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Will Wilcox

A Different Way To Bore Holes

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I figured I would share this method of boring holes in steel should you need to make one after Heat Treating, mostly because I think it's an interesting method. 

 

From "A Thousand and One Formulas" by Sidney Gernsbeck:

 

To Bore a Hole In Hardened Steel.

 

Melt a small quantity of wax and pour it on to the steel. Make a hole in the wax of the dimensions desired.

 

Then put a few drops of nitric acid in the hole and leave it for some time. If not eaten through in 15 or 20 minutes, wash the acid off and apply another dose. Continue until the hole is eaten through. 

 

I realize this is impractical for most people, who likely dont have nitric acid on hand. It's not hard to make, honestly, just be cautious if you ever do!

 

Oh yes, and drill your holes before heat treating of course ;).

 

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Sounds like a good "fix" if one screws up and forgets a hole................but I've a question:  Does the diameter of the hole "bleed" outward or does it maintain the intended diameter?

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It would depend on the thickness of your piece of steel, but unless wax is applied to the inside of the hole in between coats of acid, it would probably bleed outward, I would imagine. 

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