Best Drill Bits For Wood – Reviews & detailed buyers guide
Choosing the best drill bits for wood
Are you looking for drill bits for wood for an upcoming project? Maybe you like working with wood and you are not sure of what drills bits to buy. Having covered the types of drills and drill bits in our Best Drill Bits Sets and Reviews article, this article will help you specifically find the best drill bits for wood.
They come in different sets and designs all set for drilling holes in wood. Yet, there are also different types of wood and it’s important to know what type of drill bits goes through particular woods.
The drill bits themselves are so many in the market and picking the right one may be confusing. We have done an extensive research and picked the Best 5 Drill Bits for wood which include both standard drill bit types and flatbit drill bits for boring larger holes.
After our research, we came to the conclusion that the Mannesmann Professional Drill Bit Set would be the best set for both professionals and for home DIY project enthusiast. Amazingly they also come with a 10 year warranty and offer excellent value for money.
Wood Drill Bits Buyer's Guide
There are many excellent drill bits that will easily cut through wood, yet it comes down to the type of hole that you need to bore.
Understanding the types of wood
Before you decide on which drill bit is suitable for your job at hand, it is important to understand the various existing types of wood. Generally, there are two basic types of wood that you need to know about; hardwood and softwood.
Hard wood vs Soft wood
Hardwoods usually come from trees which basically have leaves only. The typical hard woods include ebony, ash, maple, cherry, oak, mahogany, teak, and rosewood. On the other hand, softwood come from corn-bearing trees. These include pine, larch, spruce, hemlock, yew, redwood, and firs. This is only a general guiding principle although there are some exceptions.
When buying these woods, there are two buying principles that are often used:
- Wood that requires an excellent finish usually called select lumber
- Wood that is for general use and typically it has defects like knots on it
It is worth mentioning that hardwood is typically more expensive than softwood. It is also a bit harder to drill through than soft wood which is when better quality bits come in.
Different types of drill bits for use on wood
The most common drill bits are made from steel, high speed steel (HSS), titanium coated bits, black oxide coated, cobalt, diamond coated and carbide tipped bits. These materials have varying durability. For instance, steel bits are the cheapest and they are good for drilling through soft woods, but they will blunt faster if used on hard woods. HSS bits are ideal for the most purposes and drilling on all types of woods.
- Auger bits - This drill bit features a screw tip thread that starts the hole. It then uses the tip in pulling the bit through the wood so as to make a hole. An auger bit will usually have a really large flute to help in removing the drilled wood. This method was initially used along with hand drills by carpenters and it is still valid today.
A typical set of auger bits will contain up to 10 auger drill bits for a price of about £10 - £15. Buying a set is a great idea as opposed to individual drill bits as you’ll get the best value for money. Plus, a set contains drill bits of varying diameters so you can make holes of many sizes from a single kit.
- Spade drill bits - Spade drills are the best option for drilling large diameter holes. They usually have a hex shank which give a reliable grip in the drill while avoiding slippage or jarring. Spade bits tend to be faster than most other drill bits.
- Hole saw - These are the alternative to spade drill bits as they are also meant for cutting larger holes through wood. They may not have a great deal of use but when the need arises, it is good to have a set that will get the job done. Hole saws are the most expensive of drill bits but they make large, accurate holes than an alternative will do. Hole saws are great for the odd jobs of which you want nothing but accuracy and efficiency.
- Twist bits - Twist bits are all-rounder type of bits commonly used to drill through wood and plastics. They are the best bits for making straightforward holes or pilot holes in wood. You can this individually but again it’s more cost effective to buy a set. Ideally, different sets will have varying sizes of bits and the total number of drill bits.
- Brad point drill bits - These are extremely good for drilling wood due to the pointy end, called brad, which ensures accurate positioning. The brad also helps to avoid any chance of slipping when beginning the initial drilling sequence. They also feature extra wide flutes which help in removing the wood chips and shavings as you drill. These bits give you more confidence when pin point accuracy is required.
- Forstner drill bits - The forstner drill bit is perfect when you need to create a hole with a flat bottom. You can buy these as individual drill bits if you need them, however, they also come in sets. Forstner drill bits are popular in kitchen trades, cabinet making, railings, and other relevant works. They work well in soft woods and also in hardwood with a fair amount of pressure.
- Pilot and countersink drill bits - There are times when you need to countersink a screw into wood. To achieve this, you’ll need to drill a pilot hole then make a screw head shape into the wood. Of course, this gives a pretty clean finish with the help of a pilot and countersink bit. These kind of jobs are rare so these bits are usually for occasional use.
OUR TOP 5 DRILL BITS FOR WOOD REVIEWS
After looking at the different types of drill bits for drilling though wood, here are our best drill bits for wood:
Mannesmann Professional Wood Drill Set Review
**OUR BEST PICK**
- Comes with 8 drill bits made of special alloyed chromium steel.
- Durable drill bits that come with a 10-year warranty.
- The bits come in a tidy plastic container for storage.
- They feature milled grooves and centre for cutting through wood cleanly and accurately.
This German-made set consists of 8 drill bits designed for swift drilling through wood. The drill bit sizes range from 3 to 10 with 1mm increments. The bits are sharp and are sure to remain as new even after sustained use.
They drill wood cleanly and accurately than ordinary HSS drill bits. The Mannesmann Professional Wood Drill Set which comes in a Plastic Box is simply the solution to professional wood drilling, no wonder it’s used in over 70 countries worldwide.
As you would expect, these typical German tools are sure to withstand extensive use with the manufacturer offering a 10-year warranty for the drill bits. They are made of special alloyed chromium steel which adds to the overall toughness.
They also feature milled grooves and centre which ensure clean and accurate cuts. Surprisingly, these high-quality drill bits are cheap and only beaten by fellow German tools, Bosch X-Pro Wood 7pc Drill Bit Set, in our list when it comes to price.
- The carry case is a bit on the cheap side as opposed to the top standards of the contents, however its not a deal breaker.
Would we recommend - The Mannesmann Professional Wood Drill Set in Plastic Box is a great tool box for use in DIY, craft and industrial sectors.
There are 8 pieces in the box designed for drilling holes of varying sizes from 3mm to 10mm. The quality of these bits is unbeatable thanks to the special alloyed chromium steel construction which guarantees high durability. As such, the product comes with a warranty of 10 years which is simply amazing and just further shows the confidence the manufacture has in there ability.
Furthermore this set is cheap thus almost anyone in whatever sector can afford to have a set, even occasional diy enthusiast.
Apart from the case that seems cheap quality, hope it lasts too, this set offers real value for money; you don’t have to buy drill bits now and then, the Mannesmann Professional Wood Drill Set will serve you a long time.
Because of their high quality, affordable low price and 10 year warranty, it only made sense that these are the best choice for most people, this is why we decided to name it our 'Best Pick'.
If however you are looking at drilling larger holes then we have some equally impressive drill bits further down that will be more suitable and just as impressive from the DeWalt and Irwin.
Bosch X-Pro Wood 7pc Drill Set
**AMAZING VALUE FOR HOME USE**
- Made for accurate drilling into all sorts of wood.
- Set consists of 7 tough, sharp drill bits – sizes 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 10.
- Designed with a straight shank which increases strength while drilling.
- The package is very lightweight weighing just 100g.
The Bosch X-Pro Wood 7pc Drill Bit Set comes in a well-built case which opens and closes with ease. There are 7 pieces designed to drill holes into all woods, whether hardwood or softwood, but we find them very efficient with drilling softwood.
These set is cheap so if you are looking for drill bits to use with hardwood, we recommend spending a little more. They also get hot while drilling so you might be forced to give them some time to cool down in between the drilling to prevent them from breaking.
These drill bits have straight shanks which offer great stability and strength required to drill precise holes. They are tough and super sharp and they seem to retain their edge after extensive use.
Another thing about the set is its low weight. At just 100g, this is an extremely lightweight package, perhaps the lightest in our list too. The storage box is clearly numbered for where to get every bit from and store after every use.
You simply can’t go wrong with these bits.
- These bits tend to get hot during the drilling process and that usually leads to breakage if they are not left to cool down or if a lot force is used.
Would we recommend - The Bosch X-Pro Wood 7pc Drill Bit Set contains a fantastic quality of drill bits. They are sharp thus deliver very clean, precise holes and they don’t lose their edge after a lot of use.
The carrying case is sturdy and the complete package is extremely lightweight, which is a very likable attribute.
Although Bosch says they are good with all woods, we find them efficient with softwood. Perhaps that’s the trade for the cheap price of these bits. You can spend a lot higher for quality bits to use with hardwood.
The major flaw is that they get hot while drilling but that can be managed to prevent warping or breaking, this is probably going to only be a issue with hardwoods that are more difficult to drill..
Overall, they are good drill bits for the price and perfect for home DIY projects or lightly trade use. A great selection at a great price.
DeWalt Extreme Flatbit Tough Case Set Review
**BY FAR THE BEST FLATBITS WORTH BUYING**
- The set contains 8 pieces of varying sizes; 12, 16, 18, 20, 22, 25, 28 and 32.
- Suitable for the drilling of holes in wood including natural hard and softwood, chipboard and other materials.
- Features extra thick sturdy steel shank for unmatched durability and bit life.
- Chamfered outer cutting spurs for clean, fast drilling and longer drill life.
- Accurate ground central point with optimised design for rapid material penetration and increased drilling speed.
DEWALT is known for manufacturing tough, powerful, accurate, rugged and reliable tools and the DeWalt DT7943BQZ Extreme Flatbit Tough Case Set sets the standards of their reputation.
The set contains 8 drill bits of different sizes meaning you can drill holes of varying diameters on wood. The pieces can drill holes in all sorts of wood including natural hardwood or softwood, chipboard and other materials such as plastic.
The set comes in a durable plastic case which is quite easy to open and close. The drills are very sharp with chamfered outer cutting spurs for clean, fast drilling and longer lifespan.
In addition, the robust steel shanks also mean extra toughness and extended bit life. The bits have an accurate ground central point with an optimised design for faster material penetration and increased drilling speeds.
They can also be sharpened after a couple of uses just to keep them in high-performing condition.
- The plastic case is cheap so you can’t be sure of its durability.
Would we recommend - The DeWalt DT7943BQZ Extreme Flatbit Tough Case Set contains some of the best drill bits for wood we have ever reviewed.
They are built tough and are probably one of the best flatbits we have come across and are a must for anyone in need of flatbit drill bits. They can be sharpened to maintain their top performance, these bits are quite durable just like you would expect with DEWALT, thanks to the sturdy steel shanks and the chamfered outer cutting spurs.
The plastic case looks sturdy and easy to open/close but there are doubts about its durability, could be better but not a deal breaker.
In any case, we recommend the DeWalt DT7943BQZ Extreme Flatbit Tough Case Set to those who like investing in durability and want a set that will stand the test of time.
The reviews on Amazon.co.uk for these drill bits are also fantastic with well over 100 reviews.
Irwin Blue Groove Drill Bit 6 Piece Set Review
**A GREAT OPTION FOR LARGER HOLES**
- The set comes with 6 pieces including 16, 18, 20, 22, 25, and 32mm.
- Feature full screw tips for easy drilling and pull through.
- The bits have cutting spurs for delivering clean holes with minimal break out.
- They take a Tri-Flute design for faster chip ejection.
- Tapered flute ensures less binding and ease of use.
The Irwin Blue Groove Drill Bit 6 Piece Set consists of 6 pieces of augur type of bits. These are fiercely sharp drills bit which eat through timber with a lot of ease and they still remain sharp after extensive use.
Just make sure the drill you are using has enough torque to advance the bit through timber as less powerful drill will struggle. The larger sizes especially do need a powerful drill to be able to keep them turning.
The bits feature full screw tips for easy drilling and pull through. Some practice before doing the job will get you used to them.
They have cutting spurs which deliver clean holes with quite minimal ‘break out’. These bits eject pretty fast due to the Tri-Flute design while the tapered flute ensures there is minimal binding and increased ease of use.
They also have a full length heat treat for increasing durability. The case that carries these bits is uniquely designed to open to the sides with three storage panels on either side.
- Driving these bits through timber requires a fair amount of strength in your arms. Even the larger bits, say 22 and over, need a strong drill with enough torque to keep them turning. You may need to invest in a new drill if you have a cheaper home DIY type drill.
Would we recommend - If you are looking for a quality set of auger drill bits, the Irwin Blue Groove Drill Bit 6 Piece Set is a magnificent option and maybe the last set you will buy.
You will be able to drill holes of different sizes with the smallest being 16mm and the largest 32mm. These bits are sharp and you will love how they eat through wood, creating clean holes and pull out easily, thanks to the full screw tips and the Tri-Flute design.
The downside with these bits is that they require a bit of strength to get the job done, not a bad thing you just need the right drill for the job .
Because a strong drill is required to drive the larger bits through timber which sometimes you might have to invest in a more powerful drill.
All in all, they are great auger bits with a lovely colour and design. They seem a bit on the expensive side yet they are worth paying for as they perform very well and will last many years no problem.
They do a similar job to basic flatbit drills, in terms of performance, these are probably better than the DeWalt Flatbits we have reviewed above but they are a little more expensive.
Which you use is probably down to personal preference. We are very impressed by both types, with both having amazing reviews on Amazon.co.uk so we will have to let you decide, which is more suitable for you. Which ever you choose you won't be disappointed.
Bosch 6 Piece Selfcut - Flat Spade Wood Bit Set
**OUR BEST PICK**
- A set of 6 drill bits ranging from 13mm to 25mm.
- The bits have self-feeding precision ground tips and cutting edges for precise dimensional stability.
- They drill 3 times faster than ordinary spade bits.
Winding up our list is another set from Bosch which drills larger holes than the bits contained in the Bosch X-Pro Wood 7pc Drill Bit Set. The Bosch 2608587793 1/4" 6 Piece Selfcut Flat Spade Wood Bits Set contains 6 pieces of spade bits which include 13, 16, 19, 20, 22 and 25mm along with a ¼ inch hex shank, all of which is contained with a nice wallet.
The grey bits come in a sturdy foldable case for keeping together the bits, with Bosch embroidered onto it.
The bits are incredibly sharp and eat through wood three times faster than standard ordinary bits.
The self-feeding precision ground tips on these bits and cutting edges ensures accurate dimensional stability when eating through timber. It’s worth noting that the total length of the bit is 152mm while the working length is 122mm.
- The case is not numbered for where to keep a particular bit but it’s the bits themselves with the numbering.
Would we recommend - The Bosch 2608587793 1/4" 6 Piece Selfcut Flat Spade Wood Bits Set in Wallet contains good quality drill bits meant for professional and DIY uses.
The foldable case is quite unique in design although it’s not numbered like most other cases but the bits are.
What we like most about these bits are the fast drilling speeds. The packet says these screw end spade bits drill 10 times faster than the pointy end ones and 3x faster than standard spade bits.
If you fancy fast drilling speeds, the Bosch 6 Piece Selfcut Flat Spade Wood Bits Set is one that delivers at a great price.
When compared to the DeWalt set, these are not on pare, but they are good enough for most users, personally if you have the extra budget, we would invest in the Dewalt Flatbits as they are better quality, however not everybody needs drill bits of such as high standard, specially people who are doing a little home DIY which the Bosch Flat-bits are more than adequate.
Finals thoughts and conclusion
Drilling through wood can be an easy task so long as you have the right drill bit.
Knowing the type of wood that you want to drill through, hardwood or softwood, will help you pick the suitable drill bit for the job.
The kind of hole that you need to make will also determine the type of drill bit required, whether an auger bit, spade drill bit, hole saw or any other type.
Hopefully you find this article useful in your search for the ideal drill bits for wood.
Our Best Pick (Standard drill bit types)
The Mannesmann Professional Wood Drill Set is our best pick overall. We liked the toughness of these bits and the 10-year manufacturer’s warranty is enough assurance on their top quality.
There are 8 pieces ranging from 3mm to 10mm which can be used in DIY, craft and professional sectors for drilling clean and accurate holes.
On top of the high quality comes a great price so definitely they offer great value for an investment of less than £10.
Best Flatbit drill bit
The DeWalt Extreme Flatbit set is our top recommended set for drilling larger holes. We looked at around 8 sets of flatbits and the DeWalt set was by far the best choice which was further confirmed by over 100 reviews on Amazon.co.uk alone. The are made to lastm durable and made to the highest standards.
The only other set designed for larger holes that really impressed was the ?Urwin Blue Groove Bit set which are augur type of bits.
They are equally as impressive and to be honest, its hard to decide whether you should invest in these or the DeWalt flatbits.
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