drilling phenolic router plate - Router Forums
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 12:04 PM Thread Starter
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Default drilling phenolic router plate

Hi all,
I was just wondering what is the best type of bit to drill a phenolic router plate, or would a normal carbide tipped bit work well. And is there any special considerations to keep in mind while drilling?
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 12:23 PM
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Hi Biker

I just used a standard drill bit, like you get in those sets (nothing fancy). I found that if you first drill through with a small bit, that gives you the pilot hole to work with. Just be careful that the drill bit does not wander (use a sharp punch to start). Take the size drill bit that you want the hole to be and drill through half way on both sides to eliminate any chipping. Use a counter sink or counter bore to allow the head of the screw to sit flush on one side of the plate or a slight bit below. If you use a forstner bit in your drill press, keep a backer board under your plate and that might help the chipping also. I would not use a brad point bit, even though they are excellent, as you might tend to ruin them. I am sure other members will have their own versions of how to attack this also.

Joe Z.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 06-05-2008, 04:55 PM
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Hi italian biker

drilling into phenolic, it's funny stuff to drill, it's not like wood,plastic or metal it comes out in chips,,, I would suggest using stubby machine drill bits..

135 Quick-Cut point will not "walk" or "wander", Special heat treatment, results in cutting edges that remain sharp longer when drilling in tough materials...


http://www.amazon.com/Carrera-Titani.../dp/B000BMIGZ8
http://www.centurydrill.com/hss.html


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Quote:
Originally Posted by italian biker
Hi all,
I was just wondering what is the best type of bit to drill a phenolic router plate, or would a normal carbide tipped bit work well. And is there any special considerations to keep in mind while drilling?



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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-31-2009, 08:07 PM
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I thought I would bring this post up to page 1 to try and generate more tips.

Drill from the top of the plate (that will face up when the router is in the table) to the bottom (where the router will be attached) and use a good backing board that fits closely to the plate. That way, any chipping will be out of sight because it will be covered by the router.

What type of countersinks did you use? Mine left a bit of a "lip" in the phenolic that I filed down using a round file, but it it left some cosmetic chipping on the top of the plate. Perhaps a finer file or a touch-up with sandpaper would have left a smoother finish.

My router came with cap head bolts. Given the height of the cap head, it appears you should swap out the cap head bolts for flat head bolts to avoid drilling too deep into the phenolic plate.

I drilled my plate with a hand drill. A drill press probably would be better but is not necessary. In either case, drill slowly and carefully.

I have seen reference to bits made specially for drilling phenolic. If you can find them easily, it may be worth picking them up for a better cut.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-31-2009, 09:59 PM
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i just used a regular drill bit and it worked fine

try not to breathe the dust that comes off, that stuff has got to be toxic!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-31-2009, 11:14 PM
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I have installed many phenolic plates with no problems. I use a sharp HSS bit and drill from the back side. I flip the plate and countersink the holes. Done.

Mike
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 03-31-2009, 11:23 PM
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I double this Mike

Nicolas
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2009, 07:42 AM
 
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I'm glad someone bumped this. I'm about to drill my phenolic plate, and and glad to see the info.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 04-01-2009, 10:51 PM
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It is a good thing I have a "test" plate to work on. I found out I need flat head bolts to replace the cap head (half circle) bolts by finding that I had to drill the countersink holes too deep in the phenolic plate. This evening, I just figured out that I had the router base upside down when lining up the holes to drill. The bolt holes are fine, but the two holes I need to adjust the router from on top of the table are out of line because the router base was upside down - it needs to face the same way as it would face if still on the router with the router attached to the plate. This was an old, single hole plate that I planned on replacing anyway, so no harm but it was a learning experience.
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