Keggle Drilling Problems

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bass-a-roo

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i'm having a lot more trouble drilling through my keg than i had thought i would. I borrowed a 7/8inch unibit (step drill bit) and am using a slow speed and plenty of lubricating oil. How long should it take me to get the right size hole? i drilled a pilot hole through the wall of the keg with a smaller regular drill bit, and now i'm trying to get the unibit to make even the smallest sized hole it can drill but 30 mins of drilling (off and on) i seem to be getting nowhere. Is this normal? how long did it take you to drill through your keg?

ALSO: i'm using a 7.2 volt cordless drill if that makes a difference. (I didn't think it does because i'm supposed to use a slow speed i believe)
 

chuggs

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I used a 1/2" drill with enough torque to almost snap my wrist when the high speed bit catches on the metal. I used a high speed carbide tipped drill bit. It didn't take very long...but it will catch once you get close to going through all the way.

If I do it again...I'll use a step bit.



- Harbor Freight Tools - Quality Tools at the Lowest Prices

Oopps...if I read your post carefully...I see you're already doing that. The only thing I can think of is that the bit your using might be worn down from a previous use. If it's sharp...it should cut it..a little at a time.

Good luck...and be carefull if you get a high torque drill...it can put a hurtin' on ya.
 

DarkSide

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I used a 7/8 step drill bit as well. I was worried it wold be a problem, but it took me only 5 minutes to drill the hole. I used lubricant too. I started off slow, with a lot of pressure. As the hole got bigger I increased the speed. Every time I stopped I put a little lubricant on the drill bit. After I lubricated the bit, instead of applying a constant pressure I kind of rocked it where I put pressure, release, pressure, release. If the bit got stuck, more lubricant, repeat.

Now I used an 18V Drill, so your 7.2V may not be enough. Also I did not go all the way to the top of the bit, the 7/8 mark. As I got closer to the right size hole, I would stop and check the size with my 1/2 inch nipple. So when it had enough room to wiggle through, I stopped.

Check out this link to the HomeBrewTalk Wiki and read hole cutting:

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Keggle#Hole_Cutting
 

BA_from_GA

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i drill all kinds of metal with unibits at work almost every day. High speed is good. If your bit's going that slow, you probably borrowed an incredibly dull bit. just today i had a well used bit cut right into 1/2 in angle iron, and kept right on going till it hit the dull step, then it didn't go any further, changed to a sharper bit, cut right on through.
 

Synovia

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i'm having a lot more trouble drilling through my keg than i had thought i would. I borrowed a 7/8inch unibit (step drill bit) and am using a slow speed and plenty of lubricating oil. How long should it take me to get the right size hole? i drilled a pilot hole through the wall of the keg with a smaller regular drill bit, and now i'm trying to get the unibit to make even the smallest sized hole it can drill but 30 mins of drilling (off and on) i seem to be getting nowhere. Is this normal? how long did it take you to drill through your keg?

ALSO: i'm using a 7.2 volt cordless drill if that makes a difference. (I didn't think it does because i'm supposed to use a slow speed i believe)
At 7.2V, its more of a screwdriver than a drill.


Every man needs a real drill, IMO. I <3 my milwaukee M18 cordless.
 

Bacon_grease

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i'm having a lot more trouble drilling through my keg than i had thought i would. I borrowed a 7/8inch unibit (step drill bit) and am using a slow speed and plenty of lubricating oil. How long should it take me to get the right size hole? i drilled a pilot hole through the wall of the keg with a smaller regular drill bit, and now i'm trying to get the unibit to make even the smallest sized hole it can drill but 30 mins of drilling (off and on) i seem to be getting nowhere. Is this normal? how long did it take you to drill through your keg?

ALSO: i'm using a 7.2 volt cordless drill if that makes a difference. (I didn't think it does because i'm supposed to use a slow speed i believe)
Perhaps someone here has a better way, but I used a cheap 3/4" hole saw bit. A quick ding with a center punch, plenty of cutting fluid and a small power drill and I was through in about sixty seconds.

I used a round file to enlarge the hole *just* enough so I could thread the coupling in. Perhaps 10 minutes getting that fitted up properly.

Then, another 5 minutes or so to get the fitting (I used a Weld-B-Gone type with two silicone gaskets and a locknut - and a layer of teflon tape) and it was done.

Including drinking, set up, drinking and clean up, it was about a 45 minute job.
 

Synovia

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are you sure you're not spinning the bit backwards? A weak drill should lag or stall, but it should still cut.
 

android

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it took me FOREVER also, but i just kept at it, eventually i had to switch bits because a dull spot formed on the one i was using... very aggravating. i was worried that i had hardened the steel from friction, but the new bit made things easier.
 

Bobby_M

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It's hard to know what the issue is because a sharp unibit should go from 1/4" to 7/8" in about 2 minutes. You need to use some pressure and maybe the right amount it too much for a low torque drill. I use a Dewalt XRP 18 volt.
 

Synovia

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It's hard to know what the issue is because a sharp unibit should go from 1/4" to 7/8" in about 2 minutes. You need to use some pressure and maybe the right amount it too much for a low torque drill. I use a Dewalt XRP 18 volt.
I just checked every 7.2v drill/driver I could find, and they all do about 60-80 in/lbs of torque.


Your dewalt (and my milwaukee) do somewhere from 400-600(depending on whether its the drill/driver, or the hammer).
 

samc

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I found that as my step bit started to dull it would no longer work with my deWalt 18v cordless. Switched to a corded Heavy duty drill and it went right through.
 

mac1jw

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1" Bimetal hole saw and thread cutting oil. You'll need to touch up the edges with a file to get a tight fit if you are using a 1/2" stainless coupling as they are approximately 1.06 OD.
 
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bass-a-roo

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thanks for the help everybody. i guess i'm off to the Depot to get a corded drill and new step bit. And here i was trying to SAVE money by brewing :(! (hoping my brewing hobby would be cheaper than my golf hobby)
 

humann_brewing

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After reading this I realize the unibit I bought only goes up to 3/4" and I bought it for this purpose :mad:

Well, back to the store.

At any rate, I have a 19.2V craftsman drill but I still plan on using my AC powered drill for this job. Just seems like I need the more torque right?
 

brrman

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I destroyed a step bit from Harbor Freight trying to get a hole in my keg - they are just too cheap, even at low speed with cutting oil. I went and bought an Irwin step bit and holy crap that thing had my hole cut in 30 seconds.
 

JKoravos

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Yup, as others said, it's probably dull. Once they dull they don't go through crap. With a sharp unibit and a good drill it should take about 30 seconds.
 

Rick500

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I think I remember reading here that others have had success with the HF bit. (I hope so... I bought one!)
 

bendavanza

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You have to apply a lot of pressure, put your body weight into it, keg on the floor, HF bit will cut through easily. If you let it just get hot from spinning it will get dull. A unibit should catch and cut little threads of ss away as it goes.
 

JKoravos

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You have to apply a lot of pressure, put your body weight into it, keg on the floor, HF bit will cut through easily. If you let it just get hot from spinning it will get dull. A unibit should catch and cut little threads of ss away as it goes.
good point...if you're not seeing little ribbons of metal coming off while you're cutting, your either not pushing hard enough or the bit is dull. If you hit a sweet spot of pressure/speed you can get an almost continuous ribbon of metal from the entire cut.
 

Bobby_M

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The harbor freight bits will last for many many cuts if you do it right. I agree with the ribbons of metal peeling off as you go. If you're not seeing that, you're just heating the bit and hardening the stainless.
 

rex

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I used a cheap Princess Auto step bit and no lubricating oil...only took about a minute!

Low speed...high pressure! That's what I did anyway.

Clean 7/8 hole that I didn't even have to de-burr.
 

Whiskey

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I agree a Unibit is the way to go. However all unibits are must certainly not created equal. I bought a no name "Ti" coated set from Ace hardware, that look exactly like the Harbor Freight ones and they just didn't cut it on SS, they are great on anything soft, aluminum, plastic plexi etc. I actually use the 3/4" one for deburring copper tubing, works great for that. My dad gave me an old high speed 1" stepbit, not sure who made it, but it is short and squat, black and steps about every 1/16. That monster cut through a buddies keg and a SS pot like they were made of wood. I was using my 18v Bosch litheon.
 

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