What oil to use on router bearings???

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Forum topic by Bill White posted 03-05-2013 10:51 PM 12564 views 0 times favorited 54 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Bill White

5311 posts in 4879 days

03-05-2013 10:51 PM

I’ve been using a light weight general purpose oil for the bearings (mostly shielded), but was wonderin’ what you guys use. Seems like the high speed might require a different viscosity or type. Am I just worryin’ too much?

-- [email protected]

54 replies so far

View Handtooler's profile


1628 posts in 3051 days

#1 posted 03-05-2013 10:57 PM

As an advanced novice craftsman, and not knowing any better, I use 3-n-one sparingly and seldom. Not after every use.

-- Russell Pitner Hixson, TN 37343 [email protected]

View a1Jim's profile


118145 posts in 4496 days

#2 posted 03-05-2013 10:59 PM

View Kazooman's profile


1540 posts in 2871 days

#3 posted 03-05-2013 11:58 PM

I watched the first video and I have to say I was not impressed. I always get my hackles up when someone says “what you don’t understand” or similar words. I do understand router bits, and the guy in the video has some issues. He starts out OK, but then goes on to equate a round-over bit with a beading bit, claiming that you can just swap out the bearings and make a round-over bit into a beading bit The beading bit has the added duty of cutting s nice clean edge above the curve. Round-over bits are not designed to do this and they won’t do this. Slap a smaller bearing on a round-over bit and you will get a mess. Put the correct bearing on a beading bit and it is a round-over bit.

Didn’t notice anything about lube in the video. I have not watched the other one yet.

I would recommend a light weight oil and be certain that you are not using anything with silicone in it that might be a problem with finishing down the road. Oil the bearing and then wipe off any excess that does not seep in.

View a1Jim's profile


118145 posts in 4496 days

#4 posted 03-06-2013 12:17 AM

Here’s is “the guy’s” web site. “Charels Neil” Note the furniture he has made!
He has been a professional furniture maker for 30+ years,He teaches many classes all over the US ,He makes 40 major pieces of furniture a year, teaches classes on line and has dozens of Videos on woodworking an finishing,an has written a book on finishing. There is a good chance that he might just know a little something about woodworking and how router bits work !


View Handtooler's profile


1628 posts in 3051 days

#5 posted 03-06-2013 12:28 AM

+1 a1Jim Boy, is Charles ever helpful. He spent four extremely helpful and trying attempts for me to correct white cup and glass rings from a table that was recovered from a cafe/bar that had closed. His last piece of advice did the trick. I didn’t have to strip the table as he advised not to, since it was an heirloom sample of furniture well worth saving. Man, do I ever admire that person. He’s an accomplished woodworker of the highest level.

-- Russell Pitner Hixson, TN 37343 [email protected]

View a1Jim's profile


118145 posts in 4496 days

#6 posted 03-06-2013 12:34 AM

I confess I just read the google description that included router bit lube in it. But Charles did mention there was router lube in the kit. I guess I owe you 3 minutes :))


View Kazooman's profile


1540 posts in 2871 days

#7 posted 03-06-2013 12:45 AM

a!jim and handtooler: I didn’t go to the website, since I am certain that he has made a ton of impressive stuff, otherwise Woodcraft wouldn’t have made the video. However, that does not excuse him from providing erroneous information to novice woodworkers in the form of a Woodcraft video. What he said is BS. The guy comes across as a “know it all” A-hole. Perhaps he does “know it all” but if he continues to record videos with misinformation then he is not doing the community any favors.

I don’t “know it all” but I do know a few things and I know that this “A-hole” is wrong. Such a condescending attitude!

View GaryL's profile


1099 posts in 3749 days

#8 posted 03-06-2013 01:07 AM

Easy with the name calling… If you don’t agree with Charles, fine. You don’t have to jump off a cliff about it.
Oh and by the way….I’ve changed bearing sizes on “round over bits” many times to get a shoulder, i.e. bead, with no problem at all and vice versa with beading bits. I’m sure every manufacturer does not make their bits identical to each others, so maybe yours won’t do this, but many will.

This is a typical roundover bit. If you look at it there is no reason that a smaller bearing could be installed and achieve a bead. Most carbides are sharpened far enough in. Just the opposite to get a roundover from a bead.

Bill….sorry about that, we’re a little off topic. Myself I have never lubed a router bearing and have never burned one up or had one go bad. I have used many bits and probably have 70 to 80 on hand right now (some are wore out and should be pitched or sharpened…tool hoarder confession). I’m sure A1Jim has his fair share too as well as Charles. Even though I don’t treat my bearings properly, I’m sure lubing won’t hurt.

A1Jim…I do enjoy watching Charles videos but I have to agree with James. He does tend to drag things out a bit.

-- Gary; Marysville, MI...Involve your children in your projects as much as possible, the return is priceless.

View juniorjock's profile


1930 posts in 4684 days

#9 posted 03-06-2013 01:22 AM

Oh hell no…........... you don’t know what you’re dealing with . . . . . . . . .

View Tony_S's profile


1362 posts in 4002 days

#10 posted 03-06-2013 01:38 AM

Sorry for continuing the derail…

The info that Charles Neil gave on the round over/beading bit is 100% correct.
Ive used numerous different brand names over the years, Velepec, Dimar, Whiteside, Freud and probably 2 or 3 more that I don’t recall the brand names of. No issues with putting smaller bearings on any of them to cut a bead.

Freud even suggests/recommends it on their website.

Like Charles Neil or not…you owe him an apology.

-- “Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.” – Plato

View a1Jim's profile


118145 posts in 4496 days

#11 posted 03-06-2013 01:41 AM

What he said was correct ,I’ve done it myself.Perhaps if you watch it again you might understand it better.I guess how people come across to us might be a reflection of how we view people in general . Your entitled to your opinion and I mine. Charles is very knowledgeable and kind and giving person,He helps anyone that emails him with questions with out asking for anything in return (like Handtooler),he has built the things of beauty an auctioned them off to send the proceeds to people in need.There are many other things I could list that would only embarrass him.
So I guess it’s up them who know him and others to evaluate who the A-hole is.

Charles is from the south and is what I call down home folks (real people) His delivery is just who he is. I have no problem with it. This might be a generational thing or a regional thing. One thing I know is he is more knowledgeable than any of the faster talking TV or on line woodworking personalities .

Bill I’m sorry for high jacking your thread. I will not post anymore on this thread.


View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 4227 days

#12 posted 03-06-2013 01:58 AM

I have also changed bearings on a roundover bit numerous times to achieve beading..
I use a lightweight oil on bearings to lube them…everything from router bearings to thrust and guide bearings on my bandsaw. whenever I clean bearings to remove pitch or crud and then lube them after soaking with acetone.

View ward63's profile


363 posts in 4006 days

#13 posted 03-06-2013 02:15 AM

I’ve used graphite in the past and it has worked great.

View Dallas's profile


3599 posts in 3406 days

#14 posted 03-06-2013 02:46 AM

Bear fat.

-- Improvise.... Adapt...... Overcome!

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3609 days

#15 posted 03-06-2013 02:48 AM

I soak all my router bits in “Bug and Tar Remover” from the auto parts store to keep them clean. This also seems to keep the bearings well lubricated.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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