Spade Bit Vs Drill Bit

by Joost Nusselder | Updated on:  March 18, 2022
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When it comes to drilling, you will have multitudes of different drill bits to choose from. Being able to pick the right drill bit is often a prerequisite for getting the best results. If you’re new to drilling, you might be torn between choosing a spade bit or a standard drill bit, but there is nothing to worry about as you’ve come to the right place!
To put your mind at ease, we’re going to present a spade bit vs drill bit comparison so that you can get to work with the best tool! So, let’s get right to it.

What Are Spade Bits?

Well, spade bits are drill bits in every aspect. They are, however, different than your usual drill bits. Although most commonly used by plumbers and electricians, they’ve become quite popular in woodworking as well. You can easily recognize a spade bit by its flat, broad blade and two lips. The pilot point comes attached to a shank that’s about ¼-inch in diameter. Its sharp bottom edges are perfect for boring holes quickly, making it suitable for larger projects. Spade bits excel at making bigger holes. They tend to be a lot cheaper than the others.

Differences Between Spade Bits and Other Drill Bits

  • Only Suitable for Softer Materials
Spade bits are designed for softer materials like softwood, plastic, plywood, etc. You cannot use them for metal or other more rigid materials. However, they can cut with surprising precision and speed. You will love how fast they get the job done. For drilling metal, you’d have to stick to regular twist drill bits.
  • More Affordable
This type of drill bit is relatively inexpensive. Even those larger ones will cost you much less than other drill bits. As they are remarkably easy to modify, you can customize the size of the holes without any problem. This feature will definitely come in handy when you need different-sized holes.
  • Creates Rough Holes
Unlike other drill bits, spade bits aren’t very clean. They cause splintering and create rough holes. So, the quality of the holes won’t be all that appealing. Some drill bits like the auger bit are excellent for making smoother and cleaner holes.
  • Requires Fast Spinning
One important thing about spade bits is that they need to be spun too fast to be effective and efficient. So, you can’t use them with hand-powered machines. They work best with power drills and drill presses. Other drill bits may not require fast spinning.

Why Choose Spade Bits?

So, why should you pick spade bits over other drill bits? The answer is quite simple, really. If you’re looking for an inexpensive tool capable of creating large holes within a short time but don’t care about the quality of the holes, spade bits will be perfect for you.

Final Words

There you go. Now you know a bit more about drill bits, especially about when you should pick spade bits over the others after reading our comparison. It all comes down to what you need at the end of the day. To summarize, spade bits are perfect for anyone looking for a cheap alternative for boring large holes into softer materials quickly. Remember to pick high-quality ones if you want them to last long.

I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.