Cobalt drill bits were constructed and designed to be able to drill particularly hard exteriors such as cast irons, titanium or treated stainless steels. Cobalt drill bits were made from a solid composition of steel and cobalt. It is made to withstand high speeds and is designed to last long. There are two grades available for cobalt drill bits, these grades mirror the amount of cobalt contained within the high-speed steel drill bit. For example, an M42 grade cobalt drill bit contains 95% high-speed steel and 5% cobalt, if the concentration of cobalt is too high then the cobalt drill bit will become brittle and will not be able to withstand high-speeds. Keep in mind that the harder the drill bit, the more brittle it is. A cobalt drill bit is heat-treated to change its color from steel blue to a shiny gold, this helps distinguish it from other standard drill bits.
Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind when using cobalt drill bits.
Tip 1 - Wear Protective Goggles
Wear face shield and gloves when operating any drills. Remember that because of the extreme speed of the bits, debris is highly likely, so it is important that your eyes and your hands are protected.
Tip 2 - Use the Correct Drill
Make sure that you are using the correct drill bit for the correct surface. Knowing the exact drill bit to use for a specific project will not only save you some time and money, it will also keep you from getting hurt. For example, cobalt drill bits are used for hard steel or metal, if you are dealing with hard wood then opt for a titanium drill bit. Although the most common drill bits used are standard high-speed drill bits, it doesn’t get the job done as fast and smoothly as it would if you don’t use it for the right surface and you risk getting hurt as standard high-speed drill bits cannot withstand extremely hard surfaces better than a cobalt drill bit.
Tip 3 - Sharpen Cobalt Drill Bit
Make sure that the cobalt drill bit is sharpened to ensure maximum results. It is better to drill with a sharp bit because it doesn’t take that long to finish, if the drill bit is hard, then obviously it will take longer.
Tip 4 - Use Masking Tape
Put a piece of small masking tape around the drill bit matching the depth of the hole you want to drill to ensure that you don’t drill deeper than that.
Tip 5 - Don’t Rush
It is always better if you keep a slow and steady pace, because this will lessen the odds of having an accident or making an escape.
Tip 6 - Hold the Bit Straight
Make sure that the drill bit is straight while drilling.
Tip 7 - Never Overheat
Make sure that the drill doesn’t overheat; over-heating may cause the drill to stop working, which will only prolong your project unnecessarily.
Tip 8 - Keep it Clean
Pull the bit out often and clear it of dust, keeping your drill dust-free will also keep it from over-heating.