drilling steel cases?

Frequently asked questions about tools and instruments used in stompbox development.

Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby JiM » 30 Mar 2009, 20:56

Definately doable, better with HSS bits than unibit. And maybe some lubricant/coolant.
Just be patient.
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Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby lolbou » 30 Mar 2009, 21:32

Aluminium is fairly "soft" as compared to steel...

Use bits progressively (getting bigger of course, every mm or two), and a fast drilling machine (high speed only, or you'll make a triangle hole).

A "drill stand/holder" would be safe for your fingers...
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Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby Reginald » 31 Mar 2009, 03:58

Drilling steel isn't too difficult if you have sharp bits. If I were you I'd buy a good 1/8" bit for drilling pilot holes, and some bits in whatever size you need. You can always sharpen them again.
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Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby soulsonic » 01 Apr 2009, 08:05

I've drilled those exact cases with a Unibit without too much trouble. You might need a higher-powered drill depending on how much torque your cordless can deliver... I've seen some cordless ones that are pretty juicy so maybe you'll be fine.
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Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby willc1968 » 06 May 2009, 19:54

definitely try to start out with a pilot hole and keep the bits well lubed. i will have a cap off a quart container of oil half filled and dip the bit in there prior to drilling the hole. when using the larger bits i will do a few drops of 3 in1 oil while drilling. also if you dont have one a drill press is the way to go. i got my little delta brand new for under $80 about 15 years ago. i am sure one can be had in the used market for a reasonable price. also new or well sharpened high speed steel bit are best for metal cases but i have had good luck with the cheap reconditioned carbide bits for drilling my pcbs.
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Re: drilling steel cases?

Postby Scruffie » 06 May 2009, 20:01

I had a steel scratch plate drilled out for my guitar, I just took it to a local hardware type shop and they drilled out 3 holes for about £2 so that could be a possibility if your near anywhere that might have a decent drill, just an idea.
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