Pallet fork; drill a hole?

TheOldHokie

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I have a set of PFL1242 pallet forks on my BX,.

How "hard" of steel are they if I wanted to poke a BIG hole near the end of one (or both)

Occasionally I might like to put a trailer hitch ball in the end of one to move an empty utility trailer around my flat yard.

Also, another project has JUST come up where using forks could be a lot easier than using my bucket for visual reasons.
I want to gently yank something BIG out of a shed and visibility and maneuvering real estate is at a premium, so thought if I had a hole in one
(or both) I could install D-rings in the holes, then straps or chains, etc.

I don't own any specialty drill bits or a mag drill (who wouldn't just love one of those, right?)

Thanks for the thoughts / ideas.
The wisdom of that aside I would not expect forks to be excessively "hard" in machining terms. Case hardened steel is 59C to 61 C and I doubt your forks are case hardened. Pushing HSS or M42 saws/drills you can machine close to 50C steel. Low surface speed and lots of cutting fluid. Tool life will be reduced so dont expect to do dozens. Heres a little video just to illustrate.


Dan
 

Smokeydog

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“take about a minute”…??

If one has an active imagination perhaps.

(I don’t think a bi-metallic hole saw will do anything more than scratch the color off the times of my forks. If fork tines could be cut with a hole-saw…. I wouldn’t want those forks.)

A 5/8” or 3/4” hole thru a fork tine has ZERO ability to weaken the forks.
Cut real forklift forks with bimetal bandsaw blade for tomahawk blanks is a favorite for the blacksmith guild.
 

GeoHorn

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Cut real forklift forks with bimetal bandsaw blade for tomahawk blanks is a favorite for the blacksmith guild.
Perhaps…but a bandsaw a holesaw ain’t.
 

GeoHorn

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Well…all I can say is…the tines that video is certainly a lot softer than what is on the custom forks made for me by the Hayspear folks.…they are damn HARD….I drilled a pilot hole, then the final 5/8” hole for the bolt of my fixture… Wore out completely two carbide bits.
 

CGMKCM

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I use one of these and have used it for moving trailers around. I have moved my 8K travel trailer with it on flat gravel surface. I use a short section of 3/8" chain with hooks on both ends that also uses old fire hose to protect the paint on my fork frame. I would not trust the eye bolts alone to stop the hitch from sliding off of the forks.
Forking hitch
 

ve9aa

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Step away from the drill bits fellas...........I bought one of these y'day. Unfortunately it came with a 2" ball but my utility trailer takes a 1-7/8" ball, so I had to buy that part separate.

For all that I am doing it'll be fine. Last year, I used a 2' long angle iron "bed rail" and 2 C-clamps to move my trailer around. A little janky, but it worked.

This thing is 10-x better than that setup.

1684332366508.png
 
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fried1765

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Step away from the drill bits fellas...........I bought one of these y'day. Unfortunately it came with a 2" ball but my utility trailer takes a 1-7/8" ball, so I had to buy that part separate.

For all that I am doing it'll be fine. Last year, I used a 2' long angle iron "bed rail" and 2 C-clamps to move my trailer around. A little janky, but it worked.

This thing is 10-x better than that setup.

View attachment 102719
I have the same.
Works great!
 

Runs With Scissors

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I made a version of the one posted above.

I drilled a 1/4 inch (maybe 5/16) hole in the fork for the locking pin. I don't recall it being especially difficult to drill through though.

Slow speed and a little "mystery" cutting oil and walaa...

20230221_102746[1].jpg
 
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