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Old 11/12/2019, 12:13 PM   #1
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MattL's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Putnal Valley, NY
Posts: 2,191
Drilling and Tapping a PVC Blind Flange

I would like to drill and tap a PVC blind flange for a project. I have no trouble using the taps to get NPT threads. The problem is, the drill bits I've used don't produce a smooth enough hole (I get chipping, vibration, etc. when using a drill press)

Moreover, the holes typically use very odd sizes (to the 64ths), making finding a n answer difficult.

Has anyone ever tried to drill and tap holes in plastic on the 3/4", 1" size?


Matt L., Ph.D. Environmental Microbiology
Questions about nutrients, cycling, and bacteria in a reef tank?
Member: Boston Reefer's Society, Manhattan Reefer's Society

Current Tank Info: 210gal Display Tank, 125gal Sump, 75gal Refugium, 55gal Quarantine Tank, 120gal Frag Tank
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Old 11/12/2019, 12:37 PM   #2
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 19,798
What type of bits are you using?

A regular twist drill really isn't the best for plastic like that and certainly not in that size..
Spur/Dowel bits can work better in plastic...
Other tricks like smaller pilot holes/countersinking,etc... in addition to firm/solid work holding can be used.

Bi-metal hole saws can be used too but use caution to avoid overheating/melting the piece.. Shallow "pecking" and even water cooling can help there..

Beyond that a CNC router/zero or single flute bit does a great job too boring the hole..

You can likely get by though with a drill press and a regular twist drill but you must clamp the work piece, lock down the table and go very slow.. (try the pilot hole/countersink too)

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