Using Soft Pine

I am sure this has been covered in another post somewhere in the Forum but I am unable to dig it up.
I am trying to carve a large (24x24inches) picture for my son and all i can find is soft pine in this size. I have tried to cut this using the 2 step process with the first rough pass using a 1/8 straight 2 flute bit and the second path using a 1/6 down cut bit. I haven’t been able to get past the 1st pass. This is a reverse cut design with only the eyes and the mouth standing. The face is 1/32 below the the background and the nose and whiskers are 1/32 below the face. I have selected the MDF and soft maple as my material but I am having tear out of parts that should be standing after the cutting is finished. I have a feeling the speed of my Dewalt 611 and the cut settings aren’t the correct for this soft of material.
The odd thing is that I cut a test one out of the pink insulation board and it came out a whole lot better.
I know the issue is an ID-10T error, but I don’t have a lot of stock left just to play with.
Thanks for the help!

Sorry, I meant to show the picture of what I

am trying to do.


Here is a thread i did on soft pine you might want to check it out

@GaryArgabrite A couple of different things will help you here I think. In general, 1/16" bits only have a cutting depth of 1/4"; so your entire design should probably step no more than 1/4" total. Multiple steps would be fine, just know that 1/4" is likely all the deeper that you can reach with your 1/16" bit.

Another is that I have found that I get much better results when I run the detail pass first and then run the roughing pass. I get noticeably cleaner edges and hardly any chip out. For the Pine, this would work very well.

Regarding your machine settings, I very seldom use a depth of cut more than half of the nominal diameter of the bit (0.03125" for 1/16" bit, 0.0625" for 1/8" bit). For both of these, I would set my feed rate at 80 in/min and my plunge at 40 in/min.

Hope this helps =)

I am a little confused by this could you expand on this a little more ?

finishing passes are meant to be done last and if you leave offset material from your roughing pass you will not have chip out when you are doing a finishing pass

just curious

Somewhat true, however there is no option to create an offset in Easel, it’s done automatically. Also, while the chip out would be correct in more dense woods, for soft woods like pine and in my recent case cedar, small details or sharp points have a tendency to break off with such an open grain wood. If you run the detail pass first, you have the full surface area of the wood holding itself together, then all you need to do is clear out the other areas.

are you using easel only to program?

Gary didn’t say that he wasn’t.

Thanks. The problem I am having Is that big chunks from the eyes and mouth break off.
I never thought about the Dewalt chuck hitting the wood. That would sure do it.
I thought I had the bit chucked down enough but maybe not!

Thanks Phil, that’s what I was trying to explain.

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I was never been able to get to the finish pass yet, The rough passes is where I am having the issues.


I am not sure what you mean by the dewalt chuck hitting the material?

could you explain that a little more?


I think the bottom of the Dewalt was hitting the top of material I was carving.
I didn’t think about the Length of the Bit on how deep I could carve

oh yes don’t do that lol

and do you have any pics of some of the problems you are experiencing?

If you are working in Easel and care to share the file, I’d be happy to take a look and make recommendations from there.