Metal Cutting Router Bits - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 03-18-2015, 05:03 AM Thread Starter
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Metal Cutting Router Bits

Does anybody have any experience with those spiral-type metal-cutting bits you can put in a wood router?

I've been cutting rusty old galvanized steel barn roof panels and old license plates for the wife for her crafts. I've been using a metal-cutting wheel and a jigsaw with metal-cutting bits, but am going through them like crazy.

I thought it would be nice to use the router/router stand I have, plus I think it would enable me to do smoother, more detailed work.

But, at roughly $30 a pop for bits, I'm not sure if it's worth it.

Does anybody have any advice on what kind of bit I should look for to cut through this type of material and how long a bit might last doing so?

It seems like some of these bits are designed to work with much tougher/thicker metal materials so I'm hoping I'd get quite a bit out of life out of one bit using it for the corrugated steel and license plates.



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post #2 of 14 Old 03-19-2015, 03:02 AM
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I use a few small milling machine bits. (pawn shop Cheap bin)
They are designed to side cut metal all day long. It would take some
hard metal to wear one out.

I use a metal cutoff wheel on my 6" grinder motor too.

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post #3 of 14 Old 03-19-2015, 03:04 AM
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Even if ya do the 30 bucks I think the detail and speed will be worth the dime.

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post #4 of 14 Old 03-19-2015, 04:27 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CheapBassTurd View Post
I use a few small milling machine bits. (pawn shop Cheap bin)
They are designed to side cut metal all day long. It would take some
hard metal to wear one out.

I use a metal cutoff wheel on my 6" grinder motor too.
Are the ones you use the fluted-spiral type ones or the burr-type bits? I'm thinking the the burr types are probably the cheaper ones? Thanks for the info. I've got a big "production run" coming up over the next few weeks.....



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post #5 of 14 Old 03-20-2015, 07:37 AM
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One thing about cutting metal with wood working power tools is that they run way to fast for metal cutting. If there's no way to cut the rpm, try using some light oil on the tool bit to cool it down.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-22-2015, 11:57 AM Thread Starter
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Actually over the last couple of days I've "Become One With The Dremel" and have found you can do pretty intricate work with a 3.5" metal-cutting wheel on a Rotozip, including curves.



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post #7 of 14 Old 03-22-2015, 08:42 PM
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I think the fastest cut your going to get is with a cutoff- tool, Like your dremel, but with a 3" Carbide blade. The carbide bits or burrs that you reference would not be fast at cutting license plates/sheet metal. They make them typically in a 1/4" or 1/8" shank. Great for grinding out a broken bolt and such.

But cutting larger sheets of steel a cutoff wheel would work best. They can come in varying thickness, 1/16", 1/8" and 3/16". You get thicker, then it becomes a grinding wheel.

I sell tools to the automotive/truck maintenance world. I think if you try to pull a 1/8" burr thru sheet metal, it would snap pretty quick.

Your dremel style tool can handle smaller diameters too for more detailed work.
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post #8 of 14 Old 03-23-2015, 05:57 AM Thread Starter
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I concur with your theory, Tigagreen. I've been using the "standard" metal cutting wheels available at any hardware store. They're pretty thin, but I've learned you can either cut with the edge or grind with the sides.



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post #9 of 14 Old 03-23-2015, 06:40 AM
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Also, something to note... The spiral Carbide Burrs usually have a cross-hatch cut to them and operate similar to a metal file. So if used on aluminium or other soft metals, they will 'load' up very quickly. There are burr's made for aluminium that does not have that cross hatch design.
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post #10 of 14 Old 01-27-2017, 10:09 PM
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Hi Planalp!
If you are doing straight cuts you can purchase metal cutting abrasive wheels for your skill saw. They cut sheet metal very quickly.

The milling machine bits will wear very quickly in a router. A router spins around 20000rpm. Much higher than the milling cutters can handle for long. A 1/8"HighSpeedSteel milling cutter should turn about 2000 to 2500 rpm with cooling. A carbide cutter would be 2 to 4 times that so a MAXIMUM of 10000rpm...with constant cooling flood. So you can see that a router is MUCH too fast for a milling cutter.

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