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Cobalt Drill Bits vs Titanium; Main Differences and Features

Confused between these two? Don't worry! we will help you decide.
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We have tons of drill bits in the market, but some of us really can’t tell the difference between them. Most of us are unfamiliar with whether to buy titanium bits or go for m42 cobalt drill bits.

This article will discuss the key alterations between different types of drill bits and how you should select the right drill bit before buying one.

What is a Drill Bit?

Drill bits are multi-purpose tools that come in a variety of shapes, qualities, and sizes. They are designed for different cutting applications.

Nowadays, we have an additional drill bit for different materials. Like we have one for wood, another for metal, and a large number for masonry. Each of them has a different built quality and a slight difference in shape. 

The best drill bit materials include carbon steel, high-speed steel, titanium, zirconium, and cobalt. Let’s discuss cobalt drill bits and titanium bits in detail.

A Quick Comparison Between Cobalt and Titanium Drill Bits:

Cobalt Drill Bits
  • A little pricer than titanium
  • Same material inside out
  • Easy to sharpen
  • Designed for tough steel like cast iron and stainless steel
  • Versatile to work with most materials
Titanium Drill Bits
  • Has low cost than Cobalt
  • Steel inside, titanium nitride coating outside
  • Risk to sharpen may deplete coating
  • Designed for soft metals, wood, or plastic
  • Lesser life than Cobalt

Cobalt Drill Bits:

Cobalt Drill Bits All Sizes

The cobalt drill bits are identified by dull gold color. However, this is not always the case. Though named cobalt, it’s not only made completely out of cobalt.

It’s much harder to find pure cobalt in nature. It’s a cobalt alloy that contains a ratio of steel and cobalt. Normally the two famous cobalt alloys used in the making of drill bits are M35 and M42. 

These cobalt drill bits are much more versatile as they are designed to deal with tougher surfaces. Thus this enables them to drill through a number of different materials.

Therefore, they don’t only drill tough material like stainless steel or cast iron; they can also be used on soft metals and wood.

They won’t lose their coating as they are the same inside out. You will only be replacing them if they break. Else they are made to last.

Types of Cobalt Drill Bits:

The M35 contains a 5% cobalt ratio, whereas the M42 cobalt drill bits have 8% cobalt.The M35 is known to be better because it can be fearlessly used in drills with a lesser chance of stripping.

On the other hand, the M42 is a little more brittle and more likely to break due to the greater cobalt concentration.

Features of Cobalt Drill Bits:


Cobalt Drill Bits are Heat Resistant

This is a very natural and phenomenal rule of friction that heat will produce whenever two metals will rub against each other. And as we know that the drill bits have hundreds of RPM. This means that they can quickly heat to a great level while drilling metals. 

Cobalt is much heat-resistant in this regard. The cobalt material allows the drill bits to disperse heat easily. Else we know that the drill bits can easily get hot and are much more prone to shattering/damages at higher temperatures.


While talking about the cobalt drill bits’ price, they are priced a little more than the titanium or high-speed steel drill bits. However, they are much more durable and longer-lasting than the titanium bits, which means they are worth the price. In other words, it’s a one-time investment that can go ages, unlike the titanium drill bits.

Performance and Sharpening:

Talking about the performance of the cobalt drill bits. Trust us, and it’s fantastic. They are specially designed to deal with heavy-duty drillings or particularly tougher materials.

Most of the tough materials like cast iron or stainless steel are no big deal for these drill bits. They allow fearless and confident drilling experience. 

Unlike the titanium bits, the cobalt drill bits don’t have any actual coating of any material. This means they provide longer life periods as they are of the same materials outside as inside. 

Apart, the coating doesn’t wear off over time, which means that one can easily use any sharpening method to restore the cobalt drill bits’ brilliant performance, unlike the titanium one, which needs to be replaced after the coating has started to wear off, as this will no longer be better heat- resistant.

In simple words, though these cobalt drill bits may sound expensive in the initial run, yet due to zero coating on them, they can be easily restored to their original state. So, they tend to be cheaper in the long run as they are a quality and valued purchase.


As mentioned above, these drills are very responsive to most of the tough metals. This means that if it’s designed to work well with metals, it can also perform excellent with soft and light materials. This chalks down to whether the drilling material is cast iron or softwood; these drills work fine.

Titanium Drill Bits:

Titanium Drill Bits All Sizes

Titanium drill bits, on the other hand, are very much similar to the brother-cobalt drill bits. However, some internal features set them apart. Other than that, the shiny golden color on the titanium drill bits makes their appearance different from the cobalt drill bits.

This shiny gold color is the result of the titanium nitride coating.  In general, the titanium drill bits are for softer materials like light metals, wood, or plastic.

Features of Titanium Drill Bits:


As we already talked about, the titanium drill bits are made up of steel and coated with Titanium nitride. This means that when the drill bits contact other metals or tough surfaces, their coating will start to wear off over time. This also means that after some time, you may lose the advantage of that coating as well. 

This narrows down the discussion to one statement: the titanium drill bits have a shorter lifetime than the cobalt drill bits. Because they are coated with layers, and once the coating is gone, the drill bits have now lessened much of their heat resistance feature. 

Also, you can’t sharpen the titanium drill bits too much. This will also eventually result in the worn-off coating, shorter lifespan, less heat resistance.

Durability and Performance:

Titanium is the best drill bit material if we consider drilling plastic, wood, or light metals. It’s truly worth the price. We all know the drill bits may get quickly hot while being operational on the metals due to high-speed motion.

However, it’s mainly good enough due to the excellent titanium coating that enhances its strength, durability and protects against heat. Though, the coating depletes with time.


Composition of Titanium Drill Bits

So the main point is, what are titanium drill bits made up of? So titanium drill bits are made up of high-speed steel or metal coated with titanium nitride or TiN that delivers extra durability and strength to the drill bits. Because of this, they are also called titanium nitride drill bits.

This extra coating enables it to dissipate heat as drill bits are more prone to damages at high temperatures. Though they sound very premium in reality, they don’t mean that high-end. This is why they have a relatively cheaper price tag than the cobalt drill bits.


Speaking of the price of titanium drill bits, it’s relatively cheaper than the cobalt drill bits. It certainly doesn’t mean that’s it of low value. It’s designed for light and soft materials.

If you are considering buying these drill bits for drilling into the metals, this will certainly cost more than the cobalt drill bits. The reason is that it will have a short life span and will require you to replace the drill bits quite often.

These are much better lasting than other drill bits in the market except for cobalt ones’.

Frequently Asked Questions:


Finally, towards the end of this brief article, we discussed cobalt drill bits vs titanium drill bits. In this, we came to know that cobalt drill bits are a little pricier than titanium drill bits, and the reason is that they are much more rigid and longer-lasting than titanium drill bits. They are made for metals and can be easily sharpened to restore the original performance. 

On the other hand, Titanium drill bits can be sharpened but at the risk of losing their coating, resulting in their inability to resist heat. But this doesn’t mean that they are not worth the price. These tools are nonetheless excellent for wood, plastic, or soft metals. 

Now it’s one’s own choice to select between them. If they are often drilling with metals and if their budget allows them to have one, then the cobalt drill bits are the best versatile option available.

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