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View conban1's profile

The Drill Doctor: Good Medicine?

by conban1
posted 1114 days ago


19 replies so far

View Loren's profile

Loren

7390 posts in 2274 days


#1 posted 1114 days ago

No.

If you have a steady hand and a decent tool rest, you can learn to
regrind drills freehand easily enough. You can also grind old twist
(standard) drills into brad point drills, which are much more useful for
woodworking.

-- http://lawoodworking.com

View kpo101's profile

kpo101

32 posts in 1255 days


#2 posted 1114 days ago

I’m a lot like Loren, I sharpen all my drill bits by hand and was taught by and older machinist friend of mine. With that said I have used a drill doctor only to bring a broken bit back into shape and then i sharpen it by hand.
But Loren i would like to know more on how to convert a twist drill bit into a brad point, So any details would be great.

-- When the problem becomes just too much, There is always the directions!! Karl O. of Louisiana

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6923 posts in 1540 days


#3 posted 1114 days ago

I give the Drill Doctor 3 out of 5 jalapenos. I have a first generation DD and for standard bits it works OK. IMO, anyone who wants to take the time to sharpen an entire drill index by hand, is welcome to do just that. Sure, that kind of attention will result in better results, however, the DD saves time and has its place in the shop. BTW, brad points I do sharpen by hand.

So, YES.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View PurpLev's profile

PurpLev

8476 posts in 2274 days


#4 posted 1114 days ago

I used one for some time and have mixed feelings about it, it can do quick and easy work, but if it’s out of alignment it can just as easily mess you up your drill bits.

I ended up giving it away and got a cheaper but more consistent sharpener for drill bits. you can probably get as good results using a regular grinder and a steady rest.

EDIT:
FYI, I use this sharpener now which for me provides more consistent and quality results than the drill.dr :

http://www.plasplugs.com/001/acatalog/Multi_tool_sharpener___accessories.html

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10721 posts in 1316 days


#5 posted 1114 days ago

I have the Drill Dr that sharpens up to 3/4” bits and wouldnt part with it for several reasons: I can put split point grind on my metal bits which is difficult to do by hand,I can save broken off bits, and it is much quicker than hand grinding. I have resharpened/salvaged a LOT of drill bits and feel it has more than paid for itself. A pure woodworker has less need for one as metal drilling is MUCH harder on bits.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View TomHintz's profile

TomHintz

207 posts in 2024 days


#6 posted 1113 days ago

i also have the Drill Doctor 750X that does up to 3/4” bits and love it. I know that lots of people can sharpen drill by hand but that isn’t me. I can sharpen bits with the DD so that they cut better than ever, do it quickly and whenever I need it done so I love it. Incidentally, since getting the DD I have resurrected a ton of old dull and busted drills that I have been tossing in a drawer. Now I need a bigger drawer. My review of the DD I have is at the link below.

http://www.newmetalworker.com/Reviews/drldoc750rvu.html

-- Tom Hintz, www.newwoodworker.com

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1319 days


#7 posted 1113 days ago

I’m impressed by Mike’s 3 jalapenos. By my math, that’s almost one habanero. That might have just pushed me over the edge to purchase one. Like you, I have a drawer full of dull bits and I add to it weekly. Just be forewarned, I’ve heard that the drill doctor is a chiropractor, not a physician;)

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View MedicKen's profile

MedicKen

1599 posts in 2088 days


#8 posted 1113 days ago

I have one of the older models and was also taught by my father to sharpen by hand. I have found I prefer the drill Dr to sharpening by hand. I gives you the option of different angles for various applications and is much faster. The only draw back is it will NOT sharpen brad points

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their therapist....medic20447@gmail.com

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6923 posts in 1540 days


#9 posted 1113 days ago

That’s OK Berta, I hear you clean house for Alan Harper, the chiropractor, anyway!

LOL!

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Bertha's profile

Bertha

12951 posts in 1319 days


#10 posted 1113 days ago

Huge lol, Mike. That dude’s such a slob. I found two used Carpi Sun pouches in his sofa cushions. I won’t tell you what I found in Sheen’s recliner. The horror.

Uh, oh, Harper’s not laughing.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View twiceisnice's profile

twiceisnice

95 posts in 1453 days


#11 posted 1113 days ago

I THINK THE DRILL DR. IS A PIECE OF JUNK. THE FIRST ONE I GAVE AWAY THINKING I DIDNT KNOW HOW TO USE IT PROPERLY. THEY COULDNT GET IT TO WORK RIGHT ALSO. SO ABOUT A YEAR LATER I WOULD GIVE IT ANOTHE TRY. I BOUGHT ANOTHER ONE . JUNK JUNK . SO I SMASHED IT. I KNOW PEOPLE THAT HAVE TRYED THESE ALSO AND ASKED WHAT THEY THINK. THERE A WASTE OF MONEY. BUY YOURSELF A GOOD SET OF DRILL BITS FOR CERTAIN APPLICATIONS. GO TO HARBOR FREIGHT AND BUY CHEAP BITS FOR THE ODD STUFF. I WOULD CONSIDER SOMETHING ELSE.

View MrRon's profile

MrRon

2788 posts in 1869 days


#12 posted 1112 days ago

I know how to sharpen drill bits by hand and still do so with bits larger than 3/8”. For smaller bits, the DD works very well. You can’t sharpen carbon steel bits, only HSS bits. I don’t bother with bits smaller than 1/8”. They are cheap enough to toss. The one I have, I paid less than $40 and sharpens up to 1/2”. I wouldn’t spend more than that for a sharpener.

View DamnYankee's profile

DamnYankee

3233 posts in 1188 days


#13 posted 1112 days ago

It would appear we have a pretty even mixed opinions on the ol’ DD.

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View ferstler's profile

ferstler

333 posts in 2146 days


#14 posted 1112 days ago

I have the 500X and it works well enough for me, especially since I purchased directly from the company for a pittance after I contacted them about problems with one of the earlier and cheaper models that I had. In some ways it would probably be cheaper for occasional drill-bit users to just purchase new bits or cheap bits when the old ones wear out as twiceisnice says, but, heck, the little sharpener is kind of fun to use, and it does seem somehow proper to not just discard a bit that can be sharpened.

I will say that the DD instructions can be a big confusing, but if you work with the thing enough you get the hang of it and it works just fine. MrRon is right about trying to sharpen really small bits.

Howard Ferstler

View LONGHAIR's profile

LONGHAIR

94 posts in 2440 days


#15 posted 1111 days ago

Hand sharpening was one of the first things I was taught in a vocational school machine shop class, some 30 years ago… I still do it to this day. It is far more versatile than a machine that can only do one thing. There are times/reasons to change the point angle and even more for the clearance angle.
IMHO, it’s something that everyone who uses drill bits should learn.

I have gone so far as to sharpen drill bits “on-site” for other installers/tradesmen with something as crude as a belt sander

View Grandpa's profile

Grandpa

3075 posts in 1301 days


#16 posted 1111 days ago

Longhair, I agree that people should learn to grind drills on a pedistal grinder. I also learned this over 40 years ago in classes I had to take. I don’t do it today though. I also learned to use a hand plane but today I use a jointer planer because I would rather use power tools. To each his own. I have worked with a fellow on volunteer projects that owns a drill doctor. He furnished all the drills we needed and he sharpened them. They seemed to work fine for us. After reading this thread I would say that the better quality Drill Dr. are the best (as with most tools) and you still have to learn to use them. After that is becomes a personal preference. Al, the Drill Dr. is a D.O. anyway…...a Drill Operator

View sparks44pay's profile

sparks44pay

24 posts in 1160 days


#17 posted 1111 days ago

I learned many years ago to hand sharpen drill bits and have never had any problems doing it. This said, where are work they have a drill doctor 750X and a commercial sharpener that works in a very similar way. Both of these sharpeners work very well. They actually are faster because they don’t seem to over heat the bits, which you can easily do if you are not careful using a bench grinder. They can however make a bit very hard to resharpen correctly if you don’t set the bit up correctly in the chuck and do not set the angle right for the bit you are sharpening.

View coloradoclimber's profile

coloradoclimber

548 posts in 2694 days


#18 posted 1110 days ago

I have one and use it infrequently. When I do use it I like it. It works and puts on a good edge.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile

TopamaxSurvivor

14721 posts in 2302 days


#19 posted 1110 days ago

I got one to try for some reason a long time ago, it works, but I went back to just hand grinding them. I really do not remember why I bought it. Drills are not hard to sharpen on a grinder with a litle practice. Google it, I’m sure someone has posted the procedure.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

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