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Try Dormer Pramet's Force X and Force M solid carbide drills

A solid carbide drill (VHM drill) is today a widely used tool in machining. In CNC machines, it is generally the first choice. HSS(Co) is only used if there are specific circumstances that make a solid carbide drill unsuitable. In this article you can read more about solid carbide drills, in particular about Dormer Pramet's solid carbide drills: the Force X and the Force M.


The evolution of solid carbide drilling

The popularity of the solid carbide drill has increased significantly over the years. In the 1980s there were still strict conditions for its application, because the stability of the machine and the fixture was limited. This is no longer an obstacle in modern CNC machines. That is why solid carbide drills are now widely used in all kinds of machines.

The stability and capacity of milling and turning machines has been greatly developed in recent years. In addition, the development of tools has taken off in the field of base materials, coatings and geometries. As a result, it is now possible to drill very deep holes with a solid carbide drill. Previously this was unthinkable, because this would immediately lead to breakage of the drill.

However, solid carbide drills are still mainly used for holes with a depth of max. 3xD or 5xD. As more and more machines are equipped with high-pressure cooling through the spindle, the use of solid carbide drills with cooling channels has taken off.

The advantages and disadvantages of solid carbide drilling


  • Higher productivity
  • Longer tool life
  • Higher hole accuracy and dimensional stability
  • Better positioning accuracy
  • Better hole surface quality
  • Can be used in harder materials
  • More resistant to heat development
  • Lower cost per hole drilled in series production


  • More expensive to purchase than HSS or HSCo drills
  • More sensitive to instability in machine, fixture or workpiece
  • Higher RPM Required

Solid carbide drills from Dormer Pramet

Dormer Pramet mainly focuses on the development of tools for a wide range of applications. After all, many production companies work with all kinds of different materials. Then it is more efficient to have tools that achieve good productivity in all these materials. Dormer Pramet's range of solid carbide drills consists of two series: Force X drills and Force M drills.

Force X drilling

The series consists of drills with a possible drilling depth of 3xD, 5xD and 8xD. The first two are available in a version with cooling channels and a version without cooling channels. The latter drill is only available with cooling channels, because at that depth it is necessary to evacuate the chips from the hole by means of cooling pressure.

Unique to the Force X series is the CTW TM  geometry. This ensures a good centering point in combination with a much better resharpenability of the drill. With VHM drills, it is worthwhile to regrind several times due to the higher purchase price. This leads to a saving of valuable raw materials and tool costs. Solid carbide drills often have quite complex point geometries, which means that in practice a lower performance can be experienced when regrinding. The CTW TM  geometry offers a solution for this. 

Force X drills feature a reinforced cutting edge design. This benefits the standing time. In addition, the drills with through holes will generate less forces in the material when they come through. Also, the cutting angle design increases the hole quality and cross-hole drilling will be better and quieter. The cutting edge of the solid carbide drills have been specially treated, making them more stable without losing their sharpness. This also increases the tool life and makes the cutting edge less likely to crumble or flake.


Force X Series:

Force M drilling

The Force X drills described above are characterized by their wide usability. The Force M has been developed specifically for stainless steels (ISO M) and titanium alloys (ISO S). Since these materials demand a lot from the tools, in practice it pays to use a specific drill for the desired productivity. Dormer Pramet's Force M drills are ideal for this.

The Force M has undergone a number of changes compared to the Force X (see the image)

The Force M proves to be an ideal choice, especially if a light-cutting drill bit is desired for drilling in long-chipping materials. Practice shows that it can be used much more widely than what it was originally developed for. Our advice is therefore to choose the Force M if you not only have to drill in ISO M and/or ISO S materials, but also regularly in normal steel types.


Force M series

What is Dormer Pramet CTW™ technology?

CTW stands for Continuously Thinned Web. By this it is meant that the core of the drill, from tip to shank, is constructed so that it is not necessary to provide the drill tip with a taper. Regrinding the clearance surface is sufficient. Since the core of the drill has the same thickness over its entire length, the geometry is more reproducible. With a normal core, the core of the drill gets thicker as the drill gets shorter. As a result, the point has to be ground in deeper and deeper so that the drilling pressure does not increase too much. A thicker core results in a longer cross-cut edge, which determines the force (drilling pressure) required to penetrate the material. The advantage of applying core thinning in the production of the drill is that the symmetry of the drill tip, and thus the drilling accuracy, is better maintained. 




This technology developed by Dormer is now being applied to the solid carbide drills, so that the Force X and Force M drills contribute to the sustainable use of the raw materials needed for the production of carbide. Resharpening becomes much easier and therefore cheaper.

Our solid carbide drills only perform optimally if they are clamped in a high-accuracy recording. Therefore, the shaft is manufactured in accordance with DIN 6535 HA, i.e. a cylindrical unit shaft in H6 tolerance. It is especially suitable for the crimp holder or hydraulic tensioner. Of course, it can also be incorporated into a collet chuck, but in that case we recommend a precision collet chuck (with increased concentricity).
If only weldon holders are available, grinding a chuck on the drill is an option. However, this can negatively affect the accuracy and tool life of the drill at high speeds. 

Usability of the solid carbide drills from Dormer Pramet

The Force X drills are designed for general purpose applications in steel, alloy steel, stainless steels and cast iron. The Force M drills have been specifically developed for stainless steels and titanium alloys.


Do you have any questions or need more information? If so, please contact one of our experts.