Come the Apocalypse, this hand held auger bit drill (aka “brace”) will do the
same work for humanity all hand powered tools have done for centuries.
This one, of course, is not exactly your grandfathers brace and bit since
the bit is the innovative modern adjustable version introduced sometime
in the second half of the 20th Century.
Any size hole up to 3 inches with just a turn of the adjustment screw! Prior
to that most carpenters carried an entire cloth tool roll filled with every size
needed on the job to make holes from 1/4 inch up to a gargantuan 1 1/4 inch diameter.
For larger holes an additional tool roll of large hole augers would need to find
space in the toolbox as well.
I used this particular combination brace and bit all through the late 1970’s through
the middle 1990’s- mostly to bore knob and lock holes in the solid fir doors commonly
available at the time.
Before battery operated drills with individually sized hole saws the trusty brace and bit
was the go-to hole making tool of the day.
Of course, in the 21st century most doors come from the factory with knob and lock holes
pre-drilled so even the need to cut holes onsite is uncommon.
Nevertheless, as recently as a few weeks ago I needed to make a special retro sized hole
and none of the many hole saws or spade bits in my tool box could quite do the job.
So maybe the day of the classic brace and bit is not yet gone. They are still for sale
(new!) online. Go figure.