Router bit for making a sign - Router Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2015, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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Default Router bit for making a sign

Hi, novice router guy here. I can make 3d printed templates for guide bearing pattern bits but I am wondering if I can print out a lettering template and use it for some type of sign making.

I ask b/c I don't see v cut bits with guide bearings, but maybe the shank/shaft of the bit can still guide well enough on a template?

Also, what type of router bit should I use to make the siign? angle of cutter, etc?


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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2015, 06:46 PM
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There is no set rule of which bit to use to make a sign. It all depends on the finished product you seek. Your question is wide open. What material will you use? What thickness? Will it be painted, sanded, shaped, bent, laminated, etc.? What font? What size? What depth? Recessed or protruding text? Chamfered? Rounded edges? Hollow (requiring some stencil configuration)?

Sign making is an art all its own. The letters can be any configuration you desire, as long as you have the tools and the ability to achieve the final product.

I don't understand why you would 3D print a template for lettering though. That seems like an awful lot of work unless you are going to make hundreds of signs with the exact same templates.

Can you post an example of the type of sign you want to make?
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2015, 07:29 PM
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There are lots of commercial letter template sets out there that generally use tape to attach them to the piece you're working on. Many of the sign makers here use a trim router for this purpose with either a fairly pointed bit or one that is more rounded. If you are doing some fine letters you might want to have a small straight bit to keep the depth the same as the wider parts of a font.

Depth of cut is another factor since you have to fit the bit into the template. If you use a trim router, like the Bosch Colt or the Makita or DeWalt, you will be using quarter inch shanks, not half inch. You will find that there are some replacement bases with double handles on them to help you control the direction. Here's one from Amazon:
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2015, 08:20 PM
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You can buy bearings to put on the bits shank but a better choice is to use guide bushings. This way you are not limited to the depth you can cut or the bit style.

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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-07-2015, 08:48 PM
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What Mike said, although bushings also have a downside in that you need to accommodate the bit/bushing offset in the template.
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