In this guide we’ll look at the best hand drills.
We’ve compared weight, construction, accessories and cost
to give you our top recommendations.

What Is The Best Hand Drill?

IMAGERECOMMENDED PRODUCTSPRODUCTFEATURES
  • Weight: 245 g
  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 14.3 x 23.8 cm
  • No. of accessories: 4
  • Weight: 281 g
  • Dimensions: 6 x 6.5 x 23.7 cm
  • No. of accessories: 0
  • Weight: 880 g
  • Dimensions: 16 x 37 x 7.5 cm
  • No. of accessories: 0
  • Weight: 207 g
  • Dimensions: 14 x 5 x 5 cm
  • No. of accessories: 6
  • Weight: 499 g
  • Dimensions: 20.8 x 11 x 8.8 cm
  • No. of accessories: 20

More Detailed Hand Drill Reviews

Fiskars Manual Rotary Craft Hand Drill

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  • Weight: 245 g
  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 14.3 x 23.8 cm
  • No. of accessories: 4
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Fiskars Manual Rotary Craft Hand Drill Review

Fiskars are known around the world for making some of the best hand tools available, and the Fiskars manual rotary hand drill is no exception. Its light weight doesn’t mean it’s not powerful enough to drill through wood, plastic and even thin metals.

It has a clever pistol grip handle that makes it the best hand drill for accuracy, you can comfortably hold it steady while drilling, which is an essential feature of a hobby tool like this.

The enclosed gears mean that they won’t get gummed up with sawdust, and the handle can be folded away for easy storage, making it the best hand drill for a small tool box. We liked the included drill bits, it meant it was ready for most tasks straight away.

Schroeder 1/4-Inch Hand Drill

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  • Weight: 281 g
  • Dimensions: 6 x 6.5 x 23.7 cm
  • No. of accessories: 0
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Schroeder 1/4-Inch Hand Drill Review

This Schroeder hand drill is made in the traditional “egg beater” style, with a three-jaw chuck that is perfect for small drill bits when accuracy and precision is needed. Made in Germany, the all-steel assembly and wooden handle are well-made, as you would expect, and feel like they will last a lifetime.

As a lightweight and almost silent tool, it’s the best manual hand drill in the traditional configuration we’ve ever reviewed. The chuck has excellent knurling on it, which made fitting new drill bits easy and allowed for effective tightening down.

Faithfull CB10 10-inch Carpenters Brace

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  • Weight: 880 g
  • Dimensions: 16 x 37 x 7.5 cm
  • No. of accessories: 0
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Faithfull CB10 10-inch Carpenters Brace Review

When you need the best carpenters brace, you can’t go wrong with the Faithfull CB10. This capable bit and brace setup can bridge the gap between the precision of the best hand drill and the power of a modern electric drill.

The 12-point reversible ratchet means that you can turn the handle in one direction without turning the drill bit. We really like the ratchet function because it can make drilling holes when access is tight pretty easy, and with a smaller profile than a heavy electric drill.

The four-jaw chuck is optimised for round bits up to 13 mm, and can be used with augur and flat bits as well. It’s a solidly built bit and brace for fine carpentry work when control is needed more than noisy power.

Fdit Hand Twist Drill Set

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  • Weight: 207 g
  • Dimensions: 14 x 5 x 5 cm
  • No. of accessories: 6
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Fdit Hand Twist Drill Set Review

When it comes to the finest precision and tiny drill bits for model making or jewellery, this Fdit hand twist drill is ideal. Sometimes any mechanical advantage is too much for delicate materials, so you need the hand-held accuracy of a true hand drill.

With a lightweight yet tough hollow ABS plastic handle, we liked the fact that you can keep small bits inside ready for use. And with a proper three-jaw chuck, you can use round and hex shank bits for any drilling job that needs the human touch.

We liked the fact that you can apply direct hand pressure to extra fine drill bits without snapping them, as long as you have a steady hand. It’s the best hand held drill for tiny drill bits, but we wouldn’t recommend using it for batch drilling.

HYCKee MF16 Aluminum Hand Drill

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  • Weight: 499 g
  • Dimensions: 20.8 x 11 x 8.8 cm
  • No. of accessories: 20
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HYCKee MF16 Aluminum Hand Drill Review

The aluminium hand drill set we tested from HYCKee was an excellent example of a manual twist drill with a range of accessories to help the keen hobbyist or model maker. The keyless chuck makes it easy to tighten down on the smallest drill bits we had, even down to 0.5 mm.

The fully aluminium drill body was sturdy but light enough to throw into any small tool kit and made one handed drilling a breeze with a little practise. One feature that made us think this is the best manual hand drill for electronics projects was the free-spinning swivel top, allowing us to keep pressure on the drill bit while turning.

The accessory kit was another big bonus. The small pin vice was perfect for holding small materials, and could be screwed down for extra stability. The included bits were sharp and the needle files will come in useful as well. It’s a comprehensive kit for any model maker.

Hand Drill Buyer’s Guide

There are many times when precision and accuracy is required more than raw power. An electric drill can be too heavy, clumsy or noisy, so a hand operated drill is perfect for smaller tasks. When it comes to model making or working with delicate materials, you need the best hand held drill for the job.

Types of Manual Drill

The best hand drill is a mixture of precision and torque, depending on the task at hand. Modern types of rotary craft hand drills such as the Fdit Hand Twist Drill Set apply new techniques to classic tool design.

The traditional “egg beater” style hand drill like the Schroeder hand drill adds a mechanical advantage to drilling, but for true precision in the most delicate application you need a manual twist hand drill like HYCKee Aluminium Hand Drill.

The best carpenters brace needs extra torque for drilling holes in solid timber, so a large crank is supplied to add the leverage necessary for harder tasks.

Usage

Manual drills like Faithfull Carpenter’s Brace are used for a wide range of tasks, but can be the most suitable for delicate applications like model making or building electronic circuit boards. If you need to drill soft or brittle materials like resin, beeswax, amber or glass, a hand drill is the most effective tool available.

Conclusion

The best hand drill review wouldn’t be complete without a winner, so we’re happy to choose the Fiskars manual rotary drill, we think it’s a brilliant manual woodworking tool. The innovative hand grip shape was comfortable to use and we really liked the enclosed gearing.

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