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View Poll Results: Should I drill my rotor without a drill press?

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  • Yes

    0 0%
  • No

    6 66.67%
  • Do it anyway, and show us how it turned out

    3 33.33%
  1. #1
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    Default How To Drill Brake Rotors?

    I guess the better question is can... or *should* I try drilling one of them without a drill press? Or is this just a stupid idea? Anyone ever attempted it before?

  2. #2
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    There is more to drilling brake discs than just punching holes through them. The layout and spacing of the holes paramount. Do some research.

    As per your original post, buy a drill press.

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    Drilling rotors is a fucking pain in the ass even with a drill press. But you could probably do it without one, I just don't think it would be as neat as rotors done in a press.

    I drilled a set of rotors once for a tracker I built. Longest job of the build but it came out awesome. Print out a template online that's a perfect overlay of the rotor you're drilling. Tape it on and centerpunch every hole and you're already 1/2 way there. Be prepared to buy a shitload of bits - with hard rotors you'll need to step up sizes, so be aware that drilling is usually about a 3 step process.




  4. #4
    numberonewing
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    rotors are hardened steel n drill like that //if ur going to use an old one n drill them together or just buy mine drilled new ///2 for 99 shipped plus i got good used

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    Oof that does not sound like a fun job. If you do go this route, mind your cutting speed, and check the condition of the drills periodically. Use a drill doctor or freshen them up by hand on a sander or grinder as needed. Dull drills will generate a lot more friction (ergo heat) than a sharp drill. Go slow, and be sure to use some sort of oil to cool the part and tool during the drilling.

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    Ya might want to do a couple of test holes on some scrap to see if you REALLY want to go through with it. Beats drilling a rotor a few times then deciding ya wish ya hadn't.

    If you can find someone who has a milling machine or a non-shit drill press and a rotary table (indexes holes precisely and quickly) that would get it done with much less suffering.

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    Awesome! This already helps guide my decision. Anyway, I figured it'd be a pain with a handheld power drill since the rotor is hardened steel. I'm trying to do as much of my own work on this chopper as I can, but I'm also quickly learning I don't have ALL the right tools... and therein lies the great irony of "DIY is cheaper". No, no it's not (necessarily* hahaha) because I don't have the money for a drill press.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NeoDutch View Post
    There is more to drilling brake discs than just punching holes through them. The layout and spacing of the holes paramount. Do some research.

    As per your original post, buy a drill press.
    I'm starting to research how to pattern the holes for brake rotors. If anyone has information or sources explaining the geometry, physics, layout (whatever), I'd appreciate the info! Thanks!!

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    Just make sure the layout overlays the rotor perfectly. Some of those templates are difficult to scale.

    Doing two rotors at the same time sounds like a solution, but if you want a perfect job, do them one at a time. Rear rotors are usually smaller anyway and will require a totally different template. I also drilled the final size of the rear holes one size smaller than the front to keep it looking proportional given the smaller diameter.

    Here's a decent DIY with some templates. Just pick your style and print out a few:

    http://www.xs650.com/forum/showthread.php?t=12671

  10. #10

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    I did mine with a 100$ drill press and used 2 drill bits for one disk (2 sizes).
    Use lot's of cutting oil and don't do it all in once, or you'll go numb..

  11. #11
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    I've drilled a few. The best set-up to do it manually is a rotary table in a Bridgeport type mill. Not an option for most guys.
    If I was going to use a drill press, I think I'd find a scrap rotor that was already drilled from the factory and bolt or clamp it to the rotor I want to drill. Use a slightly smaller drill ( machinists use drills, carpenters use bits) and use the old rotor as a drill jig.
    You just use the holes you want so you can use any old rotor as long as it has holes that overlay onto your rotor. Watch your spindle speed, buy some good quality drills, use oil and don't remove the old rotor/jig until you're done. Use a larger drill or, better yet, a counter sink, to lightly break the edge. Should come out fine.

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