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What you should know before you  

buy your next Diamond Drill / Bit

Not all Diamond Drills/Bits are created equal. Diamond Drills are found in hundreds of different varieties, types, bond types, and manufacturing methods. Its important for the user to understand the subtle differences between diamond drill & diamond drill bit types, their intended application and their affect on performance. The Guide below was designed to aid diamond drill/bit users of all experience levels from novice to experienced manufacturing engineer, researcher and professional craftsmen. Better understand the numerous variables that play a vital role in the success of your diamond drilling operation. Each diamond drill/bit is designed specific application, and hence may react differently under different conditions. What worked for one application, may not work for another. After reading this guide, the user will be equipped with the knowledge to make a more intelligent diamond drill selection. And Select the Right Diamond Drill/Bit for their material/application the First Time

Why use Diamond Drills? 

Diamond is the hardest material known to man kind. When used on diamond drills/tools, diamond grinds away material on micro (nano) level. Due to its hardness Diamond will work all types of materials from hardness of 40 on Rockwell scale and up. Diamond (diamond drills/bts) will machine hardest material, including those materials that other conventional types of abrasives, carbide and high speed steel will not. Diamond Drills/Bits will drill materials faster, produce smoothes surface finish quality, provide consistent performance, & yield (cost per part) possible. Diamond drills are an excellent alternative to carbide, and other types of drills Unlike carbide, high speed steel, & other types of drills. Diamond drill works by grinding away material on micro (nano) level. Carbide and other types drills on the other hand cut material with a sharp cutting edge.

Diamond is the hardest material on earth (diamond core drills/bits) will drill hardest material

SMART CUT™ technology

SMART CUT is an advanced technology that redefines the standard in cutting and drilling. Diamonds are oriented inside matrix, so that every diamond is better able to participate in drilling action. SMART CUT open bond bond design makes sure every diamond is in the right place and at the right time, working where you need it most. You get maximum use of diamond and bond. Find out more..

Some of the advantages include:

  • Minimal Chipping

  • Faster Drilling Action

  • Minimal Drilling Noise

  • Minimal Loss of Material

First Universal Diamond Drill/Bit

If you are like most users, you come across dozens of materials everyday. Would it be nice to have a diamond drill/bit that does an excellent job on most of these materials? Now you can.


SMART CUT™ series sintered (metal bond) diamond core drills, UNIVERSAL APPLICATION are one of the first diamond drills you can fond on the market. Designed for maximum drilling performance on materials with various degrees of hardness. The following are materials and applications diamond drills/BITS with SMART CUT technology can substitute. Find out more...



Advanced Ceramics Composites Concrete Glass
Quartz Stone Lapidary Precision Optics



Alumina Ruby Glass        Yag
Quartz  Silicon Silica    Fused Silica
Ceramics   Bk7   Building Materials Refractories   
Concrete abrasive blocks  Porcelain  Brazilian Agate
Marble     Sapphire Tile Granite
Onyx       Opal        Jade Ametrine



Can't find what you are looking for? Let us know. UKAM Industrial Superhard Tools has the capability to manufacture virtually any type of diamond core drills for any requirements. No matter if you have a zero tolerance requirement for drilling precision optics, or standard drilling of granite. We can help you get the most value for your money. Find out more...

Diamond Core Drills for any application


Diamond Core Drills - SMART CUT™ technology vs. Conventional metal bonded diamond drills

Diamond Core Drills with SMART CUT technology are the best value for users looking for high quality, and long lasting drills at an affordable price. The most fast drilling, highly aggressive, and longest lasting core bits available today. You can tell  Diamond Core Drills with SMART CUT™ technology apart from other drills, by the clean and smooth finish they leave behind. Unlike other diamond drills which will work on some materials, and not on others. Diamond Core Drills with SMART CUT™ technology are first diamond drills that will do an excellent job on just about any material. You can't beat their universal performance. Find out more...

Sintered (Metal Bonded) Diamond Core Drills


Electroplated (nickel bonded) Diamond Core Drills

                               - Multiple layers of diamond                                           - Single layer of diamond

                               - Stands up well under aggressive conditions       - Cannot be dressed (in most cases)

                         - Super smooth finish                                      - Least Expensive

                         - Longest lasting blade                                    - Shortest Drill Life

                         - Very Universal                                             - Cannot be used on number of materials

                         - Most cost effective

Sintered (Metal Bond) Diamond Drills

Metal bonded diamond core drills have diamonds sintered and multiple layers of diamonds impregnated inside the metal matrix. Diamonds are furnaces sintered in a matrix made of iron, cobalt, nickel, bronze, copper, tungsten,  alloys of these powders or other metals in various combinations. Metal Bonded Diamond Tools are “impregnated” with diamonds. The compacted materials are then hot pressed or sintered to full density. Heating rate, applied pressure, sintering temperature and holding time, are all controlled according to the matrix composition. This means that selected diamonds are mixed and sintered with specific metal alloys to achieve the best cutting performance possible on any materials such as sapphire, advanced ceramics, optics, glass, granite, tile and etc. The metal bond surrounding the diamonds must wear away to continuously keep re-exposing the diamonds for the diamond tool to continue cutting. Sintered (metal bonded) diamond tools are recommended for machining hard materials from 45 to 75 on Rockwell Scale (5 to 9.5 on mohs scale of hardness). As a general rule of thumb, Metal Bond (sintered) diamond drills last longer than other diamond drills available

They can be used in almost all diamond drilling application ranging from very soft & abrasive materials to ultra hard materials. Typical applications include in order from hardness: Composites, Glass, Concrete, Sandstone/flagstone, Natural Stone, Optical Materials, Precious & Semiprecious stone, Advanced/Technical Ceramics, Advanced Materials, & Many Others. Sintered (metal bonded) diamond drills/bits are used & preferred in most Industrial/Manufacturing, R & D, Professional Contractor, & Serious Hobby Enthusiast / Craftsmen users. Sintered (metal bond) diamond core drills/bits are most widely used diamond drills across almost all industries & applications. They wear evenly, and are known for their long life & consistency. Precision & Accurate tolerances either on OD, ID, Run Out & Concentricity can only be obtained with sintered (metal bond) diamond drills

Sintered (metal bond) diamond core drills/bits Require PROPER USE & SOLID UNDERSTANDING of Proper Diamond Drill/Diamond Tool Principals. Experience well help as well. Careless handling or use in imprecise machinery will result in diamond drill wrecking/breaking, bending or cracking the bond and will prevent future use. Drilling life will vary with manufacturer & application/material factors described in this guide below. While there is no way to accurately predicting diamond drill life, with most conventional sintered (metal bonded) diamond drills, you can expect 350 to 1200 holes, parts machined, or cores. In laboratory tests, Diamond Drills with SMART CUT technology have shown to last 2,000+ holes on many applications/materials. Sintered (metal bonded) diamond core drills/bits with SMART CUT technology are the latest technology available in diamond drills. And represent the best value and performance per hole or part.

HYBRID BOND™ Diamond Drills 

Between METAL BOND and RESIN BOND. Designed to produce smoothest surface finish possible. You will find all the advantages of drilling speed and fine finish that you have come to expect in a resin bond, and long life, consistency, aggressiveness, durability, and excellent performance on you look for in a metal bond. Hybrid Bond Diamond Drills are used on finish critical applications, that require a minimum amount of chipping and where no further polishing, lapping, or processing of material is planned. Best performance will be achieved on following applications: Glass/Quartz Tubing, Bk7,  Fused Silica, Other ultra brittle materials. Advantages include: Less Chipping, Additional Universality in Application - 1 drill will work in both metal bond and resin bond applications, and Greater Consistency in Performance.

Electroplated (Nickel Bond) Diamond Drills

Electroplated  Diamond Core  Drills & Electroplated Thin Wall Diamond Core Drills  have a high  diamond  concentration and maximum diamond particle (grit) exposure/protrusion ratio. This provides freer,  faster drilling  action  with  minimum heat generation. Electroplated Diamond Drills provide excellent performance on softer materials ranging from 6 to 1 on mohs scale of hardness. While electroplated diamond drills, specifically manufactured by UKAM Industrial, will still work on  harder materials (up to 9 on mohs scale). Diamond drill life will be (very short) significantly reduced. Diamonds stay on the surface of the drill allowing for fast material removal. Perfect for softer, more ductile, and gummable materials.  Find out more >>>

Not recommended for drilling very abrasive materials such as sandstone and concrete (they will wear out on these materials almost immediately). Electroplated Diamond Drills last less than metal bond, hybrid bond drills and are the least expensive diamond drills available. They provide very smooth surface finish quality & less thermal damage to the part being drilled

Electroplated diamond drills are frequently used in glass and composite industries (as well as some photonics / optics) applications. Electroplated Diamond Drills are designed for small & occasional use.  They are widely used by beginning diamond drill users (novices) in numerous hobby/craft applications. As well as home owners and contractors requiring to drill a few holes when installing tile, marble, shower doors, glass mirrors, and etc. (not recommended for professional or serious industrial use). They are also usually more forgiving to operator/user drilling mistakes than most other types of diamond drills/bits. Electroplated core drills are just about the only type of diamond drill that may be used dry (without coolant) in a few applications if needed. Best performance and results will be achieved when drilling less than 1/4" (6.35") into material. Performance in many applications will decline when drilling thicker materials.

Most Electroplated diamond drills/bits have only one layer of diamond coated on a steel body. Diamonds stay only on the surface. When this diamond portion is worn out or peeled off, the diamond drill will slow down, drill on the side (not drill straight) or stop working (drilling) altogether. Electroplated diamond core drills Manufactured by UKAM Industrial are Multi Layered. They have 3 layers of diamonds, not just 1 layer of diamonds like conventional electroplated drills. This provides longer drilling life, faster and freer  drilling action, & more consistent performance.

Varying with application, an average electroplated diamond core drill/bit will last you 80 to 120 holes. Whereas a conventional metal bond (sintered) diamond drill should last you about 1,200 holes. And a diamond drill with SMART CUTtechnology will last more than 2,000 holes. Once you compare price and performance per hole, SMART CUTmetal bond diamond core are the best alternative. 

Sintered (metal bonded) diamond core drills are the latest technology available in diamond drills. And represent the best value and performance per hole. They are the best investment you can make. Although they will cost you more than electroplated diamond drills, metal bonded diamond core drills will more than pay for themselves in terms of:

Longer Life

Electroplated diamond drills/bits cost less, and at first glance may seem like the most cost effective alternative. However, they will cost you more in the long run. Depending on material and application, metal bonded diamond core drills will last significantly more than 20 electroplated diamond drills put together. You can't get more life out of any other drill. Instead of constantly putting diamond core drills on and off the drill press, you will save time and money by using one drill. This means cost per hole, metal bond diamond core drills are the best choice. 
More Consistent performance

Electroplated diamond drills have only one layer of diamond coated on metal core. Diamonds sit only on the surface. When this diamond portion is peeled off, the diamond drill will slow down, drill on the side (not drill straight) or stop working (drilling) altogether. Metal bonded diamond core drills have diamonds sintered and multiple layers of diamonds impregnated inside the metal matrix. Unlike electroplated drills, metal bond diamond core drills wear evenly, and are known for their consistency. You will get consistent drilling speed, and overall consistent performance from sintered (metal bonded) diamond drills.

HYBRID BOND Diamond Core Drills

Between METAL BOND and RESIN BOND. Designed to replace the conventional resin 

bond diamond drills. You will find all the advantages of cutting speed and fine finish that you have come to expect in a resin bond, and long life, consistency, aggressiveness, durability, and excellent performance on you look for in a metal bond.

When to use the HYBRID BOND?

On finish critical applications, that require a minimum amount of chipping. And where no further polishing, lapping, or processing of material is planned. Applications include:


find out more...

When using Carbide, and Other types of diamond drills

Diamond drills are an excellent alternative to carbide, and other types of drills Unlike carbide, high speed steel, & other types of drills. Diamond drill works by grinds away material on micro (nano) level. Carbide and other types drills on the other hand cut material with a sharp cutting edge.

Diamond Drill/Bit Advantages over other drills:

Many users have found that  ONE  diamond drills can last up to 50+ carbide drills put together. Is a Diamond Core Drill the right tool for your application? To find out, give our Engineering Department a call at Phone: (661) 257-2288.


UKAM Industrial Superhard Tools manufactures & stocks Diamond Drills/Bits to customer desired specifications, outside & inside diameters, drilling depths, bond types, diamond grit sizes, mountings, & tolerances. Below is a diagram (technical drawing) that will help you better understand different diamond drill/bit specifications that can be altered based on your requirements.


D = Outside Diameter   D1 = Inside Diameter  D3 = Shank Diameter  

D4 = Shank Inside Diameter


H = Total Drill Length  H1 = Diamond Depth (diamond height)  H2 = Drilling Depth (how deep you can drill)  H3 = Shank Length


TH = Drill Tube Wall Thickness  TH1 = Outside Diameter Diamond Section Relief   TH2 = Inside Diameter Diamond Section Relief

Offcentric Diamond Drill: Designed with what is commonly called Half Moon shaped ID, allowing the core drill to move material and coolant at the same time as it drills the hole. ID (Inside Diameter) of the Diamond Drills/Bit is made larger (off center). OD (outside diameter) is made smaller to accomplish this purpose.

Non Coring / DISINTEGRATING ID Diamond Drill: Inside diameter of this diamond drill is offset. It is still considered a diamond core drill because it has a slot on side for coolant to pass through center of the diamond drill. This type of diamond drill leaves no core behind (destroys core when drilling), because its  ID (inside diameter) is Offset.

Slotted Diamond Drill Design - Making slots in diamond drill tip will usually make them drill faster and freer in hard materials. Slots help reduce diamond drill heat generation, and better propel coolant through the drilling zone. The width of slot depends on hardness of material. Diamond Drills manufactured for drilling harder materials require more slots than diamond drills made for softer materials. Slots are recommended for thick wall diamond drills, helping increase drilling speed and efficiency.  

Diamond Core Drill/Bit Mounting Methods: Diamond Drills/Bits must be either mounted on a collet or made with straight shank. Diamond Drills mounted on a collet can be used with water swivel adapter to run high pressure of coolant through center of drill. Diamond drills with straight shank are meant to be placed in drilling machine chuck and cannot be used with water swivel adapter. We recommend using diamond drills/bits that are mounted on a collet. You can always purchase a shank adapter that will thread into the collet, that will convert your diamond drill into a straight shank mounting. Various industries used different collets (mounting methods). Most often used collets are 5/8-11", 5/8-18, 1-14, 3/4-16, 7/8-14, 1-1/4-7", BRANSON (Ultrasonic) and Others. Standard shank sizes are usually 1/4", 3/8", and 1/2" diameter

Diamond Core Drills vs. Blind Hole (Blunt Nose Bits)

Diamond Core Drills have a hollow tip and are used for drilling through material. A "core" or "plug" is obtained in the process, from middle of the hole. Blind hole drills have a solid tip, and are used to make a small size hole in material. With blind hole drills you are generally limited to how deep you can drill and the size of your hole. Blind Hole Drills can only obtain a small drilling depth and hole outside diameter (OD) up to 3/8". If you need to make a large Blind Hole, a Bottoming Tool will have to be used. Diamond Core Drills drill much faster than Blind Hole Drills. 

Diamond Core Drill

Non Coring Drills (Blind Hole Drills)

Bottoming Tool (shown with a special water swivel adapter)


Find out more...           Selecting the Right Diamond Drill for your Application >>>

What you should know before you buy your next diamond drill?







  Universal Metal Bond Core Drills            Electroplated Core Drills        Thin Wall Metal Bond Core Drills     Drilling Accessories     

UKAM Industrial Superhard Tools   Division of LEL Diamond Tools International, Inc.

28231 Avenue Crocker, Unit 80  Valencia, CA 91355  Phone: (661) 257-2288  Fax: (661) 257-3833


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