Drilling Through a Glass Bottle

Patty Anderson
by Patty Anderson
2 Materials
2 Minutes
Again, I must say, you all inspire me! From the Hometalker who used permanent colored pens to paint her Royal Crown bottle to other Hometalkers who used various mediums to paint their glass panes or bottles, I wanted to do the same thing....then go a step further. Drilling through glass was something I figured was beyond my expertise, but I watched many a youtube, and gleaned bits and pieces of common sense for this craft. Here's what I did, and it's super simple. Come on, I'll show you......
Let's talk glass and tile drill bits. I watched folk use the Bosch glass and tile bits to cut a hole through glass, and the diamond dust circular bits from Drilax and Neiko. I bought all three from Amazon, Bosch being the most expensive at 12.82, and Drilax and Neiko being a "bit"....get it? icon less expensive, at 9.99 and 9.80 a pack. I'm used to drilling through wood, but through glass? It kind of scared me, so, after watching more youtube, I put on my big girl panties and decided to use the Neiko diamond circular drill bits. Let's do this!
Here's what you need. A bottle, (I've been drilling through the bottom of the Crown Royal bottles, so that's what I will show ya'll today) a cordless drill, a small container of water and of course, the not shown drill bit! Also, one should always wear eye protection. The possibility of glass shattering is small, if you don't rush things, and we can always put a tourniquet around your neck if you cut your hand, but your eyes.....just wear the glasses, okay? Ah, and one other thing you'll need......
A bucket of damp sand. Seriously, I watched a bunch of how to's online, with folk having others hold their bottle, making a jig to hold it, standing on the bottle with their foot,...... and one lady sat solo with a bucket of damp sand and it was SO simple......so. Here we go!
Sit down and get comfortable with your bucket of damp sand. I have a bucket of extra sand beside me, to add to my bucket in front of me, just in case. The sand will hold your bottle awesomely. Now, this is for drilling through the bottom of the Royal Crown bottle, but if you wanted to drill through the side, just make sure you have a bucket or turkey broiler or SOMETHING long enough to hold your bottle. It'll work. Now, where's my bottle.....
Push your bottle into the damp sand, and add more if you need to, so that the bottle does not move. Half ways up the sides is a good start.
Jewels of wisdom...you MUST have lubricant. Whether water, WD-40, oil, whatever, you need to keep the drill cool and moist. I used water. The bottom of the Royal Crown bottle is slightly concave, so I poured water onto the bottom, and gently shifted the bottle in the sand to make sure where I wanted to drill was covered in water.
Okay then! Jewel of wisdom....start off at a rough 45 degree angle, with steady hands. You will want to score the glass with the EDGE of the drill, which will help keep the drill from walking about. Use a medium speed, steady hands, edge of the bit scoring, then, as you see the glass dust start to color the water white, slowly lift your drill into the upwards position. Really, once you do this, you will wonder why you haven't done this before! Another jewel of wisdom....let the drill do the work! Do not push down like one does when drilling wood. Let the drill do the work. It won't take long.
Once the water shows glass dust, you can slowly upright your drill. Your drill won't walk, then. Basically, I would say the weight of the cordless is sufficient weight to drill through the glass. Relax. Drill. You're doing well. Here is where you can "rotate" your drill, like you were reaming a hole through wood, except it's glass. No undue pressure, just gentle small circles, reaming the hole out. Light hands on the drill. You're doing good.
The bottom of a Royal Crown bottle is about 1/4 inch thick, still, it won't take but a minute or two to drill through this. The gentle rotation helps. You will notice "droplets" falling through the almost finished hole just before the bit breaks through. Nice and easy, almost there.....
And there you have it! A lovely hole in the bottom of the bottle! Remember, start at a rough 45 degree angle to score the bottle so that the bit doesn't walk off, don't use pressure to push the drill through, just gently rotate or circle the drill, like a top spinning on a table, reaming the hole. Now, rinse your bottle!
Professionals use grommets; I used a piece of a drinking straw to push in the drilled hole, so that my wires (oh yeah, did I mention....) would not have to rub against the sharp edge of the drilled glass. I also used E6000 glue to set four glass beads as feet on the bottom!
See? Your alls inspiration has allowed me to play with colors! And, with the hole in the bottom, I bought fairy lights from Amazon (9.99) to fill my Crown Royal bottle!
Oh!!! *Falls over, drooling.....* night light extraordinaire!!!! I see Christmas gifts and lights on every corner!icon
And, for those of you thinking I'm totally nuts, you can buy cork shaped whine bottle fairy lights battery operated with 15 LED's, six colors for 15 bucks! Now, let's go spread the color!!!
Suggested materials:
  • Royal Crown bottles
  • Diamond drill   (Amazon)
Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 4 questions
  • Lillianna Chudolij Lillianna Chudolij on Oct 27, 2017
    What type of paint was used???

  • Gypsy Gypsy on Oct 27, 2017
    Well... If YOU drilled through ¼" glass and lived to tell about it, i guess this old lady can try it too... Would you do this same procedure to drill holes in glass block?

  • Lillianna Chudolij Lillianna Chudolij on Oct 27, 2017
    Patty -- what type of paint did you use???

Join the conversation
3 of 87 comments
  • Kay Kay on Dec 02, 2017
    Hey..what ever works best for you is what counts. With the tape you need to stack several pieces so it will hold the drill bit. With glass it's always tricky. Kay

  • Kay Kay on Dec 02, 2017
    Hey..what ever works best for you is what counts. With the tape you need to stack several pieces so it will hold the drill bit. With glass it's always tricky. Kay