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Wood finishing

Discussion in 'CNC Mills/Routers' started by ElRowlando, May 20, 2016.

  1. ElRowlando


    Mar 29, 2015
    Likes Received:
    I have a few questions about finishing a piece that was cut. I make monograms with my router, and after I'm done I have to spend a ton of time cleaning up all of the edges. I use a downcut spiral bit, so the top edge is already a lot cleaner than the bottom edge, so I know that a compression bit would probably work better, but I don't want to have to shell out that kind of money. I also saw a trick of using a downcut to begin with then an upcut for the final pass that cuts all the way through, so I may try that. But there is still going to be finishing that needs to be done. Basically I wanted to know if it's normal to have to sand down all of the edges or if I'm doing something wrong. I'm using an OX with a dewalt router. When I get home I'll post some pictures of the edges that I'm talking about.

    I was also wondering how many cuts people can do before having to get a new bit. I seem to be able to cut maybe 5-10 plywood monograms with one bit. I'm doing about 70ipm and roughly 16k rpm at 1/16th inch passes in 1/2" birch ply. I'm needing to do some more testing to see if I can go a bit deeper per pass with the same feed rate, but in the past I've noticed that it bogs down and tends to run off of the path and ruin the piece. I just feel like my machine is not as capable as other peoples, so maybe there is something wrong with the way I set it up. Thanks for any information!
  2. JustinTime

    JustinTime Master

    Dec 18, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Generally, the wisdom is to cut shallow passes at higher speed (inch per minute) rather than deep passes at lower speed. At higher speed (IPM) you can run the bit at higher speed (RPM) which is good since it will give a cleaner cut.
    If your RPM is too high the bit will get hot and its life will decrease. Keep the above principles but adjust the RPM to correct amount so that the bit will not get hot.

    My machine is far less stiff than the OX, I have a PhlatPrinter III, and I cut wood with it all the time. Hard wood too.

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