Alternatives to Onsrud CNC router bits

We’ve been using our ShotBot Buddy CNC router nonstop for the last three years for FRC and other projects and it’s been transformative. So far we’ve been buying Onsrud 63-618 3/16" single flute bits for this.

I was wondering if anyone has a cheaper alternative? Onsruds are great but at $37 a pop they do get expensive with student (ab)use. By the way, this is mainly for aluminum with a little ABS and polycarbonate thrown in.

Not exactly a game changer price wise but McMaster sells 3/16 solid carbide single flute cutters for $5 less.

WCP has these single flutes for a little less

I’ve been importing these new aluminium specific single flutes from china for $5 a piece and have been getting the same performance as my Onsrud bits. They are still a pain to get, I haven’t found an english re-seller.

We use the 3/16 Amana bits from Tools Today at $30. I think if you buy 5 of the same you get a 10% discount or so.

Try these guys:

A few teams in Australia are using their single flute bits with success. Good mills at good prices.

We started to sell these because our team uses them like crazy. We mainly use the 4mm because its a .156-.157 diameter tool. It allows us to do #10 tapped holes, #8 holes and #10 holes without changing a tool, which is huge for us. We’ve had great success with them.

Thanks RC. I just order five of your 4mm bits so we’ll see it goes! That’s a great price even if they only last half as long as our Onsruds.

Are go to has been these bits for about $26 still not a great price but pretty good.

We have found that 2 flute end mills are more cost effective than single flutes. For roughly 2/3 the price you get an endmill that will do great and last at least as long. The key is keeping your cuts clean and lubricated.

We really like these:

0.1875, 2 flute and $17.56

However most of our machining is done with 0.250 end mills:

0.250, 2 flute and $21.46

For really tight radiuses we use these:

0.125, 2 flute and $14.17

Do you also use the 4mm for cutting outlines and pockets?

Can you share your speed, feed, and depth of cut numbers when using these endmills?

On a router? Forgive my skepticism, we’ve had much better luck with one- and zero-flute mills on ours. For mills, 100% agree that 2-flute is the way to go

Speed & chip-load are posted at the link. RC, what’s the depth of cut on those?

We have been using cutters from Online Carbide at my shop. Their quality and pricing is outstanding.

3 flute ZRN coated for 12.95

Mr Mike

As a point of reference on speeds and feeds…

I use and for my side-business. We’ll do sheet metal in a single pass, from 0.030in to 0.080in 5052 H32, at 24IPM/24kRPM (.001ipt cut load) with good results and excellent cutter life. Cutting single-pass is remarkably useful because you don’t need to worry about re-cutting, which is the single biggest killer of router bits in my experience.

In thicker material we run around 0.05-0.06inch DOC and use an air-blast and dust collector to keep chips out of the cutting channel, with the same 24krpm and 24ipm travel.

We’ve tried running faster, but the machine doesn’t seem rigid enough. It’s a torchmate small-shop machine, mostly made from 8020 with a convoluted spindle mount.

Out of curiosity, what kind of machine are you running?

Do you have an example cut recipe?