v-groove bits


Rick Geschrey
Silver Member
my question is with how much rpm do you run a v-groove bit


You need to find the speed that is right for your set up. For an example, I cut my grooves when my nose is about .960. Some guys like to do it at a smaller size. The thickness of your pronge and the mass/configuration of your cutter will dictate vibration variables which in turn will lead to mill marks from chatter on the faces of the cut when your not tuned in properly. I personally have found that cutting the groove when the piece is thicker limits the vibration. You can hear it and feel it if you touch the piece while it is cutting. I have noticed that some people use follow rests to dampen vibration or put their hand on the piece to dampen. At .960 I don't have to dampen with any follow rest pressure on the back side of the piece while cutting.

I core all my cues and know that higher speeds create more heat, so I like to keep it on the slower side. There may be a nice setting at a higher RPM that is tuned into a low vibration also, I just never went up there because of fear of too much heat. Glues are sensitive to heat.

When I was using a set up with a 2.5 HP Hitachi Router I used just under the # 2 setting a hair on a 0 to 9 scale and cutt grooves in the direction of conventional milling. That gave me a smooth rms finish on the 90 degree faces. Today I use a milling machine and do not exactly know the rpm it is set at but I can tell you it is on the slower rather than high speed of the pully ratio adjustment. Your travel speed is a factor but not so important as the RPM, IMO.

Practice on a maple test piece and start out slow and keep making cuts and compare the outcomes. Too much RPMs and you can experience a burning to the wood also. When you find the right speed for your chosen size of your forearm and set up, it will be apparent because it will reveal a smooth cut, low vibration on the piece without chatter marks. That is all that matters!

Everyone does it a little different so find what works best for you. It should not take that many try's

Good luck and have some fun,

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AzB Gold Member
Gold Member
Silver Member
I have cut with one inch side cutting v bits at up to 30,000 rpms. The wood does tend to burn a little when cutting that fast. About half that speed would probably be best. But I have also cut at just several thousand rpms with a milling machine using the same bit and it worked fine although you could not feed the work into the bit as fast. If you can get a variable speed router that still has torque running slower it would be better.