Router bit vs. drill bit – what’s the big deal?
Let’s use the router bit in a drill and do the work. Wait. Before you use a router bit in a drill, tell me can you use a router bit in a drill or not? Are you doing it by knowing the consequence, or just as you want it?
A router bit is designed to operate at high speed, it’s used to create curved edges, molds, patterns, etc. While a drill runs slower and is used to create holes. You can create only round holes, that too at your own risk.
So, you can’t use a router bit in a drill. If you do so, you run the risk of breaking or damaging the bit itself and potentially injuring yourself. We will know the consequence of using a router bit in the drill below in detail.
And before making any decision, you must be aware of the basic differences between a drill and a wood router and when to use them. If you are interested in knowing about these, you are welcome to be with me till the end.
Once you finish the article, I am sure you will know why you can’t use a router bit in a drill and a lot more about drill and router power tools.
What Are the Basic Differences Between a Drill and a Router?
Drill and router, both the drilling machine have almost the same configuration, but not the same. They have some basic differences, and we will know them below.
- A router is designed to cut various types of straight and curved edges on a narrow wood piece, acrylic, etc. On the other hand, a drill is designed to create downward holes in metal, rocks, etc.
- A router can spin 8,000 to 30,000 revolutions per minute. At the same time, a drill can spin a maximum of 3,000 per minute.
- A router bit is much larger and has more teeth, making it better suited for routing wood. On the other hand, a drill bit has lower teeth and comes affordable.
- Routers use sideway pressure to cut smoothly. In contrast, the drill uses downward pressure to create small and large holes.
- A router is a handled machine that is also mountable for CNC on a computerized table. Along with the handheld version, a drill is also available in bench and floor-mounted versions.
- A router is used to cut straight edges, complex curved edges, beveled edges, round over, grooves, etc. And the drill is used to create various sizes of holes, spot facing, countersinking, reaming, counterboring, etc.
The consequences of using router bit in a drill
Drill is a very helpful tool to complete any drilling project efficiently. But when using a router bit in a drill, the consequences can be serious and dangerous.
Router bits are designed to create edges at high speed. Drills are highly restricted from operating at high speed to protect their moving parts from abrasive wear and tear. So, when you put it in the slow runner drill, its blades gouge the wood excessively, as well as a jerk the tool, causing potentially dangerous consequences.
A router bit doesn’t fit in a drill perfectly, so the drill can’t hold the chunk tightly as it should. As a result, the router bit is more likely to slip in a drill, which is potentially dangerous, and the bit can also be damaged due to having a few grooves on the router bit shafts. If you fail and put the router bit in the router for further drilling, the router bit will break down easily.
A router bit works with sideway pressure, but a drill is not designed to handle sideway force. So when you use a router bit in a drill, it can’t handle the excessive downward pressure and end up with the chuck coming loose.
Can you use a drill bit in a router?
No, you can’t use a drill bit in a router.
A router has a flat, wide base that rests firmly on the workpiece. By doing so, not only does the top-heavy tool remain steady during use, but the router bit’s depth of cut also remains consistent. This ensures greater safety and precision during use.
When you use a drill bit instead of a router bit, the drill bit can’t handle its sideway pressure, lose its temper, and mostly break down. Because a drill bit is made of high carbon steel or low carbon, that easily loses its temper if gets overheated and pressurized.
A minimum router speed is 8000 revolutions which are almost 3x of a drill bit’s maximum spin per minute. So when you try to drill with it, the drill bit breaks down due to overheating. As a result, you can’t drill your desired hole.
And if you face a drill bit breakdown in the middle of drilling, you may damage the router and can end up injuring yourself. Sometimes the bits could fly out of the machine and injure someone else too.
But if you claim you are a highly skilled woodworker, the drill bit is made with strong material, and you are maintaining the safety requirements, you may give it a try when you have no option. Avoid this highly if you are a novice and take proper safety precautions to be safe from any injuries.
When To Use a Drill and When To Use a Router?
When to use a drill
A drill is a flexible, low-speed useful tool. You can use it for drilling, tapping, reaming, and counterboring. Whether you want to hang your pictures or frame your house, a drill bit can do it all.
- If you want a tear-free small hole in rigid surfaces or solid materials like metal, you can rely on a drill. A drill with a twist bit or tapered bit can create a small hole for you in numerous types of materials.
- When you need to create space in floor joists, countertops, or cabinets for plumbing pipes, you need to use a drill. You can also use it for recessed lighting. A drill can cut large, and round, high-quality holes with a specialty bit.
- If it’s about performing aggressive work like installing long screws and bolts in various surfaces, a drill can consistently and perfectly do it.
- Drill doesn’t stop by drilling small and large holes, it can perfectly drill deep holes on a conventional CNC machine as well.
- You can use a drill to remove rust from metal, iron, or steel tools & items, and also can smooth the irregular shapes or carves & arcs.
When to use a router
A router is a high-speed power tool that is portable and usable for various work such as cutting and trimming, and a lot more.
- When you want to create decorative simple rounded molds to roman ogee, you can use a router. You just need to use a different bit, and you will get different molds on your desired materials.
- Whether you want to create a beaded pattern for doors, chair rails, complex widows, or baseboards, a router can help you do all these things. Plus, you can use it to cut door hinges space and lock faceplates by using it with a jig.
- You can also use a router when you want to create dadoes; whether it’s a through dado that runs through both sides of a surface, leaving the ends open, or a blind or stopped dado which intersects at a point where one or both cuts meet the surface edge. But to enjoy this cut, you have to use a straight router bit.
- When you want to groove cut the back edge of a cabinet or bookcase sides, or jambs for the casement windows or door, a router with a rabbet bit is all you need. A router is flexible; it can accommodate different rabbet bits and can cut your desired width grooves with ease.
- Not only for creating new molds or designs but a router can also be used to re-create the design of a broken wood piece. And to do that, you don’t need any other tool to copy the design, it can easily trace the design and recreate it.
As we told above, you can’t use a router bit in a drill, but the good news, there is a router attachment for the cordless drill!
When you are looking for a DIY router, this matrix system is the best solution. Whether you want to do decorative woodworking, small edge forming, or trimming, this router attachment is the perfect tool for you. You will just need a base tool, and it’s ready for cutting, drilling, sanding, and so on.
It comes with high-quality torques and best-in-class speed that allows you to tackle your household work or workshop tasks with ease. Additionally, it has a quick-adjust button, that lets you adjust the depth to 1″ if necessary. And for single wrench bit changes, it has a spindle lock button.
With the concern of doing each job with perfect speed, this tool is equipped with a variable speed dial. Its RPM is 12v maximum=0 to 6800, 20v macimum= 0 to 9000, and AC 4A=0 to 7300. And most importantly, you can carry this router attachment anywhere whenever you need it, without any stand-alone units.
Can I use a drill instead of a router?
You can use a drill instead of a router if you want to use it for drilling work. If you are thinking of using a drill to complete the task a router can do, you are absolutely not allowed to do so. A router is designed to create decorative molds, various patterns, round holes, etc. while a drill can only create deep holes. So, after considering router operation, I think you shouldn’t use a drill instead of a router, if you do so, you will waste your time and tool both.
Can you use a drill as a router?
Never, you can’t use a drill as a router. Because routers can handle much more wood than drills, they’re perfect for detailed tasks like cutting dadoes or rabbets in lumber, as well as less-trivial operations like cleaning up cuts made with standard bits in your workshop routing table saws.
Can you use a router to drill holes?
Yes, you can use a router to drill holes. As we said above, a router can cut round molds that are a type of hole. So if you know how to use a router, you can definitely use it to drill holes, and sometimes better holes than a drill.