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I am looking to get into using lock miter joints and was wondering if anyone uses the MLCS lock mitre bits?
 

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MCLS bits are good and are mostly asian made. MCLS also owns Eagle America and they are mostly US made. The difference is price and quality. If you are going to make a couple drawers then get the MCLS. If you are going to make hundreds then get the Eagle America or Infinity.

As stated by by Steve get the setup block. Setting up a perfect 45 degree lock miter is exhausting. The gauge makes set up fast with only a little tuning.

The trick to making drawers with the lock meter is you need a gig to hold the parts vertical and square to the fence and table. They make commercial jigs or you can make one your self . Whichever jig you choose use it. Trying to free hand a drawer side vertically through a router can make you grow old quick.

Check out this link https://www.infinitytools.com/blog/2013/05/17/set-up-lock-miter-router-bit/ for setup instructions.

Warning 45 degree miter lock bits are fussy to set up perfectly.

Good Luck
 

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Sorry I pushed post too quick. Look at this site as well for setting up lock miter bits.

https://www.popularwoodworking.com/projects/lock-miters/

The key is in the picture, if the joint is set up right it will look like this. The bit is adjusted just right and the fence is adjusted just right. To achieve this without the set up gauge to get you in the ball park will take a long time to trial and error your setup.
 

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Infinity also has a setup jig that is a tiny piece of aluminum. It has a mark to line up with a certain spot on the bit. Find a safe home for this tiny jig because it's really easy to lose. There are two jigs, depending on the size bit you're using.
 

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+1 on the infinty set up jigs.
 
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I've got a few as I was trying to use these on 1/2" plywood drawers. It was a mess and most likely due to the quality of the plywood. I also bought a Whiteside after not doing so well with the Infinity bit. I don't have a local source for Baltic Birch plywood and expect my results would have been different if I had. Using these bits on solid wood was much better and I've resolved myself to using hardwoods for my drawers going forward. Quality plywood is just too hard to get at home. There is a wood supplier about an hour away but they have very restrictive hours for the hobbyist and I think they sell 5x5 sheets. I really need to get down there and check them out. Company called Wurth Wood Group> I don't know a thing about them or what their pricing is like but it sounds like it might have to be a journey made.
 

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Mlcs has great bits and I use them all the time. As mentioned if you plan on doing hundreds of drawers then maybe you should be looking at other brands. But if you are a typical woodworker then they are all you will ever need. Having said that, unless you are a glutton for punishment I would stay away from the lock miter bits. In the time it takes to set the bit up you could build the entire drawer using traditional methods. It won't make the drawer any stronger and you will still need to make other cuts or the bottom. in addition the sides will have to be thicker which doesn't necessarily make them look better.
 

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I've got a few as I was trying to use these on 1/2" plywood drawers. It was a mess and most likely due to the quality of the plywood. I also bought a Whiteside after not doing so well with the Infinity bit. I don't have a local source for Baltic Birch plywood and expect my results would have been different if I had. Using these bits on solid wood was much better and I've resolved myself to using hardwoods for my drawers going forward. Quality plywood is just too hard to get at home. There is a wood supplier about an hour away but they have very restrictive hours for the hobbyist and I think they sell 5x5 sheets. I really need to get down there and check them out. Company called Wurth Wood Group> I don't know a thing about them or what their pricing is like but it sounds like it might have to be a journey made.
I have them cut the sheets into 3'X5', and 2'X5' to get into my van, besides I can't handle a 5'X5'
@mgmine , I am with you the first time I used the lock miter bit, I must have use a whole sheet of plywood scraps trying to get it right, then gave up. I would recommend a Drawerlock bit myself.
Herb
 

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I wonder if the manufacturer noticed that the joint pictured in the top illustration is impossible to make Herb? At least with the bit shown and if only using one bit.
 

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I'll probably get accused of talking outg of turn but what the heck, I am know for doins gos,

In my ipinion and experience, llthe only people that use set up blocks and/or gauges are those that don't know how to set the bit mathematically.

Now, I'm the first to say that such a statement is a bit arrogant and most people will wonder why I would make such a statement.

There is a god reason for this and this that due to my poor vision along with my desire tmaster the set up. I had to do some work that other's with normal vision wold probably never try to do.

In doing so I found out how to do the set up for any thickness of stock using only my dial calipers and some very simple math.

If anyboy just happens to wonder what I'm talking about, I'll gladly explain it again as I have done so in the past on this forum.

The odds are almost zero that anybody will ever need to use the things that I learned in my quest to do the up the way that I do it.

It's just my nature, as many of the members will attest to, to always try to re-invent the wheel, but when one is handii capped one has to find way to work around such issues.

Now llthat I hve written what I have, I need to akd for forgiveness for being so arrogant.

Jerry
 

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If reinventing the wheel is what floats your boat, well keep on rowing brother!!!!

Given your circumstance down there in Texas, the fact that you are willing to pursue an alternative that works
for you and then share the adventure is admirable.



I'll probably get accused of talking outg of turn but what the heck, I am know for doins gos,

In my ipinion and experience, llthe only people that use set up blocks and/or gauges are those that don't know how to set the bit mathematically.

Now, I'm the first to say that such a statement is a bit arrogant and most people will wonder why I would make such a statement.

There is a god reason for this and this that due to my poor vision along with my desire tmaster the set up. I had to do some work that other's with normal vision wold probably never try to do.

In doing so I found out how to do the set up for any thickness of stock using only my dial calipers and some very simple math.

If anyboy just happens to wonder what I'm talking about, I'll gladly explain it again as I have done so in the past on this forum.

The odds are almost zero that anybody will ever need to use the things that I learned in my quest to do the up the way that I do it.

It's just my nature, as many of the members will attest to, to always try to re-invent the wheel, but when one is handii capped one has to find way to work around such issues.

Now llthat I hve written what I have, I need to akd for forgiveness for being so arrogant.

Jerry
 

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I wonder if the manufacturer noticed that the joint pictured in the top illustration is impossible to make Herb? At least with the bit shown and if only using one bit.
Good eye Chuck,
I think I cropped the picture, there is a #51 and a #52 bit,two separate bits. the #52 is the one I wanted to show. My bad when I took the screen shot and cropped it then saved the picture.

Herb
 

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OK, what is the method Jerry?

Tom, it's kind of you ask me about "my method" of setting up the miter lock bit, however, as happy as I am with how I do what I do and the result that I get, I seriously doubt if many of the members would have any realy interest in it. Id say this because I believe that the majority of the member have normal vision or at least good enough vision to do the set up in a traditional manner.

I have been led to believe that many folks have given up on the set usp due to not understand how the joint is designed to work. If I were t tell you what I went through to arrive at what I eventually did, most of the people reading about it would either get a big laugh out of it or just cry when they saw how ignorat ignorat I was in the beginning.

I suppose that I could describe what I learned if there were enough sincere interest in what have to say about what I went through and learned, but I do doubt if that is the case.

But thanks anyway for asking, it did make me feel good that you did ask.


Jerry
 

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Considering that these commercial set-up jigs are made for specific thickness material and any difference in thickness will lead to an imperfect joint, it's important to be able to set-up the bit without such an aid. I put a piece of the material against the bit and look along the table as I adjust the height of the bit so that an equal length of the mitre shows at the top and bottom. I then adjust the fence whilst still looking along the table. This gives a close setting, a couple of test cuts will show what fine tuning is required. Once this is perfect, make and keep a small sample for the next time the same thickness material is used, which will be no different to using a set-up jig.
 

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Here again is the Infinity set up jig. Note with the larger bit that there is a mark for the centerline. That park aligns with the center of the workpiece. Mark the center of the workpiece and line up the mark by adjusting height and you should be very close to perfect, with only a little bit of error. Still going to still make a trial cut, but the correction will be minimal. This is very similar to what Harry described. Tiny errors are barely visible, but people can feel an edge only 1 or 2 thousandths over. No matter what you'll want some extra stock to set up with.

The infinity bits work very well for me.
 

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