Cutting 18mm Film Faced Birch Plywood

Hey Guys,

This is 100% a newbie questions. I am about to jump in a build a Lowrider CNC.

But before I do, I just wanted to check that it will be able to do what I am looking for it to do.

I want to be able to cut 18mm Film Faced Birch Plywood. I am not looking at complex shapes, but would be looking for a neat finish.

Would there be any issues in doing so with the lowrider?

Thanks in advance your responces

Does the manufacturer of the material have any recommendations for cutting? If the use of a router is one of them you should be good to go. Different materials may have different needs so I’d try to get an answer from the ‘horse’s mouth’.

While having never seen film faced birch plywood it doesn’t look like it should be an issue as the film is paper. Your main concern is probably going to be tearing of the paper. 90% or what I cut is 18mm birch ply and it does that no problem. Just get good cutters, I have had great success with straight flute bits but you have to be a bit careful when plunging as it doesn’t clear the holes well.

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I’d try to find compression end mills. These cut down on the top part of the bit and up on the bottom. The direction of the cutters helps to reduce chipping of the top and bottom surface. Some recommend having air assist with these bits to reduce chips collecting in the grooves of the material.

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When cutting 18mm or 3/4" plywood run a down cut bit at 1mm - 1.5mm depth of cut then run an upcut for the remaining roughing and finishing.

More than one way to accomplish your objectives. All options presented are viable.

Thanks Guys, you quick response is very much appreciated. Compression end mills, or the. combination down cut / up cut sounds like they will do the trick. Any thoughts about doing it in 1 cut. I watched a video of someone with a large CNC do it. But am assuming perhaps the lowriders nemas might not be up to the task.

Cutting in a single pass causes you to cut slower. This tends to produce saw dust instead of chips and can cause the end mill to overheat and burn instead of cut.

There’s a trade off between Depth Of Cut (DOC) and speed. If you have a spindle with a variable speed, then you may be able to slow the RPMs down to cut full depth while still producing chips.

Then again, I did just notice you’re asking about LowRider… I’m sure someone else will correct me if the LowRider is different in this regard than the MPCNC. I’ll be curious to hear if there’s a difference in capabilities on full cuts.

You can. Only if you’re willing to conduct numerous test cuts to fine tune your machine. Roughing Endmills