Drill SFM Calculator

Drill SFM Calculator

Created by Team y2calculate

Content written by Kate (Mechanical Engineer)

Coding and design by Marcelino (Ms)

Reviewed by Sajid khan

Fact checked 🔍✓

Published: January 22, 2024 → Last Updated: February 5, 2024

Table of Contents

What is Drill SFM?

Drill SFM stands for “Surface Feet per Minute” in the context of drilling operations. It is a measure of the cutting speed or velocity at which the cutting edge of a drill contacts the material being drilled. SFM is a crucial parameter in machining processes, including drilling, as it directly affects the efficiency and effectiveness of the cutting action.

The Drill SFM is calculated by multiplying the drill’s diameter by its rotations per minute (RPM) and then further multiplying by a constant factor. The formula for Drill SFM is often expressed as:

Formula to calculate Drill SFM and Variables:


  • is the Drill Surface Feet per Minute,
  • is the diameter of the drill in inches, and
  • is the Rotations Per Minute of the drill.

This calculated SFM value helps machinists and manufacturers optimize drilling processes, ensuring appropriate cutting speeds for different materials and drill sizes.


The formula for Drill SFM with variable explanations is given by:

\[ SFM = \frac{D \times N \times \pi}{12} \]


  • \( SFM \) is the Surface Feet per Minute.
  • \( D \) is the diameter of the drill (in inches).
  • \( N \) is the RPM (Revolutions per Minute) of the drill.

Calculate the Surface Feet per Minute (SFM) for a drill with a diameter (\(D\)) of 0.5 inches rotating at 1200 RPM (\(N\)).


Using the formula:

\[ SFM = \frac{0.5 \times 1200 \times \pi}{12} \]

Calculating the result:

\[ SFM = \frac{0.5 \times 1200 \times 3.14159}{12} \]

Approximating the value:

\[ SFM \approx \frac{1884.9556}{12} \] \[ SFM \approx 157.07963 \]

Therefore, the Surface Feet per Minute (SFM) is approximately 157.08.

How to use Drill SFM calculator

Measuring Drill SFM is easy. For user convenience, we have created a Drill SFM calculator. First, select the unit, and then enter the Drill Diameter. In the second step, select the unit, and in the fourth label, enter RPM.

Click the calculate button, and the Drill SFM calculator will calculate Drill SFM for you.

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