Best Drill Press for Woodwork

What is the best drill press to buy? Your ability to render a drill press best is majorly dependent on the intended use. Some tasks require specific drill presses to accomplish the task. The price, quantity, thickness, and hardness of the wood are some of the main factors to consider when identifying the best woodworking drill press to buy.

  • Best Beginner: ShopSeries RK7033

This drill press suitable if you are just a beginner or DIY (do-it-yourself) type of person. Most DIY projects are small-scale, and power consumption is manageable.

  • Best Benchtop: JET JDP-15B 15″ Drill Press

This one comes installed with LED lighting for more visibility, and the table tilts 45 degrees left or right. It is the best of benchtop drill presses.

  • Best Features: Powermatic PM2800B 18″ Drill Press

This floor standing drill press has the most standard and convenient features you would like in one. The size, voltage of 115 volts, and speed of 3000 rotations per minute may be just what most people need.

  • Best Floor Standing: JET JDP-17 17″ Drill Press

It has a large iron cast base that gives it utmost stability. It is safe to do light to heavy work on it because of firm support.

  • Most Portable: DEWALT DWE1622K Drill Press

This drill press is 22.44 x 6.5 x 19.29 inches in size. However, despite the portability, it highly compromises other features like rotating speed and voltage. Speed is only a maximum of 450 rotations per minute, and the voltage goes as high as 240 volts. If you are comfortable with paying the cost, go for it and end your transportation troubles.

  • Strongest Frame: WEN 4210T Drill Press

The price is slightly higher for this one, but this drill press’s body frame justifies it. It’s bigger and thicker than most others, therefore, trustable with heavy duties.

  1. Can you mill wood with a drill press?

Let us examine the functions of a drill press to understand whether it is used for milling wood. You might discover that a wood miller can drill wood, but a drill press can’t mill. The common question revolves around the safety of milling wood with a drill press. 

  • Drilling holes with precision:

Although hand drills can also be used for drilling holes, drill presses have more precision to get the task done uniformly. Drill presses hold the piece of wood being drilled into position or at an angle when necessary, and those with the laser beam make work even easier by marking the target area. 

  • Enlarging existing holes:

A boring tool is used to enlarge existing holes on wood evenly. Assuming you made 1-centimeter holes on the wood and you need 1.5 cm, you will have to attach a boring tool to the drill press and allow it to rotate over the previous hole at the same angle. There is no reverse for poorly-done holes besides getting fresh wood. Therefore, save your time, energy, and money by investing in a drill press to get things done seamlessly. 

  • Finishing and threading holes:

A reamer is attached to finish holes, while a tap is used to create threads in holes. You can acquire the spare heads at a lower price if you want to do different tasks.

Gaging from the above, it is highly unlikely that milling wood is a probability with the drill press. Any attempt to mill wood bears potential hazards like jumping off of pieces rotating at high speed. Such activity may result in damage to the drill press. Let’s not misuse our work tools. Just follow the manual and only do what it says. Better safe than sorry. 

  1. Is a drill press worth it?
  • Most of us look at drill press functions and think to ourselves, “can’t a hand drill do this more conveniently?” I know exactly what you mean. The hand drill seems better by far because of other factors like portability. However, slow down first and see just why you need the drill press just as much.
  • For those who are slaves to perfection, you are better off using the drill press to avoid those substandard results. A drill press is more accurate and holds the reputation of being the only tool to make holes at exactly 90 degrees. If you have a task or project that needs such precision, you wouldn’t want to gamble with other tools. Even I don’t trust my hand to be that stable in driving in a drill at a perfect 90 degrees. 
  • A drill press applies metric technology that many tend to disregard over imperial. However, a drill press makes metric look classy and easier to handle. All you have to do is adjust the measurements based on the readings and calibrations you see, and you are good to go. It works as though the drill press collaboratively communicates with you in getting the task done. Let’s say you are sharing your mind with the machine.
  • If you still don’t think you need the drill press, think about this. Imagine that you are doing a project and have to install rods to a cabin at a precise 28 degrees. It would be best if you had the drill press to save you from that one. It will repetitively drill the holes in no time, and all you have to do is slide the wood into position. So you see, you need it if you care so much about the perfection of your project. If not, you don’t like the drill press.
  1. What does a 15-inch drill press mean?
  • The distance between the centre of the spindle and the column edge makes half the drill press’s measurement. The total measurement is that distance multiplied by two, like the full diameter the drill press can cover. I know you may be wondering what the inches mean to your task. The bigger the inches on the drill press, the larger the load it can handle.
  • For example, if you have a plank of wood or board that is 15 inches wide, the furthest you can drill into it is 7.5 inches inwards. If you have an 18-inch drill press, the furthest you can drill into it from the edge is 9 inches inwards. Therefore, the drill press length increases or decreases your work scope, depending on the wood piece’s width.
  • Most commercial drill presses have longer drill inches because of the nature of the work they handle. They probably have to deal with big boards of up to 1 metre squared. It would be impossible for them to operate with a 15-inch drill press without having to break the board into manageable slices: the bigger the inches, the more commercialized the drill press.
  • DIY drill presses usually have small inches. For instance, a 15-inch drill press can accomplish simple at-home projects such as fixing a piece of furniture on a shelf. Therefore, you must understand the nature of your tasks before buying a drill press. If you do woodwork as a hobby, it is convenient and cheaper to buy the 15-inch drill press but if the woodwork is your occupation, go for bigger alternatives to avoid limitations.

A 15-inch drill press is a standard one to possess and can accomplish most of the basic tasks. Now you understand what a 15-inch or any other inched drill press is.

  1. Jet drill press

Here are some reliable Jet drill presses.

  • Jet IDP-22, 22″ Industrial Drill Press

The dimensions of this make are 35 x 19 x 67 inches. Its speed is 3050 rotations per minute, and its energy consumption is 115 volts. There is also a built-in LED work light. The large swing length is perfect for industrial or commercial work.

  • JET J-2500 15-Inch 3/4-Horsepower 115-Volt Floor Model Drill Press

This drill press weighs 167 pounds, and its dimensions are 54 x 20 x 10.5 inches. Its energy consumption is at 115 volts, and its speed ranges between 200 and 3630 RPM. 

  • Jet J-2530 15-Inch 3/4-Horsepower 115-Volt Bench Model Drill Press

This item weighs 157 pounds, consumes 115 volts of energy, and measures 22.5 x 12 x 32 inches. According to Amazon, it has a 2-year warranty period as proof of durability. 

  • JET J-A3816 15-Inch Single Phase 6 Speed Floor Model Drill Press

This drill press measures 32.5 x 21.5 x 70 inches with a speed of 3500 rotations per minute. It weighs 450 pounds, which is more than double other drill presses. You can consider it if portability is not a priority.

  • JET J-A5818 15-Inch 1-Horsepower 230/460-Volt Three Phase Variable Speed Floor Drill Press

This drill press is 31 x 31 x 70 inches and bears a speed of 3500 rotations per minute. Its energy consumption is 460 volts. 

  • JET JDP-15B 15″ Drill Press, 16-Speed (716200)

This drill press measures 36.5 x 33.25 x 12.81 inches. It also has a high speed of 3500 rotations per minute and consumes only 115 volts of energy. 

  • JET JDP-17MF 17″ Drill Press (354169)

It weighs 23.5 inches by 12.8 inches by 54.5 inches and consumes up to 115 volts of energy. The weight is 200 pounds, and the speed is 3630 rotations per minute.

  1. Delta drill press

There is a limitation in the variety of drill presses under the Delta brand. However, we shall take a look at the available options and discuss them at length. Delta has more hand drills than drill presses. Could this be an indication of their preference for the hand drills? Let us now look at the only available Delta drill press discussed below. 

  • Delta 18-900L 18-Inch Laser Drill Press

This drill press features a low rating on Amazon. It is uncertain whether these faults are arising from the Delta company or the Amazon dealers. 

Delta laser drill press has 16 drilling speeds you can adjust to your preference. You may adjust the speeds depending on the depth of the drill or the hardness of the wood. For hardwood, you are better off using the fast drill. If you are drilling from end to end on a thick hardwood surface, you can use the fastest. For shallow drills that you don’t want to pass to the other end, you can use slow speeds or short impulses of the fast one. The drilling speeds range between 170 and 3000 rotations per minute.

It also comes with an LED light to enhance the user’s vision; this means you can work at whichever time of the day without lighting inconveniences. I understand that workshops can be very poorly-lit at times with nothing more than a headlamp. Regardless of where you are, you have nothing to worry about as long as your drill press is plugged into a machine.

This Delta drill press’s dimensions are 59 x 30.5 x 13 inches, which is quite a reasonable size. It weighs 261 pounds and consumes an energy level of 120 volts. It is categorized as one of the best for commercial work, with a swing length of 18 inches.

  1. Wen drill press
  • WEN 4208 8 in. 5-Speed Drill Press

The speed of this drill press is 3140 rotations per minute. The energy consumption is at 120 volts. It operates at five different speeds of 740, 1100, 1530, 2100, and 3140 RPM, which is reliable enough to get the work done. The lowest speed is relatively high compared to other drill presses. Many people claim that this is interchangeably the best drill press compared with the WEN 4210.

  • WEN 4210 Drill Press with Laser, 10-Inch

The drill press measurements are 21.5 x 14.5 x 9.5 inches, and the speed is 3100 rotations per minute. The lowest speed is 600 RPM up to the highest. It has 10 inches of swing length. However, this is relatively small and suits small projects rather than big ones.

  • WEN 4214 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill Press, Orange

The drill press in the discussion uses 120 volts of energy and has a speed of 3200 rotations per minute. The total height of the drill press is 37 inches. The swing length for the WEN 4214 is 12 inches, which is still relatively small for big commercial projects. However, this is a reliable drill press, and anyone considering a fast average-sized one for basic errands should consider this. 

  • WEN 4227 13 Amp 12-Speed Floor Standing Drill Press, 17″

It has 12 different speed ranges that accommodate the drilling of different materials besides wood. The various intensities can be adjusted from simple materials like plastic to hard materials like metal. The swing length is 17 inches, which is the longest of the WEN series. This particular WEN drill is longer and bigger than the others. The drill press dimensions are 14 x 30 x 67 inches, and the RPM is 2940 at its highest. The overall weight of the item is 214 pounds.

  1. Grizzly drill press
  • Grizzly G0751 – 22″ Heavy-Duty Drill Press

Speed: It has six spindle speeds of 90, 210, 345, 670, 1180, and 1970 RPM.

Measurements: The overall dimensions of the item are 29-1/2″ W x 36-1/2″ D x 69-1/4″ H

Voltage: It consumes 220 volts of energy.

Weight: It weighs approximately 849 pounds.

  • Grizzly G0808 – 20-3/4″ Gearhead Drill Press with Cross-Slide Table

Speed: The speed is variable and ranges anywhere from 0 to 2500 RPM.

Measurements: It has overall dimensions of 42″ W x 46-1/2″ D x 77-1/2″ H.

Voltage: It has a consumption of 220 volts.

Weight: The approximate shipping weight is 739 pounds.

  • Grizzly G0823 – 15″ Drill Press with Auto Downfeed

Speed: It has 12 speed levels ranging between 140 and 2436 RPM.

Measurements: The full height is 67 inches.

Voltage: Energy consumption of 220 volts.

Weight: The shipping weight is 772 pounds.

  • Grizzly G0925 – 8″ Baby Benchtop Drill Press

Speed: The drill press has five spindle speeds ranging between 740 and 3140 RPM.

Measurements: The machine’s overall measurements are 9″ W x 12-1/2″ D x 23-1/2″ H.

Voltage: The energy consumption is 120 volts.

Weight: The shipping weight is 36 pounds.

  • Grizzly G7945 – 34″ Benchtop Radial Drill Press

Speed: It has five spindle speeds ranging from 550 and 3000 RPM.

Measurements: The overall size of the drill press is 11-1/2″ W x 33-1/2″ D x 31-1/2″ H

Voltage: The consumption is at 120 volts.

Weight: The weight is approximately 97 pounds.

  • Grizzly G7947 – 17″ Floor Drill Press

Speed:It has 12 spindle speeds including 210, 310, 400, 440, 630, 670, 1260, 1430, 1650, 2050, 2350, and 3300 RPM.

Measurements: General size is 21″ W x 30″ D x 70″ H.

Voltage: The energy consumption is 120 volts when prewired and 140 volts when not.

Weight: The approximate weight is 260 pounds.

  1. Dewalt drill press

Dewalt company specializes in building and construction machinery. However, little is found on drill presses.

  • DEWALT Drill Press, 2-Speed, Magnetic, 2-Inch (DWE1622K)

The dimensions of this drill press are 22.44 x 6.5 x 19.29 inches. The energy consumption stands at 240 volts, and the machine has a lightweight of 38 pounds. The lightweight and small size explain why it is categorized as the most portable drill press. It has a slow spindle speed of 450 rotations per minute, which is lower than most other drill presses. 

It is the only identified Dewalt drill press on Amazon with a high rating of 4.7 out of 5. Amazon has even listed it as Amazon’s choice. Most of the positive reviews speak of the effectiveness and perfection that this machine has over others in the market. The majority sounded pleased with it.

This Dewalt drill press has a two-speed spindle changing feature. It has a strong-built body that can sustain heavy-duty and increase its durability. Its small size only has a 2-inch swing length, meaning that its use is very limited to small projects or only the small bits of big projects. 

Despite the simple portability, it has to be connected to a power source through an electric cord. The fact that it is portable is bonus enough. However, the necessity of a power plug may act as a limitation to its portability.

It appears there is always a benefit foregone in prioritizing a certain feature over another. While you may gain a more portable tool, you will have slower speed in rotations per minute and higher voltage usage. 

The machine is priced at $755.96, which is relatively higher. However, you can walk in the assurance that you will have the product long enough and working if you follow the manual that comes with it. 

  1. Floor drill press

Let us take a moment to examine other floor drill presses that may not have been discussed under any of the brands above. We shall look at their features to help us determine how reliable they are against their competitor brands.

  • BILT HARD 13-inch Floor Drill Press, 16 Speed Stand Bench Top Drill press, 6.6 Amp 120V 3/4 HP, 5/8″ B16 Chuck, CSA Certified

This highly-rated floor drill press is interesting in its features. It bears an energy consumption of 120 volts and an amperage of 6.6 amperes. It is strongly powered even to the extent of comfortably drilling through hard materials like metal. Therefore, it can be used to drill all types of wood, hard and softwood. It comes in two sizes, the 8-inch and 13-inch swing lengths. However, we shall major on the latter here. This floor drill press has a maximum spindle speed of 3600 and 16 different speeds, with a minimum of 220 RPM. 

  • Shop Fox W1848 Oscillating Floor Drill Press

This product’s standard dimensions are 24 x 15 x 63 inches, with 63 representing the floor’s vertical height. It operates on an energy level of 110 volts and a maximum speed of 3050 RPM. It has a range of 12 speeds, with the lowest being 250 RPM. 

  • Klutch Floor Drill Press – Variable Speed with Digital Display, 17in. 1 1/2 HP, 120V

The maximum spindle speed range for this floor drill press is 600 to 2400 RPM. The standard dimensions are L 28 3/4 x W 14 1/2 x H 68 7/8 inches. It consumes energy levels of 120 volts and has a 14 by 14-inch work table. However, its ratings on Amazon are low (below 4-star), showing that it might just have its share of weakness that prevents it from being the popular brand.