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Thread: Setting up a Drill Press

  1. #1
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    Setting up a Drill Press

    Okay, so I'm putting together my drill press.

    It probably seems like a no-brainer to everyone, but I've never had a drill press, so it's Greek to me.

    So I got the pulleys lined up. The photo is distorted, but they are all in line.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Got it together, and no it won't stay on that rug. I have to make some kind of stand for it. It's too tippy for my taste.

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    But I have a couple of questions. First one is it comes with a vise. Where, how, and when do I use that vise? I assumed I would just clamp work to the little table, or do I need a bigger table for it?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last question is, the instruction book says to put the chuck on and lower the spindle? to the table (pressing it into the table) "until the chuck is on tight". Uhhhhhh how tight is tight? And if it's real tight then how am I gonna get it off? Do all DP's have chucks that attach like that?

    thanks all
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
    AKA The Rookie

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cynthia White View Post
    ...But I have a couple of questions. First one is it comes with a vise. Where, how, and when do I use that vise? I assumed I would just clamp work to the little table, or do I need a bigger table for it?

    Last question is, the instruction book says to put the chuck on and lower the spindle? to the table (pressing it into the table) "until the chuck is on tight". Uhhhhhh how tight is tight? And if it's real tight then how am I gonna get it off? Do all DP's have chucks that attach like that?...
    The vise is handy for holding smaller pieces, but for larger things, you're right...just clamp it to the table. In some cases, clamping isn't necessary, though. It depends what you're drilling and how big of hole you're making. If ever in doubt, clamp it.

    Once the chuck is installed, chances are you'll never need to remove it. If you do, it's usually done with a bit of brute strength and awkwardness, along with a special little forked tool that may or may not have come with the drill press. So...by "tight", they mean "real dang tight".
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  3. #3
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    Congrats Cynthia!

    I've probably injured myself on the drill press more than any other tool in my shop because I would take the risk of not clamping stuff down. A drill press has a really neat way of teaching you that lesson by grabbing whatever it is you are drilling freehand and suddenly spinning it right into your hand that you were using to hold the piece down...

    I've got a little quick clamp thing I use now that works great. Just a little post that bolts to the table with a quick cam clamp that holds the work piece for me.

  4. #4
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    Brent brings up a good point. I've also hurt myself worse with a drill press than any other tool. Don't let this happen to you...

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    I'll spare you the pics of what my hand looked like. I was very lucky to have not done more damage than I did. This was the result of not clamping the piece down, and also holding the piece with a gloved hand.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

    workingwoods.com

  5. #5
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    Congrats, Cynthia.
    The dp coming with a vice means you are now obligated to start making pens. The vice is a necessity for drilling the tube holes.
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cynthia White View Post
    Where, how, and when do I use that vise?
    I've never had a vise like that, but I bet the day will come when nothing ... else ... will ... do, and you'll be glad you have it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cynthia White View Post
    the instruction book says to put the chuck on and lower the spindle? to the table (pressing it into the table) "until the chuck is on tight".
    Yeah ... kinda counter-intuitive when you look at the taper and it looks like it's tapering the wrong way.


    Quote Originally Posted by Cynthia White View Post
    Uhhhhhh how tight is tight? And if it's real tight then how am I gonna get it off? Do all DP's have chucks that attach like that?
    Like Vaughn said, pretty tight. The first time the chuck falls off while in use is a real reality-wrencher. But! Before you get it on too tight, consider buying a keyless chuck that will fit the same taper. I guess they're not for everyone, and some might object to having keyless chuck on a DP ... but I love it!

    Yes, as far as I know, all DP's have chucks that mount with tapers.


    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    I've got a little quick clamp thing I use now that works great. Just a little post that bolts to the table with a quick cam clamp that holds the work piece for me.
    Yep ... fiddling with C-clamps gets old. If you have another solution, like Brent's quick-clamp, go for it. (Can you show a pic Brent?)
    Last edited by Kerry Burton; 01-23-2011 at 12:47 AM. Reason: Fixed the spelling of "Vaughn"

  7. #7
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    I have a VISE JUST LIKE THAT AND FIND IT WORKS GREAT ON SMALL PARTS AND WILL SAVE YOU FINGERS
    "Thereís a lot of work being done today that doesnít have any soul in it. The technique may be the utmost perfection, yet it is lifeless. It doesnít have a soul. I hope my furniture has a soul to it." - Sam Maloof
    The Pessimist complains about the wind; The Optimist expects it to change;The Realist adjusts the sails.~ William Arthur Ward

  8. #8
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    As far as seating the MT (Morse Taper), Use some mineral spirits to clean any grease or oil off of the chuck side and wad up some paper towels to clean up the inside of the morse taper. Any grit or gunk could lead to it not seating right, coming off later, or being a bit out of round before you put it up there...

    (Probably too late for this advice, huh? Well if it falls off, try and remember.)

  9. #9
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    Cynthia, check out the table i made for mine.

    http://familywoodworking.org/forums/...ll+press+table
    If you don't take pride in your work, life get's pretty boring.

    Rule of thumb is if you donít know what tool to buy next, then you probably donít need it yet.

  10. #10
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    Yeah, Kerry, that's what I was worrying about...does the chuck ever just *fall* *off*?

    Vaughn, and others, I had no idea you can get hurt so easily......

    Frank, I have to get a lathe before I can start making pens

    Steve, I'll have a look at your table.

    Brent, I'll be careful and clamp everything. I already learned that lesson with the miter saw.

    What's a keyless chuck and why is it great to have one?

    thanks all for the input.
    AKA Young Grasshopper Woodworker
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