How To Setup Your Drill Press?

A drill press machine is a fixed drilling machine that can be mounted or bolted to a stand, floor or workbench. With their immensely powerful motor reducing the effort needed for the various drilling purposes, drill presses bring in flexibility and utility to the workman’s kit.

Drill Press

A place for everything and everything in its place

Choose the perfect spot for your drill press before any installation processes. It should be placed in such a way that it is close to where most of the work-pieces need to be handled. Have a separate lighting option apart from the built in lamp of the machine. Ensure bright lighting for high visibility for better accuracy of work and to prevent any mishaps. A closed storage area in close proximity to the drill press is a good idea to store unfinished work and other handy accessories.

Fix the tiny details

Bench type drill presses can be bolted to a workbench but it’s much better and easier to use when bolted onto a wooden or steel stand separate from the workbench. Nuts and bolts should be used on the base of the machine while bolting to the bench. If the drill press is unsteady and tends to be easily toppled over, the stand or bench needs to be safely secured to the floor. The bench and stand model of drill presses can be mounted onto wooden floors using lag bolts. In the case of concrete, anchors and masonry bolts are the way to go.

Stay grounded, stay safe

Ground the drill press to protect user from an electric shock. The motor used in small drill presses is typically wired for 120 volts usage with a single phase and is assisted with an appropriate three conductor cord and three prong grounding type plug to fit snugly in a three-slot receptacle. The green colored conductor in the cord is called the grounding wire and should not be connected to a live terminal.

Power up!

Power tools should always use a unique electrical circuit protected with a 20-amp time lag fuse and is not less than 12 gauge wire. Ensure that the wire ratings of extension cords are in sync with the permitted motor amperage of tool and that the electric current voltage is same as the value written on the motor. If the extension cord is already in use, only a three-prong extension cord should be used in a grounded three pole receptacle. Ensure that the machine switch is in off position before connecting to the power source to prevent any accidental mishaps. When in usage ensure that all the line connections are tight; using in low voltage conditions damages the power tool quickly.

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The right amount of lubrication for efficient performance 

Wax and oil are your friends when it comes to lubrication for power tools, including drill press. The surface of the table can be protected with a neat coat of paste wax or a thorough rub down with wax paper. Rusting of the column and quill can be prevented by using a slightly oiled cloth to wipe them. Lubricating the spline and quill using a light machine oil can go a long way in maintaining efficiency and longevity of drill press.

Less stress, smooth experience

The amount of pressure applied on power tools to control its penetration into work-pieces is called feed. Too much feed and the tool is being pushed beyond its capacity leading to rough cuts and damaged drill press. Too little feed (especially with hard materials) causes overheating of the drill press, which results in burning of the cutting edge. A perfect mix of speed and feed results in steady cuts and good quality work.

Speed Thrills but kills

The optimum speed to be used on the drill press is determined by a variety of factors that include type of cutter, size of hole, kind of material, etcetera. Soft materials can handle higher speeds while lower speeds should be used on tougher materials. A chart accompanying the tool will provide a list of permissible ratios and can be used to come close to the maximum speed with slight adjustments to the drive belt. Though speed is a rather interesting feature, steadiness should be given higher priority, which suffers as speed increases.