Best Drill Bit Sharpeners Reviews & Comparison
Whenever we pop out to buy some tools we need we silently hope that they will last forever. After all, if they do this, it means no more trips to the store to get a replacement tool over and best of all no more money will need to be spent. However, we have learned from years of experience that change is the only real constant in life and that almost nothing lasts forever. At the backs of our minds, we know that at one point or another we are going to need to buy new tools.
Nonetheless, if it is possible to repair the ones we have now, we can extend the lifespan of some of our favorites. The same is the case for drill bits. After constant use, they are bound to become dull and blunt. They, therefore, cannot do their jobs effectively. Rather than always having to go to the store to get a new set, you can get a sharpener and from the comfort of your home sharpen your drill bits when the need arises.
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There being that option does not mean that you have to be any less careful when using them. The wise owner will do all it takes to keep his drill bits from getting to the point where they need to be sharpened. Here’s a guide on how to do that.
10 Best Drill Bit Sharpeners
1. Drill Doctor 750X
The manufacturer is an American based company a fact they seem to be very proud of. This is because there is a stereotype that anything made in the US is usually high quality. This has been demonstrated by the 750X time and time again. With regards to features, this particular tool has a number of them that are bound to prove useful when the 750X is put to use. Some of them are as follows:
Sharpen different types of drill bits – This covers a very comprehensive range including masonry drill bits as well as tin coated and cobalt bits. It is even able to sharpen hardened high-speed steel drill bits if the task is presented to them. It can cover a vast array of sharpening jobs once you have it and so you won’t need to buy another unit for the same tasks.
3-year warranty – The mark of quality in a product is usually the warranty. The more extensive it is, the more you can bet on the product not just to carry out its functions but also to last longer than others. A 3-year warranty is about as good as it gets. Nonetheless, some circumstances will lead to the voiding of the said warranty.
There are of course other impressive features such as the custom point angle sharpening. That feature lets users choose the degrees to which their drill bits will be sharpened too.
Add that to the fact that the 750X will ensure some extra narrow chisel points which is significant because narrow chisel points will make it easier to bore into any material they encounter.
Can sharpen multiple types of drill bits
Custom point angle sharpening
Diamond sharpening wheel
Drill point splitting port
Who is it for?
The price point of this tool is one that would make most people step back and rethink buying the device. However, in our opinion, this would be a mistake. It does everything that it is supposed to do and even sports an extended warranty of up to three years.
Despite the Drill Doctor 750X being expensive, we believe it is worth every cent. Nonetheless, you should only buy it if it is not going to prove too much of a financial strain on your budget.
Sharpens larger drills with minimal effort
Once a user gets the hang of it sharpening will be a breeze for other bits
Parts are replaceable
The unit is relatively small and lightweight
It can be a pain trying to sharpen smaller bits
2. Drill Doctor 500x
The 500X also has some pretty impressive features. They are going to be highlighted below, and hopefully, that will help you decide if you’re trying to pick out one of the two.
Diamond sharpening wheel – This is the same wheel used in the 750X and seeing as though some of its parts are made of diamond it is clear that it will serve you for a long time to come. Nevertheless, if you use it for long, it is bound to lose its effectiveness, and hence the manufacturer made this part replaceable. You can essentially buy another wheel pop it in and go about sharpening whatever you need.
Easy sharpening – The process of sharpening includes a three-step process that should be easy to learn for just about anyone. If the instructions prove difficult to understand there is always the option of going to YouTube and checking out some of the “how to” videos on the same. We advise that you both read the instructions and check out the videos so that by the time you get to sharpening you have a good idea of what to do. This will make sure that you are effective in the process.
The 500X sports the same 3-year warranty as the 750X and we would have to conclude that the differences between the two devices are minimal. The fact that the 500X can also handle quite a variety of drill bits no matter the construction is also something to write home about.
Diamond sharpening wheel
Drill point splitting port
Who is it for?
This gadget has many of the capabilities of the 750X, but it still falls short in some scenarios. It is very solid and will cater to almost any sharpening need that you might have. If your budget is a little tight this moderately priced drill sharpener may be what you need.
Instructions are unambiguous
Sharpening drill bits is faster and more comfortable with this device
Handles a wide array of bit sizes
It might take a few tries to be efficient in sharpening for first-time users
3. Drill Doctor 350X
One key difference between the 350X and the other two models named above is the design. Some features are as a result not present in the gadget. However, some of its features are still quite impressive. Here they are:
Diamond sharpening wheel – One feature that does not change throughout the lineup is the fact that they all have a diamond sharpening wheel that can be removed and replaced if it stops being effective. Also since it is made of such a durable and long-lasting material you can be sure you’ll use it for quite a long time before having to replace it.
3-year warranty – There are many times that you may buy a gadget only for it not to last very long. Most of these times you chalk it off as a wasted investment, and you go ahead to look for something to replace it. If you could have any defects repaired at no extra cost, then you would have saved some of your valuable cash. A warranty will help you do that and what’s more the warranty by Drill Doctor lasts up to about three years.
The alignment port isn’t included in this unit, and hence that reduces the number of sharpening steps to two. Overall this is a more easy gadget to use, but it still requires the user to follow instructions to the letter if they want quality output.
2-step sharpening process
Diamond sharpening wheel
Who is it for?
If all you use are standard drill bits, then this gadget by Drill Doctor is perfect for you. If however, you use a wide range of bits this may come up short. As such it is ideal for the home garage setting and DIYers. Also, the price is small enough that you don’t need to break the bank.
After a mild learning curve, the 350X is very easy to use
Comes with some clear instructions on how to use it
People using it for the first time may find it difficult to figure out
4. DAREX Sharpener
All the same, some of its features are downright amazing, and we wouldn’t be doing our jobs right if we didn’t highlight them for you. Here they are:
A borazon sharpening wheel – Not many people are familiar with the term Borazon, but we will do our best to explain it. It is an abrasive material consisting of boron nitride and also happens to be known for its hardness. It has been included explicitly for high-speed steel drill bits and even cobalt ones as those are much harder materials.
If, however you often use carbide drill bits you have the option of going out and purchasing the optional diamond wheel for the unit. This means you can virtually sharpen any drill bit no matter what material it is made off.
Adjustable split point feature – You have probably used a split point drill bit and know how easy it is for them to drill into materials without needing to stop every few minutes. With the V390 you can adjust the split points on the bits to make them even more effective than they were before you sharpened them.
The manufacturer recommends that users don’t wear the device out by keeping use to a maximum of 50 drills in a week. Doing this will ensure it lasts longer, therefore, giving you more service.
A borazon sharpening wheel
Optional diamond wheel
Adjustable split point feature
Who is it for?
The V390 model can only be said to be for professionals as it is more than likely to give a return on investment. The price is nonetheless something that would scare most people away from buying the product.
Spending more than $1000 may not be everybody’s cup of tea especially if there are models like the Drill doctor 750X that come at less than a 1/8 of the price of this device.
The manual is crystal clear on how to use the device
Easy to use
Caters to a wide array of drill bits
The price is quite steep
5. Tormek DBS-22
4-Facet points – The result of this feature on the sharpener is that when you get down to sharpening a bit, you will end up with a sharp chisel edge. After that whenever you get down to drilling on any material, there will be no walking and hence no moving away from the intended mark.
Highly adjustable – You have the option of setting the sharpener up between 90° all the way to 150° which is quite a wide range. This will come in handy if you have an extensive array of blunt drill bits in your toolbox. The clearance angle is also adjustable which can be a plus.
With decades producing quality tools, the DBS-22 is a culmination of all those years of experience, and it shows.
Compatible with a wide array of bits
Four facet point sharpening
Compatible with T-7 and the T-3 sharpeners
Water cooled sharpening system
Who is it for?
If you already have the Tormek T-3 or T-7 sharpener you might have an easier time purchasing this gadget as it is quite expensive. Nonetheless, if you have the extra money and are willing to pay, this tool would prove a valuable addition to your set. It does the job it is supposed to do quite well.
Extremely well made
Instructions help with the sharpening process
Attaching the tool to the T-7 and T-3 sharpener is easy
Before users get the hang of it, initial sharpening may take longer
6. XtremepowerUS All in 1
4800RPM – Speed is usually needed in the sharpening process as it relies heavily on friction. The higher the speed of the sharpener the less time you are going to spend sharpening anything. With a total of 4800 revolutions per minute, your drill bits are likely to come off sharp as new.
Multipurpose usage – It is essential for a drill bit sharper to do just that; sharpen drill bits.
However, other tools around the house may require sharpening from time to time. If you could buy a single device to sort out all those issues, you would potentially be saving a lot of money. This tool offers you that chance by being able to sharpen knives, scissors and more.
This ExtremepowerUS tool features a 2” diameter tool, but despite the small size, it is more than capable of doing its job.
4800 RPM wheel speed
Knife, scissor and blade sharpener
2” wheel diameter
70 watt @ 110-volt power input
Who is it for?
This gadget is one of the cheaper units on our list and as such should be affordable for most people. Also, you are better getting this tool if you are new to DIY projects. If you are a veteran of the game or a professional you should try and invest in something more suited for the job.
Great quality sharpening wheel
Easy to use
The guide for holding bits in place is not be all that good, and you may be better off using your hands
7. Woodstock D4144
Sharpens 1/8 inch to ¾ inch diameter drill bits – This covers quite a wide range of bit sizes making it a very versatile tool.
Fully adjustable angles – Drill bits usually have different drill point angles. This all depends on the job that it is supposed to do. Having this feature will ensure that all of your drill bits and their angles are catered for when sharpening.
Instructions are included in the packaging so that users know just what to do with it when they get the tool.
1/8 inch to ¾ inch drill bit range
Fully adjustable angles
Who is it for?
Do you have a wheel bench grinder and if you don’t, do you plan to buy one? If you answered yes to any of those two questions, then this tool would be of extreme benefit to you.
Also noteworthy is the fact that the D4144 is very pocket-friendly.
A straightforward setup process
Sharpening is quick and easy
The instructions do not seem to be very clear to some
The alignment piece is challenging to use
8. Multi-Sharp 2001
Aluminum oxide and silicon carbide wheels – These two sharpening wheels can sharpen just about any drill bit inclusive of HSS bits that you feel aren’t as sharp as they used to be.
Wheels are replaceable – The sharpening wheels that are put in place are bound to wear out after long periods of constant use. Rather than having to go to the store to get a new sharpener you can buy spare sharpening wheels and replace them. After this, your tool is bound to last longer than most.
This sharpener can also be used to sharpen other small tools in your arsenal such as cold chisels and tile cutters.
Dual sharpening wheel (Aluminum oxide and silicon carbide)
3-13mm drill bit capacity
Who is it for?
This tool would best suit DIYers who don’t have that many bits to sharpen at a time as the wheels have been known not to last very long. It isn’t the cheapest gadget on the market, but it is still reasonably priced enough that a lot of people can afford the tool. Also after that, you only need to replace the wheels periodically.
Replacement wheels are readily available
Compact and lightweight
Can also sharpen other tools
The wheels in place don’t last very long
You need a learning curve before using the tool effectively
9. Grizzly G1081
1/8-3/4 inch bit range – So many bits fall between that range, and consequently for general drill bits this tool will work just fine.
Angle setup – if you know what you’re doing with this tool you can set the angles for sharpening, and this will help get the sharp bit results that you are after.
A very lightweight tool that shouldn’t be too much of a hassle to set up once you get the hang of it.
1/8 inch to ¾ inch bit sharpening range
Adjustable for various drill point angles
Who is it for?
The quality of this unit by Grizzly is good, but in a lot of aspects, it would be no different than buying the Woodstock D4144. You need to pick one of the two models and buy it since even the pricing is similar.
Makes it possible to set the angle on the bits you want to sharpen
Instructions come with useful information on bit angles
Very difficult to set up and get used to
10. Neiko 10170A
Works with carbon steel and high-speed steel bits – These are some of the harder metals used in the construction of drill bits. Some sharpeners cannot seem to handle them, but this unit by Neiko is an exception and will sharpen them just as it would any other bits.
Thermal protection – Since there is a lot of friction involved in sharpening, the heat might become a little too much and destroy the tool. Having this feature beforehand prevents this from happening.
The rubber feet might seem like they were put there to add aesthetic value, but they also serve a purpose which is to provide stability.
Works with HSS bits
Adjustable degree for sharpening
Thermal protection to avoid overheating
1720 RPM grinding wheel speed
Who is it for?
A great tool that is complete with thermal protection and also features a reasonable pricing point. This tool is recommended for DIYers who don’t have too many drill bits that need sharpening.
Rubber feet work to prevent slippage during sharpening
Thermal protection ensures the tool lasts longer
Each bit takes up a lot of time to sharpen
Factors to consider before buying a drill bit sharpener
More often than not this has a tremendous impact on the quality of the sharpener. Some brands have perfected the art of making drill bit sharpeners while some fall short whenever they put out a product.
Looking into the most reputable brands in the industry and then looking through their products will give you an edge when you finally get to select a particular model.
Drill bit size
Drill bits come in different sizes to cater for a variety of scenarios. The same case applies to the sharpeners. Some can handle a large variety of drill bit sizes while others can only handle a limited range. If you already have the drill bits in hand make sure that the sharpener can handle them.
Also, if you don’t already have them make sure you match the sizes up when you buy both the sharpener and the bits.
Ease of use
A utility tool doesn’t need to be all that complicated to use. It should be simple enough that one can quickly figure out where to put the bits, how to start it up so it can sharpen and how to use it efficiently without injuring yourself.
If you have the option between picking out a model that can handle 3 to 5 drill bit sizes right alongside one that can handle 10 to 15 of them, you will benefit much more if you picked the one that can handle a more significant portion.
This minimizes the chance that you will have to go back to the store when you buy different sized bits which also essentially saves you money in the long run.
It’s very annoying to spend a large sum of money buying a particular tool only for it to last but a few weeks. It can also be taxing on your pocket. If the product has a comprehensive warranty, however, you can deal with such a situation at no extra cost.
Some, nevertheless, don’t even have warranties, and you would be better equipped to handle such a case if you were privy to that information beforehand.
Having the above in mind should assist you tremendously in picking one out of the many drill bit sharpeners out there. Below are some of the sharpeners that we feel are the best in class in order of how we rate them. We are sure you can find one just for you on our list.
How to extend your drill bits life expectancy
Match your tools with the right jobs – Most people are guilty of using some tools for a purpose that they weren’t intended for. You can’t find your screwdrivers, so you use a kitchen knife to open up the screws on things such as sockets or even electrical appliances. In this illustrative example that would be potentially detrimental to both the kitchen knife and the electrical appliance.
The same case applies when we use drill bits for the wrong reasons. If the bit is meant for wood using it on metal will shorten its lifespan. Most drill bits will come with instructions on what they should be used on, and almost all of them can be used on a variety of materials. Make sure you know these materials before even buying a set as that information might come in handy in future.
Lubricate – Drill bits tend to end up in a lot of high friction situations. That is one of the many reasons why they are made of sturdy materials. Nonetheless, high heat will eventually take a toll on the tools. If you were to have some lubricant on hand to use every time you put your drill bits to work the result would be the retention of those bits for longer.
Monitor your drill bit speed – Among the instructions that come with a bit is the optimum conditions of use. Since they are to be attached with a drill, the tempo at which they operate is something that can be controlled. You might be thinking that if you use the highest speed possible, you will get whatever job you are doing done quickly and get on with something else. This holds true in some cases, but overall it might not bode well for the bits you paid for.
Also when you do this, the bits are more likely to break mid-project and leave you stranded. To be safe ensure that your drill is operating at the recommended speeds.
Use a drill bit sharpener only when necessary – Having a drill sharpener in your garage is not an excuse to use it every time you embark on a project. Yes, their purpose is to sharpen drill bits but only when these bits need sharpening. If you, however, grind them too often, there will be nothing left to sharpen in the long run not to mention that you’ll also be wearing out your sharpener. Do the smart thing and only sharpen when there is no other possible course of action.
Be familiar with how to drill – Different drill requirements might come up during a project. You might need to drill out large holes, drill into metal, drill into glass or even drill out a stripped screw. Not knowing what you’re doing before getting in there can damage your tools not to mention has the potential to cause you injury. There are various tutorials even on YouTube about how to go about these tasks. At the very least having that information can make you more efficient in your project.
Having done all the above, it is still very likely that you will end up needing a drill bit sharpener. You might be tired of having to continually throw out your drill bits and replace them with new ones. Also, you might be proactive enough to know that you will need a sharpener sooner or later.
Should I clean the sharpener?
Cleaning a sharpening tool may prove a valuable exercise as it extends the overall life expectancy of the device. A shop vacuum may be ideal to remove the debris that is left behind after a sharpening exercise.
What angle should the tip of the drill bit be?
There are two very common angles in drill bit tips, and that is the 118° and the 135°. The 118 can typically be found in drills that bore holes into softer materials while the 135° is for use with harder materials.
Drill bits tend to wear out quickly especially for professionals. If you have a sharpener, you could save on a few trips to the hardware store and as a result, save a lot of cash.
Also, if you hate throwing away bits, then the above tools can be used to extend their life cycle effectively. Use some of these products on your bits and tell us what you think about them in the comments section.