Recommend a bench top drill press

40 posts / 0 new
Last post

Pages

scottyhazzard
scottyhazzard's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/09/2011 - 19:02
Posts: 1127
Location: Northern California
Recommend a bench top drill press

Father’s Day is coming up and the ladies don’t want to buy, “Any flashlight stuff”. I need a drill press for repairs around the house. (That’s code for flashlight modding) I am looking for something that is accurate and around $100.

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not."

EDCPlus
Offline
Last seen: 6 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 03/08/2012 - 22:09
Posts: 320
Location: California

I have this one: http://www.amazon.com/3320-01-120-Volt-10-Inch-Drill-Press/dp/B003LSSS0W...

It’s pretty decent for the price. I got it on sale though for about $75. Looks like its $129 @ Lowes. There are 10% coupons out there for Lowes though. Maybe other places have it for less. There is also always harbor freight, but their quality is kind of hit or miss sometimes.

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

I have that same Skil model, and mine has a ton of slop between the quill & upper housing. The quill's surface is rough machined, and the bore it rides in is bare grey iron... not a good combination. Probably works fine using it for what it was designed for, but used as a ghetto mini-mill, it's probably worth it to spend a little more on a machine that has better machining and/or some kind of bushing in the headstock.

jcs0001
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: 05/21/2013 - 21:29
Posts: 132
Location: western canada

I’d suggest that what ever you buy has a jack shaft so that it has a low min. speed. Should be about 210 rpm or so. Very useful for bigger bits or hard material. In my experience such drills are often better in quality than their higher speed brethren.

If you can examine one for runout before buying that would also be a good idea.

John

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

I rarely use low speed, only for drilling troublesome stuff like copper, sometimes aluminum. For any kind of end mill or carbide it has to be set to max speed or else it grabs and chatters and generally makes a total mess of things.

hank
hank's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 days 16 hours ago
Joined: 09/04/2011 - 21:52
Posts: 9634
Location: Berkeley, California
jcs0001
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: 05/21/2013 - 21:29
Posts: 132
Location: western canada

I do some work in metal and also in wood. Bigger holesaws and the like work better at low speed. I imagine that low speeds wouldn’t be as important for most flashlight mods. Shouldn’t cost much more however so may as well cover all eventualities?

John

captq
captq's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 years 3 days ago
Joined: 05/02/2014 - 20:54
Posts: 27

I’m not sure this is heavy duty enough for you but dremel does have a drill press adaptor for the dremel

It is a bit plasticy but it does work at least for the simple things I use it for.

scottyhazzard
scottyhazzard's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/09/2011 - 19:02
Posts: 1127
Location: Northern California

I think I’m leaning toward the Central Machinery press that hank posted. Thanks for the input guys.

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not."

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

Harbor Freight drill press on sale, with coupon 19910942 = $59.99

http://www.harborfreight.com/8-in-Bench-Mount-Drill-Press-5-Speed-60238....

scottyhazzard
scottyhazzard's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/09/2011 - 19:02
Posts: 1127
Location: Northern California

Comfy, you think it won’t be able to take the ghetto mill action that I plan for it? I looked at some others but the price quickly triples. I was also looking at Craiglist for old ones that have endured the test of time and coming up with a lot of the harbor freight, sears drill presses. I like that price with the coupon, that was a nice surprise. I guess my question is do you think that it could consistently be accurate to a 64th of an inch? I suppose I could measure a smidge bigger, then sand and buff to tolerances…

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not."

Muto
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 46 min ago
Joined: 09/04/2012 - 16:42
Posts: 2699
Location: Southeast, PA

It seems like it lost a lot of it’s torque over the winter, drilling into some steel last week and the thing kept stalling out. Thought maybe it was just a dull bit, but that was not the case.
Belt is good, no slippage so it just seems like the motor is laying down.

I really have not had a ton of hours on it since I got it.

But, hey with HF you have 90 days to see if it works for you, just keep the receipt and they will take it back if you are not happy with it.

As for mine, I am going to search for an older USA made beast at some upcoming community yard sales.
A guy up the hill from me used to have a garage full of the big stand up drill presses like we had in my high school.
Wish I would have gotten one from him. He moved now and I have no way to contact him.
But they are out there and I will find one.

Good luck with your search and let us know what you got and how well it works,
Keith

The difference between Hoarding and Collecting is the illusion of Organization
.
.“I will get one of flashlight from patrol car”

“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it sometimes rhymes,” Mark Twain

After the Apocalypse there will be only 2 things left alive, Cockroaches and Keith Richards

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

There's no way to set up the fixturing to give you a specific dimension, you have to guess, make a cut, measure it, and see if you need to tap the table/vise one way or the other. Accuracy in this case is down to how precise you are on the setup and learning how the machine reacts to different cut depths (if there's a lot of slop in the spindle/quill/headstock, making a cut can pull it farther in one direction depending on the type of cut you're making).

It's kinda like asking 'what's the accuracy on that hand file?' It depends on how much metal you take off! Smile

wight
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 11/27/2013 - 16:40
Posts: 4969
Location: Virginia, USA

comfy, I think he was trying to ask how bad the runout / slop / etc was. You brought that up earlier in the thread and I agree that it’s a valid concern… that said, there’s really no halfway on having tight tolerances. Either you’ve got what you need or you don’t. If OP can’t spring for the best, the HF may be a great option.

Still fine, still on a break. One day I’ll catch up with you folks! previous wight catchup Wink
list of my drivers & variants (A17DD, FET+1 stuff, WIP stuff, etc)

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

The slop or runout doesn't matter. Holding the workpiece at a stable, fixed point relative to whatever space the spinning tool bit occupies is what will determine the accuracy. Even if the shaft is bent and has lots of runout it still spins the tool bit in the same size circle every time it comes around. Machining round parts, the accuracy depends on being able to rotate the workpiece in a concentric circle, not the machinery.

wight
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 11/27/2013 - 16:40
Posts: 4969
Location: Virginia, USA

I see what you are saying now.

Still fine, still on a break. One day I’ll catch up with you folks! previous wight catchup Wink
list of my drivers & variants (A17DD, FET+1 stuff, WIP stuff, etc)

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

First step, the four holes are the reference point for the first cut. The accuracy of where you put the holes and their size and their concentricity will determine the accuracy of the outer circle. It's like tracing a pattern. Any flaws in the master will transfer to the copies.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06849.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06851.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06855.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06857.jpg

The starting points for the 4 holes were in the right places, the scribed circles were not! The holes are the part that matters.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06860.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06862.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06865.jpg

Tapping the table left or right moves the fixturing pin closer to or farther from the tool bit. There's no measuring scale like on a feed screw on a X-Y table or a lathe tool post. You just have to tap, make a cut, measure, and see how much it moved and whether you need another tap.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06869.jpg

Now that the outer bore is the right size, and round, the center locating holes are no longer needed. The outer part of the holes will take over the job of being the master for making the rest of the cuts. (also note I replaced the previous layer of masking tape on the aluminum angle with packing tape, to reduce friction)

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06870.jpg

The flashing left over is thin enough this part was cut freehand, it was very easy to cut away the leftovers without cutting into the finished part.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06871.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06873.jpg

Again, another step is cut, using the un-cut part as the locating point for the clamped pins. If the surface used as the reference point is round and the right size, the new cut will be as well.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06878.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06874.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06881.jpg

 

 It's all about the fixturing, and being able to plan out a series of operations that will give you something accurate from the previous step to use as a reference for the next one.

 

 

MRsDNF
MRsDNF's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 months 1 week ago
Joined: 12/22/2011 - 21:18
Posts: 13473
Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

That is one exceptional effort CC.

 

djozz quotes, "it came with chinese lettering that is chinese to me".

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

old4570 said "I'm not an expert , so don't suffer from any such technical restrictions".

Old-Lumens. Highly admired and cherished member of Budget Light Forum. 11.5.2011 - 20.12.16. RIP.

 

Oldkid
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 7 months ago
Joined: 05/30/2014 - 14:07
Posts: 14
Location: USA Maryland

I use one of these
Dremel 220-01 Rotary Tool Work Station
by Dremel
Link: http://amzn.com/B00068P48O

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

There's another very important point: how you set up this stuff matters. A lot.

This is correct. See how if the workpiece moves away from the pins, it will cut LESS? And by pushing it up against the pins it'll cut more?

http://75.65.123.78/drillpressabuse/Dsc05321.jpg

Same here, just it's a cut on the ID instead of OD. If it moves away from the pins it cuts less.

http://75.65.123.78/RMM/Dsc06787.jpg

Same here.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06891.jpg

Now, see this? This is WRONG! WRONG WRONG WRONG DO NOT EVEN TRY THIS, it will bind up and either fling the piece across the room or break the bit or maybe both. You absolutely MUST have it set up so you can slide the workpiece away from the pins (& the bit) while you reposition your grip. If it cuts deeper when the piece moves away from the pins, you will have a very bad not good day.

http://75.65.123.78/drillpressabuse/Dsc06900.jpg

scottyhazzard
scottyhazzard's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/09/2011 - 19:02
Posts: 1127
Location: Northern California

Very interesting, Comfy. This is the kind of thing that fascinates me. My imagination is so convoluted and complex that I can’t imagine a way to overcome lack of machinery and high end ($$$$) tools. Your solutions remind me of the simple old world solutions that people come up with in my wife’s home country of Costa Rica. I often see how people manufacture of repair things there and wonder why they have something set up in that way until I see what they are doing and I am dumbstruck by their genius of simple solutions to complex problems. I envy that ability to cut out the noise and identify the problem and come up with a solution that is simple and robust. I was looking at rotating tables but the cheapest one that I could find was for $250 on Craig’slist and was a huge version of one of these.

Perhaps or maybe better, please consider posting a thread of how to machine like comfychair. It would be a big help for those of us on a budget that lack a practical imagination.

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not."

wight
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 10 months ago
Joined: 11/27/2013 - 16:40
Posts: 4969
Location: Virginia, USA

scottyhazzard wrote:
Perhaps or maybe better, please consider posting a thread of how to machine like comfychair. It would be a big help for those of us on a budget that lack a practical imagination.
I’m seconding this request. I think that could be a great thread!

Still fine, still on a break. One day I’ll catch up with you folks! previous wight catchup Wink
list of my drivers & variants (A17DD, FET+1 stuff, WIP stuff, etc)

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

Well, each situation requires its own novel solution. It's like, how do you give instructions on how to be creative, how to repurpose 'found' objects to solve a problem? I used that 4-up bezel-thing as an example, just because that was one that took me a good bit of thinkin' before I hit on the solution, mostly because I was trying to make it more complex than it really was. To cut something round, you only need a stable & accurate reference point (it only varies a little whether it's on the inside or outside of the workpiece); in that case it was as simple as using the four center holes that would later be cut out and discarded.

That fixture thing I made to hold the stainless pins I use for probably better than 90% of everything. It's just two pieces of 1/8" thick aluminum angle, clamped in the vise, and then six holes drilled only partially through, so the pins don't fall out the bottom when the vise is loosened, and to hold the pins at the same height even if you move the pins to a different set of holes. I have a bunch of the long stainless pins (scavenged from old CD-ROM drives, they're the guide rails the laser pickup slide on), and cut them to length (height) if I don't have something already made up that will work. You could just as easily use various diameter TIG welding filler rod, it's available in about every material you could imagine - stainless, titanium, inconel, aluminum, silicon bronze, etc.

For milling a flat surface on top of something with an endmill it's a lot harder, the cuts have to be really shallow or else it bites and flings stuff across the room. Whenever possible, especially since a lot of these parts are small and that puts soft fingers uncomfortably close to very sharp fast-spinning metal, I try to bolt the object down onto a larger baseplate that gives a more stable surface to slide around while making the cut. For something like a pill that's taller than it is wide, that helps a LOT.

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07599.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07600.jpg

That was done without being clamped down except to the square baseplate, just sliding the baseplate around under the endmill. Taking very very shallow cuts (no more than about .010"), measuring, then raising the table a tiny bit and going at it again until it's close enough to finish off with a file and then wet sanding.

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

Turning down a 3XP & TIR from 20mm to 17mm:

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07532.jpg

 

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07534.jpg

 

This is a spare pill from a different light that was already made up with a matching cut-down 3XP board to fit inside the pocket, it fits with very little slop but still spins easily. Just used as a fixture to allow rotating the TIR in a consistent, concentric circle, at a fixed distance from the tool bit. The repeatability of that distance between the center of rotation of the workpiece and the tool bit is what determines the accuracy.

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07536.jpg

I could churn out a dozen of those 17mm TIRs with a finished OD variation of just a few thou. The catch is, it helps to do them all in one go, without moving any of the fixturing... if you move on to a different setup for machining a different part it's hard (but not impossible) to get back to the exact same setup to do another TIR that comes out the same size as the first ones. But again, it depends on how carefully you set it up, not so much on the tools.

http://75.65.123.78/z1/Dsc07540.jpg

 

 

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

DO NOT EVER WEAR GLOVES when trying any of this crazy shit! Gloves will not protect you, they will just get snagged and wrap your whole hand around the bit, instead of just giving you a little nip.

In case you ever wondered why the switch on a drill press or mill is where it is, in that awkward location right out in front of the headstock, it's so you can bang it 'off' with your forehead while your hands are being devoured by the spinning tool bit. This is not for the faint-hearted!

WarHawk-AVG
WarHawk-AVG's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 7 months ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 06:47
Posts: 5071
Location: H-Town

comfychair wrote:

First step, the four holes are the reference point for the first cut. The accuracy of where you put the holes and their size and their concentricity will determine the accuracy of the outer circle. It’s like tracing a pattern. Any flaws in the master will transfer to the copies.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06849.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06851.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06855.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06857.jpg

The starting points for the 4 holes were in the right places, the scribed circles were not! The holes are the part that matters.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06860.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06862.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06865.jpg

Tapping the table left or right moves the fixturing pin closer to or farther from the tool bit. There’s no measuring scale like on a feed screw on a X-Y table or a lathe tool post. You just have to tap, make a cut, measure, and see how much it moved and whether you need another tap.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06869.jpg

Now that the outer bore is the right size, and round, the center locating holes are no longer needed. The outer part of the holes will take over the job of being the master for making the rest of the cuts. (also note I replaced the previous layer of masking tape on the aluminum angle with packing tape, to reduce friction)

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06870.jpg

The flashing left over is thin enough this part was cut freehand, it was very easy to cut away the leftovers without cutting into the finished part.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06871.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06873.jpg

Again, another step is cut, using the un-cut part as the locating point for the clamped pins. If the surface used as the reference point is round and the right size, the new cut will be as well.

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06878.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06874.jpg

http://75.65.123.78/endless/Dsc06881.jpg

 

 It’s all about the fixturing, and being able to plan out a series of operations that will give you something accurate from the previous step to use as a reference for the next one.

 

 

Holy crap! A Quad triple!
comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

WarHawk-AVG wrote:
Holy crap! A Quad triple!

Please don't quote multiple pics like that, all my stuff is hosted on my home computer and once is more than enough already. :_(

scottyhazzard
scottyhazzard's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: 08/09/2011 - 19:02
Posts: 1127
Location: Northern California

Did you have the triple glued down? How did it not fly off when you were working on it. As for gloves, yeah I learned that lesson about 13 years ago on a jointer table. Didn’t lose any fingers but I still learned.

"Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not."

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

Glued down? Hell no, it has to be rotated by hand! Like, with fingers! Push the part towards the cutter, it stops when it hits the two clamped pins (or the single pin thru the center, depending on which part is being worked on), and then rotated as it cuts. When you can push it towards the bit and turn and no more is being cut off, it's finished.

Rufusbduck
Rufusbduck's picture
Offline
Last seen: 9 months 2 days ago
Joined: 04/04/2012 - 15:34
Posts: 10389
Location: Golden state

Not a high jacking so much as a complimentary post but how about recommendations for a cross-slide? The harbor freight models seem to have a good deal of play. Are there any that rotate?

Three Tanna leaves to give him life, nine to give him movement. But what if he eats the whole bag?

Scott

comfychair
comfychair's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 8 months ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 05:39
Posts: 6198

Get a X-Y table made for a small mill, the cheap cross slide vises are junk, at least for doing work like this. They're also extremely awkward - the vise jaws being one piece with the base means your setup options are extremely limited. You may need the vise jaws oriented in a way that's physically not possible.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/300938380035

http://littlemachineshop.com/products/product_view.php?ProductID=2008&ca...

One of those with a standard low profile drill press vise clamped on top is much more versatile. You can get the same results without one, you just have to be more picky about positioning the vise on the drill press and adjusting the table.

Pages