I've got some 1095/15n20 damascus steel I'm working on and while it grinds
ok, I'm having trouble drilling it. I used a cobalt drill and a carbide
center cutting end mill and neither one seems to be doing a good job.
Even after I took the end I need to drill up to a dull red heat.
Just not penetrating. However, I realized after I posted this that even
though the metal gets softer when you heat it up, it doesn't revert to
its pre-hard state until you get it past the critical temperature. I can
drill them now, but it still kind of rough.
I'll check out the HiRoc drills. Thanks!
If this works out for your job, you could try the old gunsmith's trick,
which is to chuck a nail with a rounded point in the drill press and heat
the spot with friction. You don't have to get it red -- going through all
the shades of blue will do it. Then you can drill it with a good HSS bit.
Of course, it depends on how thick the material is, and whether you can
tolerate softened edges on the hole.
Buy some solid carbide drills. They work just fine red hot.
Drill small holes and then work up - easier to work it that way.
Martin H. Eastburn
@ home at Lions' Lair with our computer lionslair at consolidated dot net
TSRA, Endowed; NRA LOH & Patron Member, Golden Eagle, Patriot's Medal.
NRA Second Amendment Task Force Charter Founder
IHMSA and NRA Metallic Silhouette maker & member.
I once drilled a 3/8" hole in the end of a large tap with a carbide
drill in my lathe. It was very hard but the carbide worked wonders, it
was a 1-flute straight drill.
Free men own guns - www(dot)geocities(dot)com/CapitolHill/5357/
If you took them up to red heat and *cooled them slowly*, and it didn't help
much, then your problem is not hard material. The time you should spend
cooling them depends on the alloy. In this case, it depends on the
slower-quenching of the alloys involved. For plain carbon steel, you can
just heat to red heat and let it cool in air, unless it's very thin. But
alloy steels can require a long cooling time.
They're interesting, Todd.
Red hot is actually a fairly large temperature range. The dull red
temperature I was talking about probably was in the 1100-1200F range.
Glowing, but dull color and not that bright.
By 'quick anneal' I meant that I took it up above the critica/curie point
to where the steel reverted to austenite, and then let it air cool. Quick
meaning air cool, and not putting it something like ashes or vermiculite
to decrease the rate of cooling for a 'full anneal'. Sorry for the bare
bones response, but I'm camping and the laptop is running low on the
Should have worked fine as long as the thrust was adequate at around 150-200
lbs. maximum and 100 minimum. Just guestimates.
Also, plenty of coolant as the tool can't possibly get red hot if there is
still liquid oil or coolant around it at that speed.