Drill bits are important tools in almost any manufacturing environment. Because drill bits see so much use, they can wear down pretty quickly. This means that busy shops will have to buy new drill bits rather frequently. Instead of having to deal with this, it is easier to buy carbide drills so you will have to replace them less often.
One of the biggest advantages of using carbide drill bits is the fact that they stay sharper for longer and outlast steel tools. While carbide is a relatively common tool material, many machinists are not familiar with its composition. Tool carbide looks almost metallic at a glance, but metal is just one part of its construction. The actual carbide in carbide tools is a powdered ceramic material known chemically as tungsten carbide. This dense ceramic is mixed with a binding metal to form the tool carbide that is ground into tools.
The fact that carbide tools merge qualities of ceramics and metals is what makes them so unique. The tiny grains of tungsten carbide embedded throughout the body of the tool are significantly harder than steel, giving these tools amazing cutting power. Ceramics are also extremely resilient when it comes to heat. Carbide drill bits can operate at temperatures that are even hotter than HSS or high speed steel tools. This is because all metals can only be heated so far before passing their tempering point and softening. Because carbide relies on ceramic for its cutting power, there is no risk of heat causing the tool’s edges to soften.
Another great reason to buy carbide drills is accuracy. Especially when used in milling applications, drill bits can have some serious issues with accuracy. This is because they are very long relative to their width. This means that when operating at high rotational speeds, they tend to vibrate as the entire bit flexes due to the force of the rotation. This can lead to the tip of the tool deviating from the central axis of rotation. This means that upon making contact with hard surfaces, the bit can deflect and “walk” off its mark.
There are a few ways to deal with this problem. Using spot drill can help improve your accuracy, but it will also add a tool change to the production process. Carbide drill bits are actually much more rigid than steel tools. This means that they do not vibrate as much and can produce extremely accurate results without the need for spot drilling.
If you want to buy carbide drills for your shop, Online Carbide is a great place to start your search. They manufacture all of their solid carbide cutting tools right here in the US using high quality tool carbide stock and precise CNC grinding tools. Their inventory include standard jobber length drill bits, stub drill bits, as well as spot drills and drill mills. All of their tools are available at manufacturer direct pricing when you visit their online store at www.onlinecarbide.com.