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More Broken Screws ... And a Drill Bit

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Forum topic by Beams37 posted 05-03-2015 01:42 AM 956 views 0 times favorited 25 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Beams37

163 posts in 655 days


05-03-2015 01:42 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question maple drill-driver

I feel like a dumba$$. I posted recently about breaking some Kreg screws in a piece of hickory. I wrote it off to being new to woodworking and never working with hickory. Well, today I broke off some regular wood screws and a freaking drill bit in a piece of maple. So, I am asking for specific and actionable advice.

The Bit: What the heck can I do to keep bits cool in hardwoods? Should I be spraying them with oil? Should I only drill 1 hole every 10 minutes?

The drill: I fee like when I back it down to the max “clutch”, screws and bits will barely go into the wood. When I have it on max power, it breaks of screws. This has happened with both my drills.

The screws: What kind of screws should I be using? I have heard of “waxing” the screws, but I have never seen “screw wax”. Any help?

Please help !!!

-- FNG ... On a quest for knowledge.


25 replies so far

View BurlyBob's profile

BurlyBob

3688 posts in 1730 days


#1 posted 05-03-2015 02:05 AM

I’ve heard of guys using beeswax or a beeswax paraffin mix. I’ve tried paraffin but it doesn’t seem to work well.

View Beams37's profile

Beams37

163 posts in 655 days


#2 posted 05-03-2015 02:07 AM

Where can I get beeswax? At this point I’ll try anything.

-- FNG ... On a quest for knowledge.

View MrUnix's profile

MrUnix

4230 posts in 1664 days


#3 posted 05-03-2015 02:13 AM

Sounds like you are drilling too fast, and not big enough for the screw. Drilling wood, even hard stuff, should not break bits. That is usually caused by drilling too fast (rotation speed) and applying too much pressure. What size screws are you using and what size drill bit?

Cheers,
Brad

-- Brad in FL - To be old and wise, you must first be young and stupid

View Don Broussard's profile

Don Broussard

3022 posts in 1716 days


#4 posted 05-03-2015 02:15 AM

I’ve used a bar of soap to reduce the friction and effort of driving screws. Seems to work well, but I haven’t worked with hickory yet.

-- People say I hammer like lightning. It's not that I'm fast -- it's that I never hit the same place twice!

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cutmantom

389 posts in 2500 days


#5 posted 05-03-2015 02:19 AM

Toilet wax ring can be used

View Rayne's profile

Rayne

470 posts in 1004 days


#6 posted 05-03-2015 02:22 AM

I use Johnson’s paste wax. You can get it at Ace Hardware (I’m sure you can get it elsewhere, but that’s where I bought mine). As for your bits, I’ve never had issues with hard maple unless it’s a really small bit. Your bits may also be dull. That could be an issue as well.

View Beams37's profile

Beams37

163 posts in 655 days


#7 posted 05-03-2015 02:28 AM



Sounds like you are drilling too fast, and not big enough for the screw. Drilling wood, even hard stuff, should not break bits. That is usually caused by drilling too fast (rotation speed) and applying too much pressure. What size screws are you using and what size drill bit?

Cheers,
Brad

- MrUnix

Brad,

I was using a Rockler Tapered Countersink Drill Bit. I was using the #8 size and the #8 wood screws from HD.

-- FNG ... On a quest for knowledge.

View Beams37's profile

Beams37

163 posts in 655 days


#8 posted 05-03-2015 02:30 AM



I use Johnson s paste wax. You can get it at Ace Hardware (I m sure you can get it elsewhere, but that s where I bought mine). As for your bits, I ve never had issues with hard maple unless it s a really small bit. Your bits may also be dull. That could be an issue as well.

- Rayne

Rayne,

I’ll have to check out the Johnson’s paste wax. Even if I can’t find it locally, I can find it online. Thanks for a specific brand.

As for the bit, it was brand new. It is a small bit, but dang. I feel that piece of metal should be able to drill more than a few hole in some hardwoods.

-- FNG ... On a quest for knowledge.

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Rayne

470 posts in 1004 days


#9 posted 05-03-2015 02:35 AM

Well if worse comes to worse, use Titanium coated bits. They’re strong enough to drill through steel, so it shouldn’t break on you as quickly. Worth a shot.

View Ripthorn's profile

Ripthorn

1406 posts in 2450 days


#10 posted 05-03-2015 02:48 AM

The vast majority of twist bits anymore are HSS. HSS is the old standby for metalworking and should work wood quite easily. The times I have broken bits are usually when I either put too much pressure on it (cause the bit to flex to the point of breaking), or when the drill got bend sideways while drilling. HSS is pretty hard and therefore brittle and will break relatively easily.

Keeping a bit cool in wood is not really necessary. Even with carbon steel, I have never blued a bit drilling wood. And even if you did, that would cause it to lose temper and go soft and bend, not break.

As mentioned, max rotation speed is the most likely culprit with the bit. For screws, it is probably that your torque setting on your drill is too high. Regular candle or parafin wax works great on screws as well.

-- Brian T. - Exact science is not an exact science

View johnstoneb's profile

johnstoneb

2145 posts in 1637 days


#11 posted 05-03-2015 03:01 AM

Beeswax, parafin, soap will all lubricate screws and make them drive easier. The hole still needs to be the size of the screw shank and deep enough. You shouldn’t be breaking bits in wood unless you are applying too much pressure or bending the bit in the hole. also if the hole is very deep don’t try to drill in one push remove the bit from the hole a few times and clean the flutes. Twist drills are designed for metal and the flutes don’t clean out the wood as well as they do metal.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View Exhale's profile

Exhale

3 posts in 1067 days


#12 posted 05-03-2015 03:49 AM

Just a thought is your drill turning the correct direction.

View pjones46's profile

pjones46

986 posts in 2108 days


#13 posted 05-03-2015 03:55 AM

+1 with johnstoneb

However, if you are using taper point bits, it should be a 11/64 bit for a #8 screw according to W.L. Fuller. I have seen some Countersinks w/Taper Point Drills that are supplied with 7/64 taper points claiming they are for a #8 screw and they are to small. Check the size of the bit supplies with your Rockler Tapered Countersink Drill Bit to insure it is 11/64.

-- Respectfully, Paul

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5765 posts in 951 days


#14 posted 05-03-2015 03:55 AM

I get johnsons from Home Depot. If you don’t pull the bit out out here and there to clean it, chips will get compacted in the flutes of the bit. Which leads to heat, burnage, and possibly breakage.

When it stops ejecting chips you should pull it out to clean it it. Then rinse and repeat.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View lepelerin's profile

lepelerin

478 posts in 1790 days


#15 posted 05-03-2015 04:12 AM

right size pre-drill and wax is my solution and I do not break the rare screws I use.

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