One of the first projects I tackled on the milling machine was making a guide for drilling holes in metal freehand. I am still in the process of setting up my shop, and so things are still being bolted down and secured.
If you’ve ever tried to drill a large hole in .500 plate steel with a hand drill, you know why having a guide is helpful. They are simple to construct, and don’t really need to be fancy. If you only need one size, a scrap piece of thick steel will work.
But since I had some scrap 4140 and a new machine, I decided to make one with a number of sizes:
Nothing very complicated, just some spaced and chamfered holes with a couple of half circular slots milled out for clamping. Here is what it looks like being used to drill some holes for mounting a vise:
A handy tool for drilling and tapping straight holes…