The ultimate secret for professional results with a wood router is to use sharp, high quality router bits.
Have you ever tried to cut a tomato with a dull knife? Such an effort usually results in one "nasty" piece of tomato! Wood workers get the same result when we allow ourselves to use dull cutting edges on our tools, including our router bits. I'll be the first to admit that the most important thing we can do toward keeping our edges sharp is to gain accurate knowledge about sharpening techniques. Then, of course, we must apply that knowledge through good shop habits. These two things cost us relatively little out of pocket. Really, how much does a sharpening book cost? $11.95? Habits cost us only some mental effort and self discipline.
However, the cost of router bits themselves is a different story. We must have the correct router bit in hand before we can do any work with a wood router. To reduce costs, we can borrow router bits from a friend. But, if you're like me, you want to work on your stuff and you want to work on it, NOW! (This is where I stamp my feet and cry to my wife, "No, I don't want to come in and eat dinner. I'M NOT HUNGRY!" Sometimes, she can't tell the difference between me and my 8 year old boy.) Anyway, I developed a nice inventory of router bits, without a big strain on my budget, by learning all about the bits themselves and then creating a buying plan to obtain the ones I wanted over a period of time. This really helped me get what I wanted without feeling a lot of financial pain. My thinking is, since I can't avoid the cost of buying my router bits, let me buy smart with a well educated plan.
The keys to a smart router bit buying plan.
When it comes to buying bits for our routing projects, we love shopping online with Rockler. They have a huge selection of router bits. Their site presents them on pages with an organized, easy to use format. They provide an on site search box that helps us find the bits we're looking for super quickly. We find it very useful how each page we come across provides excellent information on a specific bit or set of bits. All we need to do is just click on the "Details" tab on any product specific page and, voila, the info is right there. We also noticed that their site suggests other products related to the ones for which we're searching. This helps us consider alternative products, perhaps at less cost. It also helps us become familiar with products that we might not otherwise think about, but might meet our current need exactly.
Best of all, we can always bank on Rockler's complete satisfaction guarantee.
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