Drills are a type of narrow rotating weapon which were sporadically used throughout Robot Wars. The first robot to use them was Torque of the Devil in Series 1, while the most successful was the US shufflebot Drillzilla, which won several side competitions in Robot Wars: Extreme Warriors and finished runner-up in The Second World Championship.

House Robot Sir Killalot was also fitted with a drill-like lance on his right arm, which became one of his signature features throughout his appearances.

Definition[edit | edit source]

Drills (or Hole Saws) refer to any narrow face spinner with spear(s) or chisel(s) on their face. The spear(s) or chisel(s) are mounted parallel to the motor axle, enabling them to grind holes through other robots when they rotate.

There were two basic methods of making a drilling weapon:

  • One was to place a spear or drill bit directly onto the motor axle. so that the weapon functioned like a traditional hand drill.
  • The other was to take two spears and place them opposite each other on the disc, an equal distance away from the centre.

Advantages and Disadvantages[edit | edit source]

Sir Killalot's lance easily pierces through W.A.S.P.'s armour

Ming Dienasty self-rights using its arm-mounted drill


  • Drills, like chainsaws, were very easy to obtain and attach to a robot, as they were simply obtained or converted from ordinary construction tools.
  • They could be very effective in piercing through weaker armour or poking through exposed gaps in the robot's armour or chassis. Sir Killalot's lance was especially capable of drilling and skewering through competitors throughout his appearances.
  • They could be attached to a lifting mechanism to either offer an effective weapons synergy or act as part of a self-righting mechanism. Sir Killalot's lance was especially capable of lifting and spinning competitors into the air, while Ming Dienasty's arm-mounted drill successfully worked as a srimech at multiple points during its only battle.
  • Drills could be easily be fitted into invertible designs, working either way up. Rawbot, Spam and Trazmaniac are examples of invertible robots armed with drills.


Firestorm 3 was easily able to avoid Bee-Capitator's weapon during their first-round battle

  • As with spears, drills were exceptionally narrow, making them difficult to aim properly, and were not usually large or powerful enough to cause any major damage. While Ming Dienasty was able to cause damage to Scraptosaur and Ceros in its Series 7 first-round melee, it was unable to cause enough for it to progress to the next round as a result of it being largely unable to aim its drill for much of the battle.
  • They could also be easily damaged or broken off, as Sir Chromalot's Series 4 battle against The Steel Avenger demonstrated.
  • Being extremely narrow, facing one direction and requiring a sustained attack to cause damage, drills also had a very limited attack range, and could easily be avoided by opponents. For example, Bee-Capitator's drill proved largely ineffective in preventing Firestorm 3 from getting underneath and flipping it.

List of Robots with Drills[edit | edit source]

Robots are listed alphabetically. Robots which are not heavyweight entries are listed with a green background. House Robots are listed with a yellow background. Robots that fought in the US 1990s events are highlighted in purple.

Robot Series Appearances with Drills Notes Image
Axios Series 3 Mounted on a lance which could enable the drill to swing at a full 180 degrees.
Basenji US Season 2, Nickelodeon Two 6-inch hole saws mounted at the rear, used in tandem with the robot's front wedge and four-wheel drive.
Basenji in arena.png
Bee-Capitator Series 5 Mounted near floor-height.
Drillzilla US Season 1 Shufflebot. Drill was mounted at the rear and featured three sharpened flutes. US Season 1 Annihilator and Tag Team champion; runner-up in The Second World Championship. Relied more on its pushing power and speed than the drill or cutting jaw weapons.
Ming Dienasty Series 7 Rotational speed of 3,000rpm. Drill was mounted on an electric arm, allowing it to self-right.
Niterider Extreme 2 An 'active spike' weapon, nicknamed a 'Disemboweler'. Added sharp teeth to the tip which could extend outwards when the weapon spun round, and cause substantial internal damage once the spike pierced through other opponents' armour.
Rawbot Extreme 2, Series 7 Represented Sweden in international competition.
Robert Redford Jr. 1996 Championship Used a large lance like drill, similar to Sir Killalot.
Robot redford jr.jpg
Ron Series 2 A set of four drills, used in tandem with four saw cutters and a 300mm circular saw.
Ron website image.jpg
Sir Chromalot Series 4 Two 18-inch drills accompanying the robot's existing spike weapon, attached to either side of Sir Chromalot's wheel hub body. A single drill was used during its main Series 4 campaign, while the twin-drill set-up was adopted for the Series 4 Celebrity Special. The drills themselves proved very brittle, and were easily damaged in combat. Replaced with a flipping arm in subsequent appearances.
Sir Chromalot.png
Sir Killalot Series 3-10, Extreme 1-2, US Season 1-2, Nickelodeon, Dutch Series 1-2, German Series Mounted on the end of his 'lance' and capable of lifting, drilling and spinning robots over. Did not have drilling capabilities in Series 2.
Sir Killalot S6.png
Spam Series 6 A front rotating 'prong' shaped like a tin-opener, powered by two kinetic flywheels to the robot's top and bottom.
Torque of the Devil Series 1 First robot with a drill; also the first vertical spinner.
Torque Of The Devil.jpg
Trazmaniac Dutch Series 2 Direct drilling attacks allowed Trazmaniac to take future runner-up Philipper 2 to a close judges' decision in the same series.
Twister Series 5 Three-bladed drill cutter with a tapered cross bit, mounted on the same axle as a bludgeoner.
Twister (UK).jpg
Wizard Series 2 Front-mounted hole saw.
Wizard Crop.png
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