Jump to content

After the drill wars. The new war is the battle of the bits and blades.


Recommended Posts

Hi Folks,

Wayne the mad U.K Plumber/Builder, back again with another few thoughts and ideas gathered from the last 33 years loving the job and cursing the weather :).

Much is made of the performance of power tools, battery or corded there's always someone on a video somewhere holding his drill aloft giving it "THE POWER OF GREY SKULL" thinking he's He Man, after drilling a few holes on a bench (never lay as if he has been tipped out of a sack in some painful contortion like we all do) lol.

But how often do we get some information about what goes in them?

Isn't it time we stopped and thought "Hang on which drill bits cut the largest holes using the least battery life and putting the least strain on my very expensive drill?"

How many of us in the, grunt and shove harder, tighten till it farts or you do, real world building trade, realise that our 18v drill won't drill a hole in wood over 2" or 50mm? ( If you find one I am all ears) It may be funny to watch some fool smoke his world beating pride and joy but it's damned expensive.

We all blame the drill, but after all these years folks and with all the jokes and humour to one side, I just want to put it out there, that having spent Hundreds and sometimes thousands on power tools, we should look,think and invest harder in the the bits we put in the sharp end.

Many bits are real rippers, but find a knot in a joist and it's a wrist breaker but also in some cases a drill breaker as well.

These drill bits can seem the dogs doodaas, but may use many times the battery life, and put much more strain on you and your drill, than say a tungsten tipped hole saw."Yes but they are not deep enough to go through thick timber" I hear you cry.But maybe one of the new generation spade bits or spiral augers will?

Maybe its time for the trade and weekend warrior alike, to throw it back on the manufacturers, to show on the packaging the torque required to turn these things. And for ourselves to read the instructions on our drill, and think the bigger the bit the lower the speed and the higher the torque.

In this rare case torque aint cheap, so all the more reason for us all to think about this one and stop burning and keep earning. :)

And remember lads old sparky's ( electricians) never die they just end up very well earthed :)

Best regards


  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Who makes the drill bits, hole saws e.t.c that allow us to cut the biggest diameter holes with our cordless drills without killing them?

Who makes the best reciprocating saw blades and jigsaw blades e.t.c?

We all spend a fortune on tools, but my real question is, who makes the best sharp stuff that we put in them?

And who uses them correctly to get the best results?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I dunno who makes the best, but I know the Bosch jig saw blades are great. The redesigned Milwaukee Sawzall blades are the best ones I've used. It's hard to Freud circular, table, or Miter saw blade though.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My example is the Bosch multi-construction hole saws because they drill almost anything, and without taking the auger out of the drill, with the quick change, you can change the pilot bit or cutter to a metal cutter for example, and just keep going.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I found the 13 piece Milwaukee hole saw kit at HD on Black Friday for 1/2 price. It seems to be good quality but I very rarely use them. Couldn't pass them up for that price though. The quick change arbours are a hell of a lot better than the old school ones. I'm like you Wayne, I'd like to see some in depth testing and reviews on bits, blades, etc.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Don't be shy folks get involved and have a laugh, as well as swapping ideas and information.

Have any of you folks out there used the Armeg WoodBeaver drill bits?

I want to try some of these, they look like real competition for the Irwin blue groove. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Bosches winged channel chisels are supposed to be all the rage, I won't comment personally, I try to steer clear of masonry.

I have had excellent results with any of the Hilti bits I've used. I have heard rumors that some of there stuff is starting to be imported from China now though. Most of my SDS bits are Boschs.

As for hole saws, I have an older bi-metal Morse set that just won't quit. I do have a few carbides, a Lenox single tooth in 2 1/8" for door hardware, it cuts very quickly, super easy to sharpen as well, but man, does it leave a rough looking hole. If it broke I would be buying another one that day or the next. I use a Bosch multi tooth for when I'm working at a more refined pace on higher quality doors. I have a mix and match box full of just about all the major manufacturers hole saws but rarely use most of them. If I'm not grabbing my Morse set, I'm most likely looking for one from Greenlee. I like the new Lenox arbors the best.

My favorite reciprocating saw blades are Boschs when I can find the ones I like. I'm particularly fond of the RDN6V. For strictly cutting metal I'll go for either Boschs RECM9X2 or Lenoxs 21069618GR

I have been disappointed in Milwaukee’s "Torch" line, it seems to me they just wear out very quickly. Their wood blades are a little better, but they are not among my favorites. I won't go out of my way to pick up any Dewalt blades. If I'm looking for cheap blades I'll instead head to Walmart and pick up some Black & Deckers.

I like Skils brush blade for finishing the cuts in 6"x -8"x material.

For ships auger bits, again I've got a mixed box of bits, mostly Bosch, Milwaukee, and Greenlee with a few Irwins thrown in as well. If you asked me to pick a favorite today I would say Milwaukee. I haven't used my new Bosch "naileaters" or Greenlees impact driven ship augers enough to form a decent opinion. They both seem like they may worthy contenders. Do you all want to get into brace driven bits?

For selfeeds I do like Milwakees version and really appreciate the replaceable screw feed part, not to mention one of the best extensions I've ever worked with. A couple of the larger bits have changeable cutters. I work mainly in pine, these bits probably wont work well in hard woods, I wouldn't even like to think about putting a 3" hole in oak with one. Your going to need a large drill for some of their larger bits. They don't stay sharp for a particularly long time and are a real pain for me to resharpen, but I feel they are worth if.

Rigid makes a really fast self feed bit, that when I'm trying to work quickly and don't mind a rough hole, are my first choice. Think 1" holes through framing. I think they may have discontinued them as I no longer see them on my local stores shelves.

For spade bits, I most often use Irwins regular bits. I don't really care to use self feed spade bits but when I do, I think the Boschs Daredevil bits work the best.

I mostly run Freuds thin kerf diablos in my circular saws, although I do have some Tenru and Irwin blades kicking around. I still have not worked through all the Hilti blades that came with the saw I bought from them either. They seem like pretty good blades, I haven't ever seen them on any store shelves, so once they are gone, I'll probably not be get any more, not saying I wouldn't if I found them again at a reasonable price though, as they do work pretty well. I run either Festools stock blades or a Forrest blade that I use for some cross cuts in my track saw.

I know I've skipped over a few, if you want my opinion on anything more specific just ask.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Milwaukee's AX Sawzall blades are awesome! I haven't used the Wrecker blades enough to really give a good evaluation. The new Ice Hardened Torch blades are a lot better than the old ones were. I'm totally sold on the Diablo blades I've got 1 on my 6390 Circ saw and it's hands down the finest cutting saw I've ever had the pleasure of using. I've been happy with the 80T Avanti Pro on my 12" miter, but I'd have never bought it had they not have been buy 1 get 1 free. Milwaukee makes really nice spade bits as well, you just don't see them very often.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The frustration over here is things like the Milwaukee quick release arbour both sizes are not available over here in the U.K yet they look a great tool.

The other is I wish manufacturers would call things by the same bloomin name both sides of the Atlantic( Are you reading this DEWALT ???!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) :rolleyes:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If your talking about this style of quick change arbor, they only make 1 size:


I have the quick change arbors that came with my set that look like this:


The lager one screws in and the the arms on the side slide up and secure it providing a completely secure fit that is as simple to remove as it is to put on and completely tool free. The smaller on just screws on and while it goes on tool free, sometimes you'll have to use a wrench/pliers to remove it as it get tight under load. Still a giant step above the old arbors with the pilot nut in the middle that required tools to both attach and detach. They offer a wide variety of these styles or arbors.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Cool that you only need one.Not cool that I can't find one over here in the U.K.

The other two are the type we have had for ages and they are a pain. lol

Can you get Lenox tools in the U.K.? I find I prefer their arbors. Greenlee has a quick change arbor as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Member Statistics

    Total Members
    Most Online
    Newest Member
  • Create New...