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  #11  
Old 07-13-2012
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

they make hole saws down to 1/2". just bought a 5/8" at home depot a few days ago. this would be the way to go. cheeper then a twist bit and cut cleaner. they also make special twist bits for plastic with 0 rake angle on the tip so it won't grab, but they are expensive what they are saying about drilling oversize is so you can make an epoxy seal on the edge of the hole so no water will get into the core. if there is a core I would cut the hole 5/8" and coat the core with epoxy to seal it. this should be fine , you are only runing wires thur it. I use a small allen wrench cut down a bit on the short end, put the long end in a drill motor and spin it in the hole to dig out some of the core and then fill the area where the core was removed with thickened epoxy. this method is better then drilling oversize hole because it leaves the two skins drilled at the correct size and is stronger
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

All good points, Jim, but if you can only drill from one side you are going to get tearout no matter what bit you use. Can you maybe get a right angle drill in there for the inner side? Good luck with your project!
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

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Originally Posted by Reef33 View Post
And I can't see drilling the wrong size hole and then repairing it to get the right size hole when you can just drill the right size hole to start with? But, I'm not an expert in drilling holes in boats, just wood.
The goal with the oversized hole then repairing it, is to provide a plug that eliminates the core where the hole is. Obviously in a non-cored hull it isn't as much an issue. I still prefer to do it though, since it allows you to do the final drilling into a surface that is a lot cleaner. Fiber threads can allow water transportation into the hull, though it's not necessary.

For a hole this size I would defiantly recommend a hole saw. Not just because it is easier to control, but it also helps control the amount of dust and itchy fibers. Forstner bits will work, as will spades, but they pulverize everything, and make a huge mess.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

http://bluesea.com/viewresource/180

From the drawing it looks like you have about 1/2 inch of covered area around the 5/8 drilled hole. So any chipping will be covered up by the deck ring.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

Well, since it turns out they do make hole saws small enough, that's the way I'll go. I've done that before and it's a process with which I am comfortable.

Thanks, everybody, for your input!

Jim
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

For what it is worth, I used a 1 & 1/8 Forstner bit to drill a hole in the wall of my cockpit for an autopilot outlet. I too was concerned about chipping and fracturing that you can get with a hole saw. The Forstner worked great, I just went slow and easy and kept everything square and drilled a very nice hole, no chips and no fiber strands.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

those large twist bits never seem to leave a nice smooth round hole .

remember to champher/countersink the edge of the hole so the sealer can form a nice o ring.

Last edited by bandaidmd; 07-13-2012 at 02:49 PM.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

5/8th twist drill bits are common , sometimes with a smaller shank ,in many tool supplies. A 1/4 inch pilot hole lets you drill from both sides, chewing up the ends of the hole less.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

Drill it to 1/2" first, then take a counterbore bit and chamfer the edges of the fiberglass to a depth of about 1/8". Now go back and drill it to the final size of 5/8". No chipouts!

And definitely coat the inside of the hole w/ epoxy (if it's cored).

Dave's rule: Don't EVER skimp on tools for a job that counts. You will more than make up the cost by not having to repair something that got buggered.
Or beating yourself up for not doing it right to begin w/.
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Re: Drilling A 5/8" Hole In The Hull?

It turned out my local Home Depot did not have a 5/8" hole saw, but they did have a 6/8" one, and that's close enough

Jim
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