Simple Solutions

Using a Step Drill Bit to Drill Different Size Holes

By: Joe Truini

A step drill bit can be used to drill a range of different sized holes with a single bit. Since each bit size drill holes less than 1/4″ deep, a step bit is mainly used for drilling thin material such as sheet metal.

To make it easy know how deep to plunge the bit for the right sized hole, wrap a piece of masking tape around the bit at correct hole size. Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information

Video Transcript

Joe Truini: I just drilled these 13 different size holes using a single drill bit. That’s possible because I used a step drill bit. This single bit, will drill 13 different holes, ranging in diameter from about eighth-inch to half inch. And here is how it works.

Start drilling, and with each step of the drill, you’re getting a larger and larger hole. So we get started right here. There you go, that’s an eighth-inch. Now it’ll start cutting pretty quickly, and again, each step the hole gets larger and larger. There you go.

Now, the trick to using a step drill is, when do you stop at exact right size hole, because you don’t want to stop and keep measuring. So here’s an additional tip. Take a piece of tape and wrap it around the bit exactly where you want to stop drilling. In this case, about a quarter inch. Then you just keep drilling until you hit the tape. And then stop, and you get the exact size hole.


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2 Comments on “Using a Step Drill Bit to Drill Different Size Holes”

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  • Rick Says:
    March 2nd, 2018 at 5:09 am

    I have a dill bit that the first 1/2″ is regular flute and then it has nubs on it the rest of the length about 3″. Was wondering what type of bit it is and what it would be used for? Never seen one like this.

  • Parris Young Says:
    April 30th, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    Thank you. This was simple and clear.

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Using a Step Drill Bit to Drill Different Size Holes