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Home -> Drilling -> Paper Drilling Tips

Paper Drilling Tips

Keep Paper Drill Bits Sharp 

The primary cause of paper drill breakage and poor work quality is a dull bit. For best results, paper drill bits should be sharpened after every 4 to 8 hours of use. They should be sharpened even more often when drilling through hard stocks, fiberboard or abrasive stocks.

Check out our Hard Paper Drill Sharpeners and Paper Drilling Accessories to keep your drilling at optimal efficiency.

Keep Paper Drill bits Clean

Clogging is another cause of broken bits. This is a commonly occuring situation when drilling through books bound with glue. If the interior surface of the bit is not cleaned after a shift change or break, the glue residue hardens, impeding bit performance to the the point of snapping. Be sure to clean out bits after each use, and when not in use, paper drill bits can be lightly oiled to prevent rust and corrosion.

Lubricate Paper Drills or use Coated Paper Drills

DHP specializes in coated paper drills such as Titanium #35, Teflon and Duralon. Coating allows for easier paper drilling of varnish, laminated and aqueous coated stocks. Also available is the #7604 Lubricating stick which can be applied to the paper drill bit every few strokes, causing the bit to function much like a coated paper drill bit.
Suggestions for Speed & Feed

Increase the RPM of the paper drill bit when paper drilling smaller diameters (1/8" or 3/16"). Accordingly, decrease the RPM in proportion to increasing the diameter of the bit (i.e., 1/2" bits should be run much slower than 1/8").

The feed (or strokes per minute) should be adjusted depending on the type of stock to be penetrated. Generally, the softer the stock being drilled, the slower the feed. A good starting point for 1/4" bit paper drilling through 2" of 10 lb. stock is 2000-2500 RPM at strokes per minute.

Remember that a paper drill must cut/drill the paper, not punch it like a hammer. Give the bit time to drill the paper. Keep in mind that the paper drill should never turn purple from overheating.


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