I have a Ramset Hammer drill with the Hammer drill option set, speed set at low [1], and a new 1/4" masonry/concrete bit. I can't get more than an 1/8" in about 15 minutes of incremental drilling with wax and cleaning. I have tried other area's and in the foundation wall and got the same result.

The drill is in forward and in hammer mode, thank you -). The drill is not cordless, but I have had it for 30 years when I use to install Kawneer and Vistawall Curtain walls and skylights (commercially).

The bit still has the hammer flutes/blades and the are not chippedits new.

There isn’t any aggregate in the wall that’s what is odd, it’s like a solid slurry of Portland cement. - think plaster consistency, tough stuff in 3 of the four walls tested. The drill is in hammer mode the select switch mode is set and on setting 1, low speed to prevent over-heating of the bit.

I’ve drilled steel I-beams with this drill up to 1/2”, and modern concrete (90’s) with the same bit type, the drill it’s just like a Hilti, same bits will work. I got them from ‘Fasterns inc.’ [mobile construction delivery service]. Thanks for the feedback and thoughts, much appreciated.

  • 1
    Don’t be insulted but is the drill in reverse setting? Also consider that yiu may need a better bit I have had success with Granite bits when standard masonary bits fail. If you happen to be drilling into a piece of the granite aggregate in the concrete you will want the better bit
    – Kris
    Feb 25, 2019 at 21:08
  • 1
    Also look at the tip of your bit. I've had new bits break very quickly and then they won't do much of anything. Is this a cordless hammer drill?
    – JPhi1618
    Feb 25, 2019 at 21:15
  • Is it possible you're hitting steel reinforcement material? Rebar or plate?
    – Matthew
    Feb 26, 2019 at 3:20
  • Get a better 'widiam' tip, cheap ones are made for plaster and when used on concrete fail. Also check the tip is turning in 'unscrew' mode to allow dust to be removed.
    – DDS
    Feb 26, 2019 at 9:14
  • You've had the drill for 30 years. Maybe it is defective now or got a bit of debris inside, and is now interfering with the hammering mechanism.
    – donjuedo
    Mar 2, 2019 at 20:12

2 Answers 2


Are you using it on the hammer drill setting? Some hammer drills allow you to turn it off and use it as a regular drill. Old concrete becomes very very hard and without the vibration of a hammer drill, you basically can''t get into it.


I'm guessing it's SDS Plus, so you shouldn't have a problem with a quarter inch bit, even in stone. So something else must be going on. Make sure you're on hammer and hit it full power and full speed. Pick up extra bits. Make sure it's in forward, most small diameter masonry bits will cut in fairly deep in reverse but because the flutes aren't removing the chip it'll bung up, overheat and mess up the bit. And push!

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