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Senior Something
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was going to make a simple cove molding until I realized I didn't have a cove router bit. I've got several brand of bits, but have not used any of them long enough to see which is the better in the long run.

I'm considering MCLS bits because of the price, but others like Freud may have better 'ratings'. Does anyone have a preference?
 

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John
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I was going to make a simple cove molding until I realized I didn't have a cove router bit. I've got several brand of bits, but have not used any of them long enough to see which is the better in the long run.

I'm considering MCLS bits because of the price, but others like Freud may have better 'ratings'. Does anyone have a preference?
If it is a bit you think you will use a lot, go with Whiteside, Amana, CMT or one of the other high end bits. If you haven't got one, I suspect your usage is minimal or sporadic where you would be cheaper out with a mid line bit and the MLCS is one of the better mid-line names. Or, take a look at the Katana line that MLCS also sells. They are a step up from the house brand but still not exorbitantly priced. :huh:
 
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Sawdust Creator
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My abbreviated quality ranking.....top to bottom


Whiteside

Frued

Bosch

Mcls

Wood river

Craftsman/American Vermont/ hf / store bread
 

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Whiteside, Infinity, Freud, and American Eagle are my best bits. MLCS, Woodriver, Grizzly, and Price Cutter are "good" bargain lines at the right price.

From FWW a few years ago:
 

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Old Methane Gas Cloud
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From what I have observed, there is no reliable measurement or test results related to router bits.

I know that the flames are coming but please read on.

Every now and then someone publishes a router bit test. The test criteria usually involves purchasing several samples of one particular bit from several sources and then running a uniform test procedure across all bits.

The natural question is, Is the test accurate? The answer is for that date, time and those samples of router bits, ABSOLUTELY. The problem is that the test does not apply to all the other bits made by the manufacturer and not even the next series of tested bits made by that manufacturer. Procedures change, factories change, designs change, suitability to task changes and all that affects the quality of the bit. There is the possibility that a bit intended for CNC use was labeled as a hand held router bit because of the lack of product of that size. In an automated test, great results but in your router a big question.

The best indications of quality that you will find are from members here. We tend to buy bits one at a time and when we get to the point of the second or third dull bit, we know what the quality of those bit are. If by the third bit the quality was good, good, good, you'll hear about it. Anything less you'll hear about that too.

I think that the general consensus among the group is going to rank Whiteside at the top, Freud QUADRA, MLCS, Katana near the top and Rockler, CMT, Wood River and Woodline in the middle.

There are some bargain bin bits that may be good if you can find them. Porter Cable made near the top bits but couldn't afford to sell them at competitive prices. DeWalt had a line that was at the top of the middle but they stopped making them about 10 years ago. Avanti make good bits and probably still do but they don't seem to be readily available anymore.

Finally, almost any bit is great for the first few times it is used. So think about how many times are you going to use a bit. Are you going to use the bit for only one project, then buy a cheap bit.
 
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Senior Something
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
After seeing the cost of the pine cove molding that I would need and the need for a bit for the next project in oak, I decided to buy a bit instead of the molding. It puts me a little behind in my schedule, though. I ordered the Freud 1/2" r x 1/2" sh because they appear to be a good balance between cost and quality (members input). So thanks to everyone.
 
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