How To Sharpen Router Bits? [Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide] How To Sharpen Router Bits? [Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide]
Ever try to route a bit of wood and ended up with jagged, chip-filled lines instead of the smooth, precise cuts you were hoping... How To Sharpen Router Bits? [Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide]

Ever try to route a bit of wood and ended up with jagged, chip-filled lines instead of the smooth, precise cuts you were hoping for? 

It’s probably because your router bits are dull. In this ultimate guide, we’ll show you how to sharpen router bits so you can get clean, consistent cuts every time. Read on for step-by-step instructions.

There are two ways of sharpening router bits, and now we will go thru them. 

Manual Sharpening

A manual is a great option for router bit sharpening. It requires patience, skill, and the right tools to get the job done effectively. The most popular manual sharpening techniques are using either hand files or diamond stones to sharpen the cutting edge of the router bit.

Hand File:

For manual sharpening using a hand file, you should select a file that is slightly larger than the router bit. This will help protect against over-grinding the cutting edge and ensure better results. Make sure to use smooth, slow strokes with even pressure as you sharpen. You may need to make several passes on each side of the router bit in order to get the desired sharpness. Stop frequently to check your progress and look for burrs or unevenness that may need further work. 

Diamond Stone:

Before you begin, make sure that the diamond stone is free of nicks and burrs. As with hand file manual sharpening, use even pressure as you sharpen each side of the router bit. You may need to make several passes on each side to get the desired sharpness. Be sure to stop frequently to check your progress and look for burrs or unevenness that may need additional attention. With proper technique and the best diamond sharpening stone, you can achieve sharp, precise cuts. 

Now when we explained methods of manual sharpening router bits, we can move on to machine-based sharpening. 

Machine-based Sharpening 

Machine-based sharpening is the quickest and most precise way to sharpen router bits. It generally involves specialized jigs or machines that are designed to quickly and accurately sharpen router bits. 

With a machine, you can achieve a much sharper cutting edge than with manual methods, leading to a cleaner, more precise cuts in less time. However, this method does require knowledge and experience to set up and use the sharpening jig or machine correctly, so it is important to take your time and be sure that you are doing it correctly. 

Router Bit Sharpening Jigs:

This method involves using a specialized jig that holds the router bit in place while it is sharpened with a bench grinder. The advantage of this method is that it produces consistent, precise results without having to worry about manually controlling the grinding process. With a router bit sharpening jig, you can get reliable, repeatable results quickly and easily. 

Router Bit Sharpening Machine:

Router bit sharpening machines are specialized tools designed to sharpen router bits quickly and accurately. This method requires skills and knowledge to correctly set up and use, but it can produce excellent results in a fraction of the time that manual methods would. 

Sharpening Step Router Bits

Sharpening step bits demands accuracy and precision to maintain the correct angle of the cutting edge. For fast progress, use a file or diamond stone, or for greater precision, use a jig or sharpening machine. Using a jig or machine will provide higher consistency and accuracy but it may necessitate additional skills and knowledge to set up and use properly. You can achieve precise results with any sharpening technique for your step bits with patience and training.

The essential to success is understanding how each sharpening method works so you can select the best one for your project.

Step-By-Step Guide 

Here you will find a list of steps to follow when sharpening router bits. We will explain every step separately, so if you want to sharpen your router bit perfectly, stay with us and keep reading this article!

  • Prepare the Router Bit
  • Set Up Sharpening Equipment
  • Remove Excess Material
  • Refine the Edge
  • Final Steps

1. Prepare the Router Bit:

Begin by examining the router bit to make sure it is in good condition with no chips or cracks. Clean any dirt or dust from the cutting edges using a clean cloth and some light oil.

2. Set Up Sharpening Equipment

Next, prepare the equipment you will use. Use an adjustable jig or fixture to hold the router bit in a consistent position. Ensure that the cutting edges are at a precise angle against the grinding wheel.

3. Remove Excess Material:

Hold the router bit firmly and begin grinding away any excess material from the cutting edge with slow, steady strokes. Apply light pressure when using an abrasive grinder and stop every few seconds to check for progress.

4. Refine the Edge:

Once all of the excess material is removed, you can begin refining the edge. Using a finer grit abrasive wheel, slowly sharpen each cutting edge with light pressure. Check your work frequently to ensure a consistent shape.

5. Final Steps:

Once you are satisfied with its shape and sharpness, clean it with a light lubricant or oil to prevent rusting and corrosion. Finally, store your bit in a safe place until you need it again. 

Following these steps will help ensure that your router bits stay sharp and in good condition for years to come. With regular maintenance and sharpening, you can get the best results from it each time it is used. Also, besides well-known router bits, there are a few different bits used for woodcraft. If you are considering buying some, here you can check out the review of the best dremel bits on the market.  


And now, that you know the best methods to sharpen your precious tool, we need to talk about safety, because that is one of the most important things about sharpening. We supposed that you are experienced enough to know how to stay safe while sharpening, but it’s always good to repeat some basic safety measures. 

Wear protective eyewear, gloves, and a dust mask as you work with the grinding wheel. Keep your workspace free of clutter so that you don’t trip over any loose tools or debris while you are working.

Keep your hands away from the grinding wheel and be sure to unplug the router bit before sharpening. Always make sure you are properly grounded by wearing a grounding strap or using an electrical ground tester. Take your time and make sure all safety procedures are followed in order to protect yourself from injury. With proper safety precautions, you will be able to safely sharpen your router bits for optimal performance.

We hope that we helped you to understand different techniques of sharpening. Now that you have the ultimate step-by-step guide in front of you, you can decide which technique is best for your ongoing project.

Jeff Richardson Editor

Passionate about wood carving since high school. Always been able to relax while carving. 7 years ago, I decided to dedicate my whole time to wood carving; this is when I started my blog. I am a fan of DIY, fitness, and crafts. Also, I love to spend time with my friends, carving something out of wood. I hope you enjoy my articles.

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