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Tungsten carbide? Skill level is beginning woodworker

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I started with the cheap assortment pack of 1/4" shanked bits from a store somewhere. Been so long I don't know where they were bought at. They will work just fine. Just take your time & make multiple passes getting to where you want your finished profile. Practice on different scrap species & router speeds to get a feel for feed rates of different woods. Most of all keep asking questions.

The best router bit advice I've read is to invest in a decent lower cost router bit set when a beginner (I chose the MLCS 8377 1/2" shank 15 piece router set - which are carbide tipped), and then replace those bits that you use most - as they wear - with higher end router bits (Whiteside, Freud, ...). 

I can't speak to whether or not the "higher end" bits are really that much better. Hopefully others can help with that.

@glens and @kenkortch thank you both for the replies. Great advice 

Yes, they are.  The carbide from the Freud Quadra-cut bits leave an incredibly smooth finish.  I do have a couple of Whiteside bits that also leave a very smooth cut - much better than the Skil or Bosch bits they replaced.

I still use most of my Skil and Bosch bits.  I do clean my bits and hone the faces from time to time with a diamond hone.

Do look on line for a speed chart.  Mine is out in the shop, so can't refer to it.  Basically, your fastest speeds are for bits under 1¼" in diameter in hard woods. Bits over 1¼" in hardwoods should use a speed a bit slower.  In soft woods, the speed would be a bit slower.  

IIRC, For my DeWalts, the speed dial (numbered 1-6, I can't remember what the actual RPM is) should be "5" for the 1¼" bits in hardwood, "4" for >1¼" bits in hardwood, "4" for <1¼" bits in soft woods and "3" for >1¼" bits.  DeWalt also has recommendations for other bits, but I don't use them often enough to remember anything.

Ken Kortch said:

The best router bit advice I've read is to invest in a decent lower cost router bit set when a beginner (I chose the MLCS 8377 1/2" shank 15 piece router set - which are carbide tipped), and then replace those bits that you use most - as they wear - with higher end router bits (Whiteside, Freud, ...). 

I can't speak to whether or not the "higher end" bits are really that much better. Hopefully others can help with that.

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