Anyone out there have the 16 speed drill press that HF is advertising
for $179? I am considering purchasing one of these machines. I gave
one a cursory inspection in the store and it seemed to be ok
considering the price. The drill press has a round t slot table, 16
speeds, MT 2 taper, and a 1 HP motor.
I have one similar from HF. Found the runnout to make drilling small holes
impossible. Have'nt figured out what I can do about it, other than use my mill
for small, less than 1/4", holes. The slop is in the bearing itselft. Oh, when
I bought it, the chuck would not work. I called them and asked if they wanted
it back as proof. they said just trash it and sent me another one as a
replacement. It was not very good, either, but what can I expect for $150?
It is my opinion that you need to hand-select at the store until you find
one that's right. Here's how:
("htbdrillp" is a shortened version of "how to buy a drill press")
I wrote this several years ago and it contains some simple and basic tips
for what you can do to combat various illnesses of cheap drill presses. Since
that time I have come to believe that many inexpensive pulleys have a whole
lot of runout, which of course leads to vibration, excessive bearing wear,
and noise. So I would add nowadays to set up a dial indicator on all pulleys
and indicate them both radially and axially.
Following my own advice, I drove up to the Grizzly metalworking showroom up
in Bellingham, Washington. I chucked up a piece of ground rod and indicated
it without power. I did this on several models, horrified at what I found.
The manager came out, curious. I showed him, and he got curious too and took
me in the back, where we ripped open about 8 more. NONE of their cheap drill
presses had runout less than 1/32"! Of course, a lot of that error could have
come from the chuck. Later I went to a used machinery dealer that had a Jet
17" floor model. I repeated the experiment with that machine, and found TIR
was within .001" - a whole LOT better. I bought that Jet and used it well and
often and sold it to a friend who to my knowledge is still happy with it.
Oh. By the way, a little mill-drill is a much better drill press than any
of the above!
Douglas Baugher wrote:
It's a good machine for the money. YMMV, but mine has a
good, tight spindle, less than .0008 runout and runs well.
Powerful enough for a 1-1/4" bit through 1" mild steel. Get
an Albrecht keyless chuck with integral shaft; pitch the
chuck it comes with.
Dweller in the cellar
Douglas Baugher wrote:
Thanks for the excellent advice Grant. The monograph you wrote about
checking cheap drill presses out deserves an A++ and a gold star. I
printed it out to refer to in the future.
I doubt HF would let me check out several of their machines until I
find an acceptable one. Given the fact that others had reported
runouts in the .030 range and the inability to inspect the machine I
get before purchase I think I am going to pass on the HF drill press.
I didn't buy the H-F model you're looking at, but got their 20"
"Industrial" drill press on sale for $300. The regular price is close
I didn't buy until I checked the runout of an identical unit a friend
had just bought. It was very low, less than a thou. I extended the
quill and pushed it from side to side against the dial indicator:
very little movement.
So, I bought one. Its runout is less than a thou, also.
My main objection to the machine is the cheap belts and pulleys. They
can really set up an annoying vibration. It's impossible to keep the
sheet metal belt cover from rattling.
If anyone gets this particular H-F drill, be prepared to buy a smaller
chuck. The original one won't close down on smaller bits. IIRC, mine
won't go smaller than 3/16".
Other than the rattle, I'm very pleased with mine--for the money, that
is. So's my friend.
I've had one of those drill presses for years and it's only good for boring
crude holes as far as I'm concerned. It's not just the spindle but the table
itself. It is not really ridged enough and flexes forward when pressure is
put on it making it hard to drill a parallel hole.
I've always looked at the imported drill presses as kits. Usually
doesn't matter where you get it, or how much or little you pay, with
some work and a little thinking, they can be made to work well and
accurately. (Doesn't mean I'm not happy to have my Craftsman
[King-Seeley] though, even if I had to make a new column for that
Others have said "pitch the chuck", and I'll agree, except I mounted
mine on a reamer float for my turret lathes. Usually, a new chuck
will cut down the runout considerably. (But not always.)
On Wed, 25 Feb 2004 05:53:18 -0800, Orrin Iseminger
brought forth from the murky depths:
Milled pulleys are available, but first try a linkbelt setup.
I got 5' of green linkbelt at HFT for $17 on sale. I put it
on my Grizzly bandsaw and it turned it into a purring kitten.
I _highly_ recommend it in place of regular v-belting.
Run a bead of latex caulk, permatex gasket compound, or equivalent
in the seat of the top. It stopped my $39 drill from rattling.
--== EAT RIGHT...KEEP FIT...DIE ANYWAY ==--
That sounds like the one I have, I bought it for $170 on a special
price. It has minimial runought, excellent table squareness (about +-
.002, mostly in dips between the T-slots). Biggist problem I have is
I am running it on a overloaded line (with 4 el cheapo flourocents)
and the lights dimm when I first kick it on. I like the slow RPM's
tho, but its a bit difficiult to get but a few of the "16" speeds due
to excessive belt changing required, I mostly just use two speeds.