Deep Rabbets

What's a deep rabbet? Depending upon the perspective, a deep rabbet could be seen as a wide rabbet. And cut like one, too. But let's look at it as a rabbet that cxcceds the capacities of the standard piloted rabbeting bit and. for whatever reason, needs to be attacked as a deep cut.

Before you abandon the rabbeting bit, however, see what you can do to extend its reach. You can sometimes cheat the shank out of the collet a few fractions of an inch. Make a couple of passes to max out the bit's cutting depth, then back the bit out of the collet for another pass or two. You want to keep at least 1 inch of the shank in the collct. And it's better to be using a '/2-inch-shank bit for this than a '/»-inch-shank one.

Another alternative is to make the first passes to the full cutting depth of the rabbeting bit, then extend the cut even deeper using a straight pattern bit. This bit has a pilot bearing on its shank. The bearing rides along the shoulder of rhe rabbet to guide the cut.

Finally, you can use a straight bit. With a hand-held router, use a

BASEPLATE

WORK

collet wut

SHANK BACKED OUT OF COLLET TO EXTEND BIT'S REACH

collet wut

SHANK BACKED OUT OF COLLET TO EXTEND BIT'S REACH

TRICKS FOR CUTTING OIL? RABBETS

bearing references against OR smoulder of rabbet bit's cut to guioe second pass.

make First pass witu rabbeting bit.

bearing references against OR smoulder of rabbet bit's cut to guioe second pass.

PATTERN BIT WITH SUAWK-MOUNTED BEARING

MAKE SECOND PASS WITH STRAIGHT PATTERN BIT.

Interchangeable bearings and interchangeable cutters are two approaches to rabbeting bit versatility. A number of manufacturers. Eagle America among them, offer bearing sets to complement their rabbeting bits (left). Eagle America's set consists of three bearings (two of them with Delrin rims) plus an alien wrench. Depending upon the bearing used, their '/¿-inch rabbeting bit will also give you Va-inch, vif inch. aind %nnch cuts. Their y«-inch rabbeting bit will make cuts of 'A inch, Mc inch, and 7/o inch in addition to rhe "stock" %-inch cut. That's six different cut widths from two bits.

Paso Robles Carbide uikes a different tack. You can change bearings, but more important, you can change cutters (right). The cutter for a Krinch rabbet will fit either the '/•»-inch-shank arix>r or the '/2-inch size. Want to make a '/«-inch rabbet? Pull the Vfc-inch cutter olTthe arbor and pop rhe /«-inch cutter in place. You don't even need to take the arbor out of the router collet. Want a Mo-inch rabbet? Switch to a different bearing.

Addresses and telephone numbers for both Eagle America and Paso Robles Carbide arc in "Sources"" on page 337.

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