Losing steps - imp or something else

I’ve got a clock face I’m trying to carve out (v-carve) and went thru a bunch of trial runs on MDF before I finally got 2 successful cuts in a row so now it was time for the real piece of wood. I’m using quarter sawn oak and it immediately went out of step. It’s like the head is trying to be pushed too fast and there is a click and the spindle seems to fall behind and then jump, that’s when it goes out of step. It was on 30ipm and DeWalt 611 at 6 using a 60 degree 1/5" bit I got from Inventables. I lowered it to 15ipm with the same settings and it got a lot further before the same thing happened. It seemed to struggle as it was coming round from the 1 to the 2 (going diagonal thru the grain) going clockwise and again between 8 and 9 o’clock.

Since slowing down the feed rate seemed to help some, maybe I need to go a bit slower, but from reading posts it seems like everyone else is using way higher feed rates for Oak. I’m also wondering if I should bump up the pot just a little bit, too? I can’t really control he depth of the cut (using Vectric) and it looks like it’s cutting about 1/8" deep as it goes. Personally, I’d like for it cut half that and make 2 passes, but I’m not sure I can control that.

Any suggestions would be nice. I’ve looked at posts and seen some similar things but am not sure since my federate seems to be way slower.



If you haven’t calibrated your pots, then do that…

6 on the dewalt is way too fast…try 1.5 or 2.

You can adjust the depth of cut with V-Carve…look in the settings for the tool where you selected the bit.

OK. I adjusted the too to make shallower cutsl, slowed down to 15ipm, router to 2 and ran a test on MDF. Quite a bit longer, but it worked. It’s now 15mins into my main run on the Oak. It’s made 2 passes around the circle without losing steps. I’ve got another hour to go, but things are looking up. I"ve watched the Vectric V-carving tutorials and they never once mention any adjustments on the tool itself… they just take all the default values and run with it.


1 Like

They probably have already set up their tools for their machine. You can probably bump up the speed quite a bit…not on this piece, but do some tests…quick and shallow usually works better.

In general keeping the speed but doing shallow cuts works better especially with those bits they are very delicate.

Thanks for the help. I had 2 successful vcarves (1 on oak and 1 on walnut) with the shallower/slower bit heads. I probably could’ve bumped up the speed some, but I didn’t mind waiting a little longer if I knew it would work. Turning the router down to 2 stopped the burning I was getting, too.

I was doing an oak project last night where I was cutting out a serving tray from 3/4" wood. I had a nice .25 Freud end mill and set it to 30ipm at .08 depth a pass. I lost steps again with the friction. I had to slow it down to 15ipm and .06 depth pass before it would complete successfully, and even then… it missed 1 step towards the end.

I was using the .25 bit because I thought it would be nice and stout for cutting thru oak, but then I started wondering if it’s also causing more friction because it’s bigger and cutting more wood. Perhaps a 1/8" bit would’ve been better? It is having to move less wood. My DeWalt was set at 2 initially and ended up at 3.5.

Instead of slowing it down, take smaller bites…do a test at 50ipm but only cutting 0.04. Router is still too fast…try 1.5 to 2.

If your bit turned black from running it too fast (dewalt setting) and too slow (inches per minute), it is probably very dull and will not give you the results you are looking for.

The bit was brand new and never used before… no discoloration and feels sharp to the touch.