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Well for Christmas everyone listened to me and gave me Visa gift cards. I am thinking of buying a bit set. My question is this: MLCS (which seems to be a popular brand amongst you veterans) has some sets available - http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/smarthtml/pages/set66.html and http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/smarthtml/pages/set30pc.html
I'm looking at the 66 piece set and wondering how often are some of those bits really used (understand that i am just starting off). Is it a good thing start off buying a set or should it be done piece mill ? Is the set the biggest bang for the buck ?? Should i be looking into another brand ? smalller set ?....etc.

Thanks
Ted
 

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If your interested in learning as well as having a wide variety of router bits, I find it better to buy one bit at a time.

Set up the individual router bits and then learn how to use that router bit with specific learning activities. My favorite router bits are the 1/4" round over, 1/4" Cove, 5/32 Roman Ogee bit, 1/2" dovetail bit, 3/8" rabbet bit, 1/2" flush trim router bit, and 1/4" spiral straight bit.

1) My first choice would be the 1/4" round over router bit...then learn to round over 1/2 of the blocks of wood in the shop then change the height of the router bit to show the profile line and cut the bead cut the other 1/2 of the blocks. Glue your favorite photos on a backing block and then learn to cut the bead around the edges and ends of the block(s)...its your first picture frame.

2) With the 1/4" cove bit learn to set up and cut the 1/4" cove. Using stop and start techniques cut the stop and start cove.

3) With the 5/32nd Roman Ogee bit learn to set up and cut the four router bits on this one bit. a) round over router bit, b) the cove bit, c) the bead bit, and d) the full Roman Ogee bit

4) With the 1/2" - 14 degree dovetail router bit cut the linear dovetail... Build a Book stand.

5) 3/8" Rabbet router bit is used to set up and cut the rabbet joint... Build a box

6) ½" Flush Trim router bit is used to cut patterns...Build your first pattern fixture.

7) 1/4" Spiral bit used to experience the spiral cut on... box joints, dados and grooves.

Just my thoughts on your first router bits.

PS: Look for our new website on router tips coming in January which will feature the learning activities that I have mentioned above.
 

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Look at the project you are about to construct then purchase the bit required to complete the job and buy good quality they will last longer with less troubles over the years. My Brand I purchase is 'Carb-I-Tool' and is avaiable over the net and should you have the 1/2" router then Purchase 1/2" cutters
Tom
 

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Dietz, you get what you pay for. While $3.33 per bit sounds great, I would consider buying one bit and seeing how it works for me. I bought a set from HD and was very unhappy and returned it. I tried one bit from Rockler and one from Woodcraft, pleased with the results from both. I tried a Whiteside bit and saw a big improvement in the quality of the cut, a much smoother finish. I agree with Rick & Tom; purchase the bit as you need it and learn before you invest. Worst case, you will have more cash to spend on materials for projects.

Mike
 

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dietz said:
Well for Christmas everyone listened to me and gave me Visa gift cards. I am thinking of buying a bit set. My question is this: MLCS (which seems to be a popular brand amongst you veterans) has some sets available - http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/smarthtml/pages/set66.html and http://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/smarthtml/pages/set30pc.html
I'm looking at the 66 piece set and wondering how often are some of those bits really used (understand that i am just starting off). Is it a good thing start off buying a set or should it be done piece mill ? Is the set the biggest bang for the buck ?? Should i be looking into another brand ? smalller set ?....etc.

Thanks

Ted
OK OK we all know that really good bits cost lots of money and that we all would like to use the best. Now if you are rich then just buy the best, if you are like me I just don't have the money to always buy the expensive one. Well I could buy them but then I do like to eat too.

I personal own the MLCS 15 piece set, I have used all the bits except for a panel bit they included. I got this set maybe three/four years ago and I am happy with it. Right now I think they have 10% off (til 12/31). They are not super high quality but they work and for a lot of the work I do they are good enough. (I would not go with the big sets unless you are sure there are bits in the set that you would need/want.)

I do get better quality bits for certain projects and get them as I need them rather then guessing what I might need in sets.

Now go and check out:
http://www.routerforums.com/showthread.php?p=4427
where we did this all before and see the rest of our comments from another day and also use the search function to find more information on "bits".

Ed
 

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Ted,

I have purchased a few of the regular bits from MLCS and find them good. If you want real good , look at Kanata bits also from MLCS. Much sharper, thicker carbide and only slightly higher priced. I too have never purchasd bit sets, but have purchased many individual bits. Remember the old argument that each time you buy a bit, you must get the router to go with it.
 
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