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  • Dado vs Router?

    I don't have a router, but would like one. My next project will be building some bookcases. Normally I just screw into the end of the wood buttjointed to the uprights. I'd like to recess the shelves into the uprights this time mostly for cosmetics (I can load my bookshelves and after years they are still tight and not drooping).

    Can a router really replace a Dado? What's the things you can't do?

  • #2
    Re: Dado vs Router?

    A router can easily replace a dado set but the reverse can't be said. You can do so much more with a router than you can with just a dado set. Some even claim that the router is the most versatile of all the woodworking tools.
    Teach your kids about taxes..........eat 30 percent of their ice cream.

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    • #3
      Re: Dado vs Router?

      I agree with Badger Dave, in the above statement,

      but to make dado I would prefer a quality dado head over a router any day of the week,

      about the only time I would chose a router over a dado head is when the unit is all ready partly assembled and I would need to work in place,
      when working with plywood the glue lines really tear up the router bits IMO.

      but it takes a really quality dado head if your working with plywood veneered with oak or similar, It is some times is best to pre score the veneerer regardless of which tool your using. router or dado head,
      Push sticks/blocks Save Fingers
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      • #4
        Re: Dado vs Router?

        I have both and use both , they both have their place.

        heres a tip - to avoid tearout along the plywood (if thats what your useing) put some blue tape along the cut.

        even better , green tape wont stick as bad when its time to remove it.
        but use care when removeing it to keep from lifting the fibers
        from the wood.

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        • #5
          Re: Dado vs Router?

          Originally posted by ThomasL1959 View Post
          I have both and use both , they both have their place...
          Ditto...I tend to use the stacked dado most.

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          • #6
            Re: Dado vs Router?

            I think a stacked dado would be more efficient (faster), especially on long cuts, that would be similar to "ripping". However, I mostly use my router for shorter rabbits or dado's like cross-cutting for bookcase shelves, etc. and for dado's that are going to stop short of the edge. Obviously, trying to cut a dado that doesn't run completely through, from edge to edge, is the job of a router.

            For almost all of these, I use a "factory edge" board as a guide for my router.

            I hope this helps,

            CWS

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            • #7
              Re: Dado vs Router?

              hello all i new to this wood working forum, and i could use all of the help i can get. also i just puchased a router yesterday, could you guy's kind of hold my hand and help me along ?

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              • #8
                Re: Dado vs Router?

                keep in mind 3/4" plywood is no longer 3/4". So be sure to buy the proper dado router bit, or you can make a jig to ensure you cut the correct dado size with any dado sized bit.

                Cactus Man

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                • #9
                  Re: Dado vs Router?

                  Originally posted by cactusman View Post
                  keep in mind 3/4" plywood is no longer 3/4". So be sure to buy the proper dado router bit, or you can make a jig to ensure you cut the correct dado size with any dado sized bit.

                  Cactus Man
                  x2 all metric now

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                  • #10
                    Re: Dado vs Router?

                    Originally posted by RD3 View Post
                    hello all i new to this wood working forum, and i could use all of the help i can get. also i just puchased a router yesterday, could you guy's kind of hold my hand and help me along ?
                    although this is an awesome site for lots of different info, you could/should try http://www.routerforums.com/. its a great place to learn about "router everything"

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                    • #11
                      Re: Dado vs Router?

                      >> "keep in mind 3/4" plywood is no longer 3/4". So be sure to buy the proper dado router bit, or you can make a jig to ensure you cut the correct dado size with any dado sized bit."

                      I bought a sheet of A1 maple last week for a new bathroom vanity and was floored when it measured at 0.745" thick, which gives a perfect fit in a dado routed with a 3/4 bit. Haven't seen that in many years, but I'm not complaining.

                      Most all of of the hardwood plywood I've been getting measures out at 0.720", which is closer to 23/32 than it is to 18 mm. I use the special bits for that. The problem child seems to always be 1/4 hardwood ply.... which is all sorts of sizes and often under 0.200" thick. It's so crappy that I try not to use it much these days.

                      I tend to use the router. Much less problem with chipout on the crummy ply we get anymore. It is more time consuming to set up, though - but maybe not by much by the time you fool around with shims and test cuts and all that. I have a 50" clamp/straightedge that sees serious use in my cabinet making.

                      If you must use a saw blade or dado stack on plywood, try this: set your fence, then lower the blade and make a score cut about 1/64 deep or maybe a touch deeper -- but not much. Then bring your blade up to final height and make your cut. This works great for regular crosscuts in plywood too. Try it, you'll like the result.

                      Good luck,

                      Andy

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