5 Essential Router Bits for Beginners

Updated: Feb. 22, 2022

Router bits are expensive; so if you're just getting started in routing, don't buy bits you'll never use. These five bits will cover the basics.

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1/8-in. Round-Over Bit

Virtually every project you make will need the sharp corners rounded over. I keep a 1/8-in. or even a 1/16-in. round-over bit in one of my compact routers at all times. That way, it’s ready to go whenever I need it. Plus: Learn how to get perfect routed edges every time.

Buy this router bit on Amazon now.

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45-Degree Chamfer Bit

A chamfer bit breaks a sharp edge, like a round-over bit does. But a chamfer adds a crisp, clean detail to an edge. Adjusting the bit’s height determines the width of the chamfer. Check out this seriously cool collection of 34 handy hints for your woodworking projects.

Get a chamfer bit for your collection today.

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Flush-Trim Bit

A flush-trim router bit has a bearing at the top or bottom. This allows you to follow any pattern, including a straight edge for jointing lumber. Many different sizes are available to suit your needs. Plus: These are the router tool basics all woodworkers need to know.

Buy it now on Amazon.

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Straight/Bottom Cutting Bits

Straight/bottom cutting bits are similar to top-bearing flush-trim bits, but the cutters extend across the bottom of the bit. This allows cutting clean grooves and dadoes. Some are available with a top bearing, while others require a guide bushing installed in the router’s base. Learn foolproof ways to make dado and rabbet cuts here.

Order a straight/bottom cutting bit for your home shop now.

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Rabbet Bit Set

A rabbet bit allows you to cut rabbets of varying depths at the edge of a board. Along with dadoes, rabbets are an essential joint in cabinetry. A rabbet bit kit comes with several bearing sizes to adjust the size of the rabbet. Ready for a woodworking adventure? Here are 19 surprisingly easy woodworking projects for beginners.

Buy a rabbet bit set on Amazon now.