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How deep to set router bit.

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Forum topic by dummy posted 06-05-2018 09:02 PM 955 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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dummy

5 posts in 409 days


06-05-2018 09:02 PM

I got a Porter Cable dovetail jig and Bosch router with a plunge base. Strictly following the instructions for through dovetails for a regular thickness 4/4 board as for setting bit depth my bit is set seemingly too shallow. When the router is plunged to the very end the drill bits does not reach the required depth unless I set it to some less than 3/4” in the collet. Is it normal or too dangerous ?


14 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

10477 posts in 4066 days


#1 posted 06-05-2018 09:29 PM

Your depth stop turret isn’t interfering with
plunging to full depth is it?

I suppose some dovetail bits are shorter than
others. I’ve never thought about it much.

You can pull out your collet and see. I think
best practice is to have the bit shank completely
inside the cone, but if it’s extending further than
that that into the hollow shaft you wouldn’t
gain any gripping power from that. You can
put a mark or a rubber o-ring on the bit shank
to remind yourself how deep to insert it.

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3115 posts in 2591 days


#2 posted 06-05-2018 09:38 PM

Get a router without the plunge base.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

9950 posts in 1557 days


#3 posted 06-06-2018 04:13 PM

If you’re using a Bosch router with the stupid little adapter to use the template bushings, buy a new baseplate. That pressed piece that locks into the base plate is far too sloppy to use with a dovetail jig. I bought the adapter, snapped it in and it had at least 3/32” of movement in it. Ridiculous. Returned it immediately and ordered a new plate.

(This ^ has nothing to do with the depth issue, just wanted to point it out since I’ve recently experienced it)

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View Dustin's profile

Dustin

689 posts in 1159 days


#4 posted 06-06-2018 04:16 PM



If you re using a Bosch router with the stupid little adapter to use the template bushings, buy a new baseplate. That pressed piece that locks into the base plate is far too sloppy to use with a dovetail jig. I bought the adapter, snapped it in and it had at least 3/32” of movement in it. Ridiculous. Returned it immediately and ordered a new plate.

(This ^ has nothing to do with the depth issue, just wanted to point it out since I ve recently experienced it)

- HokieKen

Yikes! Out of curiosity, what Bosch model was it? I’ve been using the collar adapter on my 1617 for a few years with no play issues. Maybe you got a lemon?

-- "Ladies, if your husband says he'll get to it, he'll get to it. No need to remind him about it every 6 months."

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

9950 posts in 1557 days


#5 posted 06-06-2018 04:26 PM


If you re using a Bosch router with the stupid little adapter to use the template bushings, buy a new baseplate. That pressed piece that locks into the base plate is far too sloppy to use with a dovetail jig. I bought the adapter, snapped it in and it had at least 3/32” of movement in it. Ridiculous. Returned it immediately and ordered a new plate.

(This ^ has nothing to do with the depth issue, just wanted to point it out since I ve recently experienced it)

- HokieKen

Yikes! Out of curiosity, what Bosch model was it? I ve been using the collar adapter on my 1617 for a few years with no play issues. Maybe you got a lemon?

- Dustin

Well… maybe I did? I just bought the 1617 recently specifically to use for inlays. AFTER I got the router, I found out it didn’t accept the bushing for my inlay kit. Grrrrr. So I ordered this adapter/bushing kit. Maybe mine was a lemon. I’d suggest anyone using it just give it a wiggle by hand. The slop in mine was VERY noticable.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View dummy's profile

dummy

5 posts in 409 days


#6 posted 06-06-2018 11:01 PM



Get a router without the plunge base.

- johnstoneb


Does fixed base let you go deeper than the plunge base ?

View Rich's profile

Rich

4555 posts in 1008 days


#7 posted 06-06-2018 11:36 PM

Get a router without the plunge base.

- johnstoneb

Does fixed base let you go deeper than the plunge base ?

- dummy

LOL, no. You’ll be much better off with a plunge router because you can adjust your dovetail fit more accurately.

Here’s a tip, get a set of feeler gauges at the auto parts store. You can use those to adjust your cutting depth by just a few thousandths by getting the depth close and then dropping the depth stop. If you need to go deeper, pick the gauge thickness you want, and use it to space the stop and tighten the stop in place. Then when you remove it, the cut will plunge deeper by the thickness of the gauge. If you want to go shallower, set the stop and tighten it, then raise the router and plunge it again with the gauge in place. Lock the router depth, remove the feeler gauge and then reset the stop and tighten it. Play around with that and you’ll save yourself a lot of frustration chasing the dovetail fit.

You don’t mention by how much the bit depth fails to reach the bottom of the board, but I can’t imagine it’s much. Even if it’s an 1/8” go ahead and drop the bit enough to make the cut. Even 1/2” in the collet is enough to hold the bit snugly.

-- Knowledge is not skill. Knowledge plus ten thousand times is skill. -- Shinichi Suzuki

View dummy's profile

dummy

5 posts in 409 days


#8 posted 06-08-2018 04:51 PM

^^^
The fixed base has a fine dial and does not need freaking feeler gauges and can be set more accurately than what the P&C dovetail jig requires.
My problem is not accuracy but seemingly short bit.
I will try to unscrew the fixed base from the router table and try with that. Thanks for the suggestion.

View LesB's profile

LesB

2126 posts in 3862 days


#9 posted 06-08-2018 05:20 PM

Lots of varied answers, some not particularly to the point.
The bit must be fully held by the collet to be secure so 3/4” is a close to minimal, especially if there will be a lot of stress on the bit as it cuts….ie hard wood or small 1/4” shank or a large size dovetail bit (over 1/2”).

On the other end you should not bottom out the shank of the bit because The collet is compressed and pulled down during the tightening process and also the hole is the armature is usually not square at the bottom so the collet will not be properly seated and tightened. This will cause the bit to work loose during use.

-- Les B, Oregon

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

3115 posts in 2591 days


#10 posted 06-08-2018 05:33 PM

I use PC and Dewalt fixed base routers in my PC dovetail jig with no problem on depth. Put the bit in pullit back up a little so it’s not bottomed out in the chuck tighten it up and set the depth. I’ve never had a problem not being able to det depth.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Rich's profile

Rich

4555 posts in 1008 days


#11 posted 06-08-2018 06:32 PM


^^^
The fixed base has a fine dial and does not need freaking feeler gauges and can be set more accurately than what the P&C dovetail jig requires.
My problem is not accuracy but seemingly short bit.
I will try to unscrew the fixed base from the router table and try with that. Thanks for the suggestion.

- dummy

Huh? Your OP said it was a plunge base. Now it’s fixed? And has a dial? You sure picked an appropriate username. LOL

-- Knowledge is not skill. Knowledge plus ten thousand times is skill. -- Shinichi Suzuki

View woodbutcherbynight's profile

woodbutcherbynight

5966 posts in 2828 days


#12 posted 06-10-2018 02:01 AM

I have had this issue and did this to make the bit stick out more without having a open gap under the bit. Put a BB in the bottom then set the bit until it touches the BB. Tighten and that should drop the bit lower by at least 1/8 inch and still be bottomed out so to speak.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View dummy's profile

dummy

5 posts in 409 days


#13 posted 06-10-2018 10:55 PM


^^^
The fixed base has a fine dial and does not need freaking feeler gauges and can be set more accurately than what the P&C dovetail jig requires.
My problem is not accuracy but seemingly short bit.
I will try to unscrew the fixed base from the router table and try with that. Thanks for the suggestion.

- dummy

Huh? Your OP said it was a plunge base. Now it s fixed? And has a dial? You sure picked an appropriate username. LOL

- Rich


I have both: plunged base for hand routing and fixed base ( which does have a dial) that is stays in the routing table. Thank you for being helpful.

View bandit571's profile

bandit571

23176 posts in 3102 days


#14 posted 06-11-2018 08:20 PM

IF you look where the shaft of the router bit meets the cutter part of the bit, you will see a “flared” out part of the shaft. Keep that out of the collet. Push the bit in as far as you like, then retract it about an 1/8”.

Some Dovetail jigs will have a depth setting jig built into the side of the jig. Where you can preset the depth of the cut. Once the template is clamped down onto the stock, then you set the depth of the cut on the router, using the called for jig. Some have 3 different settings, depending on the size of the bit being used, and the type of dovetail needed cut. At least there was on the old Delta 4210 I had…

On the turret on the plunge base…there is a shaft you adjust. When you then plunge the router down, that shaft will hit the “stops” on the turret….stopping the plunge at that depth. Moving the shaft up or down will change the depth settings.

Anything else?

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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