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Are there other alternatives beside a small drill (shown below) to drill a few holes on a 0.5 cm plastic? (Looking for something that is inexpensive, save energy, portable and can drill a decent hole on a 0.5 cm plastic. The maximum hole diameter should be around 0.5cm or smaller.)

enter image description here

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I'm shocked. Is this excellent portable drill considered small these days? –  sharptooth Sep 12 '12 at 7:19
    
If you don't want to buy a drill, you could probably rent one from a local hardware or big box home improvement store. It's also likely that somebody you know has one that you could borrow. –  Tester101 Sep 12 '12 at 11:29
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4 Answers 4

up vote 5 down vote accepted

You could go with a hand drill for such small holes if you wanted.This is the old way that used to be used for such things

They work reasonably well and as long as your not too unco they are easy to use.

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Well, my experience with a hand drill is that it is a nightmare when using bits thinner than 5 millimeters - high risk of bending and breaking the bit. –  sharptooth Sep 12 '12 at 7:23
    
if it wasnt into plastic i'd probably agree... but you could also use a injector drill if you have a problem using the above hand drill –  UNECS Sep 12 '12 at 7:25
    
@sharptooth possible to share with us what material is being drilled by the hand drill that is causing you nightmare (e.g. breaking bit) –  Jack Sep 13 '12 at 1:36
    
@Jack: That's not because of the material, that's because one has to hold the drill and turn the handle at the same time which makes the drill tilt and this puts bending load onto the bit and can break it. –  sharptooth Sep 13 '12 at 7:35
    
@sharptooth Thanks for sharing. At first, I thought it was some type of plastic that is so strong that can bend or break the bit even though it is just 0.5 cm thick. –  Jack Sep 13 '12 at 7:52
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One way is using a heated wire or needle (held with pliers) and melt through the plastic. This will not work for all plastics and the hole edges won't be very clean, but it is cheap and portable. You can use a lighter as a source of heat.

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Not certain but I think this would result in a cleaner hole than using a drill which will tear the plastic... –  The Evil Greebo Sep 12 '12 at 11:38
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For relatively small holes, you could use a push drill. One of the standards of this type was the "Yankee" brand from Stanley which has been discontinued. A number of other companies make this type at various price points. For example

pushdrill

A smaller version for light work is also available.

smallpushdrill

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I like the catalog that is shown in your first link. (Unfortunately, it cannot be download as it can only be view online) –  Jack Sep 13 '12 at 1:39
    
No endorsement, just a source of an image. There are many other sources of this type of tool, some more elegant and expensive than the one shown. –  bib Sep 13 '12 at 2:09
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Find a nail or hole punch in the size you need and give it a good whack with a hammer!

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Almost every type of plastic (except soft polyethelene, vinyl based items and similar) will crack or even shatter with such an approach. –  bib Sep 12 '12 at 21:14
    
Oh gosh, I don't want the plastic to shatter. I just need a few decent holes on the plastic. –  Jack Sep 13 '12 at 1:28
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