Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: Laguna Hills, CA
I'm gonna suggest something bigger than you're thinking, just for kicks and grins.
I'm a Shopsmith guy...horizontal and/or vertical drill press, lathe, tablesaw, disc sander all standard. Common accessory attachments like bandsaw (which is a nice one, for sure), jigsaw, jointer, belt sander, strip sander are often included with the sale of used units. Some people (generally those who don't own one) think/say it's a pain to swap the accessories, others and I find it takes less than a minute to switch from any one to another and well worth the effort.
$5k or more new, used Mark V models with accessories can be had for a couple of hundred bucks(!) if you watch craigslist a while...I have two extra Mk V's in parts in the shed that I got for $100 each just for the accessories they came with.
The design hasn't changed since the '50s, almost all parts are inter changeable with my 520 model from 1990 and with a brand new $5,000 unit! If you're randomly close by (SoCal), I can hook you up quite reasonably...I'd love to pass the stuff I'm not using to somebody new.
That's the heart of my shop, I can build all kinds of jigs with it...I buy what I need when I need it for specific projects.
That's how I rolled when I wanted to do woodworking, remembered using my grandfather's SS when I was about 11...was easy to find great deals on CL (even eBay models can go really cheap if the person isn't willing to ship and you're close enough to pick it up.
There are my .02 cents...james
P.s. The HFT brad drill index was a good place for me to start...as bits dull, I replace with higher quality. Can't tell a big difference when I do.
Good luck, enjoy the hobby!