Onna 'count of the composition (impregnated paper or cloth)
I'm thinking bad idea that might end up with a damaged
machine and some shattered phenolic. Actually, I think with
carbide knives it "maybe" "might" work.
On the other hand, what about a rabbeting bit with a bearing
and just rabbet the outside edge to the thickness
Be sure to install your starting pin on the routering table
before using bits with bearings and no fence.
Or, on my saw there are tabs where the insert sits. You
could use a flat bottom bit (Forstner or multi-spur) and
machine down the areas that make contact with the saw.
Never tried it in a planer but done everything you can imagine to it in a
milling machine. It machines just fine but it is extremely abrasive. It will
trash your blades in no time and the dust will accelerate wear on your
planer. I have done enough of this stuff at work that I won't consider doing
any of it at home. You couldn't give me a piece of phenolic.
Instead of phenolic you might want to consider UHMW (Ultra High
Molecular Weight) plastic for your zero clearance insert. It's self
lubricating and works much like wood. I think that would be a better
If you do decide to use a phenolic material be sure to wear a mask as
it will probably create a LOT of harmful dust (paper or glass or
fabric plus resin) when run through the planer. UHMW should create
more shavings than dust when run through the planer.
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