Complete Guide to Drill Bits for Wood, Metal, Concrete and More-NEWS-BESTWIN-TOOLS
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Complete Guide to Drill Bits for Wood, Metal, Concrete and More

Aug 02, 2021

Drilling is one of the most common tasks undertaken by every project worker. It doesn't matter whether your material is wood, metal, concrete or multiple surface materials. The important thing is that you choose the right drill bit for the job.


You must choose the drill bit that suits your job. Drill bits can make or break the success of your project. The trick is more than just knowing your material. It is to understand the different types of drill bits, their design uses and their composition.


Using the wrong bit can damage or destroy your base material. Incorrect bits may slow you down or stop your work. To ensure that you do not encounter this situation, we have compiled this comprehensive drill guide.


Not all drill bits are the same, and there is no such thing as a universal drill bit.

Drill material and coating

Not all drill bits are the same, and there is no such thing as a universal or universal drill bit. The best wood drill bits are different from the best concrete drill bits. Similarly, the drill bit used for bricks does not work well on metal.


Many factors affect the difference in drill bits. One of the biggest differences in bits is their physical shape or geometry. There are many terms related to drill bits, and they all have important meanings. The following are the most important parts of the drill bit anatomy:


Total length: This is a direct description of the physical length of the drill bit. You will find drill bits sorted by length, which determines how deep they can penetrate. A typical stub drill bit is a low penetration tool such as a Forster drill bit used for groove machining. Longer shaft drills include augers for wood drilling and extended drills for access to recessed points.

Diameter: Probably the most famous bit term is its diameter. Simply put, it is the width of the hole that the drill can cut. Standard drill bits range from 1/16 inch to 1 1/2 inch. You can also find the drill bit diameter in metric units. The drill bit usually starts at 3 mm.

Shank: The shank of the drill bit is suitable for the back end of the drill chuck. This is the part of your electric drill or hand support. Depending on how much torque you need, the tool holder can be smooth or hexagonal. Generally, the handle length is smaller than the flute and lead parts.

Groove and lead: Groove is the groove or inner groove part of the front or cutting part of the drill. The lead is the outer surface that controls the diameter of the hole and ensures that the drill bit remains on the true path. The groove and lead are mainly related to twist drills, which are the most common drills you have used.

Key point: This is the business end of the drill. There are many configurations that can be drilled. This takes into account terms such as screw point, conventional point, and split point, but the most important feature is the drill point angle. The typical drill point angle is 90° for fast cutting, 118° for general drilling, and 135° for slower drilling into hard materials.

Like the shape of the drill, there are many different drill materials. It is essential to use the correct drill material designed and used for the project material you are working on. The type of drill bit used for wood and the type of drill bit used for metal have a different material composition. There are also different materials used to make drill bit types for concrete, brick or ceramic tiles.


Metal drill bits are the most practical choice for various surfaces.

Almost all drill bits are made of metal. With a few exceptions, metal drill bits are the most practical choice for all surfaces, including wood, concrete, tile, glass, and metal. What really distinguishes the different bits is their actual metal composition. The following are the four materials commonly used in the manufacture of drill bits:


High-speed steel (HSS): High-speed steel is widely used for general purpose drilling. Suitable materials are wood, soft metals and plastics. HSS drill bits contain carbon steel and some chromium and vanadium additives.

Cobalt: Harder tasks like drilling holes in stainless steel require stronger drill materials to withstand resistance and the heat generated. This is where the advantage of cobalt alloy lies. You will usually see cobalt drill bits marked HSS Co, which ensures that you get a high-quality drill bit on challenging surfaces.

Cemented carbide tip: Cemented carbide is a very strong metal that can withstand great forces. Cemented carbide is also expensive, so tool manufacturers usually use high-speed steel for tool holders, grooves and leads, but add a piece of cemented carbide to the tip of the tool. Carbide drill bits are very popular in drilling masonry, concrete and ceramic tiles.

Solid carbide: In order to drill the hardest materials with maximum load, it is worthwhile to invest in solid carbide drills. This means that the entire drill bit has a cemented carbide structure, not just the tip. The solid carbide drill bit works well on non-ferrous metals, and works well on abrasive surfaces such as glass fiber.

Generally, it is not enough to make a drill bit from certain metals. Manufacturers will apply special additives to their drill bits to improve performance, extend product life and make workers’ jobs easier. Typical drill bit coatings include:

Black oxide: This coating helps maintain lubricant and prevents rust.

TiN coating: Titanium nitrate coating allows prolonged wear when drilling hard metals.

TiAIN coating: Titanium aluminum nitrate provides high-speed heat resistance and wear resistance.

SG coating: Organic silicon multilayer film is a special coating for extremely dense metals.

Bright finish: Brightness is not a coating. Rather, it is the shiny finish you see in most drill bits used for general work on wood and soft metals. If used properly, a polished drill bit is cheap and durable.

The best wood drill bits

Most drill bits you will use in woodworking projects have a shiny surface. For wood drilling, the type of bit material and coating is not as important as the bit design.


If you are a woodworker, you will like many different types of wood for you to choose from. You have a large selection of softwoods and hardwoods. You have endless projects to do. This can be anything, from drilling holes in furniture manufacturing to wood drilling in house construction.


Because the scope of woodworking projects is so wide, drill manufacturers have designed some ingenious and dedicated tools. There are short bits and long bits, thin bits and thick bits, and bits of many sizes and shapes. The following is a review of the most common wood you find on the market today:


The most common wood you find on the market today.

Twist drill bits: You may not find a woodworking tool kit that does not contain twist drills. These are spiral drill holes that have served the workshop for centuries. There are many different twist drill types, including jobber, stubby, pilot and prentice styles.

Countersunk bit: In order to make the screws and other fasteners flush with the surface of your finished product, no other tools can be used except for the countersunk bit. These special items cut the precise part of the fastener head along the pilot bit or previously drilled pilot hole. Do not confuse countersinks with countersinks. They are two different tools.

Spiral drill bit: The auger is specially made for drilling deep holes in wood. The tight twists on their leads and flutes are obvious. The tip of the auger also has a threaded screw tip, and then there is a sharp cutting edge on the surface.

Shovel: If you use wood, you may get quite a lot of uses from the shovel. The spade drill bit can drill through the wood surface quickly and easily, and can remove a large amount of material in a short time. One disadvantage of spade drill bits is that they tend to penetrate the wood and leave a rough trailing edge.

Hole saw: For large diameter drilling, there is nothing better than a hole saw. These ingenious tools are actually two knives combined into one. The hole saw has an inner twist drill for setting a centering guide hole and an outer cup ring containing serrations. Hole saws drill and saw at the same time, allowing you to cut plugs of a specific size from the material.

Forstner drill: Another professional but priceless drill is the Forstner drill. These drill bits allow you to drill flat-bottomed holes without leaving accidentally broken edges. Forstner drill bits are very suitable for shallow drilling, such as setting cabinet hinges.

Brad point: The Brad point drill will produce blind holes in any woodwork project you carry out. If you are setting up pins or shelf pins, then you will need to place a round head in the drill bit. Their distinguishing feature is that there are burrs on the outer edge of the cutting surface, and the center screw prevents the bit from deviating from alignment.

Reduced diameter drill bit: If you want to use a small size chuck to drill large diameter holes, then the reduced diameter drill bit is the best choice. This design is characterized by a shank with a narrower diameter than the pointed tip, lead and flute. For example, you can use a drill bit with a reduced shank to drill a 1-inch hole on a 3/8-inch chuck.

Step position: Compared with most other positions, the step position is very easy to identify. They are tapered tools with incremental steps ranging from a small tip to gradually increasing as the tapered flaring approaches the handle. When you want to make holes of different sizes without changing the actual drill bit, the tapered drill bit is the ideal choice.

Self-feeding drill bits: Self-feeding drill bits are another option for drilling into wood. These drill bits have a center feed screw that guides the drill bit into the wood and helps to drill large holes cleanly. These are usually used by professional plumbers or electricians to drill large holes for utilities.

The best metal drill bits

Metal processing is a professional skill, which requires a different technique than text processing.

Metalworking is a professional skill, which requires different skills than woodworking. It also requires different tools, including a drill bit specifically for cutting metal.


Like wood, there are many different metal materials. Depending on your project, you may encounter hard metals such as stainless steel and soft metals such as copper or anything in between, including aluminum, steel plate, brass, bronze, spring steel, magnesium, and cast iron.


One of the main differences between drilled wood and drilled metal is the resistance of the material. There is a relationship between material hardness, drilling speed and the force exerted on the drill bit. According to experience, the harder the material and the greater the speed/force ratio, the greater the heat generated.


In order to overcome the heat generated by drilling resistance, metal workers often use lubricants to cool the drill bit and reduce wear. Sometimes water is enough, but usually special oil will make the job easier. Bit composition and coatings can help drill metal, but like wood, specific bit types can make a big difference. The following are the common drill bit types that may be used when drilling metal:


Twist drills: Many metal processing jobs do not require anything more complicated than twist drills, and metal workers often use these drills. However, metal workers are more likely to own cobalt or carbide drill bits than woodworkers. They are also more likely to use coated drill bits.

Step drill: Many metal workers use step drills to cut holes of various sizes in a hurry, especially sheet metal workers. A typical step drill bit drills from about 1/4 inch to 1.5 inch, which fits well into the hole saw range.

Hole Saw: The effect of hole saw on thin metal is as good as on thick wood. You will find metal drilling hole saws up to 4 inches in diameter. But you will also find some special features of metal hole saws-the tooth composition on the sawing surface is usually carbide or diamond.

Reduced shank drills: Metal workers who need large-diameter holes but want to use small size chucks on the drill will like to invest in reduced shank drills. Tool holder sizes usually include 1/4 inch and 3/8 inch sizes, and are widely used in many combinations.

Countersink drill bits: Many metal workers pride themselves on the super smooth surface. To achieve this, they will use countersunk bits made specifically for metal products to countersunk screws and fastener heads.

Step drill bits: These drill bits are another option for drilling through metal and wood. Step drill bits are suitable for drilling holes in metal plates and other thin metal materials, and are often used by electricians.

The best drill bit for concrete and block

Concrete and blocks are special products. Their properties are very different from metals and woods.

Concrete and blocks are special products. Their properties are very different from metals and woods. Therefore, if you plan to drill holes on their surface, they require drill bits of different designs.


You may come across various concrete-based products. Popular concrete products are poured or cast-in-place, as you see in foundations or terraces, prefabricated blocks, roof tiles, cement fiber boards and artificial stones. Any or all of these products may require drilling.


Concrete is a mixture of finely ground Portland cement and larger size stone aggregates. When you drill into blocks and concrete products, you will encounter a continuous mix of hard and soft pockets. You may be drilling a concrete foundation or connecting a ledge to a masonry wall. If so, you will want something made for this purpose.


You also need an electric drill designed for concrete and block work. Two common designs are hammer drills and slotted drive shaft (SDS) drills. Both drill bits use impact motion to break up concrete aggregate and powder and cut them. If you plan to drill for any specific project, these are the compatible drill bits you need:


Masonry drill bits: Because masonry products are hard, abrasive and corrosive, you will rarely find standard bright drill bits for this job. In contrast, most masonry drill bits are coated with a rust-resistant surface, such as black oxide. You should also purchase a masonry bit with a cemented carbide surface and a hammer compatible or SDS design.

Twist drill bits: You may find many twist drills in the concrete cutting section. The proven twisted groove and lead design can quickly and easily remove dust and debris from the drilled hole, which tends to clog and hinder your work. Most twist drill bits used for concrete work have special compositions and curved heads, such as carbide surfaces and oxide-treated outer surfaces.

Hole saw: You will occasionally need to cut large diameter holes in concrete and masonry products. It is called coring in the commercial concrete cutting business, and it requires a strong and sharp hole saw.

SDS drill bit: One of the best drill bit inventions is the sliding or slotted drive shaft system. Since its shank design is similar to a slot, the SDS bit will not slide in the chuck. They slide back and forth according to the load. SDS bits also change quickly between sizes.

The best tile drill bits

Drilling into tiles may be more complicated, but rest assured, people who know the skills can always succeed.

Drilling into tiles may be more complicated, but rest assured, people who know the skills can always succeed. One of the tricks is to have the correct type of tile drill bit and the patience to handle it correctly.


There are three main types of ceramic tiles used in the construction industry. The most popular is ceramic tiles. Ceramics are quite soft, but they are very brittle. Glass tiles are sought after in decoration. They have the same density as ceramics and are easier to crack. The tiles are the hardest. Drilling porcelain requires special skills and tools.


Drill bits specially designed to drill holes in ceramics, glass and tiles have two distinct characteristics. One is the drill point configuration. The other is the material of the drill tip.


The best drill bit for ceramic tile work has a hard pointed drill bit. Some are similar to spears or arrow points. High-quality ceramic tile drills also have diamond or cemented carbide cutting surfaces. The ceramic tile requires a hard drill face and precise contact with the drill trigger. Here are the three main drill bits you need for all your tile drilling projects:


The 3 main drill bits required for all tile drilling projects.

Tile and glass drill bits: This is a general category, covering the range of drill bits suitable for ceramic tile work. You should choose a point that the manufacturer thinks matches the type of tiles you are using. In addition to the correct diameter of the hole you need, you must also ensure that the leading edge of the drill bit can drill into the tile without crushing it.

Spear tip: The spear tip has a needle-like tip that slowly joins the workpiece through small contact, and then gradually expands the hole. There are a variety of spear tips for carbide and diamond cutting surfaces.

Diamond drill bits: Not all diamond drill bits used to cut ceramic tiles have a spear tip. You can find a variety of diamond drill bits in traditional designs.

Choose construction fasteners and tools that meet all your needs

Construction Fasteners and Tools is a Canadian hardware expert. Since 2001, we have worked with professional contractors and home DIYers to provide excellent customer service and high-quality fasteners and tools. We are particularly proud of the wide selection of drill bits and drill bit accessories covering various materials and projects.


The friendly staff of Construction Fasteners and Tools provide you with expertise and extensive inventory.

Whether you are drilling holes in wood, metal, concrete or ceramic tiles, the friendly staff of Construction Fasteners and Tools will provide you with expertise and extensive inventory to successfully complete your project.


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