Buying a drill press

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goldrush
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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by goldrush » Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:43 pm

A simple way to get it close from "Bladeforums"

A piece of rod or heavy wire (coathanger).
Put it in chuck, bend till it reaches near the outer edge of the table, then rotate chuck by hand, checking the clearance between the table and the end of the wire.
When the distance off the table is the same all the way around, the table is squared...


http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/showt ... p?t=564551



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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by quadad » Wed Sep 07, 2011 10:36 am

One other comment. Sometimes when you think that your drill press is no longer perfectly square - depending on your holding/drill method, the problem might be your wood. We used the variable angle plate method as well, which needs square pieces of wood.

All of our blocks were first sorted on the drill press table, or something else that was extremely flat. We would push on the top of them looking for a deflection on each end. A good number of blocks were rejected at this step, without having any other work on them.

Really square pieces of wood, a properly set up table (and I checked it often with a dial test indicator) and the variable angle plate to drill precise angles was a consistently winning combination for us.



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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by rpcarpe » Thu Nov 03, 2011 6:01 am

I now have TWO drill presses, bench top from Harbor Freight and an old American Forge & Foundry (AFF) 12 spd floor model. Table on the HFT seems to flex under use, and table only adjust with the clamp on the post. AFF is worn, but drills very nicely. Will use Stan's method to check squareness.


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Stan Pope
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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by Stan Pope » Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:42 am

rpcarpe wrote:I now have TWO drill presses, bench top from Harbor Freight and an old American Forge & Foundry (AFF) 12 spd floor model. Table on the HFT seems to flex under use, and table only adjust with the clamp on the post. AFF is worn, but drills very nicely. Will use Stan's method to check squareness.
If you have a dial indicator, get a chunk of bolt or rod about 8" long and the correct diameter to fit the indicator (about 3/8", I think), cut off the bolt head, put a 90 degree bend about half way along, assemble, chuck and turn. Much easier to use and much more sensitive! :)

My published method takes table flex (if any) and surface irregularities (if any) into consideration, and so it would be a reasonable additional method.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by rpcarpe » Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:59 pm

Thanks Stan! Will try that before the next PWD workshop. I do have a dial indicator. The older AFF drill press seems to have a wobble in the drill head somehow. Don't know if it impacts the drilling accuracy.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by Stan Pope » Fri Nov 04, 2011 9:27 am

rpcarpe wrote:Thanks Stan! Will try that before the next PWD workshop. I do have a dial indicator. The older AFF drill press seems to have a wobble in the drill head somehow. Don't know if it impacts the drilling accuracy.
Your dial indicator can help you on this one, too! Chuck a known straight rod. Check for runout close to the chuck and an inch or so down the rod. Both should be acceptable if you want good holes.

I think that the runout checks should be made, first, by hand turning the chuck as far "up the power chain" as possible, e.g. turning the motor pulley or the belt. Then repeat by hand turning at the chuck. Hand turning at the chuck probably shows more variation from sideways motion caused by your hand pressure against the chuck and spindle. (Remember to pull the power cord if you are mucking about with the belts ... they love to try to pull fingers into the works, which stresses the fingers beyond their design point.)

If you can run the press at very low speed, try the runout checks that way, too. It hopefully still shows little runout.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by Scubersteve » Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:35 pm

my cheapie "tradesman" drill press from Sears has .018" of play in the head as soon as you pull the handle down.
Makes it real hard to drill precise holes. I have to start them with a needle exactly where I want them and them watch for deflection as I drill.
Pain in the patootie.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by Stan Pope » Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:20 pm

Scubersteve wrote:my cheapie "tradesman" drill press from Sears has .018" of play in the head as soon as you pull the handle down.
Have you "taken the cover off" to see if it can be remedied? It would depend on details of construction as to whether and how to remedy it.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by Scubersteve » Wed Nov 09, 2011 8:57 pm

I did, and I think it is a loose fit between the inner and outer spindle pieces.
I think I'll just try to score a proxxon at some point.


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Re: Buying a drill press

Post by whodathunkit » Wed Jul 16, 2014 9:05 pm

Just reading over this topic about buying & trueing up a drill press.

There is still one factor that comes to my mind that is often over looked about the drill press
(The drill bits themself!)

If the degree for the cutting edges is not milled the same degree or dose not measure to the same length from the point of the bit to the cutting edge cornors of the bit.
The bit itself will not self center as it touches the meterial to be drilled and it will not make for a clean cuts in the meterial.


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