Hello from Colorado! I have been searching the vast amount of knowledge here on this forum and all over the internet and I cant seem to find the direct answer i'm looking for.
I make knife racks, and I have previously been using my laser to engrave the area over/around the magnets where I "inlay" leather to cover them. The area I engrave is in the middle of the workpiece(hardwoods only) and usually around 12-14 inches wide by 2-3 inches tall and around 1/8" deep. The leather sits proud intentionally. The laser method works well, however, its extremely time consuming. I am trying to make my processes better and would like to router out the area instead.
I have looked at dado bits, mortise bits, bottom cleaning bits, spiral upcuts, and I just dont know which direction to go. The area i want routed will be shallow, and using templates and guide bushings, Id like to clean out the12X3X 1/8" deep area with clean sides and a clean, flat bottom for the leather to adhere to. The radius of the corners is not super tight, but I feel maybe I need to rout the outline with a thinner bit and then clean out the majority with a larger bit.
I hope I am clear in what I am hoping to accomplish, please let me know if you need more information to help give me information!
Infinity Cutting Tools makes some first-class router bits. One like this Mortise & Tenon Router Bits could be used with a template/jig that you make. Corners could be left round or squared up with a chisel. Just one of many potential solutions to your inquiry. Good luck, and be sure to share your final solution and some photos of the final products.
I would use the method that you have mentioned, templates and guides, make the necessary number of cuts using a suitable diameter straight bit, preferably a bottom cutter for the corners to allow a much larger bottom cutting bit to remove the rest of the material.
I'd suggest that you'd be best to use a spiral downcut bit for shallow mortising. The finish will be better than you can achieve with an upcut bit, particularly on any cross grain areas, and loads better than a more conventional two flute straight mortising bit. Have a look at the attached pic's. for a comparison. Spotted gum is a hard Australian eucalypt.
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