There are unique sizes, shapes and colours that rock comes in; however, it is one of the hardest substances to drill into. Delightfully, rocks can be used for a number of purposes, especially in artistry and passionate craftsmanship, and construction. For beginners, trying their hand at masonry for the first time, soft rocks are easier to drill. On the other hand, professionals prefer hard rock for craftsmanship, and many types of construction, which are typically difficult to drill. However, if you have the right tools, drilling through rocks can be far easier. Here is a quick guide on rock drilling.

Things You Need

  • Sharp-tipped marking pencil
  • Diamond- or carbide-tipped masonry bit
  • Hammer drill
  • Sharp file to sand down rough edges


rock_drilling1. Select the type of rock that fits your need. Simultaneously, keep in mind the level of difficulty that you will face in drilling a hole through the rock.

2. Next, determine where you want to drill the hole in the rock. Using a sharp-tipped marking pencil, mark the places in the rock to guide you while drilling through it.

3. Select the type of drill and drill bit. If you are working on a softer rock such as sandstone or limestone, which is less than 7 on the Mohs scale of hardness, it may be fitting to use a masonry drill. For harder rocks, such as granite, you may need a diamond-tip drill bit. If the size of the rock is suitable, you can use a drill press; otherwise, it would be better to select a stronger drill and use it with plenty of water for cooling.

4. Get your cordless hammer drill ready for action by using a freshly charged battery. If you are using an electric handheld hammer drill, make sure that it has an extension cord that reaches the location of the rock.

5. Now, begin to drill through the rock. If the rock is too small, it is important to submerge it in a small container of water to have a better view of the drilling process. For larger rocks, you will need water to be poured continuously over the drilling area as you drill through. Water is needed to cool the drill bit during the drilling process, since rock drilling generates a lot of heat due to friction in the drilling process.

6. Now, position the tip of the drill bit precisely on the mark that you have made on the rock. Slowly lower the tip of the drill bit, making sure it is straight and aligned. Next, press it down on the surface of the rock and keep it vertical and steady.

7. Apply less pressure at first as you start drilling through the rock. As you apply increased downward pressure, you will drill at a faster rate by letting the tip of the drill bit penetrate smoothly into the surface of the rock. Increase the rotational speed of the drill, and apply pressure further. Make sure that you keep the drill bit perfectly straight and aligned until the desired depth of hole is achieved.

8. Keep adding water to cool the bit as you drill through the rock. Remove any particles that may be created during the process. Once the hole is created, use a sharp file to sand down the rough edges, if any.


Make sure that you wear safety eyeglasses while drilling rock.This is because if the rock or a drill bit breaks during the process, sharp pieces can go flying, creating hazards.

Secure the rock firmly in position while drilling, keeping your fingers away from the drill bit.


If the rock is too small, it can be difficult to hold it in position steadily. Hence, it is a good idea to use clamps to hold it in place while drilling.