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Looking for tooling recommendations for CNC router

Peter Matos Member


We just purchased a nice CR Onsrud CNC router and it has an HSK 63F style spindle. 28k RPM we have been looking at various tool offerings online and trying to determine what is the best value/performance options. The machine had been using HSK63F SYOZ25 holders and we were leaning towards that but there are ER32/ER40 etc available in that spindle configuration. Any suggestions about appropriate tooling or perhaps a package of holders that is quality with a reasonable price point? The machine has a 12 tool changer.

Also we are looking at new router cutters from the likes of CR Onsrud and Vortex etc. Ammana seems to have some decent cutters too and they have tool packages as well. We want to try to be ready as much as possible when the machine arrives and finally gets powered up and vacuumed up etc. Open to suggestions.. Thanks in advance.


5/23/18       #2: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Gary Balcom


you never mentioned what you are planning on cutting with this machine. No one can give you a good answer until you do so.

5/23/18       #3: Looking for tooling recommendations ...


HSK 63 tool holders come in both ER 32 and ER 40 collet sizes the difference being the taper and the available tool shank diameter. ER 40 goes to 1 inch. The important thing is to get balanced tool holders and maintain them properly. as for tooling, most tooling companies like LMT Onsrud (not related to CR Onsrud) have reps that will come to you to see what you are cutting and to guide you on your tool selection.

5/23/18       #4: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Peter Matos Member

sorry for the lack of information. We will be processing of course mostly plywoods and plastic sheet goods such as starboard and pvc. The machine will be setup with pods for hardwood machining of parts and we will also be cutting the occasional aluminum parts from sheet goods. We are a custom shop working for clients that are higher end in nature. Lots of strange and cool stuff for the most part but generally your typical cabinet shop materials. We don't do commercial melamine or particle board materials in general. We will be contacting various tool suppliers but we were hoping for a point in the right direction for good performance/value suppliers.

I see the ER32 and ER40 collets in that configuration available as well as other smaller ranges. We use the ER32 on our HAAS VMC and also ER20. The higher speeds of the router require of course the balanced holders as most of the HSK line seems to be anyway. ER40 is of course larger but is the larger size a balance trade off or is that not an issue. How are the soyoz 25 holders Thanks again.

5/23/18       #5: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Andrew  Member


congrats on your purchase
check us out for flycutters, routerbits and toolholders, grease for the me if you have any questions.

5/23/18       #6: Looking for tooling recommendations ...


Where are you located? Do you have a company that provides sharpening service to you that represents and sells multiple lines of tooling? They should be able to help you cherry pick the best products for your needs from different companies like:
LMT Onsrud, Vortex, FS Tool, Royce Ayr, Amana, CMT, Leitz, Guhdo, etc etc.... different tooling companies have different strengths / weaknesses throughout their catalogs. If you have someone that is familiar with a bunch of different brands they might be able to point you in the best direction for different applications and provide the best value.

5/23/18       #7: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Chuck Hicks Member


Congrats on the New CNC, we have a CR Onsrud also for testing out tooling. I would stay with the ER32 or better ER40 collets. There are more options if needed and the price is alot less also.

5/23/18       #8: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Peter Matos Member

Thanks guys we are looking forward to taking full advantage of all the new machines and tooling very soon. Also exploring the Software options including Cabinet pro, Cabinetvision, Microvellum, Mozaik, and others...
Thanks Andrew I will probably contact you as the machine gets closer to being ready to run to learn about your tooling options.

I kind of agree that the ER32/40 holders may be the best bet for this situation along with a few smaller collet holders for the smaller tools..


5/25/18       #9: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Cherry Stylecnc Member


Pls tell me what material and what work you want to do? we have tools for your options. but for different work need different model, pls contact me for more information.

View larger image

5/27/18       #10: Looking for tooling recommendations ...

After trying a variety of tooling companies we settled on LMT Onsurd and have been using their Marathon coated compression spirals for several years with very good results, much better life time in the particle, mdf core & HPL we mostly use. I don't see any reason to go to collet chucks smaller than an ER32, unless you have to reach down into tight spaces with an extension. You will end up buying quite a few extra tool holders so you can leave additional bit set up ready to run.

The "pure" (no filler) plastics we cut with O flute HSS. We occasionally make tool boards for the railroad with either 2" or 3" UHMW and a 3/4" x 3" HSS bit. Cuts great but when edge shaping the boards makes a terrible mess. Chips fly 30' and are full of static electricity, so stick to everything. Just finished a stack of 2" now have an order for 3" boards. Lot of chips!

Aluminum cuts easily with a standard HSS 4 flute end mill. Some of the alloys tend to be gummy so you will need to use an aluminum cutting fluid. If your machine is not equipped with one and you do a lot of aluminum you should buy an add on system, pretty cheap. Otherwise you can just use a squirt bottle.

On our pod & rail machine we have a C-axis which I have gotten addicted to, even though there can be other ways to get there, just take more time. Having the 4th axis and the aggregates allows some pretty nice solutions that are either a lot more difficult or impossible on a 3-axis machine. Did you get the 4th axis, any aggregates?

Have you considered using heat shrink tool holders? You probably already have a torque wrench to set the collet nuts.

5/29/18       #11: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Peter Matos Member


Wow thanks for that informative post. Definitely will check out LMT Onsrud. We did not get a fourth but the CR Onsrud can accept the aggregate tooling that we have as yet not purchased. We do have a HAAS VF4 that has fourth axis for certain things and it has a good travel for a fully enclosed VMC. We do not cut virtually ANY particleboard, High Pressure Laminates or MDF but a lot of veneered plywood and prefinished plywoods. We do a lot of outdoor kitchens on the ocean and make the carcasses out of starboard or occasionally pvc board reinforced with Ipe' or similar water resistant hardwoods.

I am leaning towards the ER32 collet sets for the router and we just received it on Friday last. Gonna take awhile to get it all powered up and vacuumed up. We are placing the vacuum pumps in an outside building and running the vacuum inside to save on heat/noise and that is looking like it will take a bit of time. We are also reviewing softwares and investigating mozaik, Cabinetpro, Cabinetvision etc. Not sure what we will go with just yet. Might make that decision this week. Good luck in your business endeavors and thanks again for the information.

5/29/18       #12: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Mark T



The 4th axis on your Haas (or any cnc mill) is not like the 4th axis on a cnc router. On the mill you either have an indexer or rotary table which the parts mount via fixture or collet to be indexed. On a cnc router or point to point machining center, the 4th axis is a rotational axis that revolves directly around the spindle. The anti-rotation pin from the an aggregate style holder ( Or right angle geared holder as referred often in the cnc metal world) fits directly into the 4th axis and enables the end user to orient the aggregate to hit any of the fours sides of the part, as it sits, on the vacuum table. The main difference being the part doesn't move, you could literally machine detail into the edges of a 5' x 12' sheet if needed and if your machine has the travel. You can use some of your existing tooling from the Haas depending on the application, most tooling in the CNC router world is however very specific to the typical materials machined and often a higher rpm bandwidth. Hope this helps!
Mark T.

5/29/18       #13: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Peter Matos Member

Ah I gotcha when you said C axis I thought you meant rotary axis. You are speaking of an indexing axis for the spindle to orient your aggregate tooling. I am not sure if our machine has this feature or not. I will have to check into it. We are still working on getting it setup etc. Looking forward to using this machine. What software are you using for your router programming? Thanks for the clarification.

5/29/18       #14: Looking for tooling recommendations ...

We also put the 40hp vacuum pump in a shed outside to get rid of the heat and noise. Has a big fan in the wall to keep it cool and in the winter an electric heater to keep the oil warm while shut down. 4" PVC pipe and a control wire.

5/31/18       #15: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Peter Matos Member


good to hear we are not reinventing the wheel here. We are in Florida so winter is pretty mild. The heat is a bit much at times but it will be in an outside shed with a large roof and ambient air all around it. Our system also uses the 4" pipe for the vacuum. Do you know offhand the type of pipe you used? We are going to need to source that here very soon. Thanks for the input. :)


9/29/18       #16: Looking for tooling recommendations ...
Salce Smith  Member


Congrats on the New CNC CR Onsrud, it is a great machine. In my opinion OZ/EOC25 is better than ER32/ER40 collets, as OZ/EOC25 collet total length is 52mm, bigger than ER40 collet length 46mm, and ER32 collet length 40mm. Long collet can clamp the router bits stronger, and reduce vibration. HSK63F toolholder made by Leitz, Leuco or AKE, usually adopts OZ/EOC25 collets.

View higher quality, full size image (546 X 482)

9/29/18       #17: Looking for tooling recommendations ...

There may be advantages to a longer collet, there are also disadvantages. Collets that have slits form both ends require that the entire length of the collet be filled. If they are not they form a wedge shape on closing and only contact the tool at one point. You can get around this if you put a pug into the bottom of the collet, but it must be an exact match in diameter to the tool.

As the collet gets longer it should have more grip. But this is the kind of argument about whether a 16 oz. hammer is better than a 10oz. to kill a fly.

Use your torque wrench to set the nut and keep things clean. Use new collets when the old ones have reached their expiration date. (Recommended hours of use.) In many years of use I've never had a tool slip on an ER32. Buy only high quality collets and tool holders.

In my metal working area we have 5C & R8 collets. Both capable of holding tooling shorter than the collet length with no problem. But they are slit from one end only, so grip parrallel.

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