Large Hole Beads & Ultrasonic Technology
Large hole stone beads present unique challenges for manufacturers. The larger the hole, the more commonly breakage occurs in drilling. This means that manufacturers spend more time inspecting and sourcing raw materials, along with inevitable loss from breakage. As a result, you'll notice that large hole beads usually cost more.
There are multiple ways to drill stone. The best method (and the one we use for large hole beads at Dakota Stones) uses ultrasonic technology, a drilling device that uses vibrations in order to hammer its bit through materials, as opposed to traditional drilling methods. If you're interested in the science, it's fascinating.
The results are even more exciting. Ultrasonic drilling gives the cleanest possible hole edges, minimizing potential abrasion and damage to stringing material. It also gives a consistent hole through the entire bead, eliminating the frustrating, and often impassable, narrowing in the middle of the bead that can result from poorly executed traditional drilling methods. Our large hole beads range from 2mm to 2.5mm, depending on the size of the bead.
We now carry 6mm Large Hole beads along with our original 8mm and 10mm sizes. This new size is great for designing more delicate pieces, while still being able to use leather and thicker cording!