Drill press

No great surprise, it’s hard for any shop to survive without at least a basic drill press.
 If you are going to do anything beyond light weight occassional use, I would encourage you to move up the extra dollars to get an all cast head & base with at least a 3″ column.
 Columns on domestic presses in the 2″ range flex quite easily when you apply a little pressure to the handles.  Even the 3″ will flex a bit when I start fish mouthing tubing for a cage.  Once that happens,  your accuracy goes.
Adding a few vice and clamp solutions over time and you’re all set for most challenges.  I have even performed some light milling with this press.
 Frankly, several of my friends bought this same drill press around the same time as me (nearly 30 years ago), and they are still going strong even in commercial shops.
Biggest problem I have had with mine during that time is the plastic ball came off one of the handles and broke.  A little loc-tite to hold the pieces together and it screwed right on and was good as new.
30 years of moderate to heavy use is good from just about any equipment.
Once again, you can find these drill presses, exactly the same, marketed under several names, usually for a few hundred bucks.  That’s not bad for a tool that will probably last a life time.
Tip: Tossing a plastic tub under the table to catch most of the drillings makes clean up a lot easier.
A magnetic base lamp is inexpensive and takes the strain off your eyes.


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