Sticking bits in collet solution!

Wanted to share my success discovery! As I used my X carve more and more, I seemed to be having more frequent issues with the bits getting stuck in the collet, and bits falling out. I had to tighten the nut really tight to lock the bits in. Initially, a light tap with the wrench and they would drop out, then I got to where I had rattle them out with the wrench, then give a semi solid tap with a screwdriver. I ordered new collets, even ordered a new Makita router in hopes of finding a solution (none of which I have yet received). Then I started breaking more and more detail bits!

Was talking to a machinist friend, and he suggested I “reset” the collet each time I changed the bit. IE, pull the collet fully loose, set it back in the router, then install the bit. This little gem of advice has worked wonders!!! After each bit use, I fully remove the nut, fully remove the collet, then put the collet and nut back on and install my next bit. The spindle has improved so much, that it I only need to “clinch” the bits in and they don’t fall out, and when I loosen the nut, the bits often release and drop out before the first full turn of the nut.

Bit life has improved drastically as well! If the collet never moves, it makes small grooves and shoulders inside the router shaft that cause it to bind up. If this is common knowledge, I feel stupid, but I can’t be the only member who has experienced this. give it a try, it costs NOTHING!!


This is just my opinion, but it sounds like a one-word problem… SAWDUST!!! :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

It sounds like sawdust from the machining process was just getting jammed in the spaces between the collet jaws over time. This would essentially cause unpredictable clamping action around a bit until the packed dust was removed or it fell out on its own.

Glad everything is working better for you now…!!!


Brandon Parker


I thought so at first too, actually thought it was pitch or resin, but collet was cleaned regularly, and router shaft swabbed out with denatured alcohol until the swab came back clean. Then make a couple of production cuts, changing the bit, but not releasing the collet, and I was back to breaking bits and having to beat them out.

Since I’ve implemented the fully remove collet between bits, my problem is about gone. Bits are easy to change and I’m not breaking them like I was before. Thanks for your input!!

Are you sure you aren’t using a metric collet with SAE shanks, or vice versa?

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I had the same problem when I worked with aluminum. Never had the problem with wood. Thanks for sharing!

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