Introduction: How to Open the 61637 Titanium Nitride Drill Bit Set Index Box

Picture of How to Open the 61637 Titanium Nitride Drill Bit Set Index Box

Today, I bought this 29 piece titanium nitride drill bit set from Harbor Freight. It was a deal. Only $9.99 for the whole thing, if you have the coupon. For those without coupons, it was on sale for $14.99. Still a good deal. Unfortunately, when I got home, I discovered that I could not open the box. Fortunately, I was not under pressure and had all afternoon to figure it out. It took me about 15 minutes to open it with very little demolition. As is usual for goods made overseas, there are either no instructions or they are undecipherable to humankind. This had no instructions. So, let us sally forth and figure out how to open this box.

Step 1: Look for the Big Yellow Tab

Picture of Look for the Big Yellow Tab

It seems simple from the outset. There is a very large tab with an arrow pointing down, and if you follow normal logic, you find that you can pull that tab out. Now the box should open. But as you huff and you puff, you find that it won't open. You get anxious and look for some way to pry it open. But, you don't want to ruin the beautiful index box. Well the next photos will reveal the secret. Hang on!

Step 2: The Secret to Opening the Box Is a Little Yellow Pin

Picture of The Secret to Opening the Box Is a Little Yellow Pin

The little yellow round thing there is the secret. If you can figure out how to get that out of there, you will have opened the box. It is not a screw, bolt, rivet or nail. It is simply a pin of some kind that has a slit that expands slightly to hold it firmly in the hole.

Step 3: As It Is Being Extracted, the Pin Looks Like This

Picture of As It Is Being Extracted, the Pin Looks Like This

It's a simple little pin but a big headache to extract. You may want to take it to your dentist. He/she may know a good way to extract something like this. Those mean little pincers could conceivably do the job.

Step 4: The Pin Is Very Difficult to Remove Without Damaging It

Picture of The Pin Is Very Difficult to Remove Without Damaging It

There is no tool I know of that will open this pin. There is (almost) no way whatsoever to grasp the pin to remove it gently and gracefully. Maybe if you drill a small hole and use a very small screw extractor, you could possibly remove it without much damage. My method was to use a big screwdriver and pry the box open. After that, I discovered how the thing was held together and decided to publish this instructable to help other hapless DIYers with this incredible problem.

Step 5: This Is How It Looks Once You Have the Pin Out of the Hole

Picture of This Is How It Looks Once You Have the Pin Out of the Hole

Once you have extracted the pin, you see how simple the mechanism is that holds the lid on the box. It is simply a tongue inserted into a matching hole with the pin to prevent it from opening.

Once you have the pin out of the hole, the index box opens as you would expect. Just open it like a book.

Step 6: Voilá!

Picture of Voilá!

So, here is the open box. Simple wasn't it!


stannickel (author)2015-08-23

I forgot to mention the tape at the bottom of the box. You need to take that off or cut it along the seam, otherwise you'll be stymied by that hurdle.

atomfire (author)2015-08-22

Ehat about cutting off the head and pushing the pin thru into the box.

stannickel (author)atomfire2015-08-22

atomfire's idea is the best answer. Just cut the head off of the pin, and push the headless pin into the box. Open the box, find the pin and discard it. You'll never need it again.

ChuckC60 (author)2017-12-19

Thanks. Saved a ton of "work". Glad to have found this web site. The Internet can be a very useful place! You did good.

stannickel (author)ChuckC602017-12-19

Glad to be of service. Judging from the number of views, it looks like we are in good company.

ChuckC59 (author)2017-12-09

Thank You so much to taking the time to create these instructions. This saved a ton of "vocabulary expanding" comments. Now if the drills are half as good as the packaging, we're good to go :)

stannickel (author)ChuckC592017-12-10

Thanks for your affirmation. In my opinion, the drill bits seem to be pretty good. Especially, if you only paid $9.99 or even $12.99 for them. The variety of diameters is very useful, and they cut some rather hard materials. I may have had to replace one in the months (years?) I have used them.

aconverse made it! (author)2016-12-16

You don't even know how thankful I am for this instructable! Probably saved me a ton of time and a huge headache. Glad I decided to look for some help.

stannickel (author)aconverse2016-12-17

I never fail to be amazed at how popular this instructable is. I'm very glad that I posted it. Glad you found it.

DoniM5 (author)stannickel2017-11-12

After removing the tape at the bottom of the box, I was looking very hard at that pin as the possible culprit to not opening the box. However, I was hesitant to remove the pin, afraid it might ruin the closure. Thank you for being brave and posting. I pulled the pin out with a tiny pair of needle nose plyers. Can't wait to show my husband how to open his set. Hee-hee.

stannickel (author)DoniM52017-11-12

I find it hard to believe that this is one of my most popular instructables. Over 8000 views! Glad to be of service.

WilliamN90 (author)stannickel2017-02-26

It goes to prove "little things mean a lot". As you probably well remember when you first look at it, it's deceiving as to how it works. I know I started out on a wrong tangent when I decided to try to "find out" rather than "figure out".

stannickel (author)2017-02-27

Happy to be of service!

WilliamN90 (author)2017-02-26

The wisdom of old age has paid off again. I decided to try to find out how this bugger opened BEFORE messing it up. Surprise, surprise I found this instructable! I easily pried the pin head out to grab with needlenose pliers and out it came. Honestly, I thought a search on the subject would be a shot in the dark and now I'm glad I made the effort! Thanks So Much!

MichaelS237 (author)2017-01-29

Thanks so much for the help. I cut the pin with a razor blade and pushed it through. Perfect!!

DaveL86 (author)2016-11-07

Thanks. It came out easy with a fingernail for me, but I had to come here to find out the trick.

stannickel (author)DaveL862016-11-08

Glad to help. I am just very surprised at how many people even found this Instructable to open the box.

MarkR250 (author)2016-05-29

Just wanted to drop you a line and say, THANKS! I bought this today and after about 10 minutes, I was on the verge of just busting with a hammer but didn't want to destroy the nice plastic case. I would never have figured this out. Thanks again.

stannickel (author)MarkR2502016-05-29

Glad I could help. It really frustrated me for at least an hour. The best answer is below. The one where the customer asked the clerk to help open it before he left the store!

seastar128 (author)2016-05-21

So I bought these at harbor freight. I asked the clerk to open it so I could look at the shaft. She simply took a box knife, cut the head off the yellow pin with a flick of her wrist...simultaneously causing the pin to pop out. Slit the sticker on the bottom. Voila. Less than 15 seconds total.

In future...I will always ask the clerk, "Hey can you open this for me? Thanks"

stannickel (author)seastar1282016-05-22

You are a lot smarter than I am. Good thinking!

Sasimpso made it! (author)2016-02-27

I used this little 6" pry bar and popped it right out. Thx for the article mate!

stannickel (author)Sasimpso2016-02-27

You're welcome.

GerryW3 (author)2016-01-20

Thanks for this post. Done in a minute ;)

stannickel (author)GerryW32016-01-20

Happy to help.

CD12 (author)2015-12-25

I fiddled with this case for >5 minutes! I narrowed it down to that yellow "button", but no matter how hard I pushed, it wouldn't do anything. Glad you posted this! I used some needle nose pliers and the pin came out, easy-peasy! Thanks!!

stannickel (author)CD122015-12-26

Happy to help!

BobL26 (author)2015-10-20

I hate that stuff. I gave up and gave it to the wife. Of I found the instructions here but she managed on her own, ridiculous

stannickel (author)BobL262015-10-20

It was frustrating to me as well. I had to damage the box a little bit to figure out what the problem was. Once I found it, I thought I should post the answer to help others do it the easy way! :-)

bankeratlarge (author)2015-09-26

great sense of humour! I'd have blown an artery in this situation, and you've just done a public service - kudos!

stannickel (author)bankeratlarge2015-09-26

Happy to serve.

dd10 (author)2015-09-07

Once I knew about the pin, I used flush cut wire cutters. These are used to trim wires in tight places the blades are only about 0.08" thick. The blades are flat on the bottom and will cut flush with the surface. They are sharp, so you must use gentle pressure to hold the shank of the pin. I just squeezed the blade into the shank of the pin and lifted gently. The pin came out after about three attempts.

stannickel (author)dd102015-09-07

That'll work very well. You actually got a re-usable pin that way. You may not want to use it again, but you could.

caitlinsdad (author)2015-08-22

It is probably something invented as an anti theft and tamper resistant packaging seal. You should take a look at the socket sets and try to figure out how to get the sockets off. You have to figure out which pieces of the packaging to cut and hopefully do not destroy the fitted rack that is supposed to retain the sockets in order.

stannickel (author)caitlinsdad2015-08-23

You're right about the possible anti-theft mechanism, which is probably why there are no instructions. The manufacturer forgot to think about the future owners and the problems they would have in using their product. There may be a similar mechanism in your socket set. Tricky to figure out, but easy once you know how it works.

BeachsideHank (author)2015-08-22

This is to make you buy a cordless drill to bore it out and also learn about a chicken/ egg scenario.

stannickel (author)BeachsideHank2015-08-23

Good point. Buy more tools so you can use the tools you just bought.

dmwatkins (author)2015-08-23

Lol thanks. I've purchased several of their drill bit sets and will probably get this one sooner or later... you probably saved me from looking like a fool!

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