How are drill presses measured? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
Old 01-29-2010, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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How are drill presses measured?

When I see "14" drill press", what does that mean? Is it the distance from the center of the chuck to the closest point on the support post?

Bud

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Old 01-29-2010, 09:25 AM
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1/2 that. A 14" drill press can drill a hole in the center of a 14" circle.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:52 AM Thread Starter
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Ok. Thanks.

Bud

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Old 01-29-2010, 11:13 AM
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Hm ... that's not how I understand it. On a lathe, you would be correct in dividing by two since the "swing" of a lathe is given as twice the distance from the centerline to the bed, but on a drill press, the "throat" is the distance from the post to the center of the chuck, so a 14" drill press should be able to drill to the center of a 14" RADIUS hole, not a 14" DIAMETER hole.

That is, Bud had it right.

Paul

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Old 01-29-2010, 11:35 AM
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MrHudon has it correct.

St. Louis, MO
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Old 01-29-2010, 11:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrHudon View Post
1/2 that. A 14" drill press can drill a hole in the center of a 14" circle.
exactly
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Old 01-29-2010, 12:42 PM Thread Starter
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Now wait a minute. You guys are telling me that a 14" drill press only has 7" from the post to the chuck center?

Bud

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Old 01-29-2010, 03:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlhaslip View Post
exactly
This post has said two different things.

A 14" circle is a circle with a radius of 14". It is correct that a 14" drill press can drill a hole in the center of a 14" circle.

This posts opening statement was "1/2 that" which would lead the reader to think he meant a 14" drill press only had a throat of 7".

The throat on a 14" drill press is 14".

George
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Old 01-29-2010, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by GeorgeC View Post
The throat on a 14" drill press is 14".
That's what I was thinking. So, is that the final answer? I can drill a hole in the center of a circle that is 28" in diameter with a 14" drill press.

Bud

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Old 01-29-2010, 06:27 PM
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Feirer's "Cabinet Making and Millwork", c. 1967, says of drill presses, "Their size is determined by the distance from the drill to the column. For example, a 15" drill press will bore a hole through the center of a round piece 15" in diameter".

Now at first this sounds contradictory. What it means is the size is determined by the distance from drill point to column but the actual advertised size is the diameter of the biggest round piece that can be drilled on center, or double the distance from drill to post.

Clear as mud.

Bill
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Old 01-29-2010, 07:18 PM
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Just went and measured mine.
Sticker says 13" Floor Drill press, and it measures 6 9/16 " (light) to the tip of a 2" Forstner bit that is chucked in it.
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Old 01-29-2010, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dodgeboy77 View Post
Feirer's "Cabinet Making and Millwork", c. 1967, says of drill presses, "Their size is determined by the distance from the drill to the column. For example, a 15" drill press will bore a hole through the center of a round piece 15" in diameter".

Now at first this sounds contradictory. What it means is the size is determined by the distance from drill point to column but the actual advertised size is the diameter of the biggest round piece that can be drilled on center, or double the distance from drill to post.

Clear as mud.
Definately clear as mud.

Bud

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Old 01-29-2010, 11:02 PM
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Yep, it appears that MrHudon is correct. I am right about how you measure the throat, but I was wrong in thinking that the throat is what manufacturers quote as the size.

Some reports say the swing is twice the throat as in a lathe, some say the swing is equal to the throat (which I THINK is incorrect, but hell, who knows?), but in any case the manufacturer's specs all seem to call out twice the throat as the size they quote for a drill press.

Paul

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Old 01-29-2010, 11:44 PM
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There seems to be a tendancy to assume that circular object are the most likely to be drilled on a drill press...

...a 14" drill press should be able to drill to the center of a 14" RADIUS hole
...c. 1967, says of drill presses, "Their size is determined by the distance from the drill to the column. For example, a 15" drill press will bore a hole through the center of a round piece 15" in diameter"

Why is "circular piece" automatically associated with "drill press".
And if "circular piece" is not an automatic association of "drill press" then there is no reason why a drill press size measurement should be officially related to a circle.

Hmmm...sounds funny.
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Old 01-30-2010, 12:49 AM
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Just to confirm so there is no confusion. It is the distance from the column to the center of the chuck. I have a 15 1/2" Craftsman from back when they were made in the good old USA and it measures 7 3/4". This is the same as the swing on a lathe. My 12" Delta lathe measures 6" from the spindle center to the bed.

Lamar
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Old 01-30-2010, 08:28 AM
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I didn't think my answer was that confusing, sorry.
A 14" drill press is 7" from the column to the center of the chuck.
The Radius of 14" is 7". 1/2 of 14
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Old 01-30-2010, 10:11 AM
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So a drill press sizes measurement is based on its ability to put a hole in the center of a circle.

Wikipedia says basically the same thibg as stated above...

Swing is defined as twice the throat distance, which is the distance from the center of the spindle to the closest edge of the pillar. For example, a 16-inch (410 mm) drill press will have an 8-inch (200 mm) throat distance.

I accept it but it still seems odd.

Last edited by daryl; 01-30-2010 at 10:24 AM.
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Old 02-01-2010, 07:36 AM Thread Starter
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Wow, I never dreamed that my question had so complex of an answer. I totally understand it now, but the way they avdertize the size is strange.

Bud

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