Over at Amazon, they have a set of “titanium-finish” drill bits. I haven’t seen these before, and so I took a closer look/
This Amazon Basics high speed steel drill bits are said to be suited for cutting through hard metal, like stainless steel, aluminum alloy, and titanium alloy.
The 21pc drill bit set comes with sizes 1/16″ through 3/8″.
Amazon says that the drill bits are:
Made of high-speed steel with a titanium finish and quenching treatment
They also say:
Precision grinding inclined blade helps ensure fast drilling, impressive cutting power, and excellent chip removal.
User reviews seem to be very mixed.
Umm… I’d pass, based on the effortless product description alone. Maybe they’re good – time will tell – but quite a few of the user reviews add to my hesitation.
“Hard metal like stainless steel, aluminum, and titanium.” I can’t imagine anyone successfully using these to drill through titanium. Thin stainless steel? Maybe. Aluminum? Possibly.
Amazon doesn’t show or describe the shanks, but they appear to be round without flats.
For a 21pc general purpose drill bit set, I’d much sooner get this Dewalt set. It’s priced a little higher but I’m sure it’s a lot better quality.
This Dewalt 14pc black oxide HSS drill bit set is still promo priced at $9.98. It’s a very good buy, although you don’t get as much of a size assortment as with the 21pc sets.
The Dewalt 21 piece see is my go to set (I have it in pilot point). Some years back it was $15 on black friday. It sometimes hits $20 on sale these days. Love them.
Agreed, I bought the pilot point 21 piece set on black Friday 2017 for $12.99. Sometimes one needs a loner set so that 14 piece black oxide is great at less than $10.
As someone who spent about 12 years running a machine shop which did roughly 75% of our work in titanium alloys I can agree 100% with that assessment. We used specialty drill bits with a tip geometry specifically optimized for Titanium, solid tungsten carbide, which had holes through the flutes to pump coolant straight to the tip of the bit. Cost varied by size but was normally about a hundred bucks for a single stubby drill bit in the 10-12mm or range. A long one (10-15 diameters) would cost 2 or 3x that. When they got dull we’d send them in to be resharpened.
I’m going to take a seriously hard pass on this kit, even for basic around-the-house work. Few things annoy me more in the tool world than cheapo drill bits. I fully expect these things not to drill true to their diameter, to wobble, and not to hold their sharpness worth a darn–and that’s assuming they’re sharp in the first place. Those Dewalt bits aren’t anything stellar (from a machinist’s point of view) but they are certainly not garbage and are perfectly suited to anything around the house, contractor work, auto work, etc.
Hey stu do you have any similar drill bit sets to reccomend, except with impact friendly (quick change) hex connections? Maybe below $30? There look to be a few options now but im seeing mixed reviews on all of them. Thanks
Sticking with ToolGuyd’s DeWalt recommendation, try these.
Milwaukee makes some nice sets, too.
If for any reason someone is looking into getting 2 of the 23-piece sets, HD has a 2 pack that is cheaper ($49) than 2 individual ($60).
For impact-rated, Milwaukee Shockwave are the only ones I ever really use.
I generally don’t like drilling with an impact, or using 1/4″ hex drill bits if I can help it. But I’ve had good experience with Milwaukee’s, and different sets and configurations are very aggressively priced several times of the year.
I pretty much only use my hex end drill bits when I need to drill in a right angle adapter and or with an extension.
I use and really like adapting regular round shank drill bits to hex using these hex shank collets. https://www.mcmaster.com/drill-bits/drill-bit-shank-adapters-for-power-screwdrivers-and-impact-drivers/
They are made by Snappy tools https://www.snappytools.com/product-category/drill-bit-adapters
They are bit expensive up front, however you can use whatever bits you prefer and just replace the bit when it dulls or breaks. They also work great for small taps and for countersinks.
These are a bit more than you wanted to spend, but with the bonus 1/2″ bit (worth about 50% of the set), a great set for a pretty good price.
These might not be up to par with a premium set like Norseman, but pretty close. I would get a couple of cheap sets ($10-$15) for everyday holes that aren’t difficult, where if you break, dull or ruin the bit in any way, not a big loss. When you do need to make a hole in a tough material (like stainless or similar), I would use these, and some cutting fluid or paste. They cheapos can be thrown away with no worries, while these Mach Blue’s are worth re-sharpening when they get dull….which won’t be for a while if you do like I stated above. El-cheapos for easy stuff or where there is a high risk of snapping a bit, then the Spyder or whatever you have for premium bits for seriously tough materials to go through.
I have those Dewalt drills, though mine came in a different set that also had some driver bits too. I can confirm they are excellent for general use. They are what I carry in my general use toolbag. If mine disappeared today and I had to get another set I’d buy them again.
My dad was a machinist and found thousands of drill bits in the basement when he passed. Almost all of them were Japanese or USA seemingly high quality. Half of them were super dull. Just this year I picked up a drill Dr. to sharpen all of them.
Where I’m going with this is after using good bits I’d never cheap out on them. If I had to do it again I would have never spent money on the cheapo ones. Get the good ones and just invest in a Drill Dr. or the skill to sharpen them by hand.
Definitely a hard pass on the amazon basics bits. My main sets are the dewalts and for hex shank, milwaukee. I have a set of bosch cobalts I’m happy with too.
If anything, the black oxide 21-piece Amazon set at about $15 is more attractive. I have little to no faith in the titanium coating holding up anyway. But in general I place Amazon branded tools in the same category as Harbor Freight, or the low end big box brands like Ryobi, and Skill. Those latter two make decent, budget tools. But their bits and accessories are horrendous.
I agree on all points.
I’m a multi craft industrial maintenance tech by trade, and I use primarily Cleveland drills at work. That being said, I don’t see any reason why this set couldn’t be used in a home shop role. Your average Johnny homeowner isn’t going to be drilling titanium, or even a great deal of stainless on a day to day basis.
My gripe with cheapo drills is not so much about their durability–obviously someone with serious drilling needs is not going to be shopping Amazon Basics–but it’s the fact that many of them are not straight or are unevenly sharpened and as a result they drill oversize and/or crooked holes. Sometimes they can also require excessive pressure to make the bit cut which can then break out the backside of the hole if drilling into wood or other softer materials. For some tasks that doesn’t matter but other times it certainly does.
Note that I haven’t used these exact drills, I’m just speaking of my general experience with low-end import bits.
how do they go 21 pieces and not make in to a 1/2 inch – when Dewalts kit (which I also like and own) is 21 pieces, has the 1/2 inch, and has duplicates in the right sizes.
seems off somewhere. While I agree a 1/2 drill bit isn’t that necessary – I’ve used mine 4 times in the last year. at home, on home project crap.
The only time I like an amazon basic item is when it’s a blatant knock off of a known product I was going to buy that happens to also be made in china. Like a paper shredder, or power strip.
Some sets sometimes fill in smaller sizes, others skip them to give you 1/2”. It’s really just a matter of the configuration.
A 1/2” drill bit also usually the priciest size in a set like this.
With AmazonBasics being more of a value brand, I’m not surprised to see this set stop at 3/8”.
Yeah, good point, in the Dewalt set for instance, the 1/2″ bit probably has a much metal in it as the whole left side of the case.
umm, buyer beware alert…’AmazonBasics products are going up in flames’,
An AmazonBasics microwave caught fire when an eight-year-old heated up a macaroni and cheese cup. One man saw fire coming from an AmazonBasics surge protector while only a single phone charger was…
To be fair, things like that could happen with any consumer-grade electrical device. All brands will have failures; that is not exclusive to amazon.
Also, not really relevant to a set of drill bits…
Reviews and user experiences exist for a reason.
I leave “Amazon Basics” to only one use: Stuff that doesn’t matter. USB cables and various adapters, Testing gadgets to see if we need such a thing (doesn’t matter if they blow up or fail… if you’re using it and need it, you’ll invest in something better than Amazon Basics next time.) pretty much everything and anything you can do without if it gets damaged, but at the same time, you need something to see if you can make something work at low cost… that kind of thing.
Drill bits? Are never that. So… I would skip these, regardless of price. If I need it bad enough, I have something exact bookmarked somewhere. Hard pass for me.
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I have the black oxide version of this kit in my model room, and they are adequate for drilling plastic and wood. Our in the workshop, I like better quality bits for drilling steel and the other materials I use.
The case is terrible, and if held in the wrong position will let the smaller sizes dump into the void of the oversized left side. I ended up putting p-touch stickers saying “up” to avoid this, but I suppose you could cut pieces of Styrofoam to fill in the gap if you want to spend time upgrading your 15 dollar drill set.
I just bought the DeWalt black oxide 14 piece set. They are ok.
I have a really nice Hanson set that i own. Trouble with that one is a lot of the smaller bits have either been lost or broken. I wish someone just sold a small set of only small drill bits.
I have a couple of the Dewalt black oxides too – I picked them up on clearance. I second the “ok” rating.
While they seem more durable and less prone to breakage than some of my other cheap bits, they aren’t very sharp. I have to push harder with these to drill than with most others.