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Are the Hickory Forstner Bits at Home Depot worthy?

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  • Are the Hickory Forstner Bits at Home Depot worthy?

    I'm seeing more and more where I need some forstner bits. I seen a set of them at home depot. The set was better priced than the ones I seen at woodcrafters. I was wondering if they are good enough for the weekend warrior?

    Thanks all.

  • #2
    More than likely, the Hickory bits are also overpriced for a weekend user. For occasional use it's hard to beat the prices of the Harbor Freight sets. Granted these are not the greatest bits either but they do give you the option of having alot of sizes on hand for when the need arises. If you watch their "sales", you can usually find the 16 or 20 piece sets on sale for under $30. As the HF bits get dull you can have them resharpened or do as I do and replace the individual bits with better quality Freud bits, Lee Valley or some other high quality brand of bit. Before you know it, you'll end up with a set that consists of high quality bits in the sizes you use the most and other bits in sizes you use very seldom. And, you will end up spending way less than the cost of a set of top quality bits. There's really no need to pay top dollar for a bunch of sizes that you'll only use once every couple of years.
    I decided to change calling the bathroom the "John" and renamed it the "Jim". I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.


    • #3
      Anybody have an opinion on Woodcraft router bits? I see they have about 20 of them on sale right now (was looking at them yesterday on their website) for $5.00 each. These were all 1/2" shank bits.


      • #4
        It's really hard to say about forstners. With the exception of Freud, 90% of what I see are Chinese in a wooden box. The thing with Hickory, as was said, is you're likely paying for an actual company name on them. The Woodcraft set is the way I'd go.

        As to WC router bits, guess they're OK----at least they've carried them a long time. I do like their anti-kick-back design. I'd just be curious to know why they've become so generous on the price the last 6 months or so (when they started these $5.00 sales. The same bits (at least they look the same) certainly weren't the same bagain in the previous years I've been shopping there.


        • #5
          Thanks Dave for your response on the router bits. Going back and looking at the start of this thread, I see that I have taken it off-track, don't know how I came to think we were talking router bts here, m00n clearly is asking about forstner bits, sorry.

          Anywho, the regular prices on the currently on sale bits are in the $12 to $20 range. I' think I'll get a couple and try them out. for $5 it won't hurt too much if they don't hold up for long.


          • #6
            I picked up the 16pc Hickory set a few months ago when I needed a specific size bit, and the entire set was 2x the price of the single 1.25" frued forstner. They've been great for $45 the case protects them well, I didn't have to pay freight, and I didn't have to wait 14 days for HF to ship by slow boat.

            If I had had the time to wait, I most likely would have gone for one of MLCS' deals,...right now I think there's a 17pc bradpoint set for something like $9 or $10 for a QUALITY, inexpensive (different than cheap) set of useful bits.


            • #7
              I have been very happy with the freud bits I have purchased individually. Irwin has begun making them (i saw them at the hd the other day).

              I managed to pick up the FULL CMT set brand new for 50 bucks at liquidation/going out of business. They had to be mismarked but the owner didn't seem to care. I never would have bought them if i had to pay full price, i would have gone with the freud set. not sure who makes rockler's bits and other items, some are great, some are crap.


              • #8
                Hey thanks all... I may just pick up the hickory set. Maybe.... I'm kinda looking at it like router sets... No since in buying a complete set. Why if you don't use them? Rather buy them 1 at a time as you need them... If I decide to buy a set, it will be these most likely. As much woodworking as I'll be doing, an expensive set like frued would be overkill.


                • #9
                  Drill bits are a "bit" less job specific than router bits per se. You may never need a 3/8" core box bit or some of the other odd ones you'd find in some sets. Too damnned often, I've found myself changing plans mid-project because I didn't have the right size drill bit for what I wanted to do.

                  Yes you can buy them individually, but let me ask you a question. How far do you have to travel to get the size you'll need if you discover that you can't alter the plan??? Or, are you like me, and can manage to turn even the simplest HD quick trip, into a $50 or more adventure?

                  Just my $.02 but it's dammned nice to plop that box down next to the DP & KNOW that I'll pull out the bit I want!!!


                  • #10
                    I own a set of the Hickory forstners and have used them a few times. They seem to be similar to the Black and Decker drill bits - dull quickly, prone to burning if forced, and work a little slowly. Like others have said, they are fine but certainly not worthy of mass production use. If I had to drill 150 3/8 holes in hard maple I would look elswhere. The same is true for low cost router bits. They dull quickly and burn a lot more than the pricey ones, they're almost disposable.


                    • #11
                      Re: Are the Hickory Forstner Bits at Home Depot worthy?

                      If you think that it has a good quality and had a better price than the one you seen then buy it ! Or search on the internet about that products then if your satisfied for their description then buy it
                      It makes doing things easier


                      • #12
                        Re: Are the Hickory Forstner Bits at Home Depot worthy?

                        I bought a set of Freud forstner bits a long time ago and haven't looked back too often. But something to be careful of with the Freud bits is the bit point. The point on the Freud bits is a little longer than some others. It is very easy, when drilling for 35mm cup hinges, to poke the point through the other side of the wood. When I drill for cup hinges now I use a template and bit combination I buy at HD with no problems. The Freud bit stays in the box.

                        Last edited by Tom W; 01-17-2009, 10:19 PM.


                        • #13
                          Re: Are the Hickory Forstner Bits at Home Depot worthy?

                          Originally posted by jaicee_o18 View Post
                          If you think that it has a good quality and had a better price than the one you seen then buy it ! Or search on the internet about that products then if your satisfied for their description then buy it :)
                          I'm hoping he already made a decision since the question was asked four years ago!

                          Perhaps he will offer some feedback?