DIY enthusiasts love to carry out home improvement projects every now and then. It is not unusual to see them poring over a list of the best working tools on the Internet or on DIY magazines. Using the best tools will guarantee quality work which results to an impressive finished home project. However, most of the best tools are quite expensive but it is still possible to find reasonably priced tools like some drill presses and other power tools to help you carry out the construction project.
There is one tool that every DIY enthusiast has to have in their tool collection which is the drill press. A drill press is one very useful tool that is ideal for most DIY projects. It is one tool capable of offering the user an unusual level of control and an accuracy that other portable drills don’t offer. The best drill press makes holes in plastic, wood and metal, a quality that is quite convenient in case you are working with any of those materials.
The drill press is also available in two versions which are the floor model and the bench-top type. The bench-top drill presses are the most preferred by DIY individuals thanks to their compact design that can be moved when required. Many bench-top drill presses are reasonably priced with many great quality ones being below $500.
As a home shopper, in order to get the best drill press, establish what your exact needs are. Consider if your work project is heavy duty and the weight of the drill if you plan to keep moving it from location to location. Compare the features, durability and performance especially in terms of speed, then single out the one that will effectively carry out what you have in mind.
Important Factors to Look at When Buying a Drill press
If you’re out and about with buying a new drill press, then you should know that there are specific features which are very important depending on the types of projects you usually consider. If the last time you bought a drill press was five or ten years ago and think that you still have what it takes to buy the right one for you these days, then think again. The industry has changed a lot and so did the drill presses. No worries though, we’ve compiled a list of things to keep in mind when buying a drill press, so let’s take a closer look at them below.
1. Spindle speed and horsepower
If you want to get a new drill press for metalwork and also some woodwork, then you need to ensure that it comes with the option of changing the speed of the spindle to suit your various projects. If you work with metal, you’ll generally need to ensure the speed is as low as possible, while if you work with wood, the speed needs to be raised in the high or medium range. In my opinion, if you’re after versatility, then go for a model that operates between 500 RPMs and 4000 RPMs.
As for the horsepower, the more you have, the easier it will be to drill through sturdier materials. Therefore, make sure your chosen drill press has at least three quarters of a HP.
2. Drill press table and depth stops
To improve flexibility when using it, it’s best that you get a drill press which features a table which can be swiveled three hundred and sixty degrees, lowered and also raised. When it comes to the depth-stop, it’s a mechanism that allows you to define the depth at which you can drill which is very important when dealing with projects involving repetitive boring and therefore require consistent results.
You’ll find that there are many accessories out there which you can use in order to improve the function of your drill press. For instance, a drill press clamp will allow you to ensure the materials you’re working on are kept firmly in place. As for helping with the material’s position on the table, you may want to use a drill fence.
4. How easy can it be serviced?
Lastly, if your drill press breaks, it’s very important that you can easily purchase the spare parts required to fix it, especially if you’re working on a time sensitive project that permits no delays. Better yet, I suggest you consider a model that can be fixed locally when required, so that you won’t have to send it to another location for repairs. This is not only more uncomfortable, but at the same time the shipping costs can add up quite quickly.
Buying a drill press is not as hard as you think and all you need to consider before getting one is using these useful tips as a guide. Also, always go for a heavier drill press, since it greatly improves stability when working with it.
Advantages of Drill Press
Having the drill press machine certainly has its own perks. You can always expect these from them:
- Accuracy. Expect greater and better precision with the machine.
- Speed. The machine is great to deliver uniformed and clean result in such short time.
- Power. When compared to hand drill, the drill press won’t cost you a sweat and you don’t have to worry about getting tired either.
- Functionality. The machine is great to help woodworker make accurate holes, sometimes done in certain difficult angles. This feature alone is pretty impressive and handy.
- Flexibility. The machine can do more than just drill holes. They can also be used with spindle sander, in case you need it.
How to Using a Drill Press Video
Outlined below are some of the top 5 best drill presses reviews under $500.
|Model||Shop Fox W1668||Rikon 30-120||Model: Jet JDP-12||Rockwell RK7033||EuroTool DRL300|
|Motor||3/4 HP||1/2 HP||1/3 HP||2/3 HP||-|
|Speed||250-3050 rpm||200-3630 rpm||530-3100 rpm||5 speed||8500 rpm|
|Dimensions||23 x 14 x 38 inches||24 x 13 x 39 inches||20 x 11.1 x 28.9 inches||12 x 14 x 28 inches||12 x 10 x 8.5 inches|
1. Shop Fox W1668 ¾-HP 13-Inch Bench-Top Drill Press/Spindle Sander
Shop Fox W1668 ¾-HP 13-Inch Bench-Top Drill Press goes for a reasonable and affordable. It features a 3/4HP motor which runs on 110 volts and 1725 RPM. It weighs 122.4 pounds and a height of 38 inches tall. It contains impressive twelve speed options which range from 250RPM to 3,050RPM. Shop Fox W1668 also contains a 45 degree right and left table tilt and a 360 degrees table swing.
According to Amazon reviews by customers who have actually bought this drill, it is very user-friendly and alternating speed drills can be done with ease. Many buyers were very impressed with this Shop Fox W1668 drill press and they also appreciated the fact that it contained a sanding feature. The buyers also noted its sturdiness and durability. Most of them appreciated the fact that this Shop Fox W1668 was ideal for working in smaller spaces and required a smaller press.
The only disadvantage that most customers complained of about the drill was on the packaging during shipping. Most of them voiced their concern about the poor condition the drill arrived in, for other customers, it came damaged. However, aside from the shipping and packaging issues there haven’t been any quality or performance problems voiced by the buyers of this machine. Many buyers would actually recommend this drill for many DIY projects and Shop Fox W1668 is one of the best drill press for the money.
2. RIKON 30-120 13-Inch Drill Press
RIKON 30-120 13-Inch has a lot of useful features. Weighing 123 pounds, this drill has a 1/2 HP motor and 16 speed options ranging from 200RPM to 3,630RPM. It is made from heavy solid steel and cast iron. It also has a clutch depth stop and a rack and pinion height adjustment. This is one press drill that will last for a long time and as a bonus it comes with a five year warranty from the manufacturer. What could be better than this? You don’t have to spend money in repairs because this drill is less likely to give you problems.
The fact that this drill is built to last is what draws many customers to buy it. Despite its special modern features most customers buy it because of its durability. The drill however, has only one drawback, the handle wheel has been known to cause injury to the knuckles but wearing working gloves while using it might help. A part from that, this drill remains one of the most durable and top rated drill presses and actually it is one of the best drill press for the money.
3. Jet JDP-12 12-Inch Drill Press with Digital Readout
Jet JDP-12 12-Inch Drill Press with Digital Readout has quite a lot to offer. The press drill comes with a 1/3 HP motor and an impressive innovative Xacta laser that guarantees drilling precision. There is also an impressive LED readout light to further enhance accuracy while working. It also contains a compact bench top that is ideal for working in small workshop areas.
The laser enables you to see the exact piece of what you are cutting, something that reduces the likelihood of having errors in your construction work. The large ergonomic knobs enable you to easily adjust and stabilize the drills for accuracy. The digital readout allows you to read the spindle speed and it’s perfect for different drilling applications.
It has been one of the top rated drill presses thanks to its great design and quality. Buyers have expressed appreciation for the safety chuck key feature because it has helped prevent injuries. It is also very easy to use despite its design; the simple on/off switch located at the front of the drill press, further simplifies matters making it easy to switch it on and off whenever it’s convenient.
There are some drawbacks about this machine and one of them is that it has heavy vibration during use as many users have claimed. The LED readout screen has also been known to cease functioning after months of use. The lack of warranty for a machine with its cost is also an issue. But generally, it is a great functioning machine that will give service for a long time. It has still been rated highly in drill press reviews despite the few drawbacks.
4. Rockwell RK7033 Shop Series Drill Press Replaces RK7032 Drill Press, 10-Inch
The Rockwell RK7033 Shop Series Drill Press Replaces RK7032 Drill Press, 10-Inch has a 6.2 amp and 2/3 HP motor. The drill contains five speed options and it is able to perfectly drill wood, metal and plastic. Weighing 53.4 pounds, it also contains a rack and pinion height adjustment. It also has a 45 degree left to right table tilt and features a keyed safety switch that ensures that the unit isn’t accidentally started. Buyers of this press drill have expressed their appreciation of its strong motor and its ability to deliver precision holes.
The external belt tension adjustment feature became a favorite for many users. Most have also been impressed with its durability and have used it for a long time. They considered this machine is one of the best drill press and the best benchtop product from Rockwell. This drill lacks any performance or quality issues.
The only drawback about it is that it comes unassembled and the parts are very oily. The use of gloves when assembling the parts is advised. However, overall the drill meets quality standards and it is indeed the best drill press for the money.
5. Small Benchtop Drill Press | DRL-300.00
EuroTool DRL-300.00 is the ideal tool for both small and large home construction projects. Based on the its price ranges which makes it very economical. It has three speed options and runs up to 8,500RPM. Weighing only 13 pounds, it measures 6-3/4 inches by 6-3/4 inches; this makes it perfect especially when the working space is small. It also comes with a manufacturer’s one year warranty which is quite convenient.
Customers have quite a lot of good things to say about this drill. It is perfect for woodworking and jewelry crafting. It is also ideal for most small construction projects. It is lightweight but sturdy and very easy to use.
However, the only disadvantage with this drill is that it has less power when operated on slower speed settings something that can be quite an inconvenience. Apart from this, the drill works perfectly and its quite affordable for individuals keen on costs. For that price there is no excuse for not carrying out that home construction project you have always wanted to do.
Best Benchtop Drill Press for Metal Work
If you’re passionate about creating various objects from metal and other similar materials, then you’ll certainly need to make sure that you get yourself the very best benchtop drill press for metal work, especially if you’re serious about this. So basically what a drill press does is that it helps you bore holes which are evenly sized into metal, wood and other types of materials. In fact, there are drill presses that are specifically built for boring holes into metal, while others are made to bore holes into wood. In the paragraphs below we’re only going to talk about the former, so with that being said, let’s check out what the best benchtop drill press for metalwork can do.
SKIL 3320-01 10-Inch
First of all, let me tell you that the Skill 3320 takes thirty minutes to be assembled, so make sure that you follow the directions very well if you don’t want it to take longer. Now when it comes to the motor, it’s a three point two amp motor that offers you enough power for most drilling jobs. There is also an adjustable speed pulley that you can use (you’ll find it above the motor) to control the revolutions per minute depending on what you’re working on. Using it, you’ll be able to set the Skill 3320 to 5 different speeds, including 570, 900, 1390, 2050 and 3050 revolutions per minute.
When you want to change the speeds, you should know that this is done manually by using the tension knobs on each side of the housing. You also need to slide the motor forward and then finally consider adjusting the belts to fit your preferences.
Adjustable Work Table
It’s fair to say that no matter how great a drill press is, if it doesn’t have an adjustable table it’s not really one you’d be interested in getting. Luckily, the Skill 3320 features an adjustable table which you can control using a crank handle. If you want, you’ll also be able to tilt it to the right or to the left by forty five degrees.
The slots on the table are a great addition, too, since they can be used in conjunction with a wide range of clamps and fences. Based on this fact alone and the possibility of moving the table to various angles, a lot of users have called the Skill 3320 the Best Benchtop Drill Press for Metal for those who don’t want to spend a fortune on a drill press.
LaserX2 Two Beam Laser System
Now here is where things get interesting. The Skill 3320 features a laser beam system that’s going to become vital in your field of work, since it helps you align drill bits on the work piece. Thanks to this system, you’ll find that lining up large bits is going to be much more accurate and simple. As for the lasers, adjusting them is a breeze, so you don’t have to worry about this being complicated.
The Skill 3320 is a very well built drill press that’s going to amaze you right from the first day you’ll use it. If you have a limited budget and you also have little space to work in, then the Skill 3320 is by far the Best Benchtop Drill Press for Metal Work you can currently get.