Are you on the fence about whether buying a drill press is a good idea? Many people have a project in mind but don’t want to buy another power tool because they don’t think they’ll ever use it again.
Surprisingly, there are a lot of fun and innovative uses for drill presses that will keep you using yours for years to come. You can even sand surfaces with your drill press with the right attachments.
If you’re trying to think up ways to use your drill press in the garage or want to find a new project in your shop class, here are thirteen things you can do with a drill press starting today! Let’s dive in.
1. Drill Holes
Of course, most people drill holes with their drill presses. Using a drill press is one of the best ways to get accurate, straight holes in metal, wood, plastic, or anything else you’re drilling. Most drill presses come with assorted sizes of drill bits to meet your needs.
2. Speed Up Sanding with a Drill Press
Yeah, you read that right! You can sand surfaces faster without burning out your arms.
It’s an incredible hack that will save you a lot of time. Drill presses have sander kits available online or at your local hardware store. After putting the attachments on, you can sand the wood down to a beautiful, smooth surface in no time.
Toss the handheld sanding tools in the trash and start using your drill press to get those smooth edges and corners.
3. Precision Screwing Mode
You can also use your drill press to screw things in or to remove a stubborn screw that won’t seem to come out.
If you’re working with delicate materials, using a drill press to screw things in will help prevent cracks. This is because the drill press stays in position and applies constant pressure.
If you screw things in by hand or drill bit, you can overdo things and damage whatever you’re working with, whether it’s a piece of furniture or a custom toy you’re making for a kid.
The same goes for getting stubborn screws out. If you’re worried about stripping a screw that won’t budge with a screwdriver, put it under the drill press and let the drill’s power do the work.
4. Bore New Horizontal Holes
Are you working with something that’s too hard or thick for a typical drill bit? If you try drilling horizontal holes through some metals, for example, you’ll end up with a ruined bit and tired arms.
Instead, use your drill press to bore holes through just about anything. Fortunately, drill presses usually come with boring attachments designed to make drilling holes in different sizes fast and easy.
5. Make Holes Larger
The same goes for instances where you need to expand existing holes. A drill press will do the trick just fine if you want to enlarge holes so you can use bigger screws.
You may need to buy new boring attachments to make holes bigger, but a drill press will enlarge the holes without damaging the material or changing the direction of the holes. New screws or inserts will fit straight in, no problem.
6. Cut Mortise Joints
Making custom furniture or a custom picture frame is a great project for a drill press at home or in shop class. Drill presses let you cut straight, even mortise and tenon slots to fit two pieces of wood together without screws or nails.
If you’re worried about keeping holes straight or the right size when using a chisel, a drill press can make exact cutouts that you can clean up with a chisel or sand down for smooth edges.
7. Buff a Shine With Your Drill Press
We know now that you can sand wood or other surfaces with a drill press attachment, but did you know that you can also buff them?
You can buy a buffing wheel for your drill press that looks a lot like the buffer your car detailing shop uses to make your vehicle look new again. Then, attach it to your drill press and run wood or metal under it to make it look smooth and shiny in minutes.
8. Slash Through Metal in Seconds
You can find attachments online that turn your drill press into a slashing machine that quickly cuts through thick pieces of wood or metal without much effort.
All you have to do is align the slashing attachment with your cutting line. Then, make the pilot stroke, lock the drill into position, and let it do the rest.
9. Use as a Mixer
Get inventive with your drill press and start using it as a mixer! You can add an attachment that makes it easier to mix large quantities of paint, wood stain, epoxy, or anything else that needs a good stir. Thorough mixing is a must if you want to avoid uneven colors or finishes.
With your drill press, you can mix as long as you like without using arm muscles.
10. Cut Holes in Metal
What happens if you need to cut a hole in larger metal than something a bit would cover?
Well, with the right attachment, you can cut holes or make larger holes in metal for post attachments and other uses. You’re only limited by the size of your attachment and the piece of metal you’re working with.
11. Deburr Holes
When you drill a hole in metal, there’s often a burr with rough edges at the top. Large burrs can prevent screws or bolts from fitting flush with the metal surface. Thankfully, there are drill press attachments designed for deburring holes in seconds.
Chamfering drill bits push into the new holes’ top to widen and smooth the top. This method protects the hole and makes it so whatever is going into the hole does so smoothly.
12. Countersink Your Surfaces
Do you want the top of your screws to fit flush against the surface of your metal or wood? Well, you can do it by countersinking with your drill press!
With countersinking, you widen the top of the hole and push down to make room for the top of your screw or bolt. This gives you a smooth surface even if you’re using regular screws on your project.
13. Tapping Threads Into Your Holes
Sometimes you’ll need or want to add screw threads to an existing hole that doesn’t have any. Tapping is the method by which you create threads inside of a hole so you can use bolts and keep them in place.
Tapping requires special attachments, and you’ll need to ensure that your bit is the appropriate size to fit in the existing hole without enlarging it. Once you’re done, you’ll have new threads ready for whatever bolts you need to put in.
These are just thirteen uses for drill presses to make working in the garage or your workshop more fun and efficient. Using the power and precision of a drill press beats shoving a handheld drill into metal and getting frustrated when things don’t turn out right.
Once you get the hang of your drill press and all it can do, you’ll never go back!