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Saw Blades & Bits

Even the best woodworking tools are only as good as their blades or bits. In this category, learn the types of blades & bits necessary to cut, router or drill as necessary, plus ways to keep those implements in their best working condition.

Choose the Right Router Bits
Walk into any fine woodworking supplier, and you'll find a wall covered with hundreds of different router bits of different profiles, shank sizes, tip types and more. How do you know which one to choose for your particular project? In these woodworking tips, learn how to choose the right router bits for your router and for your woodworking plans.

Ten Basic Router Bit Shapes
Woodworking routers, both fixed-base routers and plunge routers, as well as shapers are all woodworking power tools that are commonly used for applying profiles to the edge of wood. The particular profile applied to the edge of the wood is based upon the shape of the router bit installed into the router. With a single bit or a combination of two...

1/4" vs. 1/2" Shank Router Bits - Which are Better?
A number of woodworking routers include both a 1/4-inch or a 1/2-inch collet, allowing the same router to use either 1/4 or 1/2-inch shank router bits. In many cases, the same router profiles are available in either size of shank. Which shank is better? Learn the advantages of 1/4-inch vs. 1/2-inch shank router bits on your woodworking projects.

The Benefits of Making Partial Profile Router Cuts
Walk into any fine woodworking store and you should find hundreds of router bit profiles. By using a combination of two or more bits, you can cut very complex profiles onto the edge of a piece of stock. Here are some tips for making partial-profile router cuts.

How Many TPI Should My Saw Blades Have?
A common question among novice woodworkers revolves around the number of teeth per inch (TPI) a saw blade should have for a particular cut. As a general rule, the more teeth per inch, the smoother the cut, but the fewer teeth per inch, the faster the cut. Learn all of the details on how many teeth per inch your blades should have for any...

Fold Your Band Saw Blades for Easy Storage
Band Saw blades can be very cumbersome to store. However, with this quick woodworking tip, you can learn to fold your band saw blades into a much smaller size, to where they will easily fit into a drawer or other small space.

How to Install Router Bits Properly
For a router bit to function safely and cut cleanly, the bit needs to be installed correctly into the router's collet. A router bit that is improperly installed will not cut smoothly, and if the stress on the shank is too great, the bit could break off, becoming a wildly spinning (not to mention sharp) projectile. To prevent such of a dangerous...

Drill Large Holes in Wood With Ease
Spade drill bits (also known as paddle bits) are designed for drilling large holes in wood, typically from about 3/8-inch up to 1-1/2 inches in diameter. These spade drill bits are commonly used in construction by electricians and plumbers for quickly drilling holes in studs to accommodate wiring and pipes.

Drill Bits for Smooth, Flat-Bottomed Holes in Wood
Forstner drill bits are perfect for fine woodworking. They produce smooth, flat-bottomed holes perfect for fitting dowels into the holes. Available in a variety of sizes, Forstner bits typically are sold in sets. They are best suited for use in a drill press or a lathe, as they're a bit too difficult to use in a hand-operated drill. In this...

Drill Press Mortising Attachment
A dedicated hollow-chisel mortiser is the perfect tool when you need to cut a number of mortises. In truth, if you have a drill press, you probably don't need a dedicated mortiser, as you can add a mortising attachment to your drill press! Use this attachment to simplify cutting your mortise and tenon joints.

Forstner Bit Alignment Tip
When using a forstner bit with a hand power drill, often the bit has a tendency to walk, especially if the tip of the bit is worn. In this woodworking tool tip, learn how to keep forstner bits centered when using them in a hand-operated power drill.

Straight Router Bits and Spiral Router Bits: Which is Better?
When cutting a rabbet or dado with a router, you can choose to use a spiral-cutting router bit (either an updraft or downdraft) or a straight router bit (single or multi-fluted). Which would be the best choice? Learn the differences between straight router bits and spiral router bits, and when to use each.

Selecting the Proper Saw Blade
There are many different types of saw blades, each of which is designed for a particular cut. While combination blades do provide some of the advantages of the different types of blades, the best combination blade cannot cut better than the right blade for the job. Learn the different types of saw blades to select the right one for your...

Stacked Dado Blade Sets
Using stacked dado blades would likely be the easiest and most accurate method for cutting dadoes and rabbets, particularly in plywood. While there are other types of dado blades (primarily wobble dado blades), a quality set of stacked dado blades will give the cleanest cut with edges that will be square to the foot of the cut.

Will a Stacked Dado Blade Fit on Your Table Saw?
Many small and medium table saws have relatively short arbors onto which the blade is mounted. This can be a problem when trying to use a stacked dado blade on one of these table saws, as the arbor isn't long enough to safely accommodate the dado blade and chippers. How to you work with this limitation? Learn how to cut dadoes and rabbets when...

How to Remove Pitch from Blades & Bits
The best woodworking power tools are only as good as their blades or bits. In this category, learn how to clean your blades & bits, to keep those cutters in their best working condition.

Torx Bits in Your Woodshop
Torx fasteners are becoming more and more commonplace. Does that mean you should have a set of Torx bits in your wood shop? Absolutely. A set of Torx bits and a set of Torx screwdrivers are inexpensive, but incredibly handy for the occasions that you'll need them. While there aren't many star heads used with wood screws, there are plenty of...

8-inch Dado Blades on 10-inch Saws?
Most stacked dado blade sets have a pair of 8-inch dado blades and a series of chippers in between, but why, when most table saws and radial-arm saws use 10-inch blades? Are there 10-inch stacked dado blades available? If not, can you use an 8-inch stacked dado blade on a 10-inch table saw or radial-arm saw? Learn the answer to this question in...

Quick Change Drill Drive Set
Probably my favorite power drill accessory is the quick change drill drive. The drill drive holder fits into the chuck of a drill, and then an insert with an interchangeable Phillips (or other type) of driver bit on one end and a pre-drilling bit with a countersink on the other end fits into the drive holder. You can pre-drill a countersunk hole...

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