What is a Drill Gauge?

Drill gauge definition

What is a Drill Gauge?

A drill gauge is a device used to quickly and conveniently identify the size of the drill bit. A drill gauge can be made up of aluminum, steel, plastic, or wood. The indicator contains a series of holes that represent the bit’s sizes.

A drill bit is a cutting tool used to remove the problematic material to create a hole. A drill bit appears to be in a circular cross-section. These bits vary in size and are attached to a drill. Every hole is marked with a measurement based on the bit size. The measurements are printed on top of the gauge.


If we want to understand the working of a drill gauge, we should first understand how the drill bits differentiate based on size. The bit’s diameter plays a crucial role in dividing the criteria into different classes. The units are both available on Metric and Fractional Units. Metric drill bits work in countries that use the metric system, while Fractional Sized bits work in countries like the US, which do not use the metric system. This system makes the reading and perfection of a drill bit clear and straightforward.


Drill bits are sized the same as the wire gauge system. Drill sizes may vary from 80 to 1 and then by letters from A to Z, and like this, there are 106 different bit sizes. The tiniest size bit is listed in 80-gauge, while the largest is on Z-gauge. The gauges are still found in some drill bits, but the metric and fractional sizing remain common.


Some of the drill gauges may contain standard and metric measurements, while some have sizes equivalent to fractional and metric. The drill bit gauge got its name from this sizing system. This sizing system also clears the misconception regarding the measurement of different bits.


Builders may use drill gauges for different uses. For example, they may use it to have the size of a bit or determine which size bit should be used with it. While using the gauge, one should remember that the bit’s tip should be smaller than the rest of the body. Thus, it helps in more natural tearing of the material and saves time. The accurate measurement is when the bit fits within the hole and best matches the bit’s size.


There are many poor carpenters around who make drill gauges themselves using the block of wood. They choose a large piece of wood and drill holes in the wood to represent each bit. After all the holes are drilled, each hole is marked with the appropriate gauge or measurements.



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Screw Machine Length Drill –Besides the big drill bits sizes, a kind of lowest-length drill is known as ‘Screw Machine Length Drill.’ They are primarily used in screw machines. Their shorter length compared to the standard jobber bit results in a more rigid drill bit, which reduces the chances of its deflection and breakage.


Jobber Length Drill – It is the most commonly used type of drill. The flute length ranges 9 to 14 times the drill’s diameter, depending on the drill’s size. The word “Jobber” refers to the wholesale distributor. A wholesaler is a person who buys goods from the manufacturer and sells it to retailers. It is made for a variety of works that are needed to be performed. It reflects the concept name, such as general-purpose and multipurpose reflect.


AirCraft Length Drill – The long series or extended drills are known as ‘Aircraft Length Drills.’ These drills are generally used to drill deep in the material. The sharp and pointed bit makes it possible to have comfortable drilling.


Center Drill Bit Sizes – Center drills are available from two angles, i.e., 60 degrees and 90 degrees. Sixty degrees are the standard for drilling the center holes, while 90 degrees are used to locate spots before digging with twisted drills. The center drills are stiff and mostly use for drilling mill centers.


Spotting Drill Bit Sizes – The spotting drills are those which are available in small size ranges. The sizes in which they are commonly available are 1/8″, 1/4″, 3/8″, 1/2″, 5/8″, 3/4″, 4mm, 6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 14mm, 16mm and 18mm. The drills are included with 90 degrees 120 degrees angle.

What size drill bit for an eight gauge screw?

Drill Bit Sizes For Pre-Drilling For Screws Most Commonly Used Sizes In Bold are:

Screw SizePilot hole size for hardwoods*Pilot hole size for softwood**

Drill gauge metrics




According to some reviews, the experience is sometimes very tough in sharpening the drills. They may work very well, but at the moment there may be some problems too. To overcome all these problems, one may use a drill point. Several ways of using the gauge, such as looking it squarely and line it up or turning the drill, line up to cut the edges. The lining up of the cutting edges helps in cutting while also watching the correct center drill point.


The other way to use the drill gauge well is to sharpen the drill point very well. The sharpening leads to the proper drilling and efficient movement of the machine. The hole also gets deeper by using this unique method. 


After the user gets the edges and the angle right, the user should not forget to thin the web. There is a transition point at the center in any drills that usually don’t cut anything. The mesh should be made thick, keeping in mind that it doesn’t become too thick; otherwise, there are chances of fragility and breakdown. 


The center and middle points have one of great significance in drilling. It provides the correct drilling posture and better end drilling. 


Drilling is a part of the day to day life. It is commonly used whenever any new things pop up at any resident. From decoration to daily household fixes, drilling is involved. At the industrial level, also drilling is a part of everyday processes. A well-constructed gauge with precise measurements leads to safe and productive drilling.

Igor Milosevic
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