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CNC Bits Recommendation

Andre Member

Hi there,

I would like to thank you in advance for taking the time to read this post and answer it.

I'm reaching out because we have been having difficulties in learning exactly what kind of bits should be used for our work.

We have a Anderson America Selexx 510 and are using this machine to cut (for now) MDF, Plywood, Particle Board and Solid Wood.

There is so much to choose, and so much information, so little time to absorb and test and not so many people wanting to share their secrets.

We do all sorts of work with this machine, specially complicated or stuff that takes a while to do by hand.

We would like to know all bits recommended, if compression bits? regular bits? which thicknesses? 2 flutes? 3 Flutes? 4 Flutes? specialized bits for each material? Specialized bits for each operation? etc

The more details included the best.

Again, I do appreciate all time taken to read this post. Any information is good information. Please if you answer try to be as much specific and straight forward as possible.

3/25/24       #2: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
cheriLongsworth Member


For MDF, Plywood, and Particle Board:

Compression bits: 1/2" diameter, 2 flutes
Regular bits: 1/4" diameter, 2 flutes

For Solid Wood:

Compression bits: 1/2" diameter, 2 flutes
Regular bits: 1/4" diameter, 2 flutes

Consider using specialized bits for:

Dado cutting: 1/2" diameter, 2 flutes
Groove cutting: 1/4" diameter, 2 flutes

3/25/24       #3: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
Dropout Member

Well that was pretty much a useless response.
The original question is too open ended. Kind of like "whats the weather like in the USA today?".
The answers you will get are dependent on the questions you ask.
I use 1/2 compression spiral chip breaker as short a flute as I can get, 7/8 or 1 1/8, for 3/4 plywood. Single pass, 900 IPM, no one cares about edge finish so we're probably at 3,000 plus sheets on the current bit.
At times we run 100 or sheets of ply per day.

3/25/24       #4: CNC Bits Recommendation ...

I'm sure that didn't help you either. I would contact a tooling supplier for recommendations. You do a variety of materials and not just one type of plywood or paritcle board. Based on your horsepower on the spindle, you can go fairly fast. I would recommend getting familiar with chiploads and how to calculate them. Vortex Tool has a phone app that is pretty handy for figuring feeds/speeds/chipload for your application. The supplier wants you to be successful with the tools they sell you, so don't be shy about asking for advice. I would tell\ your what I use, but you need to learn your machine and what you can get away with as far as cut quality and tool life goes. Everybody has different variables as far as vacuum, horsepower, and machine rigidity goes. Good luck and have fun. Whether you are cutting composite material, solid hardword or aluminum, you feeds and speeds will vary quite a bit. Also how many flute the tool has. When you start to figure out chiploads, you will undertand better.

3/26/24       #5: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
BH Davis  Member


I would say that to start you want to keep it as simple as possible and expand your bit collection as you learn what you are doing. I'd start with a few specific bits:

1) 2-flute carbide 3/8" upcut and downcut bits. Upcuts for when the bottom of the material needs the cleanest cut and material hold down is solid such as on panel stock, and downcut for when the top of the material is most critical and material hold down might be a bit weaker as on solid wood components.

2) 2-flute 3/8" carbide compression bit for when you need a clean surface on both the top and bottom of the material as on double sided melamine panels.

I would stay away from chip breakers and other expensive bits until you have a good handle on the basics. Early on in the learning curve bits tend to get broken with the potential to waste a lot of money.

Beyond this do as others have suggested and contact a router bit supplier for guidance.

BH Davis

3/26/24       #6: CNC Bits Recommendation ...

Volume of cutting also makes a difference. Run a couple bunks of MDF every shift and you will want to look at diamond tooling. The machine makes no difference at all in bit selection, so we don't need that constant advertisement for wattsan machines cheri.

3/26/24       #7: CNC Bits Recommendation ...

If I never read another post from idiotic wattsan, it'll be too soon.

3/27/24       #8: CNC Bits Recommendation ...

We use Vortex bits. I would download their app. It can be very helpful. I would also get on the phone with them or someone like them.

Only you can judge the results you get. What is good for one operation may not be good for another.

3/27/24       #9: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
Erick Member


I don't see anything wrong with asking generalized and "stupid" questions for someone, a person is just learning

3/27/24       #10: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
Andre Member

Hi Guys,

Thank you all so very much for taking the time to answer my questions with your recommendations. It means a lot and I do really appreciate you guys always being there to answer even the stupid questions. Its the only way to learn (that and with own mistakes).

May you all have a awesome second half of your week!

PS - apologies for taking so long to answer. Been buried in work with no time to scratch it, lol.

3/27/24       #11: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
Dropout Member

It's not a matter of stupid - I say the only stupid question is the one you don't ask.

General questions get general answers.

Specific questions get specific answers is all I'm saying.

3/28/24       #12: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
Josh Koschak

Frost CNC bits, many guys are seeing much longer tool life than competitors tooling and pricing is better.

3/31/24       #14: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
dylan bayliss


Providing 30 years of experience we are happy to try and help you with your discovery. We represent almost every bit mfg in the industry, including Vortex. Its' always best to crawl, walk then run in this quest to maximize your production and tool life. A 4 flute "Tornado" bit or a PCD (diamond) bit is not a bit to start with as your first tool/s. (both have value, just not suitable newbies in my opinion).

Our chip load white paper link below.

Feel free to call with any questions.

3/31/24       #15: CNC Bits Recommendation ...
The MW Studio  Member


For your Anderson America Selexx 510, considering the range of materials you're cutting MDF, Plywood, Particle Board, and Solid Wood here are some suggestions:

Compression Bits vs. Regular Bits: Compression bits are excellent for reducing chip-out in laminated materials like plywood and MDF. They combine an up-cut and a down-cut flute to produce a clean top and bottom edge. Regular bits can suffice for solid wood and particle board, but compression bits are preferred for laminates.

Bit Thickness: This depends on the depth of cut you're aiming for. Generally, thicker bits provide more stability and are preferable for heavier cuts. For general-purpose work, a 1/2" diameter bit should suffice, but consider 3/4" or even 1" for more demanding tasks.

Flutes: Flutes are standard and work well for most applications. However, if you're seeking smoother finishes and faster feed rates, 3 or 4 flutes might be preferable, especially for dense materials like solid wood.

Specialized Bits: For specific materials or operations, specialized bits can significantly enhance performance. For instance: For solid wood, consider spiral up-cut bits for efficient chip removal and a clean finish. For intricate designs or fine detailing, opt for small diameter bits or specialized carving bits. For precise joinery, such as dadoes or rabbets, look into specialty bits designed for those operations.

Remember, experimentation and testing are crucial to finding the perfect combination of bits for your particular needs. Don't hesitate to reach out if you need further clarification or specific recommendations for your projects.

I hope this helps guide you in the right direction. Feel free to ask any additional questions you may have!

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