Making Lathe Tools #3: Drilling Holes

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Blog entry by Big Ben posted 11-06-2011 06:27 PM 1510 reads 0 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Update Part 3 of Making Lathe Tools series Part 4: Initial Set »

Yesterday I will to Home Depot and pick up some steel rods to make the chisels. 3/8”, ½” and 5/8”. When I got home I was looking at the 5/8” rod and decided to try just clamping the rod my bench and drilling a hole. I figured the worse that could happen would be that I need to cut off the damage piece and still have enough.
Clamping rod to the bench top, loaded a 7/32” bit into my corded drill. The results were so so. It was painfully slow and I was not getting the depth I wanted. Then it was suggested to me to start with a smaller bit and work way up and to also use my drill press. I regard my drill press as a true POS. But after making a crude jig, it worked with no issue. The only limitation I had was that my drill press was the clearance under the longest bit would only allow for a 12” rod. I don’t this will be prove to be awould only allow for could fit.

2 comments so far

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 3510 days

#1 posted 11-06-2011 06:41 PM

If you want to drill longer stuff, turn the head of the drill press to the side. You can clamp the stock to the side of the bench you are using.

Going through steps in size is a bit tedious but works a lot better. Especially if you don’t have a lot of power. A center drill is the best thing to get the hole started. They are little short stubby bits that are really stiff.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View jumbojack's profile


1689 posts in 3136 days

#2 posted 11-07-2011 12:47 AM

A little cutting oil would also help immensely. I know adding oil seems counter intuitive but believe me your tool and work piece will thank you.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

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