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Knife Blade & Handle Drill Speed Chart

Drilling in knives and handle materials is risky. When working with different materials, you stand the chance to damage blades and handles, or - if you don't have the right drill bits - you might not get through at all. Below is a handy drill speed chart for drilling with common materials used in knifemaking.

Material Speed (SFPM) Min Speed (SFPM) Max Drill Sizes
1/16 1/16 1/8 1/8 3/16 3/16 1/4 1/4 5/16 5/16 3/8 3/8 1/2 1/2
Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM Min RPM Max RPM
Steel (Alloy) 20 30 1212 1818 611 916 406 609 305 458 244 366 203 305 152 229
Stainless Steel 30 40 1818 2425 916 1222 609 812 458 611 366 488 305 407 229 305
Aluminum and Aluminum Alloys 200 300 12,126 18,189 611 9167 4063 6095 3055 4583 2440 3661 2037 3055 1527 2291
Soft Cast Iron 100 150 6063 9094 3055 4583 2031 3047 1527 2291 1220 1830 1018 1527 763 1145

 

 

Solve for any subject variable in bold by entering values in the boxes on the left side of the equation and clicking the "Calculate" button. The solution will appear in the box on the right side of the equation. To enter a value, click inside the boxes containing the "Enter" prompts.

Legend:
D - Drill diameter (in inches) Z - Number of flutes
SURFACE FEET PER MINUTE (SFM)

Enter RPM Enter D
X X /12 =
REVOLUTIONS PER MINUTE (RPM)
Enter SFM Enter D
X (12/ ) / =
INCHES PER REVOLUTION FEED RATE (IPR)
Enter IPT Enter Z
X =
INCHES PER MINUTE FEED RATE (IPM)
Enter RPM Enter IPR
X =
INCHES PER TOOTH FEED RATE (IPT)
Enter IPM Enter RPM Enter Z
/ / =
CUBIC INCHES PER MINUTE METAL REMOVAL RATE (in³/min)
Enter RPM Enter IPR Enter D
X X =