Lost Z steps while cutting?

I think I lost some Z steps while cutting my dust shoe, are there any know steps for debugging this, and are there any good instructions (besides reading the assembly instructions and reversing) for removing the Z-carriage router plate? I’d like to remove that because the left spring is installed in such a way that it scrapes the left Z-axis extrusion (I can just reverse it and the problem will go away).

I don’t think the scraping is causing the lost steps, BTW, It doesn’t seem to cause any resistance, just shouldn’t be left as it is right now.

What material are you cutting and what are your settings? My Z axis would skip a step while drilling down on a finishing pass on one of my 3D designs. No matter what I tried, it’d skip. I ended up drilling it out prior to the finishing pass and the same finishing pass that would skip before went without hiccup. This makes me assume that it was plunging too fast and it couldn’t remove material fast enough.

Edit-it did this with both MDF and aluminum

Funny you say that, my first operation was drilling and that is where it seems to look like I was losing Z-steps. When I got to profiling, I think I was fine.

I’m working w/ BB plywood, and my plunge rate was 15 inches/minute. I’m using Cut2D and my peck is .125" and I retract above the cutting start depth each peck.

Anyone have any tips on drilling w/o losing steps?

You know, it occurs to me that plunging with an upcut spiral bit (with a hand-held router) has always required more force than I’d imagine would be required. I wonder if there are some upcut bits better optimized for drilling.

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Drills are 4x better at drilling than end mills. End mills are 4x better at side milling than drills. End mills are really poor at clearing the chips from the center of the cut, which is part of why the force required is so high - you need to break the chip at the bottom of the hole, then throw it out of the hole, instead of carrying it out like a drill would (one long chip carried up the flutes without breaking).

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But drill are made from HSS and are not meant to spin at 15,000 rpm so be VERY CAREFUL.

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Wasn’t suggesting using a drill bit. Should have been more clear, my fault. Just trying to explain what the difference was, and why end mills suck so much at drilling. That said, HSS is just fine at high speed, if it’s a tool built for that. Running a drill bit at 14k isn’t a good idea, HSS or carbide.

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