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Drilling small holes

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Jensmith

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I was drilling some smallish holes in timber today but having problems with it splitting the wood. I was looking for a 6mm hole in a 1/2" to 1" square of wood at 1/8th thick but I tried thicker wood with the same problem. Ended up drilling in a bigger piece and then cutting down to size.

I started with a small drill and worked up but when I used the bigger drill the spinning force split it.

Is there a way to do this without splitting the wood or is it fundamentally too small a piece. It for some miniature lights so you can understand why the wood needs to be small.

Would I be better doing it on a pillar drill rather than a hand drill?

Thanks,

Jennifer,
 

bugbear

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Jensmith":z8fjjubv said:
I was drilling some smallish holes in timber today but having problems with it splitting the wood. I was looking for a 6mm hole in a 1/2" to 1" square of wood at 1/8th thick but I tried thicker wood with the same problem. Ended up drilling in a bigger piece and then cutting down to size.

I started with a small drill and worked up but when I used the bigger drill the spinning force split it.

Is there a way to do this without splitting the wood or is it fundamentally too small a piece. It for some miniature lights so you can understand why the wood needs to be small.

Would I be better doing it on a pillar drill rather than a hand drill?

Thanks,

Jennifer,
I'd try a brad point bit, at high revs, in a pillar drill, at high revs with slow feed.

Since you're trying to reduce the cutting forces to reduce splitting, you want to reduce depth of cut. High speed, slow feed achieves that.

If you can super-sharpen and polish the bit, that's gotta help too.

BugBear
 

Dodge

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Jen,

Have a word with Matthew at WH and get yourself a Famag lip and spur bit - They are exceptionally sharp and the outer cutting edges leave really crisp clean holes.

They are not the cheapest but they are the best quality drill bits I have ever used and swear by them now!

HTH

Rog
 

Shultzy

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Definitely a lip and spur drill and best in a pillar drill. Start with a 1" square block say 3" in length. Drill to the depth of the drill then cut off the 1/8" pieces.
 

9fingers

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Lip and spur bits from Wealden are also very good. Unlike other drill types, with a lip and spur you always use the final size drill only.
No pilot drill first.

Bob
 

Steve Maskery

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Your problem is that you are trying to enlarge an existing hole when there is little material support around it. If you are using jobbing twist drills, this is most definitely the source of your problem. Twist drills are designed for cutting metal. not wood.

All the advice above, about twin lip and spur bits, is sound.
S
 

Steve Maskery

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Jen
Do yourself a favour and buy a good quality set. There are cheap and nasty ones around. Many of us have learned the hard way. Buy a good quality set and you will save yourself a lot of heartaches and save a lot of time in the process.
I have an Axminster TiN set and that is the lowest quality you should settle for.
S
 

lanemaux

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Just on a slightly different tack (story of my life really) when I wish to avoid splits, blowouts and other types of unscheduled wood modification I back the piece up. If you have a handscrew clamp it may make your splitting of pieces stop. If your piece is very thin you could back it up with another piece of the same width , clamping both in your handscrew. the same method can be used in a vice as well. I'm not taking away from the other excellent advice given so far , just a quick and dirty alternative.
 

Jacob

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Drill first and then cut to size. Just one drill - working up from smaller can be very difficult.
No need to buy anything, but if you do a lot of holes in very thin stuff you might consider a wad punch.
 

woodbloke

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Steve Maskery":3249r28l said:
Jen
Do yourself a favour and buy a good quality set. There are cheap and nasty ones around. Many of us have learned the hard way. Buy a good quality set and you will save yourself a lot of heartaches and save a lot of time in the process.
I have an Axminster TiN set and that is the lowest quality you should settle for.
S
Steve is correct, but the other option is to grind your own from HSS jobbers drill bits. I've never bought any lipn'spur bits but have always made my own. You'll need a square edged grinding wheel, a decent overhead light and a steady hand. I can grind mind down to about 4mm but below that it gets a bit tricky and of course, once they get a bit blunt, it's easy enough to re-touch them - Rob
 

Jensmith

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Tried again this morning with the drill press and had a lot more success. No splits this time.
 

andy king

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Jacob":3shofuuf said:
...but if you do a lot of holes in very thin stuff you might consider a wad punch.
I wouldn't think this would be suitable in thin timber stock of the dimensions given?
I would think it would be fine if you needed discs rather than holes but the outer edge of the punch has the bevel angle so will wedge the timber and likely split it - unless there are internal and external ground wad punches?

Andy
 

Pete Maddex

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Andy!!! No!! don't question Jacob's advise :shock:

Remember thare are only two ways Jacobs way and the wrong way :wink: :D :wink:

Pete
 

Jacob

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Pete Maddex":2qh33f2q said:
Andy!!! No!! don't question Jacob's advise :shock:

Remember thare are only two ways Jacobs way and the wrong way :wink: :D :wink:

Pete
I see you have nothing useful to say, as usual, so why say anything?
Personal remarks and feeble sarcasm don't add much to these threads.
 

Pete Maddex

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Jacob":3k927881 said:
Pete Maddex":3k927881 said:
Andy!!! No!! don't question Jacob's advise :shock:

Remember thare are only two ways Jacobs way and the wrong way :wink: :D :wink:

Pete
I see you have nothing useful to say, as usual, so why say anything?
Personal remarks and feeble sarcasm don't add much to these threads.

Come on Jacob see the :D faces, Laugh you old grumpy guts.


Pete
 

Jacob

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Pete Maddex":1jgb5uhr said:
Jacob":1jgb5uhr said:
Pete Maddex":1jgb5uhr said:
Andy!!! No!! don't question Jacob's advise :shock:

Remember thare are only two ways Jacobs way and the wrong way :wink: :D :wink:

Pete
I see you have nothing useful to say, as usual, so why say anything?
Personal remarks and feeble sarcasm don't add much to these threads.

Come on Jacob see the :D faces, Laugh you old grumpy guts.


Pete
Oh all right. Ho-ho. :roll:
 
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