How do you bore a hole for a plane tote?

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by mjlauro posted 02-08-2008 07:29 PM 2555 views 1 time favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 3789 days

02-08-2008 07:29 PM

I would like to make some replacement plane totes for a couple of junkers. I have been able to make the tote , but run into major problems when I start to drill. which include a wandering bit, off center holes and of course a broken tote. Questions, comments, solutions are welcome. Thanks

15 replies so far

View ThreeJs's profile


84 posts in 3967 days

#1 posted 02-08-2008 08:30 PM

Drill the hole before you shape the tote? Dunno, never done it, but it would make sense.

-- David, Charlotte NC

View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 3789 days

#2 posted 02-08-2008 08:39 PM

You know ThreeJs I actually thought about that , just wasn’t sure if it would work. I’ve got time to kill this afternoon. Maybe I’ll give that a s shot.

francisco.. Love your bench I got to get over there a post a comment.

View Don Niermann  's profile

Don Niermann

219 posts in 4000 days

#3 posted 02-09-2008 03:37 AM

You should be using a brad point drill. If you are forcing the drill it will wander. Go easy.

-- WOOD/DON ( has the right to ones opinion but not the right to ones own facts...)

View Greg Salata's profile

Greg Salata

129 posts in 3790 days

#4 posted 02-09-2008 05:58 PM

Definitely easier to drill the hole first~

View jcees's profile


1060 posts in 3827 days

#5 posted 02-10-2008 06:35 PM

Ditto on the hole first. Eliminates the whole headache of wandering bits. Use the skinny bit first then use the hole to center up the counterbore. Good luck.


-- When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world. -- John Muir

View bern92's profile


71 posts in 3383 days

#6 posted 06-01-2009 09:30 PM

Mjlauro, here is a link for printable handle templates and a router bit…....hope it’s not to late…...,46168,46175&ap=1

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3676 days

#7 posted 06-01-2009 09:40 PM

drill hole first – this way you know exactly where that 90 degree is, and don’t need to second guess.

bern92- thanks for the links – those templates might come in handy … I always seem to find new stuff on LV website

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

View Julian's profile


880 posts in 3553 days

#8 posted 06-01-2009 09:54 PM

I drilled the hole in mine after it was cut and shaped. I made a small jig to hold the tote at the correct angle while I drilled it with regular drill bits using a drillpress. It was fairly simple and the results speak for themselves. I’m not saying this was the best way to do it, but it worked fine for me.

-- Julian, Park Forest, IL

View marcb's profile


768 posts in 3701 days

#9 posted 06-02-2009 12:19 AM

Those templates Lee Valley released are nice, they co-inside with the tote router bit that they made.

View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 3789 days

#10 posted 06-02-2009 01:29 AM

Outstanding stuff guys, I really appreciate it. I shelved this project. But now Im psyched to get started .

View SST's profile


790 posts in 4223 days

#11 posted 06-03-2009 05:03 AM

I drilled a hole after I rough cut the tote & it worked, but if I make another, I think I’ll not mess with the correct angle, I’ll just bore a hole on the drill press at the standard 90deg & draw the tote shape around the hole & then cut & finish.

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

View a1Jim's profile


117126 posts in 3605 days

#12 posted 06-03-2009 05:43 AM


-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Francisco Luna's profile

Francisco Luna

943 posts in 3421 days

#13 posted 06-03-2009 06:47 AM

Jim, post #3717, very insightful!

-- Nature is my manifestation of God. I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day's work. I follow in building the principles which nature has used in its domain" Frank Lloyd Wright

View TheWingDoctor's profile


14 posts in 3471 days

#14 posted 06-03-2009 09:16 PM

The way I used to drill holes in shotgun stock blanks will work for this, or any angled hole. Adjust your drill press table with the bit in the chuck to have enough room under the drill for the blank plus an inch or so. Use a brad point drill also. Make a 1/2” plywood plate with a screw point protruding up through the plywood a 1/2” or so. Align the screw to be directly under the center of the bit. Run the bit down if the quill travel is long enough to ensure alignment. Clamp the plywood to the table so it will not move and lock the table firmly. Mark the entrance and exit locations on the blank you want to drill and center punch lightly. Use a slow speed on the drill press. Put the bottom center punch over the screw tip and align the bit point with the top punch mark. You may want to put a clamp on the wood block if it is small to give you a larger piece to hold on to. Start the drill and slowly bore into the top of the blank. Back the drill out frequently to clear the chips and to prevent the bit from grabbing. Drill as deep as the bit and quill travel will allow but not all the way through. Before allowing the bit to exit the bottom of the blank, and hitting the screw, turn the blank over and insert a dowel sized to fit the hole you just drilled with a punch mark in the center of the dowel. Set the punched dowel over the screw and start drilling again on the end that is undrilled and the holes will meet perfectly.


-- Bruce - Fav. Quote "A man's got to know his limitations." Dirty Harry Calahan

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3613 days

#15 posted 06-03-2009 11:01 PM

Sorry whats a tote I cant help thinking it’s not a plane handle is it?Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics