From wood to metals, drill bits are designed for all types of drilling. Over time, they will become dull and lose their functionality. To restore their peak performance, there is one thing that you will need – the best drill bit sharpener.
Once drill bits become blunt, they will be frustrating to use. However, this does not mean that you should throw them and buy new bits! That would be a waste of money.
Luckily, you can still save your drill bits once they lose their sharpness. All that you need is a high-quality sharpener, including those we’ll be talking about in this short guide.
- Types of Drill Bit Sharpeners
- Our Top Picks for the Best Drill Bit Sharpener
- Drill Doctor 750X Drill Bit Sharpener
- Drill Doctor 350X Drill Bit Sharpener
- Drill Doctor 500X Drill Bit Sharpener
- Woodstock D4144 Drill Sharpener
- Bosch S41 Drill Bit Sharpener
- Tormek DBS-22 Drill Bit Sharpener Jig Attachment
- Multi-Sharp 2001 Dual-Purpose Drill and Tool Sharpener
- CZS Portable Drill Bit Sharpener
- General Tools 825 Drill Grinding Attachment
- DAREX V390 Drill Bit Sharpener
- How to Choose the Best Drill Bit Sharpener
- How to Sharpen a Drill Bit
- Keeping Your Drill Bits Sharp
Types of Drill Bit Sharpeners
Before we start, let’s have a quick look at two of the main categories of the drill bit sharpeners currently available on the market:
- Manual Drill Bit Sharpener: As the name implies, this is one that you operate manually. It is affordable but can be difficult to use. It requires manual labor.
- Electric Drill Bit Sharpener: With a motor, this will automate the sharpening process. While expensive, it is a better option as it will let you sharpen drill bits even with minimal effort to spare.
Our Top Picks for the Best Drill Bit Sharpener
With a plethora of brands and models available, which should you buy? If you are undecided, below are some of the top products that should be on your radar.
Drill Doctor 750X Drill Bit Sharpener
Drill Doctor is one of the most popular global brands for drill bit sharpeners. Unsurprisingly, the first three products on our list are from this company!
It is known for its versatility. Whether you have cobalt or tin-coated drill bits, among others, this sharpener delivers exceptional results.
Another reason why it is great in terms of versatility is the custom-point angle sharpening. You have the freedom to set the angle from 115 to 140 degrees based on what a specific application requires.
As the most expensive from the line of drill bit sharpeners from Drill Doctor, this specific model is targeted towards professionals. For most hobbyists and DIYers, it can be quite expensive and complicated.
The permanent power magnet motor is one of the reasons why even the pros trust this product. The motor makes sure that it will deliver consistent performance regardless of load and speed.
Lastly, it also comes with the standard three-year warranty from the manufacturer. This covers the product against problems in craftsmanship and design.
Drill Doctor 350X Drill Bit Sharpener
Compared to the product from the same manufacturer mentioned above, this is a cheaper alternative. It is built for hobbyists, so you can expect that it is straightforward to use. It lacks the bells and whistles you will find in its higher-end counterparts.
Despite being cheap, it does not run short in terms of amazing features. One thing that impresses us is its versatility. You can sharpen 3/32 to ½-inch standard drill bits made of light metals and wood.
To add, we also like how the sharpening process is easy with this product. There is no need for an alignment port. All that you need to do is to secure the drill bit and turn the jack. You will be done in no time without the need to sweat!
The low-profile and ergonomic design is another reason to choose this sharpener. Plus, it remains stable on the surface, regardless of how aggressive is the sharpening that you need to do.
Drill Doctor 500X Drill Bit Sharpener
The third product from Drill Doctor that we are recommending in this guide, this is the middle ground of the two models above. Whether you are a casual user or a pro, this is one model you will love using.
With its tough construction, you can expect that it will withstand the test of time. It is made using strong materials to help retain peak performance even after years of use.
More than being affordable, we also adore how versatile it is. You can sharpen at 118 and 135 degrees point angle. It also accommodates drill bits of different sizes ranging from 3/32 to ½-inch.
The diamond sharpening wheel is one of its highlights, which is responsible for saving dull drill bits. When the time comes that you need to replace the wheel, luckily, this will be easy!
Woodstock D4144 Drill Sharpener
On a budget? Then this product from Woodstock should be on your radar. While it is easy on the wallet, it is big in terms of performance.
At first, it looks like a microscope. This distinct design is also one of its best assets. It makes it effortless to secure the drill bit while also ensuring your safety.
However, take note that it isn’t meant to be used alone. Instead, you should install it next to your bench grinder.
When using this product, you can make several adjustments, which will let it accommodate different drill bits. With the full adjustments, it will be easy to customize depending on what you will need in a specific application.
Bosch S41 Drill Bit Sharpener
The brand name alone is already a compelling reason to choose this product over many of its competitors. Bosch has made a reputation in the global market for power tools, so you can be confident of its quality.
It is quite expensive, but that should not give you the reason to forget this product. Every dollar will be worth it!
However, unlike the other products mentioned in this guide, take note that this is an attachment. You will connect it to the drill with a spindle collar diameter of 43mm. Once connected, it can work on drill bits with a 118-degree angle with a diameter of 2.5 to 10mm.
Tormek DBS-22 Drill Bit Sharpener Jig Attachment
If you want to sharpen drill bits with precision, then this is one of the top products that should be on your list! Using this product will create a four-facet point, which will generate less heat and require less thrust.
It is a good thing that it is adjustable, which also means that you can use it in multiple applications. It is for drill bits measuring 1/8 to 7/8-inch. You can also set the angle anywhere from 90 to 150 degrees depending on the requirements of a specific task.
Another thing that amazes users of this product is that it allows a controlled sharpening. This will help in preventing cracks and overheating, among other common problems.
Multi-Sharp 2001 Dual-Purpose Drill and Tool Sharpener
Value for money – that is one good reason why this is another good product worth considering. We love how you can use it not just for sharpening drill bits but also for other tools.
It will also work with different materials, such as silicon carbide and aluminum oxide. Plus, it can accommodate drill bits with sizes ranging from 3 to 13 mm. Regardless, you will be happy to know that it will be a charm!
This can be powered by almost any electric drill, which is another reason why it is a great option if versatility is what you are after.
To add, you can replace the grinding wheels when they wear out. This is recommended to ensure that it will deliver excellent sharpening performance through the years.
CZS Portable Drill Bit Sharpener
This is one of the cheapest products you will find on the market. Nonetheless, being cheap speaks only of its price and not the quality.
The simplicity of this product is also one of the reasons why it is on our list. This is built for those who do not have the patience to deal with complicated products.
We also like this product because it is compact and portable. Plus, you can connect it to almost any power drill and expect that the outcome will be exceptional.
This is also a great product if you are looking for durability. It is made of ABS plastic, which is strong enough to survive several years of use.
Best of all, you can purchase this product without any risk. If you are unhappy in any way, let the manufacturer know and they will issue an unconditional refund.
General Tools 825 Drill Grinding Attachment
This isn’t a stand-alone tool that you can use for sharpening drill bits. Instead, this is only an attachment. It is to be connected to a compatible electric surface grinder or bench grinder.
One of the best features that you can find in this product is the angle attachment gauge. This will let you adjust the position depending on the angle of the drill bit that you will sharpen. You can set it at 41, 49, 59, 68, or 88 degrees.
The pivoting neck is also a good feature you will find in this product. This makes it effortless to turn the drill bits, make sure that all sides are equally sharp once the job is done.
DAREX V390 Drill Bit Sharpener
Wrapping up our recommendations for the best drill sharpener is perhaps the most expensive of the products listed above. Despite its price, however, we like how it is packed with a plethora of amazing features.
The metal-cased unit is one of the best things about this product. With the solid construction of its body, you can be confident that it will withstand even the harshest environments.
It comes with a pre-installed borazon sharpening wheel, which is also one of its most notable features. Along with diamond and boron nitride, borazon is known to be among the strongest materials, so you can be confident of its exceptional quality.
Removing grit will also be easy. You can use a vacuum system to do so. However, this is optional and does not come when you purchase this product.
Lastly, it comes with a one-year warranty from the manufacturer. If we are being honest, this is quite a disappointment. For a product this expensive, it would have been better if the warranty coverage is longer.
How to Choose the Best Drill Bit Sharpener
For the uninitiated, all drill bit sharpeners look the same. However, they are different in more ways than one. To help you narrow down your choices, below are the most important considerations.Compatibility
Not all drill bits are the same. Hence, one of the first considerations when finding a sharpener is to make sure that it is compatible with the drill bits that you have.
In the case of most products, they can sharpen bits at an angle of 118 degrees. However, for some materials, this might not be the optimum angle, so you will need another drill bit.
More so, the material of the drill bit will also affect your choice of sharpeners. For instance, hard materials like carbide will need a more powerful sharpener. Meanwhile, those made of weaker alloys will not need that much power.
Drill bits can be cheap, which is why some people do not bother using a drill bit sharpener at all. However, what most people fail to realize is that the latter can be beneficial in more ways than one.
If you want the best bang for the buck, then you should choose a drill bit sharpener that can be equally impressive in other applications. For instance, you can also use some of them for sharpening chisels and knives, among other tools.
Like when buying any other power tool, durability is a crucial consideration. This will be indicative of how long the drill bit sharpener will last without compromising its performance.
When drill bit sharpeners work, they vibrate. They can also be prone to heating. Make sure that these things will not make the drill bit sharpener easily susceptible to wear.
When shopping for drill bit sharpeners, you will see that they are available in all shapes and sizes. However, you need to find one suitable for the space you have at home.
A good choice is a compact drill bit sharpener, which will be space-efficient addition to your workshop or garage. If it is too big, then it can be a distraction, especially considering that it isn’t one tool that you use often.
While sharpening drill bits is straightforward, it can be uncomfortable. This is especially the case if you are using the wrong sharpener.
For your comfort, choose one that does not generate a lot of heat, especially if you need to hold the sharpener. It should also be quiet. Otherwise, it will be annoying when there is a loud sound.
Ease of Use
As noted above, in most instances, drill bit sharpening is a straightforward procedure. However, this will largely depend on the tool you are using.
Read reviews online and learn from the real-life experiences that other people are sharing. It should be as user-friendly as possible so that it will be easy to achieve the desired outcomes.
How to Sharpen a Drill Bit
If you want to sharpen a drill bit, you should know the different methods by which you can do so. Below, we’ll walk you through some of the processes.
Use a Bench Grinder
This is one of the most popular and effective ways to sharpen a drill bit. Here’s how you can do this:
- Position the bench grinder properly. Make sure that the guards are about 1/8-inch away from the belt or wheel.
- Turn the bench grinder on and hold the drill bit properly. Use your dominant hand to guide the drill bit and the other hand as guidance. Apply enough force.
- Move your hand depending on the angle that the drill bit needs. This will depend on the type of drill bit that you are sharpening.
- Similar to other methods of sharpening drill bits, choose the lowest speed setting possible. This will not only be safe, but it will also prevent too much heat.
- Once you are done, turn the bit at 180 degrees so that you can also sharpen the other end.
Use an Angle Grinder
This is a bit more difficult than using a bench grinder since you will be holding the sharpening tool. Nonetheless, it is still fairly easy for almost anyone to do.
- Start by having a jig that will hold the drill bit in place as you sharpen it. Use a scrap of wood, attach the drill bit, and position in a bench vise.
- Once it is in position turn the angle grinder on. Apply only a little pressure, making sure that you sharpen both sides evenly.
Keeping Your Drill Bits Sharp
Hate having the constant need to sharpen drill bits? The best thing that you can do is to prevent them from being dull in the first place. Below are some things that can help retain their sharpness:
- After drilling an inch, pull the drill bit out and remove the chips or flakes. They will build up, cause the bits to go hot, and will make it dull quicker.
- Use the stop-and-cool technique. When drilling, have a bucket with cool water nearby. Submerge the drill bit in the water after drilling a few inches.
- Keep two sets of drill bits. Some people use new drill bits only when starting to make a hole. They then switch to the older one to keep the new one sharper.
Before we conclude this buying guide, we’ll answer a few questions about drill bit sharpeners.
Is it worth sharpening drill bits?
Yes, sharpening drill bits will be worth the time and effort. It is easy and quick while making sure that you can restore the full functionality of your drill bits. No need to spend buying new ones!
How do you sharpen a drill bit without a grinder?
If you do not have a grinder or a similar tool, you can sharpen a drill bit manually. A good alternative is to use sanding paper, although, this method will require quite an effort.
How do you stay safe when using drill bit sharpeners?
To stay safe when sharpening drill bits, find a stable area where you can do the task. Hold the drill bit or the grinding tool firmly. Watch out for the angle at which you are sharpening. Wear eye protection.
A blunt drill bit can be frustrating to use! It can wear out not only your arms but also your patience. Once your drill bits become dull, however, this does not mean that you should throw them!
The best drill bit sharpener, including our recommendations above, can be your savior! It will be an effective way to restore the peak performance of your drill bits, and in the long run, a good way to save money!