I Googled rec. woodworking and "drill presses" but didn't find much.
My 30 year old Craftsman is sick. Too many parts need to be replaced so I'm
looking for a new drill press.
Up to $999.
not enough information there to make any meaningful recommendation.
radial drills are nice for being able to drill wide stock and angled
holes, but they tend to lack rigidity. I really like my mill/drill, and
a used one will be in your price range, but it 'aint even slightly
portable (which might or might not matter to you.) a nice stout 50s era
floor stand press is a good all around machine, but might be hard to
come by. the chinese have done a pretty good job copying those, and
grizzly carries a fairly complete line of that, so if that's what
you're looking for, grizzly might be a pretty good place to start
Compared to what? They definitely can be. Their low-end stuff is
definitely low-end. However, much of the higher-end stuff (any DP over
$500, for sure) seems to be good quality and a good value, from what
I've read and my own limited experience. I have one of their 16"
bandsaws (maybe 10 yrs old) and it's very solid with lots of cast iron,
yet adjustable so it can be tuned/tweaked as necessary. I've been very
happy with it. Popular Woodworking recently published an "Endurance
Test" on the Grizzly G7944 Drill Press ($250ish), and they liked it a
lot. Some quotes: "powerful, accurate, and a dang good deal... I
recommend it without reservation... a solid machine at a super price".
(Note that they do publish ads for Grizzly, if you're cynical about
that sort of thing). The quill travel on this model (3.25"?) leaves a
bit to be desired, and even their $600 model only has 4.75". But if
you look around the archives here, I think you'll generally find praise
for Grizzly's higher-end equipment, and especially for their customer
As far as tables, I'd imagine you'd want to make or buy a larger table
for almost any DP if you want to do much serious woodworking with it.
Mine is melamine-coated particle board with aluminum t-tracks and a
fence, with replaceable square inserts in the middle, which also allow
a sanding drum to be used flush with the surface of the table.
If you are going to go with a Grizzly, take a look at the slightly more
expensive G0521. Amazing machine for the price IMHO. 3 Phase motor I think
though... By more expeisive, I mean $1200 after shipping and all...
It has two interesting features in that it is capable of being run in "tap"
mode where the motor automatcially reverses rotation at a pre-set depth so
you can tap holes automatically... And it has a qull stabilizer which means
that anything you clamp to the quill can be made to stay rock solid. i.e.
mortising attachment or multiple spindle head.
But note that it is a VERY heavy machine... And they only import 3-4 at a
time for re-sale... And I've told a dozen customers about them in the past
Joe Agro, Jr.
Automatic / Pneumatic Drills: http://www.AutoDrill.com
Multiple Spindle Drills: http://www.Multi-Drill.com
My son-in-law bought a G04582 a couple of years ago and it is a good
machine. I was amazed at the value. Grizzly is like any of the tool
manufactureres - some dogs and some very good equipment. I have owned one
of their 1023S cabinet saws for about five years and would match it with
anything in the $1,000 to $1,700 price range. It cost $900 (with shipping)
when I bought it. My son in law also bought one of their G0500 8" jointers
at the same time and it is a jewel. Even Fine Woodworking judged it a best
pick in one of their tool reviews. And they don't even advertise Griz.
I have a 8" grizzly jointer and a 15" grizzly planer. I also have a
delta contractor's saw and two delta drill presses, the benchtop 12"
and the cheaper varible speed floor standing model. The bench top
delta is surprisingly good. No runout. A little under powered. The
floor standing model is good as well.
I'm also very happy with both my grizzly tools. I'd say the quality is
about even between griz and delta. Although the grizzly tools will
have chinese motors if that matters to you (it doesn't to me so far).
My porter cable 80gal compressor has a brazilian motor. In a
production environment, maybe it matters. But I can't tell the
difference between any of them in normal operation.
I went with the delta floor standing DP because the cheapest variable
speed grizzly DP at the time was around $1500. I paid about $450 or so
for mine. If VS doesn't matter to you, I wouldn't hesidate to get the
grizzly DP. They have a good reputation for customer service and have
been around quite a while now.
The only issue I've heard with buying from them is that the shipping
companies are often rough with the packages. Some people have received
boxes torn open with missing parts or severe damage. Grizzly is good
about fixing the situation when this happens. Both of my griz tools
arrived in plywood boxes with no damage at all.
Don't know if it's what I want yet, but Pop Wood just listed Delta's
new "Drill Presses for Woodworkers" in their Best New Tools column.
Table tilts in two directions, T-slots, replaceable insert in the table
center, easy-clamp edges, and a 6-inch stroke. One 17" model and two
Laser is optional. :-)
I'd like to know more about these babies. The article didn't happen to
mention what they cost. A quick run on The Google puts the 17'' at
around 4 hundred, or 500 if you want to spend more.
The new DP by Steel City Toolworks looks pretty sharp - heavy duty, 6"
quill stroke, less than $500 IIRC. http://www.steelcitytoolworks.com /
If I needed a DP, and I couldn't find a good 50-year old behemoth, I'd
definitely look there. Then Grizzly. Totally depends on what you need
it for, though.
I just picked up a used Delta 17-900 and it seems very solid but I
haven't had a chance to use it much. I have two DP related questions:
Is the oscillating feature good to have or is it a gimmick feature that
takes away accuracy?
Why does Don Dando always start a new thread with a different subject
when answering a post?
Latest issue of Popular Woodworking gave the Delta line , a 17" and
two 20" machines, a"Best New Tool" rating for 2006. I've neither
used them nor know anything more about them, but you might want to
You did a google on "drill press" and didn't come up with much? Try again.
The best way to start is to look at what is out there, make a list of what
you think you want in a press, might want, don't want, etc. and then start a
discussion that hopes to compare your list to the experiences of others.
Yep, that's what I'm doing. So far, so good. I've read some good info and I
thank those who have offered it.
I like the Grizzly G0521 that Joe "Autodrill" suggested but it has a 3 phase
motor and I'd rather not get into phase converters & such.
Sears has a "fairly new" 20" DP that looks interesting. I can get a Delta
20" from Southern tool for $699. not a bad price.
Getting it narrowed down.
How about this - what do you want the drill press for? What types of work?
How much use will it ever see? How did your old one serve your needs
before it gave up the ghost? Do you need more than what it was, or do you
simply need to replace it.
It does not do much good to say "I think I want as much capability as I can
get for a reasonable price", or like statements. Of course, we all want
that, but it's a meaningless qualifier. "I want the best quality I can get
at a reasonable price" is equally meaningless. The lowest quality and the
least functional may be all that you will ever need and would therefore make
spending any extra money foolish. What most people will be able to offer
when you don't qualify your needs, is their own experiences and preferences.
Though that may be helpful to some degree, it is more likely to result in
suggestions that are all over the map, and in some cases not even relevant
to the average hobby shop operation.
I do hobby work and, on occasion, some work for friends (who feel the
quality is good enough to pay for).
I use a drill press primarily for metal work but my time in the shop is
spent about 50-50 on wood and metal.
I have a dedicated mortiser so I wouldn't use the DP for that.
I *do* occasionally spend money foolishly. I don't play golf, drink
excessively, fish, hunt, or chase women. My wife and I travel in an RV about
4-5 months out of a year.
When I purchase tools, it's with my wife's agreement but with money from a
401K that I built up in a business after retirement from a government job.
So I get the pension, the 401K and a piddling SS check. My wife gets her
money from her 401K and a piddling SS check.
When I buy tools, I look at how much the tool will be worth *to me*.
The object of posting as I did is to get a variety of opinions from a
variety of users because I do a variety of things, within it's capability,
with a DP.
Well Max - I'll take a stab. You really didn't give me anything to go one
with what you wrote above so the best I can do is to tell you about my
experience. I have a Sears press that I picked up cheap. It's probably a
middle of the line drill press overall. It's a 17", 16 speed (I think), 1
1/2 HP, floor model press.
I do light metal fabrication (typically 3/8" and under thickness steel), and
woodworking on it. It has served my needs very well. For this type of
work, any other capabilities would be lost on me unless that capability was
a shapely brunette to operate the press in the nude. I've tried to get the
shapely brunette to operate my drill press in the nude but she tells me that
wives don't do those things.
I find that I almost never change the speed on the press. I keep mine set
slow enough for steel and it works just fine for wood boring. So, from that
standpoint, even the capability that I have is lost on me. I do think the
floor model has served me well over what a table top model would have
served. I have lowered my table to accomodate large pieces many, many
times. I've used that capability enough to say that a table top would have
not filled the bill for my needs. The press drills straight and
predictably, and it holds bits when I tighten down the chuck. Can't ask for
more than that. It has a good work light mounted in the head and I use that
every time I use the press.
If I could ask for improvements on the press it would be for quick locks on
the table. To lower or raise my table, I have to "unscrew" a clamp that
holds the table on the riser column. Not a real big deal, but a quarter
turn cam lock would sure be nicer. As well, to tilt my table I have to grab
a wratchet wrench and and extension and a socket to loosen the nut under the
table. It's a real nuisance. There is not a lot of room around the nut and
it's just a pain to have to grab tools to make this adjustment. A quarter
turn cam lock would most certainly be better here. I don't tilt my table a
lot, but I have done it enough that it annoys me every time I do it. But...
I'd have to think twice before I was willing to spend an additional $100 for
I appreciate your response. It seems that you might have the same model DP
that I have; model #113.213872.
I would make the same criticisms that you've made.
It has been a good performer but I'm ready for a new one.
I will probably spring for a 20" model, either Delta, Craftsman, or Jet.
Thanks for your input.
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