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Help drilling into round stock?

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I'm working on a small project that involves drilling into the end of round stock. My original plan was to drill a slightly smaller hole in a block of wood and tuck the round stock in the hole to hold it upright to drill into its end in the drill press. That worked for a moment or so, then the drill bit got hot and wanted to grab the stock and spin it (yes, using lubricant).

Grabbed the vise grips, they actually worked decently, but it was just eyeballing whether or not I was drilling straight down or not.

So....anyone have some trick you want to share on doing this? My next best effort is going to involve locking it into a vise and coming at the end with a standard drill, not the drill press.

Also, in spite of using lubricant, after just a moment or so the drill bit wants to practically weld itself to the stock, locking up and requiring me to pull it out with channel locks! What am I doing wrong?

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Drilling into Pine should be no problem,  Drilling into hardened H13 would be tought even with carbide bits. as it stands I hate guessing games.  and have no idea what you are drilling with, or into.  That is the best I can offer with the limited information given.

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You're sure it's mild? A-36 could well be almost anything. What size bit? How fast are you turning the bit?


A common mistake drilling is feeding the bit too slowly and turning it too fast. Slow the drill down and hog the feed. Hogging the feed means feeding close to as fast as will NOT damage the bit. This takes experience to get consistently but it's important, especially drilling copper alloys.


How long is the piece you're drilling? If it's only a few inches long and you have a 1/2" chuck on the drill press you can try chucking the rd. stock in the drill chuck and putting the drill bit in the vise. Simply using a piece of chalk or charcoal applied to the end of the turning stock will mark center. Then after using a square to make sure the bit is aimed straight up simply put the tip of the bit on the center of the smudge on the end of the rod.


Then under 300rpm. As slow as it'll go. Gentle but firm pressure on the feed, raise the feed every few seconds to clear the hole and don't get carried away with the oil. Drilling UP instead of down allows the chips to clear the hole quickly and they will carry away much of the heat. This is the main reason to hog the feed because it parts the cuttings in nice long curls that will exit the hole. When the cuttings part the parent stock most of the heat generated is generated against the parting face of the bit and so carried away instead of driven into the parent stock to be reabsorbed by the cutting edge of the bit.


About taking it easy with the oil, unless you're using a water soluble cutting oil it can help chips stick in the hole or to the flutes of the bit, galling in the hole and cooking the bit.


Frosty The Lucky.

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a large 3 jaw lathe chuck is very handy for clamping round stock on a drill, it can also be centered quite easily by putting something round in the drill chuck and then closing the lathe chuck up on it, then clamp sown the lathe chuck to the table of the drill.

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I definitely agree with buying a "cheap" 3-jaw chuck to use as a vise.  You can usually find them at flea markets, but even a cheapy from HF would do the job.


A v-block is essential and you can make one from angle iron.  


RPMs for the bit should be low low low.  Most folks have the bit spinning fast like they were drilling through wood, and that's not right.

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