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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-16-2014, 07:10 AM Thread Starter
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Default Metric and Imperial Routing Bits

I live in England. Most of English measurements have now converted from Imperial to Metric. If I buy wood or steel or wire or tap fittings, they shall all be in metric.

My router is metric. It comes from Europe. I find my router satisfactory. It has good horsepower, it is easy to change bits and seems to be relatively accurate.

Realistically, if I buy router bits over the counter, they can only be bought in Imperial sizes. Obviously I can buy metric bits online, however quality tool stores such as Axminster, Derby Tool Supplies etc which I like shop at for for advice and help, simply only stock Imperial router bits. The same when I am in the USA at Rockler etc. I guess I would expect that when the USA is an Imperial measurement country.

In the post I made yesterday about Top Bearing Guided bits, I perhaps should have added that I shall have to borrow a friend's DeWalt for that task as I have only been able to buy Imperial bits - one in Rockler and one in Axminster.

Just thought I'd comment. Sorry if I'm in the wrong section of the Forum. I'm not safe in Rockler, my Wife would tell you!
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-16-2014, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by awhitecat View Post
I live in England. Most of English measurements have now converted from Imperial to Metric. If I buy wood or steel or wire or tap fittings, they shall all be in metric.

My router is metric. It comes from Europe. I find my router satisfactory. It has good horsepower, it is easy to change bits and seems to be relatively accurate.

Realistically, if I buy router bits over the counter, they can only be bought in Imperial sizes. Obviously I can buy metric bits online, however quality tool stores such as Axminster, Derby Tool Supplies etc which I like shop at for for advice and help, simply only stock Imperial router bits. The same when I am in the USA at Rockler etc. I guess I would expect that when the USA is an Imperial measurement country.

In the post I made yesterday about Top Bearing Guided bits, I perhaps should have added that I shall have to borrow a friend's DeWalt for that task as I have only been able to buy Imperial bits - one in Rockler and one in Axminster.

Just thought I'd comment. Sorry if I'm in the wrong section of the Forum. I'm not safe in Rockler, my Wife would tell you!
__________________________________________________ ___________________

This is a line copied from an Axminster page on their website: TCT cutters with either 6.3mm(1/4") or 12.7mm(1/2") shanks. Maybe you should look at their website again under.....Power Tools | Routers & Trimmers | Router Bits | Cutter Sets

IMHO
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-16-2014, 08:33 AM Thread Starter
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That is the problem, Julian. They have 1/4" or 1/2" shanks only. Great place Axminster, I love it in there!
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-16-2014, 10:03 AM
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Hi Mike

You say that your router comes from Europe and is metric. I have European routers (Bosch, Elu and deWalt) and they all have both metric and Imperial collets available. Same applies for other European brands, such as Felisatti. Freud, Metabo, Einheil, Scheer, etc. If you post the make and model of your router I'm certain that someone here will be able to help you source an Imperial collet

I agree with you about the availability of metric shank cutters - in mainland Europe 6mm, 8mm and 12mm are the standard sizes for portable routers with few (rare) places selling 1/4in or 1/2in shank cutters (the UK and Ireland standard sizes), but you can get some over the counter metric shank cutters - try a Trend or Titman stockist because both do a limited range of straight cutters (and some others) with metric shanks. For mail order I tend to go to Wealden Tool because over many years I've found their quality and service second to none. Good prices, too. They have a range of 8mm shank straight cutters which might be of interest to you.

As an aside I think the 8mm shank size in the UK goes back to Elu days - they always suppliedm (or made available) their smaller routers with 8mm collets. An 8mm shank is much stronger than a 1/4in one (60% more cross section area) which means that in the hands of ham-fisted tradesmen like me they are less likely to break! Profile cutters often take a much lighter cut, so there was less urgency to have 8mm shanks on them, and that's where things seem to have stuck

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Phil

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 12:18 AM
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I have straight bit cutters in 6, 8, 10, and 12mm I've purchased from Onsrud in the states. Onsrud are very high quality. I've seen one post at least by a CNC member stating that he was getting far better service from Onsrud bits than he had been getting from Amana.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 03:13 AM Thread Starter
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Default Trying different size collets

I must admit I haven't tried different size collets. I presume they are are available for metric routers. Up till now, i have only changed router bits not colletsDerby Tool Supplies (really good and almost equal to a Rockler outlet if more expensive!) specialise in Trend though they do have DeWalt and Bosch routers (they are a DeWalt Service Centre) and do not sell any metric shanked bits whatsoever. I asked at Axminster in Nuneton and got the "What the H___ do you want those for?!" type of replies.

I was just interested in asking why metric size shanks are realistically available only online in England.

I would love to do more routing and have a dedicated router table.

Just on another weird note, dado saw blades are either illegal or practically impossible to buy over the counter in England!
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 11:04 AM
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I have bushings to go from 1/2 down to the 6, 8, and 10s. I have to get a 12mm collet for those bits.

I have heard that some saws over there don't have a long enough spindle to mount dadoes on so getting a set from over here wouldn't help.Just as a by the way, I've been using a dado set for 30 years without ever having an incident of any type.

Someone I consider a master woodworker once told me that a master woodworker is not someone who never makes mistakes. He is someone who is able to cover them up so that no one can tell.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 11:16 AM
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Welcome to the nanny state, Mike.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 11:24 AM
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Default No Nanny State...Yet

!... Immigrate to Canada, Mike; we allow dado sets here.
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 11-17-2014, 01:15 PM Thread Starter
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Chuck and Van, you ought to have seen the look on the faces of Arlington Texas Rockler people when I mentioned that dado blades don't seem to exist and from what I can gather are not permitted in England! Yes, you are correct about the nanny state. Gets awful cold in Canada though!
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