Whether for personal projects, woodwork projects, metal work projects or constructions, purchasing a drill press should be done with keenness just like when buying other tools. There are portable and fixed drill presses which come in different sizes so it is good to know the best one to satisfy personal requirements.
The most convenient drill
Acquiring a portable model is the smartest move to make when purchasing one because with it you can work on different items, including immovable items like benches. When you have do-it yourself projects like fixing your room or your garage or even your grill a portable one will not disappoint you because you will be mounting it on the items you need to drill without much effort.
Guidelines to follow when making your selection
If you agree that a portable one is your best shot a satisfactory drill press then these guidelines will help you get it. Even if you decide to buy a fixed one they will still apply perfectly.
Model: This is one of the most important considerations when buying a drill press. There are many different types of drill presses available in the market but they are however can be categorised into two main models namely; floor and bench-top drill presses. As the names suggests, floor drill presses are set directly on floors while bench-top drill presses are set on table tops. Floor drill press models are perfect when you aren’t confined by space or looking for a compact drill press.
How powerful is the motor? You are buying a machine and accordingly efficiency is equals to power. You need to buy a drill press with a motor power that is at least 4 amp and above to make your drilling easier, especially for metal work the motor has to be superior for excellent outcomes
What is the speed range of the motor? Of course the different drilling jobs require different speeds to get the best outcomes. Wood and metal are very different materials and if you are going to make holes on them one will require higher speeds than the other. You need to purchase a drill that puts all these factors into consideration. 700-4000 rpm will do just fine.
Is the drilling depth adjustable? While on your woodwork or metal work project you need to bore holes of different depths on your wood or metal pieces for different bolts. You need a drill press that can be adjusted to produce the different lengths.
Material: The head of the drill press must be made of cast iron. This provides outstanding protection and support to the significant parts of the machine — the quill, motor, and pinion shaft.
How much does it weigh? If you are going to buy a portable machine then you need one that you can carry around comfortably without feeling strained. You need to look for a press that weighs only a few pounds but still performs well.
Drill press table: A good drill press should have a perfectly adjustable table i.e. one that can be lowered, raised and rotated 360 degrees around the drill press column. This is important because it allows greater flexibility.
Any extra features? A good machine should be able to perform some additional jobs besides the primary one. A press with a laser beam should be an added advantage because the laser beam drills even tinier holes than the standard sized ones. Other things to look out for are safety measures and usability. It should be safe to handle, especially those with laser beams, and easy to use.
Types of Drill Press
There are many different types or configurations of drilling machines, but most drill press will fall into two broad categories. These categories have different drilling capacities, different speeds, constructions, size, and applications.
Floor type drill press
A floor, or standing, drill press is he most adored type of drill and used for commercial purpose. A floor type drill press is more powerful compare to bench top drill press and can be used on a wide range of materials. Floor drill presses have motors up to 3/4 horsepower and have 16 speed levels. The benefit of floor type drill press is it enables you to deal with bigger work pieces in light of the fact that the table can really run the entire length of the segment.
Bench Top Drill Press
The bench top drill press is more compact and less expensive compare to floor drill presses. You can practically work with them while setting them up on a table or a bench. Bench top drill presses are made for smaller jobs and have motors up to 1/3 horsepower. The bench top drill press is useful for drilling small holes, and while these machines are not as powerful they are portable and easy to manage in terms of storage.
With your check-list at hand, you now need to go into a store and make your purchase but wait, there are different brands with different costs. How durable your drill press is going to be will depend on who manufactures it. The kind of manual you get for your machine will also depend on the manufacturer. You definitely need a durable machine with easy to follow instructions so you better have the best brands in mind. Pricing is usually on top of the list and while keeping within your budget is important you shouldn’t be afraid to let go of a few extra bucks to get the best package available.
Drill Press Tables
The table that comes with your drill press is usually adequate for metalworking projects, but will not be sufficient for many woodworking jobs. The table surface area is simply not large enough to mange a woodworking project. This is when a drill press table comes in handy. It will be especially useful when you need to drill several wood pieces with a repeatable pattern. The addition of a table will increase productivity and reduce work time for any project.
These tables can range in size from 12 x 24 up to 20 x 30. They are constructed of 7/8 to 1 1/8 thickness Melamine. There is also a new Microdot surface which has a grid of small dimples that collects dust and enables the surface to better grip the work piece under pressure. There are two T-tracks that are bolted in place. It is helpful if the tracks are engraved with a scale. This makes it easier to measure and set for repeatable drilling.
The adjustable fence will have clamps for maximum hold-down. A consideration is the height of the fence and the type of drilling that you are going to be doing. Be careful that the fence is not too high and might hit the drill quill when using short drills bits. The fence should come with a stop block which makes it easier to set up a jig for drilling. There are removable inserts that can be drilled for just about any size sanding drum.
Care must be taken with the melamine surface. While it is reasonably durable, it can be easily chipped with mistreatment and abuse. Even so, this should not affect its use. You should also be cautious with the screws and bolts since they can be stripped with excess tightening. It is possible to construct your own drill press table. There are plans and instructions available for free on the internet. However, you have to consider the cost of materials and the time and labor that is going to be necessary to build your own table. It may be more practical to purchase a ready-made table from a reputable manufacturer. These purchased tables will fit just about any 12″ or larger drill press.