All about Router Bits - Part 1
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are one of the most versatile tools in the woodshop. Armed
with a good quality stationary or hand-held router and the
proper assortment of bits, you can perform a virtually unlimited
variety of specialized woodworking operations, including (believe
it or not):
workpieces to size or shape
out duplicate workpieces
decorative designs in workpiece surfaces
decorative designs on workpiece edges
a variety of joints
perform these operations, you will need a variety of different
shaped bits. More about these shapes later...but first, let's
look at some "bit basics".
bits are available in a variety of shapes and sizes, each
designed to perform a specific operation...but all sharing
three basic components. These components are:
SHANK - The part of the Bit that is gripped firmly
in your router's collet (or chuck). For the most part, bits
are available in 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2" diameter shanks. Most
hand-held routers use 1/4" shanks, although 3/8" and 1/2"
collets (or chucks) are available for many Router Models.
The larger the shank diameter, the more durable the bit
will be and the "truer" it will run under stress.
PILOT - The part of the bit that rides against the
edge of a workpiece to guide it while you're making your
cuts. More about Pilots in Part 2 of our series.
FLUTES - The part of the bit that actually performs
miss Part 2: Piloted vs. Un-Piloted Bits