View Full Version : Bad bits or work hardened steel?

10-17-2010, 08:26 PM
I've been drilling holes in my tang to balance the weight. The 1/4" holes were no sweat, but the last 3/8" hole was a mother bear. I went and got a new bit suspecting that to be the problem. But two drill buts later it just won't cut all the way thru. I got a little impatient(frustrated), and heated up the metal more than I had planned.
So is it not penetrating because my Home Depot bits aren't worth the packaging they're in or is it because my 1095 got harder from the tooling?
And no it hasn't already been heat-treated.
Help appreciated

Justin King
10-17-2010, 09:17 PM
Probably hitting large carbides. Spheriodizing/subcritical annealing will help if you have an oven. This is not terribly unusual in mill run 1095.

10-17-2010, 09:24 PM
Thanks for the info. I'm glad I'm not the only one who's had to deal with this.

10-17-2010, 09:26 PM
I've had 1095 that was dead soft and two inches later in the bar too hard to cut with a band saw. I'd bet you had a hard spot.

10-17-2010, 09:29 PM
I've run into the same problems with 1095 as well as 1084.

10-17-2010, 10:17 PM
Good to know thanks for the support guys

10-18-2010, 08:53 PM
I don't know if this helps or not, but I heard this trick (never tried it myself). Take an old drill bit, turn it upside down (so you are 'drilling' with the flat spot of the bit).

Use the bit on the place you want to drill through. Get it good and hot. Basically, you are heating up the metal via friction. Let it cool down. Now, drill the spot like you would normally.


10-18-2010, 10:51 PM
Hopefully you are using oil when you drill right!?

10-19-2010, 06:58 PM

Frank Hunter
12-15-2011, 12:58 PM
Same deal here. Yesterday I cut out a bunch of small trailing and drop point 3" edge knives from a big 72" bar of 3/16" 1095 from Admiral. As I'm profiling them I'm thinking, "Wow, these are going pretty fast." Then, I spin the bit on the 2nd 1/4" tang hole. New Irwin "Cobalt" (actually HSS C05 coated, the packaging was pretty misleading) bit even won't go. On moving to a different blade cut from the same bar all 3 tang holes for the scales go right through w/o even resharpening the abused bit. Go figure.