Drill Press question
#11
So last year around this time I purchased a brand new Powermatic PM2800B drill press, my impression of it has diminished greatly as to how great it was touted to be. First the speed adjustment has been nothing but a giant headache, after I'd say maybe 30 hours use on the drill press the two gears that link to adjustment the speed stripped all the teeth. I called Powermatic and they are a great company I was just asked the usual questions serial # problem blah blah they didn't have a tech close to come out and I wasn't about to dive into fixing it so they sent me a new one and I got to "destroy" the old one as I see fit, A.K.A. it's sitting in my garage still. Well I tested the speed adjustment handle again on the new one and I can already feel the strong tension as I adjust it so it's only a matter of time before this happens again. 

I love Powermatic and I'm not dissing them or going to say anything bad about the company, but I don't know if I've got two lemons in a row or what, but this speed adjustment is just a horrible design in my opinion and was one of the only reasons I bought it because of the "ease of speed changes".

Now that I've had some time to think I'm not so sure I even really want a super nice drill press anymore, to be honest I don't really use it a whole hell of lot in my work flow. The occasional pegged hole or depth stopped hole, but I have a mortiser (Powermatic also) and it does a hell of a lot nicer job then the drill press. 

So my question to anyone who would like to respond is, what do you use your drill press for besides mortising that makes it an essential tool to have?

And lastly what do you think would be a good replacement once I sell the PM?
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#12
I can't drill a straight hole to save my backside with a hand drill. I have a Jet drill press, and it's OK.
Oz
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#13
I have a Delta 16", and while it doesn't have any of the bells and whistles...it does what I need. I often think of getting the newer one (Delta) but I just don't use one enough to make it worthwhile. I did buy the mortising attachment and found it to be less than useful, so it got tossed. The only thing I do is drill holes with mine.
I started with absolutely nothing. Now, thanks to years of hard work, careful planning, and perseverance, I find I still have most of it left.
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#14
(07-18-2017, 02:27 PM)Wizard of Oz Wrote: I can't drill a straight hole to save my backside with a hand drill. I have a Jet drill press, and it's OK.
Oz

Grab a drill guide, they actually work pretty good.
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#15
(07-18-2017, 02:31 PM)fredhargis Wrote: I have a Delta 16", and while it doesn't have any of the bells and whistles...it does what I need. I often think of getting the newer one (Delta) but I just don't use one enough to make it worthwhile. I did buy the mortising attachment and found it to be less than useful, so it got tossed. The only thing I do is drill holes with mine.

Yeah I read the belt tensioning system in that is junk also and tons of other problems with that press, which is sad. I think I may just look for a nice vintage one off CL and restore it, as long as it runs true and straight, has a decent depth stop that isn't a PITA to adjust I don't really care. I never even used the stupid laser on the PM, but the LED lights were really awesome.
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#16
It is actually ironic, I run a large drill press at work, but that is in steel parts. I have made drill guides for some jobs (using the drill press).  And yes they do help.
Oz
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#17
I have a Chinese made drill press (no name) that someone gave me. You have to remove and replace two belts to change speeds, it rattles and shakes but drill holes straight and true. I also have looked at better presses but this one was free and it gets the job done. I think I will save my  money for more important needs.
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#18
Can't beat vintage Powermatic DP's. Built to last generations, and they do. My 1150 is a '59 IIRC and still works like it just came out of the factory.
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#19
And you are following the instructions like, you've noted if the press is supposed to be running when you made the adjustment?

I only ask because I had a Makita drill set and one of my friends tried adjusting the speed and pronounced, "this is a piece of crap."

When I spun it up and switched gears easily, he got the picture.
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#20
(07-18-2017, 02:38 PM)UpstateNYdude Wrote: Yeah I read the belt tensioning system in that is junk also and tons of other problems with that press, which is sad. I think I may just look for a nice vintage one off CL and restore it, as long as it runs true and straight, has a decent depth stop that isn't a PITA to adjust I don't really care. I never even used the stupid laser on the PM, but the LED lights were really awesome.

Not sure what you read, but I've had my Delta 18-900L for over five years and have been very happy with it.  Very well designed DP with lots of great features.  No problems with the belt tensioning system or anything else.   Most of the feedback for it on this forum, that I've seen, has been positive.  As to what do I use a DP for?  Holes...small holes with brad point bits (wood) or twist bits (metal) and large holes with forstner bits or hole saws.  I don't use it for mortises (have a mortise machine but usually use router with loose tenons) or sanding...just holes.  Yes, you can get by without a DP with guides and jigs, but it's really nice to be able to quickly drill accurately placed vertical holes on a DP equipped with a good auxiliary table and fence.
Bob
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