Drill + Tapping Guide

 

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…