Anyone using a 1/4” roughing bit?

I recently started using a 1/4” roughing bit that a friend has made for his company and I’m loving it so much, but I can’t find anyone else selling them.

Who is using roughing bits and where are you getting them?

If you’re not using a roughing bit you absolutely should. It massively cuts down on run time and you can get a cleaner finish pass cut.

A lot of us use a quarter inch End Mill with a roughing pass.
Please describe what makes the roughing bit different from the End Mill?

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How much faster can you run one vs a “regular” 1/4" end mill?
I’ve never used one, but I think they’re just called spiral roughing or chip breaking end mills. You should be able to find them pretty easily online.

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As @BillBlades said a roughing bit is used to take out material fast and can be used for clearing pockets, prepping 3d contours, or for profiling. You can cut deeper passes at a greater step over all at a much quicker feed rate.

Here is the bit I use and a piece of material where you can see the striations in the cut. This is the scrap, whereas the piece that has been cleaned up is perfectly smooth.

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You are only limited by the stability of your machine really. I’ve never broken one of these and I’ve had them cut 13/16" hard maple at 80 in/min.

I am asking because I can’t find a 1/4" roughing bit and I’ve looked online everywhere I can think of. I’ve searched Whiteside, Amana, Vortex, CMT, Onsrud, and others. They only carry 3/8" shank and larger. I know the 611 can’t hold anything more than a 1/4" so I thought somebody here might have found a source. I would have loved one of these when I was running my X-Carve. Would have tripled production.

Thanks for the tip. I never bothered because I didn’t realize you could run faster.

JERRAY@ Cutting Tools Solid Carbide roughing End Mills, HRC45 with Tialn Coated, 4 Flutes, 1/4" Diameter, 1/4" Shank, 3/4" Length of Cut, 2" Overall Length

I wonder if you’d have better luck getting a 6mm collet.

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This is a 4 flute milling bit for ferrous material. It may work, I’ve not had a lot of experience with them, but I think it would squeal something fierce unless you were moving it super quick or were able to turn your RPM way way down. I’d still be concerned about overheating and lifting the parts. But it might be worth a try.

I want 1/4” because of the geometry of my nested parts and the way my projects are setup.

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DeWalt 611 will carry 8mm when using the 8mm collet. I use 8mm to 6mm collet insert for 6mm router bits.