS. On the other hand, I can route hardwood
for several projects with HSS before it begins to get dull, which is a bit
different than what you've seen. I've got a few HSS bits that I use to hog out
MDF and particleboard, which also more quickly dulls carbide, but these same
bits have been used for maybe twenty years now. There are also cheaper carbide
bits that will tend to chip out much sooner, and they also have a place for
some projects where they're maybe 1/4 the cost but get the job done. For saw
blades, if you mean circular saws, I won't argue that one since sharpening a
HSS saw blade takes quite awhile. Overall, most of my router bits are of a
quality carbide, but the others have a use as well.
I suggest that the original poster subscribe to the rec.woodworking newsgroup and
post the question there. Those guys have oodles of experience with routers on almost
any type of wood. For a newbie, they will try to help out.
Exactly the same? I'm not talking about a 600 grit touch up here. You may also
get chip-outs in carbide, which can't be fixed. I've taken old and badly
burned HSS bit and fixed them good as new. And yes, I have touched up carbide,
and most of my bits are carbide. I've even ground specific profiles on HSS.
On 23 Sep 2004 00:45:49 -0700, email@example.com (ississauga)
Oak routs fine. Some is a bit hard and splintery, so watch out for
splitting on end grain and use a spelch plate (bit of scrap clamped to
the end of the cut).
If it's burning, turn the speed down and the feed rate up.
No "trick" really, just good routing practices:
1) Keep your cut depth shallow. Don't try to take off too much wood in one
pass. Remember that, with a roundover bit like you'll be using, as you lower
the bit, each pass takes off a lot more wood than the previous pass. So for
your first pass, you might be able to lower the bit as much as 1/8" -- but for
the second and third passes, no more than 1/16", and for subsequent passes,
you should probably limit it to 1/32".
2) Keep the router moving fairly quickly. If you move it too slowly, the wood
Doug Miller (alphageek-at-milmac-dot-com)
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Well the "front part" of the tread is already round, and you want to do the
sides, which are end-grain. End grain tends to burn easier anyway. Like
other people said, take little bites, don't stop in one place, and keep a
constant feed rate. The other thing you might want to think about is if
someone you know has a shaper. Sometimes shaper cutters move at a slower rpm
and have more cutting surfaces. That might keep things cooler.
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