Everyone needs to drill holes at one time or another and Fisch Forstner Bits create very clean holes. I tried out a set of 4 Fisch Wave Cutter Forstner Bits, and was impressed by both the speed of cut and the clean sharp edges of the top and bottom of the holes they created.
Fisch specializes in the manufacture of high-quality drilling and cutting tools in their drill factory in
West Styria, Austria. The company produces over 2 million drilling and milling bits every year. The
company's website states, "the most important precondition for the highest-quality tools is the careful
selection of raw materials. As a result of the standardization of steels and the high-quality steel
processing in Europe, we can confidently say that we only use the best raw materials in producing our
tools." They use CNC machines to produce their bits, which have a high-quality feel to them
when you open the package.
I've used a variety of Forstner bits but these have a unique wave pattern along the inner edge of the
bit...hence the name, Wave Cutter. The picture below compares the Wave Cutter to two other Forstner
bits in my shop.
The one on the left uses a serrated cutting edge with 'teeth' cut into the edge of the blade. The bit in
the center has a straight edge along the perimeter of the bit. Fisch's Wave Cutter on the right has a wave pattern along the inner edge of the bit. Below is a close-up.
Fisch's literature claims that there is a reduction of friction with this design which means that
you will generate less heat and can run the bit at a 25 percent faster speed (RPM). They also claim that you
will get 3x lifespan when compared to other Forstner bits. It is hard to substantiate these claims in a
review like this but when I used the bit in both my drill press and by hand I had the sensation that
the bit was cutting faster than what I was used to with the bits shown in the earlier picture. I also felt
like I only had to use about half the downward pressure than I normally would need when using this bit.
Another convenient feature is the hex shank on these bits. All of the Fisch Wave Cutter forstner bits
come with convenient hex shanks to reduce slippage in the drill chuck. All bits 1-3/8" diameter and
under have standard 1/4" quick change hex shanks. All bits 1-1/2" diameter and over have sturdy 3/8"
hex shanks. Overall bit length is 3-1/2". You can use the bits directly in your drill or use them with extenders
or quick change adapters as shown below.
The Fisch Wave Cutter bits produce a very clean flat bottom hole. I argued with myself about the need to take a picture of a hole. I decided that
everyone knows what a hole looks like in a piece of wood so it was unnecessary! Although a Forstner
bit will drill a nice clean hole all the way through a board, it excels at cutting a clean, flat-bottomed
hole in wood. The typical use is to drill partway through a board and insert a dowel into the hole, but
I have an alternative use that I thought I would show here.
1" inch diameter wooden signature medallions
to sign my work, which are made of 3-ply birch plywood just 7/64" thick and they fit
perfectly in a hole drilled with a 1" Forstner bit. This is a perfect way to sign your work and a perfect
use of these Forstner bits!
I would highly recommend these Forstner Bits by Fisch. They are excellent quality and
the wave cutter design will give you a longer life tool for your money. I'm going to be replacing some
of my worn out bits with these wave cutter bits in the near future!
Find out more and purchase
Fisch Forstner Bits
Jeffrey Fleisher has been a woodworker for approximately 20 years and a professional woodworker for the past 6 years. He is the president of his local woodturning club, the Woodturners of the Virginias and past president of the Northern Virginia Carvers. You can see some of the furniture he has made at www.jeffswooddesigns.com. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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