Drilling Spheres

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A friend gave me a bag of billiard balls. I figured I’d make some coat racks out of them.

Holding them to drill holes to insert dowels can be a challenge. However, a piece of plywood I use under material I’m drilling was sitting on the drill press table and a hole about the right size to hold a ball. Another piece of ply was near it for the next drill job, if I needed a clean backer. Of course, the first piece, with a hole, held the ball, and the other allowed me to position my Jorgensen clamp to clamp the ball.

A quick twist or two and I was ready to ruin billiard balls, and gain a coat rack.

I’m really surprised that you haven’t gotten any comments. I’ve got an 8 ball that I want to drill for a shifter knob, for the ‘31 Model A pickup. Haven’t done it, as I haven’t come up with a good way. Found it with your post, though.

Thanks for sharing!

Keith "Shin" Schindler

Great solution. Thanks for sharing this tip.

CHRIS, Charlottetown PEI Canada. Anytime you can repurpose, reuse, or recycle, everyone wins!

I’m anxious to see the finished coat rack. Be sure and post a picture. I am new to this site, but have already benefited from the many great suggestions like yours.

Created with Love by Tomas

Great idea. I have an old set I think maybe now I will do something with. Thank you.


If I needed to drill into a sphere I’d use the same sort of fixture. The only thing I’d do differently is I’d drill a pilot hole about 90% of finished depth first to encourage the larger bit to go where it’s supposed to.

Jeff, I used a Forstner or a spur bit, so the pilot was not needed anymore than if you were drilling in a wood project. In fact, too big a pilot could throw you off, when you switched to the Forstner/spur.

If I were using regular metal working bits, such as drilling for a shifter knob, the pilot would be, as you pointed out, a must. However, I’d still, likely, use a spur or Forstner because they cut nice.

As you can see in the attached photo, it went fine. In fact, the Forster would be better than a metal bit, because the dowel would have to have the same [large] hole in both the pool ball and the wood or plywood.

That’s a cool coat rack! Neat idea.

Keith "Shin" Schindler


CHRIS, Charlottetown PEI Canada. Anytime you can repurpose, reuse, or recycle, everyone wins!