Drilling A Hole

Drilling a hole in glass is not that difficult once you have the process down. In no time at all you will be drilling holes like a professional.

It only requires a few items to accomplish, for instance a glass drill or Dremel. Besides the items listed below be sure you use caution when drilling glass. Anytime you are using any of the fusing glass tools, wear safety glasses. Also be careful using any electric power tool near water.

Once you have reviewed the necessary materials be sure to watch the YouTube video showing step-by-step instructions. This is one of my videos, so if you would like to view more, please check out my home page on Youtube.

Here are the supplies you will need:

  • Safety glasses
  • Electric drill, Dremel, or glass drill
  • Diamond core drill bit
  • Water
  • Shallow pan/tray or clay/wax
  • Block of wood or piece of styrofoam

  • You will need to use a diamond core drill bit to drill through glass. Be sure to pick the shank size that will fit your drill and then choose a bit that matches the hole you want to make. You can use any electric drill, such as a Dremel type drill.

    Drill bits don’t rip through the glass, but slowly scrap away little pieces of material at a time. Use minimum pressure and allow the bit to work. Don’t lean on the piece.

    Drilling a hole takes time and again patience. Learning to balance drill speed, drill pressure and lubrication is a learned skill. This can only be done by trial and error. Start out with a very slow drill speed and very light pressure. Begin by drilling at a small angle. This will help to start the hole. Turn the drill bit so that it is now standing straight up. Then gradually you can increase these until you reach the point that works best for you.

    Always keep your piece lubricated with water. Drill for a couple of seconds, then lift the drill bit so that water is allowed to fill the partial hole. This will keep the bit cool and wet during the drilling process.

    Diamond bits need to be cooled with some water. There are a couple of ways you can do this.

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    Submerge the glass in water. You can do this by placing the object in a shallow pan or tray and then filling with enough water to just cover the glass. Place a small piece of wood or Styrofoam under the glass. This added cushion will prevent you from drilling through your container. I used a Styrofoam plate that was cut up and made small enough to fit inside the container.

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    Make a dam around the area to be drilled with clay or wax to make a reservoir. Fill this area with water. Place a piece of wood or Styrofoam under the glass to cushion the glass and prevent you from drilling into the object below.

    Again, wear eye protection. Drill in an up and down motion. As you do this, water will fill the hole to cool the drill bit. As you are nearing completing the hole, lighten up the pressure even more. This will reduce chipping or cracking on the backside of the glass when the bit emerges. The drill will eventually cut through the bottom of the glass and most likely will damage the container. Be sure to put some material like wood underneath the glass before drilling.

    Remember that drilling a hole fast increases friction. This will burn up your bit. If your bit develops yellow, brown, blue or black around the tip, you are going too fast. Slow down and use light to moderate pressure. Allow the drill to go at its own speed. Increasing your speed also heats up the glass and it could crack or break.

    If you are having problems with skipping or walking with your bit as you are drilling a hole, you can use a vise or some other way to hold your piece firmly under the drill.

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