Popular Woodworking 2001-06 № 122, страница 43




Popular Woodworking 2001-06 № 122, страница 43

Set Your Fence

Setting up and using a cope-and-stick set of bits is relatively easy after the shimming is done. First, make sure the bearing on the bit is flush with the fence on the router table. Flushing the bearings makes sure that the profiles will match up. Use a straightedge that spans the two fences and tap the fence flush to the bearing.If possible,close the fence faces so there's about '/e" clearance on both sides of the cutter.

Cut the Stick Profile

Using fingerboards to keep your stock in place, press the stock into the fence and down onto the router table. Which profile you cut first isn't critical. Use test cuts to get your bits in the ballpark. I cut the stick first. For door construction,you can cut your stock to finish length, but I prefer to leave the stiles a little long for trimming later.

and-stick cutter. This single bit has two cutters, a bearing and shims to adjust it. You cut the stick part of the moulding, then you disassemble the bit and stack the pieces in a different order to cut the cope. These are decent entry-level bits, but keep in mind that disassembling the bit can be a hassle, and you have to remember exactly how many shims go between each part or your joints won't fit. Also, wear on the cutter is doubled, necessitating re-sharpening more often.

The other "single-shank" solution is the non-adjustable combination bit. This one-piece bit is basically a chunk of metal on a V2" shank. It has a bearing on top and bottom. You cut the stick part of the moulding with the top section of the bit, then you raise the bit to cut the cope. The only drawback to these bits is they are a little long and will exaggerate any runout problems you might have with your router.

Last but not least expensive is the matched set. In a matched set, each bit has a fixed cutter close to the shank, a bearing and another matched cutter. These bit sets have advantages over the other sets. When they're sharpened, it's just a matter of proper shimming to get them back to an airtight fit. There's two separate sets of cutters, giving them longer life between sharpenings. They're relatively shorter than combination bits so they'll be more stable in a router. And once you get them set up, you won't have to take them apart until they're resharpened. The only real

drawback is that they are usually the most expensive solution.

Which bit is right for you? If you make an occasional door, use a single-shank solution. It's cheaper and you won't be sharpening the bit any time soon. If there are a lot of doors in your future or you just want a setup that will last a long time, a real time-saver is having two bits in two tables and running all your stock at once. The price differences between one-bit and two-bit sets is around $20 to $50 dollars, depending on the manufacturer and quality. PW

The three types of cope-and-stick bits. On Freud 99-260 the left is a matched set of cutters. One bit $111.50 for the stick; another for the cope. In the

center is a non-adjustable combination bit. You change from cope to stick by changing the height of the router. On the right is a reversible bit.After cutting the stick profile, you disassemble the bit and rearrange the pieces to cut the cope.

MLCS 8852

$65

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Popular Woodworking June 2001



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