Anyone with even a little bit of experience in woodworking or metalworking understands the significance of drill bits. They come with different tips for suiting different project needs and allow drill machines to create accurate holes for various applications.
But are drill bits universal? Well, not really. That’s because the drill bit’s shank must match the drill’s chuck. Otherwise, you won’t be able to work with it. Some are marketed as universal as they’re suitable for a wide range of materials, and they’re pretty amazing.
However, they can’t cover the entire field. There aren’t any truly universal drill bits available to this day. Keep on reading if you want to learn more about them!
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Why Aren’t Drill Bits Truly Universal?
Many top-notch drill bits are perfect for drilling holes into different materials with ease, but ‘universal’ is still a pretty strong word. You will find universal drill bits on the market. From wood to concrete, you can feel free to use them on almost anything!
However, when it comes to dealing with more fragile materials like glass and ceramic, they won’t do you much good. You’re going to have to use specialty bits for those materials. As you can see, even the ones marketed as ‘universal drilling bits’ have their limitations.
Furthermore, drill bits come with different shank sizes, which must be compatible with the drill machine’s chuck. There isn’t any one-size-fits-all as of yet. You can still go for the universal ones because they’re definitely more helpful than the single-purpose ones.
What Are the Most Common Types of Drill Bits?
You will mostly find three types of drill bits on the market. It’s important to know about them as they’re designed for handling specific materials.
Wood Drill Bits
Just as the name suggests, wood drill bits are explicitly made for woodworking. They come with a spar and a lip. The spar keeps the tip from jiggling or wobbling to prevent any damage to the wood. You won’t be able to use them for penetrating the metal.
Metal Drill Bits
Metal drill bits are perfect for drilling holes into metallic objects with ease. Their most distinguishable feature is the angular tip that allows you to drive into tough metal smoothly. However, if you use them on wooden objects, you are likely to inflict unwanted damages.
Special Drill Bits
Specialty drill bits come with unique designs for dealing with certain drilling types. They’re made for specific applications. For example, you will require special drill bits for making holes on delicate materials like glass, tile, or ceramic. Some are designed for driving screws as well.
Now, there is also a universal drill bit type that we’ve mentioned before. They allow you to use a single kind of drill on different materials, including wood, metal, and even concrete.
What Can You Use Drill Bits for?
Your drill machines are as useful as the drill bits. In other words, you can use the drills without the bits. If you want to get the job done right, you should invest in high-quality ones. As soon as you attach a bit to the drill and power the device on, it will start rotating real fast to give you the cutting power you need.
Drill bits are considered cutting tools capable of removing materials to drill holes on various materials. These holes are essential in both woodworking and metalworking as they allow you to drive screws into them. You can easily connect multiple pieces by relying on the drilled holes.
For both professionals and non-professionals, drill bits can be handy. They are also ideal for house projects like hanging pictures, building furniture, installing cabinets, etc.
Having universal drill bits will make your life even easier as you won’t have to buy separate bits for different materials. An individual universal drill bit can be freely used on almost all kinds of materials! When buying, make sure to purchase bits that are compatible with your machine.
What Are Universal Drill Bits Made of?
High-quality universal drill bits come with a unique design and boast sturdy construction lasting a long time. They’re usually made using top-grade components like carbide to offer enhanced durability.
These usually come with cutting points placed right at the shaft tip that boasts a cylindrical design. Furthermore, they feature helical flutes that are pretty steep for getting rid of the waste and retaining the tip’s sharpness.
If you want to keep them in tip-top condition, you should clean them properly and regularly. They lose their sharpness after some time, so it’s important to re-sharpen these tools every once.
Are Drill Bits Interchangeable?
One of the best things about drill bits is that they are entirely interchangeable as long as their shanks fit the drill machine’s chuck. As a result, you can replace your old power tool without having to buy new drill bits.
For example, if you’ve been using 3/8-inch tips, you can continue using it if you get a machine that comes with a 3/8-inch size. There is no need to go shopping for newer bits and waste your money if the older ones are functional. Just make sure to match the dimensions, and you’ll be just fine!
Moreover, drill bits aren’t restricted to specific manufacturers. You can feel free to use bits created by other manufacturers on a device made by Dewalt or any other brand. You won’t gain any additional functionality just by sticking to the same manufacturer.
Hopefully, we’ve been able to provide a clear answer to the question-“are drill bits universal?” Although not truly universal, some of them are incredibly versatile as they can be safely used on most materials.
If you want to stay on the safe side, try getting the standard 3/8-inch bits because they are compatible with most drill machines.