can someone give me some advise on how to hold a small piece
(1"long x1/4"wide) without having it catch the piece and spin it
around and or break the drill bit?
try a plain old ordinary ring clamp. pretty versatile things… you
can also use various pliers, small bench vises, or whatnot, if you’ve
got them. Ring clamps, though, with their leather jaws, are nice
because they don’t mark the metal.
if you’ve no other good way, the old standby is shellac or lapidary
dop wax, or something of the sort. You imbed the item in that to hold
it. Disadvantage is it takes longer to get ready to drill, then more
time to clean off afterwards, and if the item gets too warm, the wax
melts and can let go. similar materials are the thermoplastics like
jett set, or the grey thermoplastic GRS sells. Or, chasing pitch can
work too. But if you’re drilling or working on anything fragile,
easily bent or crushed, or otherwise in need not just of holding but
also of support, then this is often the best way.
If nothing else is available, glue it to something. Epoxy, super
glue, or foam mounting tape, double sided carpet tape, or the like,
can be used, though the tapes are not always predictably secure for
Sometimes you can carve enough of a groove in your bench pin or a
piece of wood so you can simply hold it down with fingers, the
grooves sufficiently resisting a spinning motion to let your fingers
hold it securely. This, if you know what you’re doing, often works
fine, but without experience, you can think it’s secure when it’s
not, risking injury to drill bit or fingers.
If large enough, or you’ve got a small enough C clamp, you can clamp
it to a piece of wood, being then able to hold the larger piece of
wood. This is similar to standard practice when drilling larger items
on things like drill presses.
What you probably don’t want to do, unless you’re very sure you can
hold it, and this would tend to be with smaller drills, is just hold
it in your fingers. But I’m guessing you’ve already found this out,
or you wouldn’t have been asking the question.
It will also help a lot to use a proper lubricant when drilling. A
properly lubed drill will cut more easily, and be less likely to
catch the workpiece.