A drill press varies from model to model, however their basic components and function remains the same throughout. Here are some safe and manufacturer approved tips on how to use the drill press:
1. Proper Speed
Different materials react differently under different speeds. Soft wood, for example will be better suited using a faster drill bit speed while metal bore holes easier with lower speed. A lower speed while drilling metal also help preserve the bit as a higher speed will invariably damage it.
2. Tighten the Chuck
Before starting to drill your project, open the chuck and place the bit in. Then firmly tighten the chuck with the key. There must be not leeway or wobbling coming from the bit. Any wobbling from the bit at small speed (or no speed at all) will be greatly magnified when it is turning. This could irreversibly damage both the bit and chuck.
Make sure that the power is off when working with the chuck. It is just a good habit and safety measure. This is very important if your drill press is equipped with a power on switch at the front of the unit and not the side. You can inadvertently trigger it.
3. Table Adjustment
Adjusting your table to a comfortable height will allow you to bore hole with greater efficiency and accuracy. One rule of thumb to obey is – If you want a perfectly vertical hole, your material (hence table) must be perfectly flat. You drill hole will have a table adjustment function – either by bolts or with a lever arm. Check it out.
4. Depth Gauge
If you want standardized holes, whether you are drilling 1 hole or a dozen, they you need to properly calibrate your depth gauge. This is the travel distance of the quill and it can easily be calibrated to a fixed distance of spindle travel.
Always clamp your material firmly before performing a drill. The high force and torque at the bit can carry material with it and injure the user. This is especially true when drilling holes in tough materials like hardwood and metal. You can easily clamp the material by using piece of junk wood and metal clamps.
6. Start Drilling
When everything is finally secured and plugged on, you can now switch your drill press on and start drilling. Wait. Before you start drilling, make sure that you are wearing safety goggles. Shards of material can quickly fly by and injure you.
With your goggles on, place the bit over the desired drill area and gently push down. There is no need to apply a lot of force. The shape of the bit will lower itself down in the material. Once you have drilled your hole, release the lever and the spring mechanism should place the quill back in place. If your device is old and does not come with a spring mechanism, you will need to gently put it first in one fell swoop.
Ascertain that the hole has been bored to the desire depth and position then un-clamp the material to the table. There you go. You have one properly drilled hole as per manufacturer standard.
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