Why, How and Where to Use Drill Press

Drill presses can be used in different materials and for different purposes. Here is a simple guide on why, how, and where to use drill press:

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Why You Should Use Drill Press

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  • Speed – The drill press allows you to drill holes faster than using a hand drill. It automatically sets the right angle and depth for you so you do not have to spend so much time in fixing the drill’s position.
  • Accuracy – Drill presses can accurately drill house based on your specifications. You can determine the exact width, depth, and angle that your project needs. Drill presses have a depth-stop feature that automatically prevents the machine from drilling too far in your material.
  • Power – Drill presses have more powerful motors than hand drills do. This allows you to drill bigger holes especially on very hard materials such as concrete and metal. These machines are usually equipped with chucks. The force from the leverage makes drill presses even more powerful.
  • Versatility – Drill presses can make a hole on almost all types of materials, may it be wood, metal, or concrete. You can change its angles and drill bits to match the material that you are drilling. They can also do a variety of other tasks.
  • Safety and Security – If you follow the safety instructions provided by the manufacturer, drill presses can be very safe to use. The chuck makes sure that the drill stays in its place and does not slip away.
drill press

Most of the time, these machines also have clamps that hold your materials in place so you do not have to hold them while drilling. This is why there are fewer accidents in using drill presses than hand drills.

Setps to Use Drill Press

1

Identify the Type of Drill Press

There are two main types of drill presses: bench and floor. Bench types are fixed to the top of the bench and made for smaller jobs while floor types are standalone and made for heavy duty tasks.

Floor drill presses are more powerful, but they are also harder to move or adjust. They require more space than bench types. To know what type you should buy, consider these characteristics of each type:

drill press

Bench drill presses have 0.3 to 0.5 horsepower and 5 to 16 speeds. They can create holes with 2 to 4 inches depth. Floor drill presses have 0.75 to 1.5 horsepower and 12 to 16 speeds. They can create holes with 3 to 16 inches depth.

If you are doing small repairs on wooden materials, a bench drill press would be more convenient. However, if you are drilling harder materials, you should consider buying a floor drill press.

2

Study the Specifications

The manufacturers of drill presses always put the machine’s specifications on its label. You should look for the following details:

  • Speed: The speed of a drill press is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm). Several different models may offer 16 varying rpm levels. There is an appropriate speed level for each material and that should be indicated on the machine’s specifications.
  • Depth: The depth of the throat refers to the distance between the spindle center that holds the drill bit and the post of the drill press that holds the drill head. The depth determines the maximum size of material that the drill press can work with. The thickness of your material should always be less than the machine’s depth.
  • Power: Most drills have an electric motor which is rated through horsepower. Higher horsepower means it has stronger force and larger capacity. A motor with higher horsepower may also last longer since it is less stressed on the tasks that it performs.
  • Adjustments: Most drill presses allow the user to adjust the angle of the drill head. Manufacturers specify which angles the drill head can be tilted. Never adjust the machine to an angle that is not specified.
drill-press

3

Safety Should Always Come First

You should always follow safety measures in using a drill press. For example, never place your hand near the drill bit while drilling. If you want to adjust the angles, make sure that the machine is turned off and not running.

You should also tighten the chucks so the drill would not slip away, especially if you are drilling metal.

safety gear

Always remember to wear safety apparel such as goggles, masks, and gloves. You can also wear apron and safety shoes. Remove and dust particle or debris after drilling because this can cause irritation and other health risks. Cleaning your workplace is very important.

Where to Use Drill Press

Aside from drilling, here are four other ways where you can use a drill press:

  • Countersinking – This process enables the countersunk bolt head or screw to sit flush below or along the surface of the surrounding material when placed in the hole.
  • Counterboring – This is the process of making counterbores. A counterbore is a cylindrical flat-bottomed hole that enlarges another hole.
  • Reaming – This process widens a bore or hole in an object using a drill press.
  • Tapping – This process is the action that creates a thread into the side of the hole.

Final Words

This guide can be helpful both for beginners and experts. It will help you maximize the use of drill presses safely and efficiently. Drill presses are useful tools that come in many shapes and sizes. If used properly, it can help a wood or metal worker be more productive.

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