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All Titanium Drill Bits not equal

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  • #16
    OK, you might want to read this article:

    Basically you have bare naked high speed steel (HSS) drill bits. Then you have titanium nitride (TiN) bits and cobalt bits. Which is misleading because one describes the coating and one describes the alloy.
    Cobalt bits are basically high speed steel but with 5-8% cobalt added which makes a stronger and harder alloy of steel.
    TiN bits are HSS but with a coating of titanium nitride, a gold-looking color. The coating is low friction, lower than HSS by itself, so the bit does not heat up on the sides and cutting surface so much - heat is the enemy of HSS because it destroys the temper of the steel.

    Unfortunately when you sharpen the TiN bits then you remove the coating and it loses effectiveness, at least on the cutting point, although the sides are still coated (but can wear off over time).
    Cobalt bits are not a coating, the cobalt goes though the bit and it can be effectively sharpened and still retain the characteristics that the cobalt bestows.

    Loring in Katy, TX USA
    If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
    BT3 FAQ -


    • #17
      (from the handyman link) . . . At that point, it’s not any better than a bare high-speed steel bit.

      That means that once these bits get dull, there’s no way to bring them back from the brink. You can’t sharpen them, as that would wear away at what remains of the TiN coating and destroy the bit. And, there’s no way to reapply the coating yourself at home.
      Well. I agree that the effect of TiN is wasted once sharpened, but disagree with the implication that the bit is useless after that. It is my thought that sharpening it - will render it to the same a normal HSS, which will still be fine for most wood drilling situations.

      My original post was hinting at - IS there a difference in TiN coatings on different Brands of TiN bits. While the direction of the discussion went towards the grind rather than the coating, it helped to see the differences that have been discussed.

      One other TiN/118/135 bit of news (pun intended): SKU 61637, 62281 118 $18.99 regular price. - But often on sale at $10.99
      ​​​​​​ SKU 61737 135 $24.99 regular price. (seems like I have seen those on sale at about $14.99 or $15.99

      AND an M35 Cobalt set: $59.99 Listed as HSS Cobalt.

      Both are Titanium coated, but the bottom one is split point 135. I noticed that my HF store had both at one time.
      Last edited by leehljp; 10-19-2019, 08:58 AM.
      Hank Lee

      Experience is what you get when you don't get what you wanted!


      • #18
        The reason the topic veered from TiN vs Cobalt to Grind is that some grinds are better suited for the problem you were trying to describe as being TiN vs Cobalt.
        Loring in Katy, TX USA
        If your only tool is a hammer, you tend to treat all problems as if they were nails.
        BT3 FAQ -


        • #19
          Met up with my friend who does roadway systems construction last night. I mentioned this conversation and he said his company has standardized on the DeWalt bits, because they beat out everything else they've used. He said that yesterday he had to make 100-some holes, so his assistant brought him three bits knowing he'd need them. He didn't, one bit did it, and is still going strong.

          They are also phasing out Milwaukee and going all DeWalt for their handheld power tools.