Lee Valley used to sell a cheap French made brad point bit for drilling dog holes. The bit is about 7 inches long give or take. I drilled a hole with it through a short piece of 4 x 4 on my drill press. Then I just laid out the grid on the bench with tape and pencil and drilled free hand just enough to register the tip of the drill in the hole then I ran it through the 4 x 4 and drilled as deep as I could that way. That was maybe 3" deep with one more to go but with the hole that deep already the guide was no longer needed. Worked great and didn't take very long.