Black Oxide vs Titanium Drill Bits – Which one is Better?

Today, there are so many power tool options that you can find on the market today because of improvements in technology. Even selecting simple items like drill bits become hard because you have so many options to choose from. You need to find the right drill bit that will help you handle your projects with precision.

When choosing a perfect drill bit, many people are torn between black oxide and titanium drill bits. The two are widely available, and they are the most common. So, what is the difference between these two drill bits? Which one is better than the other?

The two types of drill bits vary in terms of the material you use them on and durability. Selecting the right one can be tough for both beginners and pro users. We have this comprehensive guide to help you understand their features, pros, cons, and how they are different from each other.

Key Differences between Black Oxide vs Titanium Drill Bits

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If you are confused about which drill bit to choose, you should understand how the two differ. Check these differences between black oxide and titanium drill bits.

If you want to drill soft and hard metals, black oxide drill bits are the best. On the other hand, titanium drill bits are ideal for drilling PVC, wood, fiberglass, and metal.

Black oxide drill bits have great heat resistance, and titanium counterparts are long-lasting.

Black oxide drill bits feature HSS, which is heated up to 90 degrees F, and titanium drill bits have HSS with a titanium nitride coating.

But First, What Exactly Is a Drill Bit?

Before we get into details, it is great to understand what drill bit is. In simple terms, this is a cutting device or tool that you connect to a power drill to make holes in different materials. You can find drill bits in various sizes, which help you make holes of different formats. Drill bits are commonly used in building and construction sectors.

You might not know everything about drill bits for beginners, which can be a challenge when you are purchasing the right one. It is great if you first understand the type of material you intend to drill so that you can get the right drill bits.

For instance, if you are drilling through wood, any drill bit will work well for you.

However, if you are drilling hard materials like steel and the like, you need powerful and specific drill bits that can penetrate through hard materials and provide the results you need.

There is always the right type of drill bit that is suitable for a certain type of material. Each bit is made to suit a particular material, and this makes drilling easy. On top of that, the bits also vary in size and tip angle. So, you can be sure to find the right drill bit that will suit your drilling needs. Whether you want to drill metal, ceramic, wood, or marble, you will always find a perfect drill bit for that job.

How to Find the Right Drill Bit?

If you are considering buying a drill bit, how do you choose the right one? Which factors should you consider? There are a lot of things that should guide you to picking a suitable drill bit. You need to get the right drill bit that will work well for your chosen material.

You should also ask yourself several questions like the material you want to drill, the type of hole you want, and the depth of the hole. With such information, it will be easy to choose a suitable drill bit for the job.

You are having the right drill bit make your projects successful. On the other hand, if you choose the wrong bits, you can damage the surface of the drill. You can select a wide range of drill bits to suit different materials. Therefore, if you need to drill through concrete, a tougher and sharper drill bit is right. If you use such a drill on softwood, the duller cutting edge can create friction, and this can cause the wood to burn.

How to differentiate metal and wood drill bits?

Metal drill bits are different from wood drill bits. They are also designed with harder materials compared to the wood bits. However, both of them aim at precision, but their aspects are different. It can be tough to differentiate wood and metal bits because they look similar. However, if you look at them keenly, you will notice they are different.

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You can differentiate them in that wood bits have a golden color while metal bits are gunmetal gray or dark bluish, and they have either titanium or cobalt. On the other hand, masonry drill bits feature a brighter silver finish but not always.

Wood drill bits also vary from the masonry drill bits because wood drill bits can feature a flat design that resembles a chisel and then come to a sharp point. This is to help you make bigger holes. Always compare various drill bits so that you can find the right one for the job.

Using the wrong drill bit can lead to disappointing results. For instance, drilling wood with a metal or concrete drill bit will result in damaged bits, and the sharp cutting edge will chip off. However, you can drill softwood with metal drill bits, but you have to be careful and gentle. If you plan to drill various materials, then you should buy each type of drill bit.

How about drilling plastic?

If you want to make holes on plastic, a metal surface bit will work well. Additionally, check the setting of your drill if you have a multi-purpose electric drill. This means that you cannot use the hammer drill setting to drill plastic, metal, and wood because it is only suitable for stones and concrete.

In a nutshell, you should always select the right drill depending on the type of material you want to drill. This will make your work easier, and you will get the results you desire.

Black Oxide Drill Bits

These are HSS bits that have undergone heating up to 950 degrees F to come up with the black oxide finish. Not only does this finish give the drill bits a nice look, but it also makes them corrosion-resistant. Additionally, this coating minimizes friction, so they provide faster drilling than other types of drill bits.

Suppose you compare these drill bits to other untreated HSS drill bits. Black oxide bits last 40-50% longer. Also, their performance will depend on the quality of bits you buy. You can opt for these drill bits because they are suitable for general-purpose drilling.

What materials can you drill with black oxide drill bits?

Some common materials that are recommended for this type of drill bit are:

  • Wood
  • Alloy steel
  • PVC
  • Carbon steel
  • Plastic
  • Drywall
  • Composite board

Titanium Drill Bits

These drill bits are not entirely made of titanium, as the name suggests. They are the normal HSS drill bits that have a titanium nitride coating. The coating makes them durable and corrosion-resistant. It also ensures you get faster drilling on strong materials.

Their fast drilling speed and durability make them perfect for the pro application, and they also work well on soft materials. Every titanium drill bit has a 135-degree split point that enables you to get fast, quick starts with little or no skating and walking. The drill bits also last 6 times longer than high-speed steel bits, and they provide 3 times more drilling speed.

What materials can you drill with titanium drill bits?

These drill bits work well for these materials:

  • Alloy
  • Wooden materials
  • Steel
  • Carbon steel
  • PVC
  • Composition board
  • Drywall
  • Plastic

Drill Bits Care and Maintenance

Just like any other device that you have, taking care of your drill bit is essential. If you maintain your drill bits the right way, then you will enjoy better results. Contrary, if you don’t take your bits, they will not give you the results you need.

Taking care of your drill bits ensures they last longer. It would help if you had some discipline when caring for your drill bits after use. Don’t just put them anyhow in the toolbox; you should pack them nicely in a plastic sleeve that they came with it. This will ensure they don’t get damaged, chipped, or scratched when you put them with other tools.

You should always put them in a separate area and ensure you remove the last drill bit you used on the drill before you store them.

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Another great way to maintain your drill bits is to ensure you hone them frequently. You can sharpen them yourself or take them to hardware for sharpening. If you maintain the drill bits sharp, then they will give you optimum performance when drilling. When honing them, take caution not to affect their structure, so you should not push too hard.

Additionally, you should take into account angle sharpening and avoid altering their pitch. If you modify the angles, then you will not experience maximum efficiency from your drill bits. Corrosion is another thing that affects the performance of your drill bits. Always store them in a place where there is no humidity or source of water so that you can get longer use.

Another thing to avoid is rust, and you can protect them by keeping them enclosed so that water doesn’t reach them. If you take note of these tips, you will keep your drill bits safe and work effectively.

How to Sharpen your Drill Bits

Have you ever worked with blunt drill bits? If so, you understand how frustrating your work can be. Not only will it take you too much time to complete your projects, but you will also have trouble getting perfect finishes. Therefore, you should sharpen your drill bits instead of spending more on a new one.

Sharpening your drill bits is easy, and it can save you both money and time. If you have a bench in your workshop, you can sharpen your drill while keeping your hands free.

As much as they will not look new, they will give you better performance and help you finish your projects faster.

How to Hone Your Bits On a Grinding Wheel

Hold your drill bits while the cutting surface is parallel to your grinding surface area. This will help you eliminate more metal for a clean, cutting edge.

Ensure the wheel and the bit are in contact and keep the bit straight without moving it around. It will help you duplicate the initial curvature that the drill came with.

Check if the cutting edge’s heel part is ground more compared to the edge. This is crucial in making the cutting edge get near the surface you had drilled before.

When honing your bits, the steel can get warm, so you can dip them in the water a few times to cool them down. If you find it hard to hold with your hands, this is an indication that you are grinding faster and not cooling the bits enough.

After achieving a sharp cutting edge, rotate the bit halfway and begin sharpening the other part. Your bits will perform well when you grind them on both surfaces.

When the two edges are sharp, check whether their width is the same. If not, you should grind the wider part until they are both even.

Our Summarized Thoughts on Black Oxide vs. Titanium Drill Bits

Here are our summarized thoughts regarding black oxide and titanium drill bits.

Black Oxide Bits

These are drill bits that have black oxide coating, and they come at an affordable price compared to the titanium drill bits. The drill bits have incredible heat resistance, and they are also rusted and water-resistant. Additionally, the drill bits do not deteriorate with ease.

Titanium Drill Bits

These bits can have more coverage, and they are also rated high for their heat resistance. The bits are also durable than their black oxide counterparts. Therefore, you can operate them faster for an extended period, unlike the black oxide drill bits.

titanium vs black oxide drill bits comparison – YouTube

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How to drill into brick?

For you to drill into brick effectively, you need to drill, bit, speed and grunt. It is great to look for a specially designed drill for bricks, stone, or concrete, so it should have a hammer mode. This feature enables you to get the drill bit in hard material. When drilling bricks, you will experience a lot of friction, so it is recommended to ensure the rpm is lower, preventing overheating.
Always get a great drill equipped with features that will ensure the motor doesn’t overheat. Use a lower speed and remove the dust during the drilling process. When it comes to the grunt, this defines your drill’s power capabilities. It should be enough to drill through masonry. Additionally, you should wear the right safety gear to keep you the same when drilling.

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Q: How to use a drill?

A drill is an essential home improvement tool that you need to make your projects successful. After getting your drill, it is great to know how to use it correctly to get the desired results. You need to consider several things when buying a drill, like the voltage, drill drivers, the bit, variable speed, battery, and keyless chuck, among others.
If you are drilling through wooden material, you will expect splinters or even tear-outs. You can avoid these if you put the material you are drilling on a scarp lumbar. This will make you get clean holes since the clamp will hold everything in place. Place your drill bit perpendicular to the working surface and apply some pressure downward and then squeeze the trigger. After drilling, pulse the trigger until you get the hole depth you want. Similar steps apply when you are on a wall; you to make sure that you have the right height.

Q: How to drill through metal?

Drilling through metal is easy if you have the right drill bits for metal use. The good thing is that you can use them to drill other materials like plastic and wood with metal drill bits. To drill through metal, you need to wear eye protection for your safety purposes. This will prevent small metal fragments from getting into your eyes. Next, make a simple guide on where to start since drill bits can wander when starting the job. After that, lubricate the bits so that they can last longer and minimize friction.
Next, clamp the metal piece to prevent stitches. At no point should you hold the metal with your hand and drill using the other hand? Start making a small hole so that you can make big holes successfully. Once you drill, get rid of the sharp edges using a deburring tool. If the holes are larger, then a hole saw will do a better job. Next, drill at a low speed to make the holes you want.

Q: How to drill stainless steel?

To drill stainless steel material the right way, start using a sharp drill and drill slowly. You should apply more pressure on the bits. Smaller buts can be hard to work with because they break or bend. Apply pressure on drill bits that are ¼-inches or larger than that. If you get a continuous spiral pattern, then this is an indication you are applying enough pressure. Lubricate your drill bits to prevent friction when drilling. It would help if you also were careful because the bits can snap off when working on metal.

Q: How to drill a 4-inch hole in concrete?

Drilling 4-inch holes on concrete requires you to utilize a core drill. Using a standard drill will not give you good results because the drill is not big enough to drill such big holes. However, you still require the help of a standard drill in the first stages before fully utilizing a core drill.

Final Verdict & Recommendation

For any drilling project to be successful, you need to have the right drill bits for the job. Remember, there are all kinds of drill bits designed to handle any material at hand. So, before you pick a drill bit set, it is great to consider the type of material you want to drill so that you can get the right bits. With the right drill bits, you can expect a better outcome from all your projects.

Many people get confused on whether to choose black oxide or titanium drill bits. Luckily, selecting the right one should not be a bother anymore. We have given you a detailed guide on each drill bit to make it easy to choose wisely. The two drill bits work well on the same materials, but the titanium ones are durable than the black oxide drill bits.

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