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Thread: I'm comparing these two drill presses

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Vacaville CA.
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    100

    I'm comparing these two drill presses

    I am hoping Santa will bring me a new drill press for Christmas. I really like the Powermatic but at a savings of over $300 I think the Delta will do nicely. . What do you think?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
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    11,825
    Do consider the Grizzly line as well. Like this http://grizzly.com/products/12-Speed...ll-Press/G7947 and others. My G7943 has given unfailing service for almost 15 years and a much lower price. But, it is only a 3/4 hp.
    "Folks is funny critters."

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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
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    Sounds like the Gristly or the Delta to me.
    Cheers,
    Roger


    The other member of Mensa, but not the NRA

    Everyone is a self-made person.

    "The thing about quotes on the internet is that you cannot confirm their veracity" -Abraham Lincoln

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    The Gorge Area, Oregon
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    4,698
    I have the delta. When I was looking at them I thought the pm didn't have a low enough speed range, but it's a bit better now.

    There are some things I really like about the delta:
    • The speed change mechanism is first rate. IMHO you won't miss the electronic change much at all.
    • The large table is really nice, although I admit I haven't used the multiway tilt (and is would be more accurate and repeatable to use a jig anyway).
    • The speed ranges are good for the largest and smallest bits you'd ever want to use.
    • The headstock is nice and deep with a lot of distance between the bearings giving it a lot of stability.



    There are some things that would give me pause were I don't it again:
    • Delta has had a lot of problems as a company and replacement parts are a bit like hens teeth. This is IMHO the big issue.
    • The trunnion lock has some pot metal parts that I've seen a few folks have issues with. Glenn repaired his with a hand crafted wood piece, didn't look too hard.
    • The led magically comes on sometimes when you turn the drill on (last time this came up mine had never done it then a week later it started). Not really a problem but it does make me wonder what's going on in the electronics (pretty sure I could manufacture replacements for anything there).
    • The nice table isn't really designed for sub assemblies. I kept the ancient jet (sn 200) to keep the cross slide vice on.


    So overall, nice woodworkers drill press. Seems to be a fairly solid worker with the exception of the trunnion lock.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    East Freeetown, Massachusetts
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    3,014
    I don't like Delta anything - so that is off the list no matter what.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    ABQ NM
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    If it fits the budget, I don't think you'd regret going with the Powermatic. If my PM lathe is any indication, I suspect you'd smile every time you use the PM drill press. The Delta looks pretty good, but like Ryan mentioned, they've had some issues with parts availability and customer service in the past. The Grizzly falls a bit short on quill travel and throat depth, but as Frank mentioned, it's a lot less money.

    So since we're spending YOUR money, my vote is for the Powermatic, lol.
    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

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Wapakoneta, OH
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    610
    I like the way Ryan summed it up, and his opinion jives with most of what other folks tell me when I ask the question. However, Delta of today isn't what Delta of just a few years ago was and I'm really hesitant to buy any more gray tools. (this, from a guy who's shop was mostly battleship gray until recently).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Vacaville CA.
    Posts
    100
    Thanks friends, just the sort of opinion input I'm looking for. I am currently using a 16 speed Central Machinery drill press. The Griz. looks very similar. I'm ready for top of the line luxury with no regrets. I really like the duel LED lighting, keyless chuck and no belt changes speed control included with the Powermatic. Also the Delta does not come with the fence. Santa is going to think I'm a spoiled demanding brat but I will ask for the Powermatic or NOTHING. :-D

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Spring Hill Kansas
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    16
    Quote Originally Posted by Dewayne Baker View Post
    Thanks friends, just the sort of opinion input I'm looking for. I am currently using a 16 speed Central Machinery drill press. The Griz. looks very similar. I'm ready for top of the line luxury with no regrets. I really like the duel LED lighting, keyless chuck and no belt changes speed control included with the Powermatic. Also the Delta does not come with the fence. Santa is going to think I'm a spoiled demanding brat but I will ask for the Powermatic or NOTHING. :-D
    Personally I would seriously rethink your idea of a "keyless" chuck on a stand alone drill press... A keyless chuck on a hand drill is the cats meow but myself I would go with the tried and true chuck with a key to tighten the bits securely into the chuck............. Other then that everything else your looking for it great on a drill press.................Hope Santa brings what you want and then some.......................Gary

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    The Gorge Area, Oregon
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    FYI the delta fence is ~$43.
    http://www.amazon.com/Delta-18-901-B.../dp/B008PQ9CO6
    Just to make sure you're apples to apples.

    Do you know how the lighting is setup on the PM? The delta has it on a thin arm you can move around - that's another feature I do like on the PM (other than it randomly turning itself on..). After I got it I bought several LED lights on arms with magnetic bases for use at other machines - that adjustable spot light is really nice.

    I hope you're not getting rid of the HF, having two DP's is actually quite the luxurious event (put a cross slide vice on the HF - very convenient for doing small stuff where you want to get spot on).

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