How to properly drill a hole in a cast iron bath

Most people who use a cast-iron bowl, once come to the idea of ​​introducing in water procedures some innovations. Often, the modifications concern the installation of the mixer directly on one of the sides of the product or the installation of hydromassage equipment.

The device of a cast iron bath

The device of a cast-iron bath.

Whatever the hosts may conceive, this process can lead to the breakdown of enamel and deterioration of the bathroom in the absence of sufficient experience and knowledge about how to drill a cast-iron bath.

The drilling procedure should be carried out without haste, because the base in which the hole will be located has a high level of brittleness.

Drilling process

Elements of a spiral drill for cast iron

Elements of a spiral drill for cast iron.

To produce such works, the following set of tools and materials will be required:

  • permanent pen with a thick pen;
  • Drill intended for drilling metal;
  • drill;
  • kerosene solution;
  • Sander.

First, you need to make sure that the work is supposed to be carried out on the surface of a cast-iron bath. Many people face a problem when it is difficult to determine externally what type of bathtub to drill. The steel product from cast iron in the first place is different in weight. If the cup can be lifted easily, it means that it is a steel product. The cast-iron bath has a large mass, and to raise it, it will take two or even three people.

At the first stage of production, the marker should be marked with a marker in which it is planned to create a hole. The label must have a small diameter, so that during the creation of the hole the drill does not retreat too much to the side.

Screw Drills for Drilling Cast Iron

Screw drills for drilling cast iron.

How to drill a hole in a cast iron bath? It is necessary to do it very carefully. The fact is that the enamel on such a product is very fragile, it is easy to damage. In order to avoid damage to the brittle layer, it is necessary to keep the drill at the same angle both during drilling and after, while lifting the drill out of the hole.

Care should also be taken to ensure that an ideally sharpened drill is used for drilling holes in metal products. It should not scratch metal, but densely dig into it. Insufficient level of sharpening of this tool will allow to drill a hole, but this will ensure the formation of cracks on the enamel.

In order to drill a layer of cast iron with an ideal evenness, you can use a wooden bar or a plate of metal, in which an opening with the required diameter will be pre-made. Through such a workpiece it will be possible to drill a hole perfectly even if the diameters of the drill and workpiece are slightly different.

A few tips

One of the most common mistakes people make when taking on this job for the first time is neglecting such a procedure as cooling the instrument. In order to accelerate the process of cooling the drill and thereby increase productivity and reduce the time for the implementation of the conceived, the kerosene solution perfectly fits.

Types of cast iron

Types of cast iron.

This tool will not only avoid overheating of the tool while working with it, but also provide much more durability. Thus, using this kerosene solution, you can increase the service life of the drill and accelerate the implementation of the conceived changes in your own bathroom.

If such a solution was not at hand, you can always cool the place of work and tools with ordinary water. It's impossible not to cool the metal, because with heating, the iron becomes very hard, which will lead to damage to the drill already at the first stages of the work.

Another advice that an inexperienced home master can give a professional in drilling cast iron is a method that does not damage the enamel during drilling.

Before drilling a hole, use a grinder to remove the enamel layer at its location, and also 2 mm around it.

Thus, it is possible to exclude the possibility of cracking the enamel, because during operation the tool does not come into contact with it, so there will be no risk of damage to the bath itself.

To avoid damage to the enamel layer, some experts advise drilling it with a ceramic tile drill, and as soon as the layer boundary is suppressed, change the tool for the tile to a drill for metal in a drill.

The final stage of work

Scheme of a cast-iron bath with hydromassage equipment

Scheme of a cast-iron bath with hydromassage equipment.

After all the planned holes are made, you should again use this grinder, but at this stage it should be used for its intended purpose. With this tool, you should maximally smooth all existing angles and remove sharp burrs.

After all these works are finished, the edges of the product need to be processed with a soft sealing compound. A sealant is necessary because the metal has the property of rusting when it comes into contact with water or in a humid environment, which is not permissible, especially when it comes to a cast iron bath that is constantly operated in high humidity and periodically filled with water.

Often, in the process of repair work, the owners change both the finishing, and the floor covering, and the plumbing equipment, but they can not refuse about their old, long-liked cast-iron bath. To modernize it, they decide to install a hydromassage equipment in a cast iron bowl. This update leads to the need to drill a hole in the cast iron, and not one. Each hole must be drilled in full accordance with the technology described above, without hurrying up, carefully performing the work.

But it is possible that, even being well familiar with the technology, the master can make a mistake, which is hello to the deterioration of the product. Each subsequent opening should be done with extreme caution, without losing vigilance. Such neatness is necessary, because cast iron is metal, although strong, but at the same time very fragile.

In the above described work process, if necessary, the following changes can be made:

  • the drill can be replaced with a punch or a conventional turret;
  • The grinding machine can be replaced with a grinder with a suitable nozzle or with an ordinary sandpaper;
  • instead of a sealant, epoxy glue can be used.

If in the process of work still there was an error and a small cleavage or crack appeared on the enamel, they must be treated with a sealant or epoxy glue. Close with a beautiful decorative plumbing chalice with chrome plated, if drilled a hole to install the mixer on the edge.

The best option is to update the enamel layer after finishing all the work related to drilling the bathroom, so you can refresh the product completely during the repair process.

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