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Tip #174
All about Router Bits - Part 3
Router Bit Materials

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Router bits are available in three types of materials, and should be selected on the basis of the amount of use they're expected to receive and the types of materials they're intended to cut.

High-Speed Steel Bits are the least costly and are intended for occasional use only...or for working with soft woods such as pine, redwood, basswood, poplar, etc. They will deliver limited use before sharpening is required.

Carbide-Tipped Bits have become the most commonly available of all bits. They are typically made by fusing carbide cutting flutes to a high-speed steel shank.

Use them when working with hard woods such as oak, cherry, and hard maple...and for solid counter surface materials such as Corian, laminates, particleboard and MDF. They are more expensive than high-speed steel bits, but provided extended use and durability before sharpening is necessary

Solid Carbide Bits are the most costly of all available bits. However, they're also the most durable and are usually available only in simple, straight profiles.

Don't miss Part 4: Grooving & Panel-Cutting Router Bit Profiles

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