Reply by lumberjoe

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Posted on What Drill Bit Set for Pen Turning

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2899 posts in 2423 days

#1 posted 02-11-2013 01:10 AM

Get a “pen makers” bit. There is a BIG difference. I have a few really nice Colt bradpoints that I thought were awesome. When I finally killed my 7mm I replaced it with a Whiteside. I had to switch from using either thick CA or epoxy to thin CA when gluing the tubes. There is VERY little room as the tolerances are tight. It will even push out the majority of medium CA. Colt also makes a pen makers bit, but they are a little tougher to find. I do have a 10mm Colt. I will say that I prefer the whiteside, but not enough to replace the colt until it dies.

They don’t come in sets, so you need to buy them one at a time. They run between 15.00 and 22.00 EACH, so be prepared to shell out some cash. I make about 8 different pen styles, but there are a few (especially the 7mm, 3/8”, and 10mm) with the same diameter tubes.

Another good thing about “pen makers” bits – in addition to having a very precise tolerance, they are specifically designed to drill through end grain. If you stick with whiteside, they all run at the same speed, which is nice. They really do make a huge difference, even when comparing to a high quality brad point. Once you get the feed rate down, a whiteside pen makers bit will go all the way though most blanks without backing out for chip ejection. Wet wood or oily woods still tend to gum up a bit.


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