The emergence of new natural fiber reinforced composites to replace glass fiber reinforced thermosets faces a new challenge: their machining. In this work, jute fabric reinforced bioepoxy resin laminates were manufactured, drilled and inspected. Different drill geometries and machining conditions were compared. Roughness, microscopy and non-destructive tests allowed determination of the hole quality as well as delamination extent. The surface tests showed the best results were achieved with the Dowel bit, a standard wood drill, at a spindle speed of 3,000 rpm and feed rate of 0.025 mm/rev.
The delamination extent, characterized by means of Ultrasonics and X-ray Computed Tomography, also confirmed that the best results were achieved with the Dowel bit. Scanning electron microscope images were taken for the drilled holes to support the results. In contrast to carbon fiber reinforced thermosets, the detected delamination at high feed rate is not as extensive as expected. These results suggest that this new biocomposite could be machined at production rates without delamination damage being generated. Besides, a standard wood drill was more suitable than a drill for composite materials to obtain excellent finishes.