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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2010, 11:49 AM Thread Starter
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What shouldn't you rout? Besides the door and six cinder blocks that are my practice table.

Can I rout 3/4" ply wood? A friend told me not too. But then turned around and did just that.( He was make some shelves.)

Can I take the router and cut right through the middle of a board? From one end to the other all the way through the board?

Any words of wisdom will help.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2010, 01:52 PM
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Hi Rhonda and welcome. You can pretty much rout any wood. The problem with plywood and other "manmade" woods are they contain glues and contaminents (metal, glass, etc) that can dull a router bit fairly quickly.
You can certainly use a router to "cut through wood" as described above, but depending on the thickness of the wood, the size of the router bit and the router itself it could put undue stress on your router and even damage it or the bit. You have to use the router and router bits in accordance with the application you are attempting. There are large 3-4 horsepower routers that could probably use a 3/4 inch bit and cut through a 3/4" board without breaking a sweat. But you wouldn't want to try that with a trim router.
If you have an idea for a project, run it by the members here and I am sure they will be happy to give you any answers or wisdom you need.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2010, 03:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-30-2010, 03:33 PM
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Hi Rhonda

A 3 1/4 HP will plow right down a 3/4" thick plywood sheet, using the right bit is the key and getting the chips out of the way of the bit and out of the slot,most bits will pack the chips in the slot but plywood being one of the cheap man make woods it will walk right down the line easy but I would not suggest you do it all the time..plywood will dull the bit real quick unlike a power saw that is made to pull the chips out of the way and keep the heat down at the same time..heat will kill any cutting tool.. ..

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Originally Posted by hayu View Post
What shouldn't you rout? Besides the door and six cinder blocks that are my practice table.

Can I rout 3/4" ply wood? A friend told me not too. But then turned around and did just that.( He was make some shelves.)

Can I take the router and cut right through the middle of a board? From one end to the other all the way through the board?

Any words of wisdom will help.



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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2010, 08:55 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! I have a Sears special router of 1.5 hp. so I won't be butchering the plywood. Right now I'm turning some 2x4s into saw dust and fire wood.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2010, 11:05 AM
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IMHO, anything thicker than 3/8" should be taken in multiple passes.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2010, 01:17 PM
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Deb and Bob are dead-on that a 3+ HP router have the power to walk a 3/4" bit through a 3/4" piece of plywood in a single pass, but I do not recommend it as you're "pushing" safety "rules of thumb" and will not end up with a good cut.

The rule of thumb is that you should cut no deeper than the diameter of the bit. That is, a 1/4" bit should cut no more than 1/4" in a pass and 1/2", 1/2". This rule of thumb is intended to protect the bit from being broken off in the collet. Thus, to *complete* the rume it should be "cut no more than the smaller of the diameter of the bit and the bit shaft diameter." For many bits the cutter us equal or smaller than the shank so this isn't an issue and to be fair, this rule is intended to protect you when cutting hardwood but..

To get the best cut, I'd set the depth of the first cut to about 1/8" to shear the top with minimum chipout, then cut 1/2" to hog the meat, and make the final about 1/8" so the bottom chipout is minimized. Some will argue that spiral bits negate this and to some extent they do but the spirals I've seen are router shank diameter or smaller and expensive. For example, a 1/2" diameter Whiteside RU5100, 1" cutting length, sells for $40 to $50.

In any event, a circular saw blade will be far less expensive and waste less wood.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2010, 02:15 PM
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 05-01-2010, 03:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all!
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