Makita router burned up

Well couple days ago I ran my first run (other than the included sign file) on my 1F Pro, and being that I was surfacing my spoil board and mdf is toxic, I had on a respirator, so I didn’t smell that my router was burning up. Started off great, then after ten minutes it stopped. It took nearly an hour to cool. I hope it didn’t hurt my CNC too. Any idea what might’ve caused those to happen so quickly?

Takes a lot to burn up a Makita. I suppose it could have been under to much load and/or the cooling pathways got loaded up with fine debris. I mill the occasional MDF and it’s just like dust. Did the interior look like it was packed up with the MDF dust?

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No not at all, the photo was taken just after without cleaning it. You can see something leaking out of the motor. Smells bad too. I was running dust collection the entire time. This was really the first time I used it other than to make the ‘team onefinity’ sign. Thanks for the reply by the way.

Hum, did it complete the tool path? or literally stop? You were surfacing a board? Is it ceased up?

Probably no damage to the OF.

If you were using a large surfacing bit you need to go slow and shallow. The larger the bit, the more rotational velocity it has on its outside edge. That puts a lot of strain on the router. The deeper the cut and faster the CNC is traveling, the higher the stress in the router. Since they’re not designed for this you can burn one up. Many of us keep a spare for when the router burns itself out or we upgrade to a spindle.


Could be, 1 1/8 flattening bit at .03 doc. 150in/min. Im still new but those sounded conservative. Maybe I should just use a 1/4 endmill for flattening waste board, or go to 0.01 or .005 doc. Was running the Makita on speed 2. I’m sending the Makita off to try warantee repair. Just bought the Bauer trim router to try for now, with a 10 gauge extension cord. I think that’s probably over kill though with the routers have 18 gauge plugs. Thanks for the reply.

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It did not complete the tool path. Just stopped, and took out the surge protector too. Yes it’s seized up.

Hey XstormX,

Makita sells only bits with diameter on the cutter of max. 1/2" for this hand trim router. Anything wider will slow down the hand trim router too much, and as you can read in the manual, if it is too slow, it will heat up and malfunction. Nearly all the frequent reports of burning Makita hand trim routers were when using surfacing bits of 1.75" – 2.15" cutter diameter. Note that the Makita is made for short, hand-held use. Makita support confirmed that as soon that you mount it into a cnc machine, the warranty is gone.

This has to do with the motor characteristics of a router. See here for Differences between router and spindle.

Oh, ok. I was using an 1 1/8 surfacing bit on speed 2. That sounds like a possible reason. I may should consider this solved. Thanks for the reply.

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We all find the bits, speeds and feeds we like sometimes by trial and error. I resurface my stuff with 1/4" shaft 1/2" dia. 2 flute dado bits. Inexpensive and last good long time. Probable 3 on my Makita dial, 40-55 IPM, .18" depth on pine,redwood,cedar. .04-.06 on walnut. Generous stepover, 80%. I spend about $12 for my dato bits. I do like the look of the more expensive spoil board bits with their changable cutters.


Why so slow, 40-55 ipm, sounds like it would take a long time to surface. Is that all the router can handle?

I run a 4 flute, 1” surfacing bit from IDC Woodcraft at 150 IPM with a 40% stepover, and .02 depth of cut with speed between 1 1/2-2 on dial. 70% is the standard stepover recommendation. I surface all projects prior to carving. Use these same settings on pine, hard maple, mdf, etc. My 1st attempt with surfacing the spoilboard when I got the machine setup was similar to your experience. I created my own problem by going 70% stepover and either .1 or .2 DOC. Router got extremely hot but still lives today. Mine is a 2021 vintage. Others have reported catastrophic failure on newer vintage routers similar to your experience. Has the quality of parts in the newer Makita’s declined? Your settings sound like they should be safe other than bit is slightly bigger. When mine finally dies, I’ll look at other brands of routers or just upgrade to a spindle. I would learn the machine with a router, read the forum for advice, then move on to a spindle.


Thanks for the feedback. The router looks high quality. And it did good job for the first ten minutes. I guess I just pushed it to harder with 90 percent step over I think.