Drilling Pen Blanks with a Router Table - Router Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-28-2012, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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Default Drilling Pen Blanks with a Router Table

Hi all,
I have been using metric drill bits in a router table to drill pen blanks.

I have been drilling my pen blanks with a "MLCS Powerlift / Porter-Cable / RBI" Router table, which I have previously posted on this forum as an x-y-z router table. RouterForums.com Search term is "x-y-z router table"

I am using Elaire Corporation Porter Cable 7mm, 8mm, and 10mm Collets.
One can order that "pen-making" collet set as a new item PC-SET3 via PayPal.
Three Collet Series are available; Bosch, Porter Cable, and Milwaukee. (Also 6mm and 12mm)
Source: The Elaire Corporation - Precision USA made collets, holders, air tool components
(a USA company). Contact: Mark Neeley
=
Mark

Last edited by allbarknobite; 04-29-2012 at 04:32 PM.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 09:27 AM
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Could you post a picture of the operation? The how's just go way over my head.
GG
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-29-2012, 04:42 PM Thread Starter
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Default Pictures coming

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Originally Posted by grandpagrizzly View Post
Could you post a picture of the operation? The how's just go way over my head.
GG
Hi Jack,
On my next setup to drill more pen blanks, I promise to provide pictures.
Thanks for looking.
Mark

Last edited by allbarknobite; 04-29-2012 at 04:45 PM.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 08:47 AM
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i am not arguing, just trying to understand ...

why is doing it this way better than using a drill press?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 09:45 AM
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Looking forward to the pictures. This really has me intrigued.
GG
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 10:09 AM
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These metric drill bits are designed to work in the speed range under 3,000 rpms. Running them at higher speeds is not a good idea, unsafe.

Mike
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 10:13 AM
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No pictures, then it isn't being done. Just kidding. Looking forward to seeing your method.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 11:17 AM
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I have to go with Mike, this sounds like a very unsafe operation. Drill your pen blanks on a drill press or lathe.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 04-30-2012, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
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Default Ways to drill WOOD pen blanks

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Originally Posted by NiceG316 View Post
I have to go with Mike, this sounds like a very unsafe operation. Drill your pen blanks on a drill press or lathe.
Hi all,

Pictures are coming, but not today.

I am only drilling WOOD blanks. Beech and Oak. No plastic or Not-Wood. The wood comes from items of personal significance to my family. Using the pens made from family "wood" seems to invoke a special feeling when using the pens.
.
What I found out...

1. Adequate quill travel distance for drilling pen blanks on my drill press is a problem, so I looked for other means.
2. Using a sliding tailstock with a drill chuck on my PSI lathe is way too sloppy and slow, so I set that method aside, too.
3. A jig setup using my radial arm saw and drill attachment, works fine, and gives me as much drilling depth as the drill would allow. Very accurate (at 3450 rpm), but the chuck is too small and restricts me to 5/16 drill bits or smaller.
4. Using my RBI mortising router table (Posted on this forum as an X-Y router table or an X-Y-Z router table), I set up my PC router with a special 10mm collet bought from Elaire Corp. With the Powerlift speed at 100%, I drilled about 3 inches of a "cigar" pen blank in and out in about 10-15 seconds using the paddle switch. I am using German-made HSS pen drill bits, and they hold up fine. It takes longer to lock down the pen blank with a Bessey toggle clamp, and align the drill bit with the pen blank than to actually use the router.
I have drilled all the "personal" pen blanks I have in one 30 minute session and am now waiting for other people's "wood".
I will take pictures then.
Mark
ps
The Radial-Arm-Saw (RAS) method works fine... the drill chuck size is the problem.
pps
The 7mm, 8mm, and 10mm Collets from Elaire Corp. seem to have very little runout.
ppps
Safety is a relative term, whether it's a tool, a pistol, or a car.
=

Last edited by allbarknobite; 05-02-2012 at 12:56 AM. Reason: corr
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-01-2012, 01:31 AM
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Mark, every router manual tells you the speeds they run at which are far beyond the rating of these drills. There is no question, this is an unsafe practice. No machinist ever runs a tool beyond it's rated speed. It is an accident waiting to happen.

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