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Thread: Drilling pearls

  1. #46
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    I've got the very $$$$ ones and the bulk buy chisel ended titanium ones.( I've been meaning to ask down at the hardware store if they sharpen bits...in fact a knife sharpener might be able to do it. ) I take a fine file to mine but it doesn't do much. At least with the double end you get more use out of them.

    Those Otto Frei prices are nt too bad considering they are the Japanese ones. tbh I'm not sure how much of a difference that makes to the life of the tip .
    Last edited by Katbran; 02-11-2017 at 02:11 AM.

  2. #47
    purveyor of pearls Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert pearlescence's Avatar
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    The wholesalers and factories sharpen them on a spinning big wheel - like the old knife sharpener carts that used to ply around towns. You need a carborundum stone not a file - it is like sharpening a chisel

  3. #48
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    I have used the smallest hand held Dremel with a Beadalon drill bit to enlarge existing holes on Pearls, but haven't tried to drill undrilled pearls. I have no problem holding the pearl between my finger and thumb, but the hand holding the drill does get a lot of vibration. You need a dish of water handy to cool the drill bit and the pearl periodically. If I were drilling a large number of Pearls, I would look into a standing stationary type drill. I once drilled an Akoya Pearl that cracked in half and I was amazed to see how thin the nacre was that popped off of it, and the bead inside looked like what dental crowns are made of. Since then I use only Freshwater Pearls, the best quality I can find.

  4. #49
    Museum Pearl Senior Pearl-Guide.com Pearl Expert
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    Hi Lottie, this was quite an old post but glad you resurrected it ! I do use a proper pearl drill but the bits I was using at the time were terribly expensive. Shortly after that I found a source for far less expensive bits and buy them in bulk in all sizes.

    As for the water - never when the drill is running- it can pull the water up into the motor and that's never a good thing. When using a dremel to enlarge a drill hole or clean out glue or thread .. I drill and then remove it and let things cool off then drill again.

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