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Thread: Hand held brace

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Posts
    12,251

    Hand held brace

    How often do you use a brace. Why not battery operated hand drill with a forstner bit instead.

    Trying to decide if a brace still fits into a modern hand tool set.
    Used to use a brace when I used to workwith my dad back in the day.
    But where would you use them these days except in large timber framing.?

    Can anyone enlighten me please.
    cheers

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    SW Minnesota
    Posts
    159
    I use a brace and bit for holes over 3/8". I use a brace and bit because that's what I have available, no other reason, I just haven't purchased Forstner bits.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    2,746
    I have my Dad's old brace. It sits on the mantle.
    Cheers,
    Roger


    The other member of Mensa, but not the NRA

    Everyone is a self-made person.

    "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their veracity" -Abraham Lincoln

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    The Gorge Area, Oregon
    Posts
    4,698
    I have something around 4ish collected over the years.

    A small egg beater style that I use for "precise" drilling, I can correct it faster than it drills in, so it "precise" in that regard. Useful for odd shaped or stationary things that I need a good hole drilled in that can't go to the drill press. Until I got a set of gimlets this was primarily what I used for starting screw holes (but I like the gimlets better for that).

    A medium breast drill .. ummm well I got it for a really good price in nice shape I have used it for drilling some larger holes out in the back.. but arguably less useful nowdays with cordless drills..

    A couple of braces - useful for green wood especially (I think they clear better than most forstners which in my experience heat/gum up in those cases) and deeper holes. Mostly for more "rustic" work.

    I'd like to get some larger auger drills for gates and what not but haven't found them for a price I like yet.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    ABQ NM
    Posts
    30,008
    I have an old brace and some auger bits that were my granddad's, but haven't had a need to use them. I've either used Forstners in a drill press or spade bits in a hand drill. I would suggest extreme caution (or complete avoidance) when using Forstner bits in a hand drill. I've done it with smaller ones, but I think the general consensus is that you should not use Forstner bits in anything but a drill press.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    When I drilled the dog holes in my workbench the best way to do it was with a sharp auger bit and a brace, trying to hang onto a large drill motor with a 3/4" brad point style bit and drill through 4 inches of doug fir was NOT a good idea, with the brace it went super easy.
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Brooklin ON -- 45 mins. NE of Toronto, ON
    Posts
    868
    [QUOTE=Vaughn McMillan;383262]
    you should not use Forstner bits in anything but a drill press.
    Or for drilling on the lathe!!
    Mack C. in Brooklin ON
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Posts
    12,251
    Thanks guys for the input. I appreciate it all.
    cheers

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,828
    I have two left by my father. I use one of them maybe once or twice a year. Really sometimes faster than grabbing a corded drill. And definitely better than trying to use a forstner with a hand held drill. I won't do that, dangerous. I have a couple augers that are welded to long extensions I used to use those for hanging gates on posts and trees. Can be useful, don't trash if you have them.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    S E Washington State
    Posts
    3,777
    I have my Dad's, I use to use them a lot outside where I didn't have power and needed to put a bolt through a fence post or something. Sometimes I use them inside, because the auger bit may be just the correct size or length I need.
    "We the People ......"

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