Need to drill a lot of 42mm holes - Router Forums
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 09:17 AM Thread Starter
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Default Need to drill a lot of 42mm holes

I have a project I am trying to do. I am building 10 foosball tables. If I can sell them I hope to make a bunch more.

The sidewalls of the cabinet are 1.5 inches thick. I need to drill 8 through holes in each side 42mm in diameter. The spacing must be very accurate. If possible I want to drill both cabinet walls at once so the holes line up perfectly. This would mean drilling through 3 inches of plywood.

My question is...is routing these holes a bad idea? I would think cutting multiple passes in that many holes might be a lot harder than using a forstner bit.

I can't post the links, but I found a nice Stern bit for $48 and a Famag for $98.

Those are the two best ones I could find. I am open to any help or suggestions.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 12:38 PM
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Do yo have access to a drill press?

GCG
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 02:06 PM Thread Starter
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I will. Currently looking to buy one.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 02:38 PM
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Drill (upper left) has 3 carbide flutes and cares not what it bores into.
Will handily cut hundreds of holes, yielding clean walls and flat bottoms.
Would I use it on your job? Without doubt.
Would I drill in pairs? Not with my centering skills.
I have no fear of duplicating centers on my drill press.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-24-2012, 11:54 PM Thread Starter
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Pat your drill press setup is pretty sweet. Do you know where I could get one of those triple fluted drill bits 42mm sized?

The holes will be through holes, no need for flat bottom.
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 01:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeoleary View Post
I have a project I am trying to do. I am building 10 foosball tables. If I can sell them I hope to make a bunch more.

The sidewalls of the cabinet are 1.5 inches thick. I need to drill 8 through holes in each side 42mm in diameter. The spacing must be very accurate. If possible I want to drill both cabinet walls at once so the holes line up perfectly. This would mean drilling through 3 inches of plywood.

My question is...is routing these holes a bad idea? I would think cutting multiple passes in that many holes might be a lot harder than using a forstner bit.

I can't post the links, but I found a nice Stern bit for $48 and a Famag for $98.

Those are the two best ones I could find. I am open to any help or suggestions.
Whilst routing is my usual choice, there are times when other methods are more suitable, like in this case. Routing lots of relatively small holes to such a depth would be comparitively long winded. Some time ago I had a need for lots of 42mm holes so I bought an el-cheapo forstner bit from Ebay, delivered from China for about $8.00. Surprisingly it is an accurate 42mm.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-25-2012, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
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Do yo have access to a drill press?

GCG
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Originally Posted by mikeoleary View Post
I will. Currently looking to buy one.
If you plan to make a lot of these then you need a manufacturing mindset.
  1. Get the drill press
  2. Make a drill press table with a good fence
  3. Make three fixtures
    • First is a guide fixture to clamp to the fence that has horizontal surface with a hole that will be spaced from the fence the exact distance you need the holes spaced from the top of the table.
    • Second is a setup block with two holes spaced exactly the same as the hole to hole spacing on the table and exactly the distance from the back edge of the block as the holes in the table are from the top - just like the previous piece.
    • The last is a marking board with a cleat to mark the spacing of the center line of the first hole from the end of the work piece.


Setup:
  1. Push the fence back and out of the way for now.
  2. Place the setup block on the drill press table and align the drill bit with one of the holes. (Left if you intend to drill the rightmost hole first, Right if the opposite is true) If you can, lock the drill bit down for the remainder of the setup.
  3. Now position the fence up to the setup block. Insure the fence is flat against the back edge of the setup block and lock the fence in position.
  4. Place the one hole fixture on top of the setup block and use a dowel (42mm sanded lightly for a close slip fit) to align the fixture using the remaining hole in the setup block and clamp the fixture to the fence.
  5. Release the drill press to allow the bit to return up; remove the dowel and the setup block; set the dowel aside, close, for latter use.

Now you have setup your drill press to drill holes the proper distance from the top of the walls on the table. You need to measure and drill the first hole a specific distance from one end for a starting point.
  1. Using the marking board place it on the work piece at the end you'll drill the the first hole.
  2. Press the cleat against the end and mark the work piece for the position for the CENTER LINE of the first hole.
  3. Carefully position and drill the first hole. You'll only need to align side to side. Front to back is taken care of by the setup.
  4. Move the work piece so the hole you just drilled is under the hole in the fixture clamped to the fence.
  5. Slide the dowel through both the hole in the fixture and the hole in the work piece to lock the spacing for the next hole.
  6. Drill the next hole in the work piece.
  7. Step and repeat for the remaining holes.

Assuming the wall pieces are cut to the same dimensions every piece will be drilled identically.

Make yourself a cold adult beverage and admire your work.

GCG

Last edited by GulfcoastGuy; 10-25-2012 at 09:01 AM.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 10-27-2012, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you guys so much. Im starting to get an idea of what Ill need. Patrick, you drew me aa pretty good road map. Complete with a cold one at the end.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-24-2012, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Am I correct assuming that drilling 42mm holes in plywood is relatively light duty work? Any advice on power and size of the drill press I need to buy?
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 11-24-2012, 06:19 PM
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I would buy the at least 3/4 hp but 1 hp or bigger would be better (never know what the future may bring) in other words like the old saying buy the best You can afford ,,,Good luck

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