HDM Fixture Plate - DIY

A continuation of the thread started by @TheBigJam.

Started pecking some 5mm holes today, finally. 3 flute stub drill from Kyocera.

Struggling a bit losing steps occasionally, forcing a stop and re-zero. Guessing it’s my kludge mist system flow variations. I can hear the drill bind a bit occasionally, usually in the first 3-5mm. Seems odd given the giant steppers on this thing. Verified the coupler is tight. 500mm/min, 1.2mm peck depth, full retract.

In any event, it’s working, albeit slowly.


I was having issues with drilling too. I had a conversation with Vince and it turned out I was not plunging fast enough, getting build-up, then stalling the spindle. I was also using Harvey Tools carbide drills and they are 2 flute with more room for chip evacuation.


Good to know.
Started my drilling learning curve at 1000mm/min with immediate lose of steps. Ended up at 1/2 that with acceptable results but not good enough.

My California Tools air compressor crapped out yesterday so my pecking has petered out ‘til I fix the compressor. Hopefully the 2 flute drills will arrive by the time I fix the compressor.

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I also forgot to mention I have dual Fogbusters and lubrication helped drilling a lot.

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Jeez, I wish I had your $$😊. But yeah, I need to improve my lubricity.

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What RPM are you running and are you using the 1.5 or 2.2kw spindle? Also did you turn on the torque boost on the VFD? I believe I remember someone discussing that as an option for added torque maybe Luke can chime in on that.

I am using cheap Amazon 2 flute carbide stub drills.

I run 80 IPM retract with 30ipm plunge at 10k .040" pecks and lubricant is a must otherwise the chips stick in the flutes.

Buy some tap magic cutting fluid and add a few drops at the hole locations if needed. Thats what I started with years ago before the mist system.

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Started testing at 8k, 10k seems to work better. 1.5kW spindle.

I’ll probably bite the bullet and splurge on a Fogbuster. After I look around a bit to see if I can build my own. The machined block doesn’t look that hard to duplicate, just need to find the pressure capable reservoir.

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Is the better bargain over fog buster if you want to DYI buy a 10 in water filter housing they are rated to over 40 PSI and is all these companies are using.


You beat me to it…I was just about to link the SST version. :smiley:

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Thanks, I thought I’d seen an alternative somewhere around.

Fixed the compressor, back to pecking. Trying a alcohol/wd40 mix this time. 40 holes and no missed steps so far.


I got the SST lube-cube and love it. However, the stock reservoir is not good for alcohol based coolants. I had to swap mine out with a polypropylene based res. Polycarbonate gets really brittle from contact with alcohol.


I do love this forum. Another “good to know”.

Care to provide a link to the reservoir referenced?

This is what I got. I just took all the hardware off of the original res and put it on this.

You want the version without the pressure relief button.

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Got 1/2 the holes done yippee!

Stayed with the three flute 5mm stub drill, learned a bit.


Care to share the lesson with us?

Most of it is here: Is milling your own fixture plates worth it?

Will update when I’ve completed.

Thanks Griff

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Found some drill time today, last half of 3100 or so holes! Now I just need to chamfer and threadmill the 2nd half.


Looking good!

I used a small water filter housing and NTP to 5/16 quick connect pneumatic tubing hooked up to a compressor. Outlet is a 1/8 tube pushed in to the 5/16 that acts as a straw inside the housing. I built a weird janky system where the air for both the mister and air last comes from the same tube with a y splitter but from testing with a generic Amazon mister it works pretty well.

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Ok, so the container is pressurized, that should make the flow much more consistent.