For us woodworkers, the router is undoubtedly the most versatile power tool in our tool arsenal because it can be used in various woodworking projects, from edge trimming, mortising, engraving, to edge profiling. With different router bits (also called router cutters), the router is able to finish different projects. As a result, it is difficult to figure out which router bit to use with the huge number of choices. Therefore, here we drew up seven of the most common carbide-tipped router bits and what you can benefit from each of them. Let’s start the routing journey!
1. Straight Router Bit
The straight router bit is definitely the most commonly used type of router bit for its versatility. It is used to create square-bottomed grooves, like dadoes, rabbets, mortise, or even decorative inlay. The shank sizes cover 1/2 and 1/4 inch, and the cutting diameters come in the range from 3/4 to 1-3/4 inches.
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2. Round Over Router Bit
Round over router bits are the most popular edging bit with the application of easing a sharp 90-degree edge of your furniture, such as tabletops, shelves, chair arms, etc, creating a smooth quarter-round shape. The most common radius sizes of round over router bit include 3/8 inch and 1/4 inch.
3. Flush Trim Router Bit
In fact, a flush trim router bit is a straight bit with a pilot bearing on the top or bottom of the bit, or both. It is ideal for trimming a wood veneer or laminate, so if you are going to work with these two materials, get yourself a flush trim bit. Apart from trimming edges, it is also perfect for duplicating a pattern from a template. The cutting diameters cover 1/2, 1/4, 3/8, and 5/16 inch.
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4.Rabbeting Router Bit (Rebate Bit)
Rabbet joints are mainly used in furniture making, such as cabinets and drawers. To create a rabbet joint, we need a rabbeting router bit (also called a rebate bit) to form an L-shaped dado on the edge of a wood board, and then put two boards with L-shaped dado together. Voila! A rabbeting bit usually comes with a pilot bearing mounted on the top of the bit.
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5. Cove Router Bit
Instead of removing the sharp edge of a workpiece, a cove router bit creates an indentation in the edge. The main purposes of using a cove bit are producing decorative profiles on furniture like legs, doors, and shelves, or forming a rule joint that is used to add a dropleaf to a table. Cove bits range from 3/8 to 1-7/8 inches in radiuses.
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6. Core Box Router Bit
Many people often confuse a core box bit and a cove bit. Unlike a cove bit, a core box bit is non-piloted which means it has no bearings. It is used for cutting grooves with a round bottom. The main purpose of using a core box bit is to add flutes or decorative effects to stiles, table edges, and door panels. Core box bits range from 3/4 to 2 inches in radiuses.
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