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Shaper cutters or router bits

#271164 by adrianpglover » Wed Jun 10, 2020 9:19 am

I'm looking at doing some raised panel cabinet door style interior shutters for our master bedroom, which has me potentially in the market for some cutters to do some profile cuts. I got my Mark 7 six months ago and it came with a shaper arbor. I already have a Grizzly G1023RLWX that I've fitted with the Dewalt 3 HP (peak number) router, which I've used a lot in the past for edge detailing, mainly round-overs. All the router bits I've seen to do what I'm thinking of doing for the rails and styles are carbide cutters, while the SS shaper cutters are HSS. Also the router bits tend to have ball bearing guides on them which make it easy to get the desired cut, while the SS shaper uses a rub collar that might burn the wood. I'm not certain if I'd use a single bit that would cut the full edge and therefore not need the rub collar or bearing guide or if I'd use a combination of bits to gradually acquire the profile I'm looking for. I like the idea of learning how to use a shaper, but if the cutters that are available are HSS and may not keep an edge, are they worth it? I know I can get where I'm looking at going with either direction. I have a feeling that the shaper route would be cheaper on a per bit basis, but I'm also concerned about needing to sharpen or hone the edge of those cutters every so often. It would also be nice if SS had some other place I could purchase their parts from, other than ebay, but that's another thing in itself. I have a stack of rough sawn, highly figured, marbleized really, cedar that I'm planning for this project. I'll be using my SS planer to clean up the thickness and my TS to clean up the edges. I'm going to do 2 shutters each for 2 windows that are 2'x3' and 4 shutters each for 2 windows that are 3'x6', to give an idea of the immediate use of these cutters.

So after all of that background that most probably don't care for, should I go with the SS HSS shaper cutters or look for carbide router bits to use either in my Dewalt router or my Mark 7?

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271166 by BuckeyeDennis » Wed Jun 10, 2020 9:59 am

Shopsmith makes (and I own) a ball-bearing shaper spindle, which eliminates any downside of the rub collars. Even so, I'd go with a router bit, for the reasons you mention. Not to mention a much larger selection of profiles. You can still use a router bit on your Mark 7, should you wish to take advantage of the tilting table or the fence T-slots.

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271177 by chapmanruss » Wed Jun 10, 2020 12:44 pm

adrianpglover,

You said

It would also be nice if SS had some other place I could purchase their parts from, other than ebay, but that's another thing in itself.
Have you looked at the Product Catalog on this site? Here is a link to go directly to it.

https://www.shopsmith.com/ownersite/catalog/product_index.htm

As for the other, Dennis has give you some good advice that I agree with.

---

Russ

Mark V completely upgraded to Mark 7
Mark V 520
All SPT's & 2 Power Stations
Model 10ER S/N R64000 first one I restored on bench w/ metal ends & retractable casters. Has Speed Changer, Model 4E Jointer, Jig Saw with lamp, a complete set of original accessories & much more.
Model 10E S/N 1077 oldest one I have restored. On bench w/ metal ends & retractable casters.

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271184 by sehast » Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:06 pm

If you are looking for carbide tipped shaper cutters, Grizzly has a number of them with a 1/2" bore that will fit the Shopsmith. The advantage of the shaper cutters verses router bits is that they have 3 flutes and most often have a larger diameter. Those two factors are important when cutting with the Shopsmith due to its low RPM.
Also you could use 3/4" bore cutters, which are a lot more available, with adapters to fit a 1/2" spindle. Some but not all can be larger in diameter than the Shopsmith table insert so care needs to be taken and proper jigs used for safe operations.

https://www.mlcswoodworking.com/shopsit ... pernx.html

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271190 by DLB » Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:27 pm

BuckeyeDennis wrote:Shopsmith makes (and I own) a ball-bearing shaper spindle, which eliminates any downside of the rub collars.
I was looking at that spindle a few days ago. What makes the ball bearing collars incompatible with the 'standard' shaper arbor? Main reason I'm asking is in regard to a stand-alone shaper, which in my case has a 1/2" spindle comparable in the portion where things mount to the SS arbor. I take it these would not work, just wondering why.

- David

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271206 by adrianpglover » Thu Jun 11, 2020 9:32 am

Thanks @BuckeyeDennis for the insights. The limited set of profiles available through SS is a bit concerning if going down a single path, although the set they offer does seem to cover a large majority of the profiles out there. I hadn't thought of using a router on a tilt before, and I do like that the fence for the SS has the T-slots as well as grabs both sides of the table securely, neither of which my G1023RLWX's stock fence came with. (I added a T-slot track to the top for Rockler's anti-kickback rollers when I got the saw.)

chapmanruss wrote:Have you looked at the Product Catalog on this site? Here is a link to go directly to it.


Reading my statement again I wasn't being very clear. What I meant is that the only places that I can seem to find to purchase most SS equipment is either through the SS website/phone system or the second hand market such as ebay. I was trying to express a desire to see the items listed on sites like Amazon, Rockler, Woodcraft, etc or in brick and mortar stores. I do understand that Lowe's carries some of their items, but it is a very small selection.


@sehast - I very briefly looked at Grizzly's selection, but didn't know if it was quite compatible. Thanks for the info and I'll take a closer look at it sometime.


@DLB - I had the same question this morning when looking at that set. I see 2 possible explanations: 1) the ball bearing collars aren't sold separately, but only with the spindle; 2) the picture shown has some bushings that look like they would fit between the spindle and the collars. There might be a mechanical adaptability reason that you would need this. However, if you were to get the ball bearing spindle kit then you would likely have what you need to use it on the standard one that comes with the Mark 7.

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271207 by BuckeyeDennis » Thu Jun 11, 2020 10:08 am

DLB wrote:
BuckeyeDennis wrote:Shopsmith makes (and I own) a ball-bearing shaper spindle, which eliminates any downside of the rub collars.
I was looking at that spindle a few days ago. What makes the ball bearing collars incompatible with the 'standard' shaper arbor? Main reason I'm asking is in regard to a stand-alone shaper, which in my case has a 1/2" spindle comparable in the portion where things mount to the SS arbor. I take it these would not work, just wondering why.

- David


The standard 1/2" shaper arbor has a 1/2"-24 threaded shaft, and the solid rub collars have a 1/2" ID.

The ball-bearing shaper spindle has a 3/8"-24 threaded shaft, and the bearings inside the collars are 3/8" ID. I presume that this was done because the smallest rub-collar OD couldn't be achieved with a 1/2" ID ball bearing. The set includes bushings for mounting 1/2" ID shaper cutters.

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Re: Shaper cutters or router bits

#271214 by DLB » Thu Jun 11, 2020 1:42 pm

BuckeyeDennis wrote:The ball-bearing shaper spindle has a 3/8"-24 threaded shaft, and the bearings inside the collars are 3/8" ID. I presume that this was done because the smallest rub-collar OD couldn't be achieved with a 1/2" ID ball bearing. The set includes bushings for mounting 1/2" ID shaper cutters.
Thank you for that. My stand-alone would not be readily adaptable to those. Easy to find in single diameter, but I have not really seen anything similar sold as a set for 1/2" ID.

- David

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