Drill press options?


What are the best options regarding the purchase of a drill press? Is there a quality bench top model? Is a floor model the only "serious" way to go? I'm not a professional by any means, but I take my projects seriously. Either way I want a quality unit, It doesn't have to be the best though.
Thanks,
Mike Billings
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Depends on your use. Depends on how much space you have. Depends on how much money you have.
No one has ever complained that a tool was too good. A 16" floor model will suit just about any woodshop need you have.
That said, I have a Delta 12" benchtop that had done everything I need so far. In any case, the table on most drill presses is made more for machine work than wood work. You can build a nice table that sits on top of it and has clamping ability and guides for repeatability.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I personally wouldn't want one that didn't have a gear driven elevation control (ability to crank up or down) on the table. RM ~
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

This is also a major peave of mine with my current benchtop old timer. Having used a non gear driven dp for the past many years, it is somewhat a hassel when you need to go up or down a tad. The gear driven elevation option is a major need (for me at least) and will be the driving criteria on my next drill press. Quil stroke is also important. The delta 16" floor model seems to fit the bill so I have for the most part narrowed it down to that particular brand. SH
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Michael Billings (in fdKve.96679$9A2.29969@edtnps89) said:
| What are the best options regarding the purchase of a drill press? | Is there a quality bench top model? Is a floor model the only | "serious" way to go? I'm not a professional by any means, but I | take my projects seriously. Either way I want a quality unit, It | doesn't have to be the best though.
Mike...
Both bench and floor drill presses come in a full range of qualities. I have one of both types, and prefer the floor model for most work.
I'll offer some things to consider:
[1] I've found that 1.5 hp is an absolute minimum for usefulness in my shop. I drill wood, aluminum, brass, and (occasionally) steel and less than 1-1/2 horsepower tends to stall in 3/8" and 1/2" holes when drilling metal.
[2] I want /at least/ 3" quill travel. You'll need to decide how deep you want to drill and chose a drill that has that much quill travel.
[3] My floor press has a variable speed direct drive that lets me adjust the spindle speed to suit the drilling without needing to move a belt from one pulley to another. IMO this is a *huge* convenience factor.
[4] Think about how you think you'll use the press and what kind of table would best suit those operations. There are tables that tilt, rotate, and/or can be swung around the column. My floor model has a radial head and non-tilting, non-rotating table that can be swung out of the way. I wish it had a crank up/down capability, but I'm not sure that wouldn't interfere with the ability to swing the table out of the way.
[5] If you're considering a mortising jig, then you'll want to make certain that the quill size allows for attaching that jig. Don't take for granted that all quills are the same size - they aren't.
[6] You may want to pay attention to the range of bit sizes you can chuck up on your DP. Most drill presses I've seen have a chuck that'll hold up to a 1/2" bit but there is some variation in ability to hold small bits.
-- Morris Dovey DeSoto Solar DeSoto, Iowa USA http://www.iedu.com/DeSoto/solar.html
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 27 Jun 2005 03:17:31 GMT, "Michael Billings"

I've never really ran across a drill press that couldn't do the job, but you definately want to make sure you've got enough room for any project you want to do. I've got a benchtop, and while it's fine most of the time, last week I had to remove it from the base and turn it so it overhung the bench so I had enough clearance for the job I was doing. It was more accurate than a hand drill, but not as good as a drill press should be, since the "table" I was using was an uneven concrete floor. In retrospect, I really wish I'd have insisted on a floor model rather than the benchtop- As noted above, even a cheap one will do the job, so go for size you need first. It does you no good to have a top-of-the-line tool that you can't fit your work under, after all!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 27 Jun 2005 03:17:31 GMT, "Michael Billings"

Depends...I have and use 3 drill presses in my woodshop two Delta benchtops (the real small one is mounted horizontally as a horizontal boring machine) and a floor model Craftsman (spelled correctly..since it is definatelny not crap)...
The floor model gets used 90 percent of the time..for woodworking and almost 100 percent of the time for all other uses around the house/garage etc that involves drilling metal... As for space ..lol..it really saves space since my workbench is at least a little more roomy....
Bob G
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I have and have never wanted for more than my 32" Radial drill press. It is a bench top model that has a reach of 16". With that reach I can extend the chuck out 16" past the end of the bench that it sets on. It then has the same basic capacity of a floor model.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Let me share from my very recent experience (yesterday).
I have only occasional use of a drill press. I own one of those delta Shopmaster bench top models. I think they sell for about $100.
I have a job where I'm to install Dekarator brand balusters for a deck railing. http://www.deckorators.com/colonialInstall.asp?Step=7
I am using the drilling method for these. Using a forstner bit to give me a flat bottom hole. I pre-drilled all the horizontal pieces in my workshop. I needed to drill the angled holes for the stair rail on site because I didn't have the correct angle ahead of time. So, I packed up the drill press and a workmate I mount it to.
I had never tilted the table on the Delta Shopmaster DP. I knew you could do it because there was an attached angle guide. markings were present for left tilt and right tilt. Well, wouldn't you know. The table does NOT tilt!!!! Boy was my face red!!! I fumbled with this thing for almost an hour. Digging out a socket set, finding the correct sizes (metric BTW) for the two bolts under the table. Take both off an the table comes off. No way I could tell to tilt the sucker. I just checked Deltas site. I think I have the DP200. Ahh - A quick check of manual say I need to remove a stupid pin.
Anyway - This method of tilting the table is a PIA. If you need that feature look elsewhere.
For me, portable is sometimes a requirement. Size it not critical for me. HP is not critical for me.
Consider your uses, now and the future, and figure on getting something better and your probably be happy.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I have 5 drill presses, 2 of which are benchtop. I prefer the floor models because they are easily placed where I need them without having to take up bench space.
My favorite one is a Harbor Freight floor model that cost about $150 - $175. It has a pulley arrangement that allows for more speed options and a rack/pinion arrangement to raise and lower the table. It runs smooth and has a built in light. If I had it to do over, I'd probably purchase their 15" model instead of the 12" model.
The HF machine has less runout than a Sears machine I have.
Don Dando

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Mon, 27 Jun 2005 03:17:31 GMT, "Michael Billings"

It depends on your work. I have a Delta floor model and I like it. There have been several times I was glad to have a floor model. The most important "feature" of a drill press is the runout measurement. A large runout will make the bit wobble.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I have the Grizzly *baby drill press* bench top model, I can't remember the model #. I wouldn't buy it again. We had a similarly priced Delta bench top at the last wood shop I was at and I thought the Grizzly would be as good as that, I was wrong. It's very weak, has gobs of run-out, and every once in awhile the chuck falls off. Billy
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
The Delta 11-950 benchtop I bought has a pin to secure the table but the hole is too large for the pin. I put blocks of wood under the table for necessary 90 holes.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.