How to Sharpen Forstner Bits

You may have come across some of the most hardened drill bits and thought of how challenging it is to sharpen them. The carbide-tipped Forstner bits are one of the easiest bits to sharpen.

Many questions all over the internet on any topic discussing the sharpening of Forstner bits are becoming a commonplace. The prompted our research and thought it wise to share our findings. To add to what we found. Out of the various options, we will share the one that is convenient for anyone who uses the Forstner bits regularly.

Additionally, you could check out the drilling advisor pick for Forstner bit to get some good ideas.

Tools You Will Need

The Process

  • Use the vice and clamp the bit. Use a pair of V-blocks to secure the bit.
  • Start your work on the rim using the round file as you pay attention to where the file is touching. It would help if you were careful not to dull one surface as you sharpen the other.
  • The edge is sharp all the way across. You need to sharpen the face using a triangular file at an upward facing angle.
  • When sharpening the edges, make sure you sharpen it across its entire length. You can try counting the number of strokes for one side and repeat the same number on the other edge.
  • Sharpen the chippers fount at the center of the Forstner drill using the triangular file on a flat surface because the chippers are always at an angle. Then stroke the bit in an upward motion. Remember to keep the file away from all areas that you have filed. Filing according to the shape of the bit will make it easier to avoid sharp edges.
  • You are now free to test your Forstner drill bit to see how successful you have been. That is how it was easy to sharpen the drill bit.


Larger Forstner bits have teeth or cutting edges on their rims as opposed to the smooth ones that we encounter daily. The same sharpening approach applies. You need to work with the round file on the Forstner bit rim and then sharpen the individual teeth.

Using the Pointed Guide to Widen a Hole

  • Forstner bits just like the spade bits have a small sharp point at the center that you can use as a pivot point when working. For you to enlarge an existing hole in the absence of wood for the point to use to center itself, the bit will walk away.
  • Carefully center the hole and align with the sharp point over an existing hole, then clamp the bit securely and make the new hole in your workpiece. Secure your workpiece on a backer board to minimize chances or wear and tear when using a larger Forstner drill.

What to Look for When Buying Forstner Bit Sets

When it comes to buying the right Forstner bit sets, even the experienced DIYers and professionals find it a big challenge. To get the precise size for a particular hole, you need to look for the following before taking the bit.


Size is everything for a professional concerned about precision. There is an option of getting a complete set of bits so you can always choose from a variety.

Edge of the Bit

Different edges offer different designs. The edge of a bit determines how your design will look like. For example, a knife-edge bit will make beautiful cuts and drills holes faster at the expense of overheating.

Bit Material

The general feeling of high-grade steel used as one of the best drill bit material to get clean and clear holes to make it as a leading material for bits. If your choice of material is light, then going for a Forstner bit made of steel is an excellent choice.

Final word

Like any other thing that requires persistency to be perfect, sharpening a Forstner bit needs patience. You will always win big the day you realize that you can sharpen bits on your own without spending an extra dime. The center pointed [art of the drill bit should always stay at the center. To achieve this guide it using your thumb when filing.