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C. Bailey
 
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Default What type of wood is easier to router - plywood, pine, or pine laminate

I am undertaking my first wood working project. I want to put some 1/2"
rounds in the wood with a router. I haven't selected my building material
yet. I am going to paint the finished product. Should I go with 3/4" (good
one side), or a 3/4" pine laminate, or standard wood? Will there be a
significant difference in my ability to cut a 1/2" round (to dress up the
edge)? I've already noticed some tendancy of the router to "walk away" from
knots. I'm thinking the laminate could be difficult to work with. I have
never tried plywood - is it any better?

Thank you,
Chris


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Frank Ketchum
 
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Default What type of wood is easier to router - plywood, pine, or pine laminate


"C. Bailey" wrote in message
news:S4a6c.199774$A12.114509@edtnps84...
I am undertaking my first wood working project. I want to put some 1/2"
rounds in the wood with a router. I haven't selected my building material
yet. I am going to paint the finished product. Should I go with 3/4"

(good
one side), or a 3/4" pine laminate, or standard wood? Will there be a
significant difference in my ability to cut a 1/2" round (to dress up the
edge)? I've already noticed some tendancy of the router to "walk away"

from
knots. I'm thinking the laminate could be difficult to work with. I have
never tried plywood - is it any better?


I would only use plywood as you suggest if I first put a solid wood band
around the edge. If you are worried about knots, carefully arrange your
stock so that you won't have to rout through knots. Or better yet, use
clear, knot free pine. Or, since you are painting it, you can use MDF, but
this stuff is nasty and I hate having it in my shop.

Frank


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Default What type of wood is easier to router - plywood, pine, or pine laminate

Poplar routes/paints well also.

On Thu, 18 Mar 2004 13:04:12 GMT, "Frank Ketchum"
wrote:

I would only use plywood as you suggest if I first put a solid wood band
around the edge. If you are worried about knots, carefully arrange your
stock so that you won't have to rout through knots. Or better yet, use
clear, knot free pine. Or, since you are painting it, you can use MDF, but
this stuff is nasty and I hate having it in my shop.


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Mike Marlow
 
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Default What type of wood is easier to router - plywood, pine, or pine laminate

C. Bailey wrote:
I am undertaking my first wood working project. I want to put some
1/2" rounds in the wood with a router. I haven't selected my
building material yet. I am going to paint the finished product.
Should I go with 3/4" (good one side), or a 3/4" pine laminate, or
standard wood? Will there be a significant difference in my ability
to cut a 1/2" round (to dress up the edge)? I've already noticed
some tendancy of the router to "walk away" from knots. I'm thinking
the laminate could be difficult to work with. I have never tried
plywood - is it any better?

Thank you,
Chris


For the most part, plywood is not a real good choice for what you're
describing. Unless you really build up the paint on the edge and then sand
it down, you'll see the lines from the ply through your paint. You'll find
that the edge soaks up enough paint that you'll really have to lay it on to
cover the lines. You will also be likely to encounter voids in the plywood
that the routed edge exposes. Now you're faced with filling those voids and
finishing the fill.

You don't specify what your project is, so it's hard to suggest the right
material for the project, but again, in the spirit of broad brush
statements, if I'm going to route and edge, I'm going to do it on solid
wood. As another poster mentioned, you can band the edge of the plywood
with solid wood and then route that but you'll have to do some work to hide
the seam between the plywood and the solid wood edge. If this is your first
woodworking project you might have some trouble there.

You should be able to route over knots. Some things to remember when
routing...

1) Slow down a bit when you get to the knots and let the router do the
work.

2) If the router does not cut properly over the know the first time, then
make additional passes. Multiple passes with a router are common. For deep
cuts you'll need to make multiple passes (starting shallow and setting your
depth of cut deeper with each pass) - especially with 1/4in routers, for
inconsistent hardness such as found with knots in boards, etc.

3) Make sure you're using good sharp bits. I'd stay a mile away from high
speed steel bits and buy the right carbide for the job you're doing. High
speed steel is just plane junk and will dull very quickly. Unless you're
going to resharpen them yourself which takes an investment in time, you're
way better off buying the carbides you need, as you need them.

I've routed over knots many, many times and it can go just fine. In fact,
the knots can add an interesting character to your work, depending on the
look you're after. Again, as another poster mentioned, you can arrange your
stock so that you don't hit any knots with the router or you can get clear
wood.

So - besides the cheap lessons in using a router, I guess my primary
recommendation is that you use plywood for its face and not for its edge.
Where you need an exposed edge, either don't use plywood or hide the plywood
edge.

--

-Mike-



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