Can you use a bowl bit for juice grooves.?

Can you use a bowl bit on the Shapeoko?

I know you would not use the bearing on it. I am looking to make juice grooves on some cutting boards and read some horror stories.

Yes, router bits w/o bearings which can plunge can be used with suitable feeds and speeds. Router bits w/o bearings which can’t plunge can be used w/ suitable feeds, speeds, and toolpaths.

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I use a bowl bit quite regularly, it works great!
Three caveats

  1. Turn down the RPM on the router… like all the way down. They aren’t supposed to spin too fast
  2. They plunge pretty poorly, so set your plunge speed quite low (say 5 ipm)
  3. They are large and not super great for removing a lot of material at the same time, so keep F&S reasonable, something like 0.04" DOC with a 25-35ipm feedrate or so.

(if you feel the F&S are low… well, look at a high speed 1/4" endmill shape, with angled flutes aimed for quickly cutting and evacuating things… and then a bowl bit, which is just looking like a razor spinning around, no fancy advanced geometry etc)


I’ve got this core box bit set from Milescraft. I use the largest bit to cut the marble holders for Chinese checkers boards and it’s worked great for that. It’s a peck drilling operation so it’s not cutting grooves at that point. I’ve used the other bits for smaller projects where I need grooves as well, following the @fenrus advice.

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fwiw I have the whiteside bowl bit ( ) and it seems very well made…
but I suspect they basically are all similar in behavior


I love my whiteside bits, and I guarantee that’s a better bit than what I have. I think I got that set while in a rush and it’s worked great for a cheaper set, but I think I might be buying this one today now!

Yes it works great, but as mentioned by @fenrus, use a light DOC. I use .02 for end grain cutting boards, as documented here: So many scraps what to do

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Guys thanks for the input. I just wanted to make sure what I was thinking is correct. The bit we will be using is a actually a round nose bit for fluting. For some reason bowl bit was stuck in my head. But a bowl bit will come in handy for something else down the line.

Pics will be posted when completed.

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