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Adjustable Plastic Drill Stops

When drilling to a set depth, collar-type drill stops — think donuts — provide a less-than-ideal solution. Since they’re metal, they may damage the drill bit or mar the work surface. What’s more, you need one for just about every drill bit size, and when it’s time to use or adjust them, you have to find the right size Allen wrench. Recently I stumbled across something that may replace the metal, collar-style stop in my toolbox: adjustable plastic drill stops.

Made from brightly colored, high-impact plastic, you can spot these drill stops easily in your toolbox or drawer. They come in sets of two: the smaller one fits bits sized 1/16″ to 1/4″, and the larger fits bits sized 1/4″ to 1/2″. You simply twist the threaded sleeve around the internal double-ended collet to lock it at the desired depth.

At $5 to $6 a pair, are these stops the slickest invention since sliced bread, or worthless pieces of plastic? Tell us what you think in comments.

Street Pricing [Google Products]
Plastic Drill Stops [Lee Valley]
Plastic Drill Stops [Woodcraft]


12 Responses to Hot Or Not? Adjustable Plastic Drill Stops

  1. elmegil says:

    I think they’re worthless. I got some years ago, and I have yet to find an application where they don’t slip the minute you hit the surface you’re trying to stay out of.

  2. Fred says:


    My set (Arco – Century Brand) were acquired in the 1990’s for about $4 – and not even worth that in today’s dollars. The can not hold their setting.

    I like the dedicated size ones made by Clesco that have non-marring faces and a set-screw to hold them in place.

  3. PutnamEco says:

    Maybe, I haven’t tried plastic yet. the metal collars that tighten with a set screw tend to leave marks when they bottom. They do hold their place though. For a quick gauge, I usually just use masking tape.

  4. Mike says:

    I just use masking take a a bit of common sense

  5. I’d say not. Masking tape is quick and easy. If anything, a “portable drill press jig” might provide better results.

  6. George K. says:

    Not. Chalk me up as another masking tape fan. I have even used tape on end mills because the Z feed on my mill tends to do strange things at times…

  7. Jim K. says:

    Yet another not, masking tape and paying attention has served me just fine.

  8. Simon says:

    yes, they slide when pressed

  9. BadBob says:


    Use a bit of tape If you need it more accurate than that you need to use a drill press.

  10. Isaac says:

    Actually, I bought these from Rockler a couple of weeks ago. I had to do some depth-stopped drilling, and I used both the large and small depth stops. These are the kinds that you screw together to get a tight fit. Once the stop is screwed together, it took repeated ramming without even the slightest slippage. This was true for nearly any size drill. I don’t know if the rest of these comments are by people who saw them and are imagining what it must be like to use them, but for me they worked great. I should point out that I prefer these stops because I don’t need to worry that a set screw is marring the edges on my drills. Moreover, I find it’s the metal collars with set screws that tend to slip off – especially if they’re mounted on the cutting portion of the drill. I highly recommend this type of plastic depth collar.

  11. Tim says:

    I have used a set of these little red p[lastic stops for years. Yes, they slip. No matter how hard you twist them tight. But if the hole is small, I can chuck the bit into the drill leaving the length of the stop plus the depth of the hole exposed, then twist on the stop. For larger and/or deeper holes, I put a metal stop on the bit behind the plastic one.

  12. oscar buitrago says:

    This is the kind of stopper I was looking for. I use them for years , never had a problem. today they want to sell you RYOBI, just bought one, P.of S. More expensive and you have to buy another set of drills. Just bought it today at Home Depot. Im returning it tomorrow but I don,y know were to find the plastic ones

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