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Old 09-18-2009, 05:47 PM   #11
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I use a very small drill bit to drill a starter hole.

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Old 09-18-2009, 05:51 PM   #12
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I did the nail-punch dot, then small pilot hole, then step bit.

Most important thing is to go slow and hard <giggle> because you don't want to stainless to get too hot and temper. That will make it hard and impossible to drill (hee hee).

Anyone else think the thread title was just a clever euphemism? (in spite of my snickering above, I do mean the information!)

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Old 09-18-2009, 06:03 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doubleb View Post
Thanks for the replies. Its very tempting to go ahead and get the bits myself. I'm not the best DIY handyman type. I'm terribly accident prone and get stressed out easily if something goes wrong. I've got mixed feelings still. Swmbo convinced me to hire out yesterday, but maybe I'll freakin do it.

OK, so holding it between your legs is OK and will work right (with a piece of masking tape)? And just to be clear about everything I'll need

Kettle (got it)
Legs for bracing (still attached to me)
Pam (got it already)
masking tape (have it)
titanium step bit (not positive of the size yet)
safety glasses (I'm accident prone)
titanium pilot drill bit (do I need this)
file (to make the hole slightly larger if needed)

I got this to add to the kettle. http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewin...it-w-barb.html

Anything else you think I need to make this an easy as possible 5 or so minutes of my life?
I didn't need a file or a pilot drill bit. If you get the step bits from Harbor that I linked, the larger one is fine for the entire job. I also didn't need to punch or hammer anything to start the hole, the masking tape held my bit in place as I started. Once the tiny hole is started you push down harder with each ring of the step bit. I definitely suggest a spray of Pam before you start to keep the bit lubricated and not as hot. Once the hole is the size you need, you can wiggle the bit around slightly on the inside and outside of the hole to clean up any shavings that are left over. With each step you can see if your valve fits. Once it does, stop drilling. I had never used a step bit before and I drilled 5 holes in a stainless steel pot and lids in about 10 minutes.

Last edited by HarkinBanks; 09-18-2009 at 06:07 PM.
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:06 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DubbelDach View Post
I did the nail-punch dot, then small pilot hole, then step bit.

Most important thing is to go slow and hard <giggle> because you don't want to stainless to get too hot and temper. That will make it hard and impossible to drill (hee hee).

Anyone else think the thread title was just a clever euphemism? (in spite of my snickering above, I do mean the information!)
+1 on all counts.. (hehehe)

Anyway, yeah, slow and steady and try not to le tthe bit spin without removing metal as that can work harden the area.

One recommendation not mentioned is to tape the pot lid in place with duct tape. Even though you're drilling near the base where there is plenty of support, it's not hard to taco a thin kettle. Taping the lid in place will give a little more support all the way around.
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:07 PM   #15
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If you have a dirty mind(like I do) the title of this thread is hilarious....

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Old 09-18-2009, 07:18 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by c.n.budz View Post
If you have a dirty mind(like I do) the title of this thread is hilarious....
Oh... c'mon I just need my hole drilled. Nothing dirty about that.
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Old 09-18-2009, 08:12 PM   #17
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Lay a couple 2x4's on the ground parallel to each other and set the kettle on it's side between then. This will help it from rolling left to right if your foot happens to slip away a bit.

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Old 09-18-2009, 08:18 PM   #18
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I used a standard metal bit and Spit to drill my ball valve hole in my Keggle. Just do it.

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Old 09-18-2009, 08:27 PM   #19
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If you're not comfortable with the step bit DON'T BUY THE HARBOR FREIGHT BIT!! Spend a couple extra bucks on the one from depot or lowes. I'm a very accomplished DIYer and have worked in the construction industry off and on for years. I tried the harbor freight bit with tons of cutting oil and very slow speeds and only got 2 holes before it shot craps. Granted I was cutting a Keggle, so I ended up getting a proper sized hole saw and it was no problem. Just had to clean out the hole a little with a die grinder, but would have had to do that with the step bit too, you can use a file. Good luck! Or if you're going for welded fittings, just have the shop doing your welding cut the holes for you.

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Old 09-18-2009, 08:33 PM   #20
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Quote:
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If you're not comfortable with the step bit DON'T BUY THE HARBOR FREIGHT BIT!! Spend a couple extra bucks on the one from depot or lowes. I'm a very accomplished DIYer and have worked in the construction industry off and on for years. I tried the harbor freight bit with tons of cutting oil and very slow speeds and only got 2 holes before it shot craps. Granted I was cutting a Keggle, so I ended up getting a proper sized hole saw and it was no problem. Just had to clean out the hole a little with a die grinder, but would have had to do that with the step bit too, you can use a file. Good luck! Or if you're going for welded fittings, just have the shop doing your welding cut the holes for you.
Some people have had good luck with the Harbor step bit, some people have not. I suppose that is what you get with a product made in China, inconsistent results. Personally, I doubt I will ever use the step bit again so for me, $15 bucks was the way to go and I got a great result. If it had crapped out on me I would have taken it back to the brick and mortar Harbor I bought it from and gotten a refund. If I was going to use the bit a lot in the future, I would have shelled out for a Unibit.
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