Cobalt vs Titanium Drill Bits

Cobalt vs Titanium Drill BitsDrill bits are created differently.

If you are thinking of working on tougher projects that you are sure your current drill bits cannot handle, you might want to check online for bits that better suited for your needs.

Finding the correct drill bit for your project is easier said than done.

There is a lot of misleading product information that reads a lot more like ad copies that the truth about the product. This is not how things should be.

We feel that a drill bits customer should be given nothing but the correct information to help them find the right bits fr their project.

For this reason, we’ve designed a comparison of titanium vs cobalt drill bits. After reading through this guide, you will have enough information to know what makes each one special, and where each of them should be used.

Why Choose Cobalt Drill Bits?

Cobalt drill bits are made of more than just steel, with each covered with a tough layers at the top. These drill bits are manufactured primarily using high-speed steel with a feature of between 5-8 percent of cobalt in the mixture.

Cobalt Drill Bits

Via: @dumore_enterprises

This makes them much stronger than any other common bits with a far much better performance than other regular high-speed steel drill bits.

If your project involves very tough materials that are very likely to wear down other types of drill bits, then this would be a more suitable option for a brill bit. Cobalt drill bits excel at working on treated stainless steel or cast iron, and they perform greatly on titanium.

They have a very neat heat resistance feature, which comes in handy especially because of the heat accumulation that comes as a result of drilling into metal, even when you are using cutting oils.

They are mostly used for cutting through abrasive and hard materials. Cobalt bits have the ability to cut through the hardest of metals, including cast iron, bronze, titanium and stainless steel. They can also easily cut through weld seams.

Via: @harddrillbits

The cutting edges of a high quality cobalt bit will last for a longer duration compared to that of a standard HSS bit. Just like it is in other HSS bits.

Cobalt drill bits are resistant to corrosion, meaning that they are able to maintain their functional condition in any storage or performance conditions they are exposed to.

One downside of cobalt drill bits is that they can be brittle. If you drop your cobalt drill bits or do not carefully maintain them, they will break, and this can be quite an expense.

Why Choose Titanium Drill Bits?

The name Titanium drill bits is a little bit misleading. The core of each of these drill bit is designed from a high-speed steel, with the exterior coated with a layer with Titanium-Nitride.

If you are thinking of ordering these bits from an online dealer, the Titanium-Nitride might be abbreviated to TiN in the presentation.

The best part about these drill bits is that they are super affordable. They are an excellent choice for working on wood, plastic and soft metals like magnesium or aluminum.

Titanium Drill Bits

As we have seen above, TiN is a layer coating spread over high-speed steel. Although it may seem like this kind of coating is best designed for making sharp edges or to create strong surfaces, this coating is meant for a different purpose.

TiN coatings on drill bits are added to reduce friction during the drilling process. This reduces the chances of high production of heat, and because heat is among the degradation factors that wear out drill bits, it means that your drill bits will last for much longer.

Cobalt vs Titanium Drill Bits

Cobalt and titanium drill bits have a few things in common and in most cases, are used for similar applications. However, their small differences is what makes each of them a significant impact of different projects.

The differences start from the production of the bits. Titanium and Cobalt don’t do not quite perform in the same way. The coatings on either Titanium or Cobalt drill bits will make each one of the have different characteristics.

Cobalt vs Titanium Drill Bits

Titanium bits are coated using titanium nitride and sometimes, titanium carbonitride, which are available in gold or bluish-gray in color, respectively.

These coatings are meant to increase the strength of the drill bit, while at the same time, giving it a strong resistance to wear and tear, even at the highest of speeds.

Cobalt drill bits, on the other hand, come with no coating. Instead, they’re made with a mixture of steel alloy and cobalt. The cobalt increases the overall strength of the bit, while also keeping the bit from getting too hot as it spins against other metals.

Below are some of the most notable differences between Titanium and Cobalt drill bits:

Sharpening the Bits

Due to prolonged use and abuse, you will find that your drill bits need sharpening at some point, especially if you have been using them frequently on hard and unforgiving surfaces.

One problem with Titanium bits though, they come with a coating, and during the sharpening process, you might realize that all the coating has been rubbed off.

Cobalt bits, on the other hand, have no coating, so you do not have to worry about stripping off their coatings. This means that it is easier to get a longer lifetime of service from your cobalt drill bits than you would get from Titanium drill bits.


As we mentioned, both titanium and cobalt bits will perform well on wood, soft metal, and plastic. Nevertheless, these two types of drill bits contain materials that will make each one of them better at various tasks.

Titanium drill bits will perform excellently on wood

Titanium drill will perform much better when working on soft materials such as wood, soft metals and plastic. The type of coating used on them makes all the difference in performance.

For instance, titanium carbonitride coating is able to handle harder materials compared to a coating made of titanium nitride.

Cobalt bits are primarily designed for toughness and will perform excellently on hard materials such as cast iron and various categories of abrasive metals.

Cobalt bits will perform excellently on hard materials


Both Cobalt and Titanium bits are metal, so there is the concern of overheating due to friction between a metal and a metal during drilling.

Fortunately, both Cobalt and titanium bits do an excellent job of dissipating heat away so that there is minimal damages to the bits of the materials.

Among the advantages of adding cobalt to steel in the manufacture of cobalt bits is that the cobalt will assist in dissipating heat away from the contact surface, making the bit conveniently heat resistant.

The Titanium coating on Titanium bits works in a similar, acting as a catalyst between the metal work surface and the steel bit.

There are situations where you will find titanium working much better than cobalt when under intense heat environments, but this can only happen if the coating is in perfect condition.


Just like it is in everything else, your budget will be the determining factor on the kind of drill bits you will get, since these two types of bits come at different costs.

Although prices will be different depending on the brand or the materials used in the manufacturer of the particular drill bits, you should expect to pay a little more for cobalt drill bits than what you would pay for titanium bits.

Cobalt drill bits are usually more durable, so even if you will be forced to pay more for them, you are guaranteed of a longer life span of your bits.

Which One is better among Cobalt drill bits and Titanium drill bits?

Having read about the special characteristics of each type of drill bits, you can now draw a conclusion on the most suitable bits for your project.

Buy Cobalt bits if:

Your project involves hard materials, since Cobalt drill bits are designed for heavy duty procedures. The durability and high resistance these bits provide will help you drill through most of the materials rather easily.

Cobalt drill bits are designed for heavy duty procedures

However, with the efficiency brought about by Cobalt bits, comes at a high price tag, which should not bother you much, especially in you are looking for a high performance drill bit.

Buy Titanium drill bits if:

For light work such as masonry, titanium drill bits are a good choice. These drill bits will get you through different soft metals, plastic and wood, which is what a lot of handymen are looking for.

Titanium drill bits

Via: @seandimond

Titanium drill bits do not last as much as cobalt drill bits, but they provide a solid performance throughout their entire lifespan.

Cobalt vs Titanium Drill Bits – Conclusion

Buying the right kind of drill bits is crucial for the successful completion of your project.

Therefore, check the specifications of your drill bits to see if they are properly suited for the job at hand. Otherwise you will be disappointed, and you might end up spending more money than what you initially intended to spend.

Cobalt vs Titanium Drill Bits

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