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Thread: Help buying my first drill press

  1. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,607
    Quote Originally Posted by lowell holmes View Post
    I suggest you go to Lowes and Home Depot. Either can help you.

    Or Mitre 10 stores carry small drill presses. If you have one near you.
    Bill D

  2. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    10,499
    Two basic formats: floor mounted and bench mounted. I have one of each. The floor model has a greater quill depth, one of the most important specs depending on what you use it for. The bench mounted takes up bench space but the bench can have drawers and such below for storage. I mounted the bench top drill press on a old kitchen cabinet base with a formica top.

    I would never buy a new drill press with electronic control such as the one from Teknatool. Besides the cost, there is so much more that can break and the potential expense of repair might be high. Just ask the buy whose Teknatool lathe electronics failed and new parts were $400.

    My two drill presses are Delta models with belt change on the pulley to adjust speed. Heavy duty crank to adjust table height. Nice tab;e and quill locks and depth stop. Plenty of power. Relatively inexpensive. Had one for over 20 years now. I keep one in my metal shop and one in the wood shop to keep oil away from the wood.

    JKJ

  3. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Lindenhurst, NY11757
    Posts
    55
    regardless of which press you look at, always check for runout
    at the chuck. T do this, run the quill down as far as it goes, grab the chuck,and try to move it from side to side. no movement is ideal.the less movement the better.
    I have tested the drill presses at Harbor freight and found that sometimes the cheaper press is better than the most expensive one. So, if possible, test the one that you are actually buying. The press on the showroom floor may test perfect, but that is not the one you are taking home and using! Good luck!

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Spokane Valley, WA
    Posts
    208
    Quote Originally Posted by stevo wis View Post
    Don,
    I have had a 50 dollar atlas benchtop drill press that worked well all these years. a couple of years ago my wife bought me a new powermatic. The only thing i didnt like about the old one was it did not have a crank to raise and lower the table which was a big pain. I would recommend that you hold out for one with a crank.
    Stevo
    i also second the crank on the table advice. Mine is a very old Craftsman “industrial” model, a table crank is the one thing I wish it had.
    "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity" - anon

  5. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Fredericksburg, TX
    Posts
    2,536
    Things that are important for me:
    1. Adjustable speed range from about 250 to 3200 or so rpm
    2. Floor model to have a larger range of drill height over bench models
    3. Drill depth stop that is easy to use
    4. Spindle height lock - use for sanding, buffing, and at current time using as press to hold glue job
    5. 16" rating (8" from spindle to coumn)
    6. Strong column and baseplate to minimize vibrations
    7. Ease of changing speeds. Belt changes are manageable even with 3 shaft multi pully system
    8, Crank elevator for table and easy to lock to column
    9. Laser is not a big issue and can be added. Added but do not use
    10. Light or easy to add light

    The drill press in my shop gets a lot of use and I am on my third. Too old to buy the 4th, but there are some nice new models out there. You should be able to find a used floor model that handles most of the 10 needs above in your $400 range.

  6. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,607
    The quill lock is also handy when using the dp to work on lawnmower engine valves. Makes a great spring compressor.
    Bill D

  7. #22
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Saratoga NY
    Posts
    50
    Nice Craftsman drill, I have the same one and use the quill lock a lot as well. Used it tonight when setting depth.

  8. #23




    https://www.harborfreight.com/heavy-...ess-38142.html

    I am not a big Harbor Freight fan, but this is one of their gems. I have mine for ten years without issues. At $220 (after a 20% off coupon it is a real value

  9. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Modesto, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,607
    One thing I only realized in the last few years is an easy way to tell how heavy duty a dp is. Just look at the column diameter. My walker turner 20" dp has I believe a 4+1/4" diameter main support column. It is also almost 1/2" thick wall. A similar size Dp at sears might have a 3+1/2" diameter and thinner wall as well.
    Small bench top machines can get away with a smaller column since there is less lever arm.
    Bill D

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