Holes in steel studs?

I have been struggling cutting holes in steel studs (actually in the top
plate). My first attempt, using a hole saw, burned up the hole saw, and
took forever. My second attempt, using a 1 inch standard drill bit,
left the hole too small and nowhere near round.
In both cases, I ended up using a hammer and dolly to flatten out the
sheet metal so that I could put a grommet in the hole. Not fun to be
struggling drilling over your head.
Got to be a better way. Luckily I may not need to drill any more, but
not sure. Do I need to buy a punch?
I think that these steel top plates are probably around 22 ga galvanized
steel.
Richard
Reply to
Richard Ferguson
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Uni-bit. It's those weird cone shaped step drill dammits. Should work just fine on 22 ga.
Reply to
Bill Marrs
Ditto, though a uni-bit that goes up to 1" will be expensive. A good hole saw (Lenox, Sandvik, Starret) will work fine for a couple holes, but at some relatively small number of holes the uni-bit will start to look like a bargain. Be careful, running too fast will trash either the hole saw or the uni-bit.
Ned Simmons
Reply to
Ned Simmons
Uhh.. Studs usually means a long threaded shaft (like a bolt)...
But If you really are doing 1 inch holes in 22 ga galvie.. you need a Greenlee punch...
Go here
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click on Holemaking....
--.- Dave
Reply to
Dave August
Steel Frame construction studs.
As in a wall. :-) 2x4, 2x6, that kinda thing. :-)
See if the outfit that sold the studs has a punch that they rent out.
About 6 seconds per hole and no muckin' around!
Cheers Trevor Jones
Reply to
Trevor Jones
Punches are the way the pros make the holes. But punches are expensive. If you only needed a few holes a hole saw works, but they are annoying. (As you have discovered) A cheap way that is less annoying is with a fly cutter. by having a single point do the work it requires less pushing. The downside is that using one of these with a hand held drill is tricky as if you are not very careful they will grab. Using a drill motor with a lot of torque and standing on a ladder can have obvious consequences. I would use my rechargable 3/8 drill and take it easy especially when I was about to cut through.
A large twist drill is the worst choice.
Another way would be to drill a bunch of little holes in a circle, knock out the slug and file the hole to size. I have done this with a dremel and a mounted stone.
Reply to
Roger Shoaf
a good bi-metal hole saw cuts through steel beautifully, even thin stuff like 22 ga - but the cheap harbor freight units just spin and burn
Reply to
William Noble
Sometimes Costco has them at a reasonable price. Not sure if the set goes up to 1" though. Karl
Ned Simm> >
Reply to
kfvorwerk
The _right_ way is with a punch, but they're costy. The other ways are: a very fine-toothed recip saw, and a nibbler.
Change "recip" to "saber" or (incorrectly) "jig" for the average tool-owner.
LLoyd
Reply to
Lloyd E. Sponenburgh
"Richard Ferguson" wrote in message
Sounds like you need a Greenlee stud punch:
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Buy one on eBay, use it and then sell it on eBay. You'll get most, if not all of your money back.
Best Regards, Keith Marshall snipped-for-privacy@progressivelogic.com
"I'm not grown up enough to be so old!"
Reply to
Keith Marshall
DUH!!!...
Forest and trees kinda thing... :-)
--.- Dave
Reply to
Dave August
rent a greenlee knock out punch set or buy a screw together knock out punch from home depot , usually only takes a 3/8 pilot
Richard Fergus> I have been struggling cutting holes in steel studs (actually in the top
Reply to
c.henry
Yep------that's the key to success in this case. Carbon steel hole saws won't stand up to the punishment, dying from heat almost instantly. A HSS hole saw should work fine and yield acceptable results. You generally have to deburr the hole once drilled, and it tends to be somewhat oversized. .
Harold
Reply to
Harold and Susan Vordos
Richard, I use sheet metal drills. These make perfect round holes and remove a center slug. They look like woodworkers brad point drills, but with a much shorter center tip and all high speed steel. No one sells them. I made many sizes up to 1 1/2". Grinding by hand is not difficult. They pop thru suddenly, but seldom snag if held straight on. Backing up with wood is a better plan. RichD
Richard Fergus> I have been struggling cutting holes in steel studs (actually in the top
Reply to
RichD
Haven't seen anybody mention annular cutters yet. Google Hougen and Jancy for info. They make a short series for sheet metal that works great.
Bill
Reply to
Bill Marrs
If metal substitute for a 2x4, I'd go with a drill bit and greenlee punch.
Wes S
Reply to
clutch

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