To make beautiful woodworking creations, you will need the right tools. Whether you are making items for yourself in your home or cutting holes in planks at your worksite, you need the most appropriate tools for the job. That’s why you should have a drill press if you are serious about woodworking. It can do what other woodworking tools are unable to, and it is ideal for continuous drilling, making for more efficient work and a shorter worktime for you and your employees.
We would like to help you pick the right drill press for woodworking. That’s why we set out to find the best value drill presses for woodworking, and we also have some tips to share that can prevent you from buying the wrong tool and wasting your money.
What to Consider Before You Buy a Drill Press for Woodworking
So, before you start shopping for a woodworking drill press, you need to keep a few things in mind:
- The right kind of tool– Not all drill presses are designed to be used with wood. You need to be careful about which ones you pick, as you want a tool that works with the kind of tasks you are going to perform.
- Price– Some drill presses are going to be too expensive for you. You need to set a realistic budget, and if you set it too low, then either you won’t be able to purchase a decent drill press or what you get won’t last very long. You may want to look at a few price ranges to determine the average price before setting your budget for this tool.
- Attachments– Some drill presses come with attachments and others allow you to add those onto them to create greater variety in the kind of woodworking you do. You can use mortising attachments on drill presses in order to create square holes. There are other attachments as well, and you should determine if you need anything like that for the work you are going to be doing.
- Where you are working– You will probably want a different kind of drill press if you are doing work on your own as a hobby, as opposed to if you were buying a drill press for a construction site. Consider how you plan to use the drill press to determine what size it should be and what kind of features it would need to have. This can help you figure out how durable the press should be. If you are using it only occasionally, it won’t need to be very durable to last you for several years. However, a construction site drill press is going to have to be tough to live up to the investment you have made.
Product Reviews: Top 10 Best Rated Drill Presses for Woodworking
Now that you know what you should be looking out for, it is time to show you the best woodworking drill presses on the market today. Keep in mind that we do not know your particular needs, your budget or the kind of work you plan to do. You have to factor those in as you try to find the right press for you.
WEN 4214 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill Press
This powerful and versatile drill press can go from 580 RPMs to 3,200. It comes with a powerful motor that can handle even the toughest jobs, and the worktable is made of tough cast iron. Pretty much everything is adjustable, from the height to the drill itself. You can adjust how high or low you are working and move the drill from side to side to create angled holes. You can see how much speed your drill press is putting out by looking at the LED screen, and its easy to change the settings without having to change the belt.
This is a practical, easy to use and multi-featured drill press that works well no matter what you are using it for. There is one problem you need to be aware of with this drill, though. The motor is so powerful and the drive shaft so loosely constructed that when it is running, the motor can shake the drive shaft and make a lot of noise.
- Lots of features.
- Durable construction.
- Great motor.
- The powerful motor can shake the drift shaft.
You’ll get five speeds out of the Genesis, and it retails for much cheaper than a lot of its competitors. You will pay around $150 for this drill press, which is actually quite low for these machines. It’s very easy to adjust this drill press to the height you want and fit it to your workpieces. It comes with an integrated light and a nice, quiet motor, making for convenient and pleasant working conditions. This may not be the most durable drill press out there, but at this price and with all its user-friendly features, it’s a good buy.
- Easy to use.
- Includes a handy work light.
- Motor runs quietly.
Delta 18-900L 18-Inch Laser Drill Press
You probably only want to use this drill press if you run a construction or woodworking company of some kind. It is priced near the top price range, and it is a heavy-duty machine that is built to keep on working for a long time to come. You can count on it to last you and to be reliable even under continuously stressful working conditions. This is built to handle anything, and it is backed by a warranty that’s good for five years. While most drilling machines only give you an inch of depth, this one can go up to six inches, making it an industry leader and a very versatile machine that you can use for just about any woodworking job. This is a true all-in-one drilling machine, but you definitely have to pay top dollar to get the level of quality it is offering.
- Made to last.
- Incredibly versatile and fully featured.
- Designed for heavy duty work.
SKIL 3320-01 3.2 Amp 10-Inch Drill Press
For a much cheaper drill press for your woodworking, you can go with this one by SKIL. It offers five speeds and has a tilting working surface to allow for greater precision and versatility. You’ll pay just over $100 for it, and it isn’t designed for long-term heavy-duty work, but it’s a good investment for anyone who wants a personal drill press or who only needs to get light work out if it. You can adjust the drill depth on this machine, so that it can provide continuous, efficient drilling for you.
- Comes with a tilting worktable.
- Priced very affordably.
- Comes with five speeds.
- Not built for commercial drilling.
- Not all parts are very durable.
SHOP FOX Oscillating Drill Press
With the Shop Fox drill, you get a range of speeds from 250 to 3050 RPMs. It’s a 12-speed drill that can be used as an oscillating sander too. There is even a dust collection port built in so that the dust doesn’t get everywhere as you sand and you have little cleanup to do. The table tilts to allow for greater functionality and to make it easy for you to do any kind of drilling job you want to. The table can be moved completely out of your way to allow you to use the base for your sanding and drilling. On the downside, the electrical box is kind of flimsy, and it will probably be the first part to need replacing.
- Doubles as a sander.
- 12 speeds to work with.
- Table can be tilted or removed completely.
Craftsman 10 in Bench Drill Press w/ Laser Trac
For precision drilling, you can’t do a lot better than this one by Craftsman. Of course, with that brand name, you know you can count on it to last for a long time and to be very reliable. This drill comes with a laser tracker to show you right where you are drilling. The included steel fence lets you set and adjust pieces quickly and ensure that they stay right where they need to be, reducing shifting and unnecessary mistakes. You can adjust the drill and the table easily, making this a very user-friendly tool.
- Designed to be easy to use.
- Steel fence makes work more efficient.
- Comes with a laser tracker.
- Some parts are not very high quality.
Shop Fox W1668
Here is another Shop Fox machine that’s of good quality for the price. For around an affordable price tag, you get a nice range of speeds (between 250 and 3040), and it has a tilting table for added convenience. Being able to drill holes at an angle is pretty standard for drill presses, and it’s one of the advantages of using this kind of drill. However, some drill presses will have tilting tables while others have tilting drills. Either way, this tool will deliver when having to drill at an angle.
This is a versatile drill that can be used as a sander too, giving you some incredible value for its price. Just be aware that not all the parts are of high quality, and you may find some of them to be a bit flimsy. Be careful about using this drill press on worksites where you will be doing a lot of tough work over a short period of time.
- Can also be used as a sander.
- Allows for angled holes to be drilled.
- Not very durable.
- Some parts are likely to break down under tough working conditions.
WEN 4208 8 in. 5-Speed Drill Press
For the budget minded, there is this drill by WEN. It is kind of the bare bones drill press, but it still offers five speeds and adjustable components to help you get the right hole every time. You can set it to drill repeated holes of the same depth to make your work go faster, and it comes with everything you need in order to put it together.
- Very affordable price.
- Offers a good variety of features for its price.
Ainfox 10-Inch 12 Speed Benchtop Drill Press
This is another precision instrument that comes with a laser pointer for more accurate hole drilling. Ainfox has fitted it with a 12-speed motor and the ability to cut through a lot of different materials. The work table tilts, and the price is fair for what you are getting.
- Inexpensive drill press.
- 12 speeds to work with.
- Not made for heavy duty work.
Grizzly G7943 12 Speed Heavy-Duty Bench-Top Drill Press
This drill aims for the industrial grade market, offering a lot of the same functionality and durability, but it is priced like a private home drill press. It has a built-in light and a tilting table, and it is made for heavy duty work. This is by no means a portable drill press like some of the smaller, cheaper models we have looked at. It weighs about 250 pounds and it can take a beating and keep on working well.
- Very durable for the price you pay.
- Can handle industrial grade work.
- Comes with some user-friendly features.
- Not as durable as more expensive drill presses, in case you are looking at heavy-duty jobs.
Now that you have seen the best of what’s on the market, we hope you are able to find one that is a good fit for you. Just be aware that drill presses can produce a lot of power, and if you are not careful, you can tear right through the wood you are working on and ruin it. To prevent that problem, back up the wood you are drilling with another piece of wood. Also, be sure to read safety instructions and follow them carefully, for happy and accident-free woodworking.