Efficient Rock Drilling Tools: Design and Materials of Button Bits

Table of Contents

Rock drilling engineering is a technology widely used in mining, civil engineering, oil drilling, and other fields, and the button bit is an indispensable tool in rock drilling engineering. Button bits consist of a tungsten carbide button inlaid on the drill bit body, which can break the rock at multiple points and improve the rock-breaking efficiency and quality. Therefore, the design and material selection of the button bit directly affects the efficiency, cost, and safety of rock drilling projects.

button bits

Design factors of button bit

The design of button bits should consider multiple factors, including dimensions, material selection, mechanical property calculations, geometry surface treatment, etc.


The size of the button bit is one of the most critical factors in the design and manufacturing process. The specifications and dimensions should be determined according to the practical application scenario and rock type, including the diameter, length, and button diameter of the bit, etc., to ensure the adaptability and efficiency of the button bit in the rock drilling project.

Material selection

The material selection of the button bit is equally important because it directly affects the performance and service life of the product. Different materials have different physical and chemical properties and can meet different application needs. When choosing a material, you should consider its strength, hardness, wear resistance, corrosion resistance, and cost.

button bit

Calculation of mechanical properties

In the design of a button bit, it’s essential to calculate the forces and moments that will act on the drill bit during rock drilling. These calculations ensure the drill bit can withstand the impacts, pressures, and stresses it will encounter in the field. Based on the force and moment calculations, you can determine the required strength and stiffness of the button bit. With this information, we can further optimize the structural design of the drill bit to meet the specific needs of the rock drilling project and ensure its durability and performance.


The geometry of a button bit indeed plays a significant role in its performance and service life. Thus, careful attention to the bit’s geometry is crucial during the design. For example, the shape and inclination of the carbide button should be optimized for the specific rock types encountered during drilling. The right button design can significantly enhance rock drilling efficiency by promoting effective penetration and breaking.

By fine-tuning the geometry of the button bit to match the rock types and environmental conditions it will face, you can maximize its efficiency and durability, ultimately leading to improved performance and cost-effectiveness in rock drilling projects.

Surface treatment

The surface treatment of the button bit is equally important. Surface treatment can enhance the wear resistance, corrosion resistance, and service life of the drill bit. General surface treatment technologies include carburizing, quenching, chromium plating, etc.

Material selection principles for button bits

button bit

When designing and manufacturing button bits, material selection is an important step. Different materials have different physical and chemical properties and can meet different application needs. When choosing materials, we should consider many factors, such as strength, hardness, abrasion resistance, corrosion resistance, and cost.

Strength and hardness

Button bits should withstand the impact and pressure during rock drilling, so they should be materials with sufficient strength and hardness.

Wear and corrosion resistance

Button bits should work in harsh environments for a long time, so they should be made of materials with good wear and corrosion resistance.


Different materials have different prices and processing costs, so you should consider the cost factor when choosing materials.

Commonly used materials for button bits

button bit


Steel is one of the most commonly used materials for button bits. Frequently used steel materials include carbon steel, alloy steel, etc. These steels have good toughness and wear resistance and are suitable for rock drilling projects in medium and low-hardness rocks. When selecting steel, you should consider its mechanical properties, hardness, fatigue resistance, and other factors.

Cemented carbide

Cemented carbide is another commonly used material for button bits. Cemented carbide has high hardness, high wear resistance, and good fatigue resistance and is suitable for rock drilling projects in high-hardness rocks. When selecting cemented carbide, you should consider its hardness, toughness, impact resistance, and other factors.

Other materials

Indeed, in addition to steel and cemented carbide, other materials can be used in the design and manufacture of button bits, depending on the specific requirements and applications. For example, some special steel or titanium alloy has better corrosion resistance and high-temperature performance, which is suitable for rock drilling works under specific environment. In addition, some non-metallic materials can also be used to manufacture lightweight button bits or as sealing materials.

In summary, button bit design and material selection require a comprehensive approach, considering the specific application scenario and rock type to ensure optimal performance and service life. Additionally, experimental verification is essential to assess the button bit’s performance and service life, allowing for further optimization of its design and manufacturing process. By carefully considering these factors and conducting practical evaluations, button bits can be optimized to meet the requirements of rock drilling projects, leading to improved efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and safety.

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