Routing is a process involving hollowing out or shaping a piece of material, and is frequently used by woodworkers, as well as professionals working with plastics, metals, and other common materials. Routing is quite a specialized area, and as such boasts a wide variety of tools designed to meet the needs of a particular job. While routers themselves are available in several different styles, the component used to achieve a specific shaping or trim is available in hundreds of different varieties. These components are known as router bits, and are used to give a piece of material a particular finish, trim, or join.
Router bits usually fall under one of two classifications: high-speed steel, or carbide-tipped. They are also frequently categorized depending on whether they are designed for edge-work or not, and also in terms of their size and shape. While there are a great number of bits available for personal or commercial use, there is a small group of approximately ten or so bits that are most commonly used.
Perhaps the most ubiquitous of the router bits available is the chamfer bit, which allows the woodworker to cut a 45 degree angle across the edge of a piece of material, giving a neat, planed edge. A similar bit is the cove bit, which cuts a shallow, concave shape into the material, and which is often used as part of a joinery technique. For both router tips, the depth of the cut obtained will depend on the size of the router bit used; many different sizes and varieties are available to allow for this versatility.
Dovetails are another well known bit shape, and are most commonly used in joinery. A dovetail cut is a shaped cut with sides that angle in. The dovetail is a versatile router bit, and can also be used in making dadoes and rabbets. Related to the dovetail bit then, are the dado and rabbet bits, each of which is used to cut a square profile along a piece of material. A dado differs from a rabbet in that a dado is planed along the middle of the material, whereas a rabbeting bit is used at the edge of a piece of material.
The curved cousins of the dado and the rabbeting bits are the cove and roundover bits, both of which cut curves into a piece of a material. Like the dado, the cove bit is used to plane a groove into the middle of a piece of material, whereas a roundover bit is used to create a smooth, curved edge.
There are a number of other commonly used router bits that result in attractively shaped designs, with one of these being the ogee, or the Roman ogee bit. This router bit planes an S-shaped curve at the edge of a material, resulting in a smooth and attractive edge. A number of variations on the ogee bit are available in order to obtain a wide variety of profiles.
All of these bits, and their many variations are available through Carbide Processors at discounted prices every day.
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