How to dial in speed?

Howdy folks.

I am using an M2 to cut primarily plywood 1/2 to 3/4 inch deep. I am trying to figure out how to dial in the speed of the bit. I use 1/8 and 1/4 inch spiral up and down cut bits.

As far as the feed rate, I normally cut at 28 in/min with a 14 in/min plunge rate. This seems to give a pretty good cut quality but I am not convinced I am running the bit at the right speeds.

The trouble is everyone's router setting (1-5) is different when compared to other brands of router. I recently purchased a Skil router that reports the rpms on different settings (1-5). I have heard that you want big chips but it is hard to see what is coming out of there, if they are big enough.

Can I get your advice on how to dial in the router bit speed? Share your tips and/or tricks.

Thanks very much!


  • Hey, I don't really focus much on plunge rate.  It's more about depth / pass and speed.  For rough cut, non-functional projects (yard art, etc) I cut at:
    - 40in / min speed
    - depth / pass = 1/2 bit diameter

    If projects are finer detail or require really precise, functional joinery, I'll reduce each by about 10-15%.  Hope that helps!  Any others?

  •  Thanks for the reply Patrick. I am looking for the spindle speed for plywood. I have the sled speed in inch per minute dialed in I just don't know how fast to run a 1/8 inch bit in birch plywood (for example).

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