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Jewelry Drilling

 
 
 

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drilled holes in wooden beads Small holes may need to be made in metal, stones, wood, or other materials during the jewelry making process. Drills fitted with small bits - usually 2 mm or smaller - are typically used to make these holes.

Types of Drills

There are several different types of drills used in jewelry making. The type of drill you use will depend upon what kind of jewelry you are making, and what type of holes are needed. Types of drills include:
  • Small hand drill - Just like its name implies, this type of small drill is held by hand, and is best used for tiny holes.
  • Flexshaft motor - This versatile drill can be used to drill all kinds of material, but is frequently used for metal.
  • Wood drill - A wood drill is often used to drill larger holes in wood or metal, but is also frequently used by the jewelry designer to twist wire.
  • Archimedean drill - The user manipulates a horizontal wooden bar to use this drill, which is often used to drill holes in metal.
drilling a hole in a ring

How To Drill

In most cases, the drill should be held upright, at a 90-degree angle. If you are making a piece of jewelry for the first time and are unsure what size hole you need, start with the smallest bit, and increase in size until the hole reaches the right size. Lubricate the drill bit to prevent it from overheating. Always keep spare drill bits on hand, as they can break with use.
drilled holes in gold rings
Gold Rings with Drilled Holes

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Jewelry Drilling