End Mill or Surfacing Bit for Planing

I want to take a .75" board down to maybe .5" before making my cuts. Should I use a 1/4" end mill (#201) or a surfacing bit (Whiteside 6210)? Which will give me a better surface?

Or should I just say ‘screw it’ and go get Dewalt DW735 thought that I would throw that one in there.

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How wide is the board? Why not resaw it and get a 1/8" veneer cut?

If you do remove 1/4" of thickness, do it evenly, removing 1/8" from each side.

Board is 11 1/4" wide. I don’t have anything to resaw them. I have a small bandsaw but nothing that would cut a board that wide.

IF you use a #201 1/4 inch bit it will take a long time and you may still have to sand the board to remove the marks. The Whiteside 6210 is 1" side and you can use a 50% stepover. The board will be surfaced faster and most likely have less tooling marks. You may still have to sand the board depending on your router tram and flatness of your wasteboard. If you have a Whiteside 6210 I would use it.

A planner is quick but there is a minimum length to use in a planner. So even though your board is 11.25 inches wide if it is short you would be better off using the Whiteside 6210 and you wont get snipe on your board. If you board is say 30" long the planner would be better to thickness and may faster.

Either way you have to break some eggs to make on omelet.

Here is my custom tool for my Whiteside 6210 and another generic 1" fly cutter.

number vendor model URL name type diameter cornerradius flutelength shaftdiameter angle numflutes stickout coating metric notes machine material plungerate feedrate rpm depth cutpower finishallowance 3dstepover 3dfeedrate 3drpm
601 whiteside 6210 Fly Cutter end 1 0.125 0.125 0 2 3 0.125 0 Shapeoko MDF 10 80 16000 0.01 1 20 80 16000
602 Sugelary X002JUT7TF Fly Cutter end 1 0.125 0.25 0.25 2 3 0.25 0 Shapeoko MDF 10 100 16000 0.01 1 20 80 16000

I had emailed Whiteside and they gave the me the F&S. They suggested 100 IPM but I reduced it to 80IPM to be conservative. You can run the Whiteside 6210 much faster on MDF but you may want to reduce on hardwood or use a F&S calculator for exact F&S.


Thanks Guy! I’ll be going with the Whiteside. Out of the 2 that you have, does either one give you better results than the other?

So far both give the same result. In the long term the quality of the carbide will be the determining factor. Whiteside is made in the USA and has been a reputable company. The other one is a cheap Chinese bit I got free with a purchase of something else. It is fairly new and sharp but MDF dulls a bit just about as quick as anything we cut. So in the long run only time will tell if a no name generic carbide is as good as what Whiteside makes… There was not much difference in price so I like to support a good old fashioned North Carolina company and that is Whiteside. Even before I got into CNC Routing I had a lot of Whiteside bits. I bought the Whiteside with my own money and the other one is basically free as part of another deal.

The Whiteside 6210 is $29.00 on Amazon and the other one is $16.00 also on Amazon.

Another factor to consider is you can email Whiteside and get an answer about F&S. I tried to find the manufacturer website for the Sugelary and could never find anything about it or even a manufacturer website. China pumps copies of everything by the thousands and their names change from product to product so you really never know who what or when anything was made in China.

I have a 1.300 dia cutter (~$10 Amazon) JUST for doing this type of surface planing. (My depth of cut would be 1/4")Screen Shot 2021-03-22 at 10.47.54 AM

Rich, do you have a link to that one?

I’m surfacing a 22" square pine board (two glued together) and I’m pushing the Whiteside beyond the recommended IPM. Working great!

Yes. I’ve had it for about 2 1/2 years. I also use it for slotting, meaning it’s a multi use cutter, for me.

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