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#745162 - 08/19/07 06:05 PM bits for drilling horn/antler
canislatrans54 Offline
PM Junkie

Registered: 02/13/06
Posts: 11345
Loc: Salina, Kansas
Hey all!
Just out of sheer curiousity, I'm wondering what type of drill bit you guys use to drill the mounting hole for toneboards in your horns & antlers?

As some may know, I've been tinkering this summer making calls from cow horn. And finally, yesterday, I got the nerve up to work on some antler.
I had been using a variety of step drill [unibit] bits. The problem was that the one I have that goes to 5/8" only has a 3/16" shoulder.
So I have been trying different types of bits to drill deeper...
Wood auger bits--only tried that once! I don't have a drill press or a vise, & almost lost a few fingers when it dug in.
Standard high-speed bits--too prone to not cleaning/grabbing, and cracking the horn.
Wood "paddle" bits-- this seemed to work the best, but using a 5/8" after using the step bit, it tends to "wallow" out the hole bigger than 5/8".

Yesterday I got a wild hair & decided to drill a horn and an antler base (both for howlers), using only the paddle bit...but instead of 5/8" I used 9/16".
Both drillings may have been a fluke, but I found it drilled straight (no wobble), and was totally self cleaning.
It also took less time than how I had been doing it.
And the holes were just perfect to friction-fit the 'boards, enough so that I could use the reed blocks that come with the KO boards, instead of using cork!
{I did actually glue the boards in, but not the blocks.}

Again, I'm just wondering what bits work best for you?

P.S.: Sorry, no pics!
The antler howler turned out just as I wanted, with a 5"L x 1" diameter, very slightly curved body that fits the hand nicely.
The 'board end curves down, & when the call is held level in the hand, the 'board is at a natural 45 degree angle in the mouth.
Unfortunately, I messed up the "decoration/lanyard attactment" on the horn & had to put it in the "ooops!" pile.
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#745163 - 08/19/07 06:17 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
rainshadow1 Offline
Custom Call Maker

Registered: 12/22/05
Posts: 4854
Loc: NW Washington State
Not sure what to tell you hand drilling, that's hard to do! Pilot holes, possibly several of them, might be the best method with high speed bits.

I use a drill press vice, and only occasionally bore with the hand drill. Usually the press over the vice. Forsner bits for toneboard or insert holes. Slowly, cleaning often. High speed bits for enclosed reed holes.
_________________________
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RainShadow Game Calls & Custom Knives,
Mountain Lion Calling: www.rain-shadow.com

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#745164 - 08/19/07 07:46 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
trashcan Offline
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 02/26/06
Posts: 2592
Loc: Bulverde, Texas
Will, I do like rainshadow says, start small and work your way up. I have a set of Black & Decker wood bits and a couple of regular Vermont Americans from Home DeadSpot that I use. Working without a vice really gnars up your hands(especially when you think you can stop the spinning once it catches ). I strongly suggest a vise, super important tool, a must have. Antler is fun, I'm glad to see your having a go at it! Keep after it my man!!
Trashcan
DCC
_________________________
Hand call or go home.
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#745165 - 08/19/07 08:08 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: trashcan]
bearmanric Offline
PM Sponsor/Custom Call Maker

Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 11404
Loc: Tenino,WA
i drill a 9/32 hole on center drill with unibit to 5/8 then i use a counter sink to get a nice clean hole. wear good glove's.i use a dewalt hand drill. be careful. when the shop is done i will use a drill press and vise.good luck. Rick


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#745166 - 08/25/07 01:18 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: bearmanric]
canislatrans54 Offline
PM Junkie

Registered: 02/13/06
Posts: 11345
Loc: Salina, Kansas
Thanks for the tips fellas!!
R.S. & Trashcan:
Yeah, it would be real nice to have a vise. But then I'd just want a shed to put it in, & a bench to mount it to!
I'm a true redneck, but even I don't want a vise in the front/living room!
So far, I've managed to let go of the material before it can injure me too bad. The "variable speed" helps.

Rick:
I hadn't thought of a counter-sink bit...THANKS!!
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Will Horting








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#745167 - 08/25/07 02:31 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
Weasel-UT Offline
Retired PM Staff

Registered: 02/04/04
Posts: 20007
Loc: S.W. Utah
Quote:

I'm a true redneck, but even I don't want a vise in the front/living room!




I hear ya brother. That would be silly when you have a perfectly good kitchen table to mount one to. I mean it's right near the ice box and piped in water.

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#745168 - 08/25/07 02:51 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: Weasel-UT]
canislatrans54 Offline
PM Junkie

Registered: 02/13/06
Posts: 11345
Loc: Salina, Kansas
Kitchen table?
Who has room in their kitchen for a table, what with the washer/dryer taking up half the space? [yep, I'm serious!]
Weasel, have you ever heard of a "Shotgun House"?
If you know what that is, then picture this...I live in a "Shotgun Cottage".
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Will Horting








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#745169 - 09/05/07 12:22 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
forty_five_packer Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 07/12/07
Posts: 165
Loc: Michigan Houghton County, area
Will I use High speed drill bits but I also use black and decker wood bits the one that I like they come 3 to a pack they have a flat bottom on them and are great for horns that have a good curve in them that a reg bit would just go straight through these you can go straight then put some pressure on them to go up down sideways you name it.
The one I got came in 1/2 3/8 and 3/4 they are great.

Andy
_________________________
" If I'm lying I'm crying I aint shed I tear." Larry The CableGuy A Wise man once said " Do not use a hatchet to remove a fly from a friends forehead." He must be nuttier than a squirrel turd.

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#3213840 - 10/02/19 12:10 AM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
Daniel Morton Offline
New Member

Registered: 10/01/19
Posts: 1
Loc: Western North Carolina
A wood auger bit works best, but recently I have figured out a way to sandblast the bone morrow out Leaving the antlers hollow, Why hollow you may ask,Put the lighting on the tips.
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All things are possible with patients and tenacity.

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#3213862 - 10/02/19 10:57 AM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
GRIZZLYONE Online
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 3493
Loc: So Cal
Try whats called a Dagger drill this is what the Aerospace industry uses on composites.
_________________________
Coyotes shot no waiting.
Them mountains for animals and savages.

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#3213863 - 10/02/19 10:59 AM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
SlickerThanSnot Online
Die Hard Member with a vengeance

Registered: 01/31/14
Posts: 4980
Loc: stuck in a fence
this thread is older than moses.
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if you shoot a 223 at coyotes you may father children with 6 toes. are you willing to chance that?

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#3213879 - 10/02/19 04:12 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: SlickerThanSnot]
carvercalls Offline
Director/Moderator

Registered: 07/27/06
Posts: 13252
Loc: Utah
Originally Posted By: SlickerThanSnot
this thread is older than moses.



It sure is!!
_________________________
www.carverpredatorcalls.com (Hand Crafted In The USA)




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#3213885 - 10/02/19 07:08 PM Re: bits for drilling horn/antler [Re: canislatrans54]
GRIZZLYONE Online
Die Hard Member III

Registered: 11/25/08
Posts: 3493
Loc: So Cal
Well he11, I didn't realize that I ain't on here much these days!
_________________________
Coyotes shot no waiting.
Them mountains for animals and savages.

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