The drill press is a spindle mounted on a post with a height adjustable table underneath it. Like handheld drills, the chuck on the drill press holds the drill bits. But compared to hand drills, drill presses can drill holes with greater accuracy (because the bit always drills straight down), more power and slower speeds (which allows for the use of larger bits and hole saw bits). They give you the ability to apply a constant downward pressure to the material by gently lowering the spindle. And because the angle of the table can be adjusted, the drill press can also drill holes at precise angles to the plane of the wood.
- Make sure you are using the right speed for the material and drill bit size (slower for larger bits)
- Loosen the chuck with the chuck key and insert bit.
- Hand tighten the chuck around the bit. The teeth of the chuck should grip the drill bit as close to the flutes (the cutting part of the drill bit) as possible. But DO NOT grip the flutes of the bit with the chuck it will grab the bit off-center and damage the flutes.
- Tighten all three holes using the chuck key. IMMEDIATELY REMOVE THE CHUCK KEY!!
- Spin the chuck one full revolution by hand before turning on the drill press to check that the bit is centered correctly.
- Adjust the table height by loosening the table lock. Re-tighten the table lock.
- Do a dry run and lower the spindle using the feed handle. Make sure the drill passes through the hole in the center of the table or will drill into a piece of scrap wood and not the table.
- Position the material under the drill bit.
- ALWAYS clamp material securely to the table. If using a larger bit, use multiple clamps so the force of the bit does not send your material flying. YOUR HANDS ARE NOT CLAMPS!
- Adjust the depth stop (with the machine OFF) if using. The depth stop helps you to not drill all the way through the material.
- Turn motor on
- Apply even downward pressure to feed handle and begin drilling. Ease up pressure when you break through the material. If drilling deep holes, pull drill out of hole every few seconds to release chips.
- Retract drill bit WHILE MOTOR IS RUNNING. Smoothly and slowly returning feed handle to resting position don’t just let go of it!
- Turn motor off.
- Unclamp and remove your work.
- CLEAN UP!! Leave the drill press AND surrounding area clean and clear of scraps and saw dust.
Tips and Safety Notes:
- NEVER leave the chuck key in the chuck!! It will fly across the room if you forget and seriously injure you or someone else nearby.
- The spinning bit has high torque and can easily catch and pull loose hair or clothing into machine!!This machine is powerful enough to scalp you if your hair is caught in it!!
- NEVER TOUCH THE DRILL BIT WHEN MOTOR IS RUNNING!
- ALWAYS clamp your work down. The larger the bit is, the more secure the work needs to be.You do NOT want your work to come loose and start helicoptering around or across the room!
- ALWAYS unplug machine if changing speed.
- IF DRILL BIT BINDS, DON’T PULL UP ON THE FEED HANDLE even though it is instinctively what you want to do!! Shut motor off and manually spin the chuck backwards by hand to slowly work the bit out.
- If the bit smokes or screeches, it needs to be replaced. Do not use this bit.
- If you want a very precise hole, make a pilot hole first with a smaller bit or a dent with an awl and hammer.