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  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bartlett, IL, USA.
    Posts
    15

    Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    I have a year old table top drill press from Craftsman. It does a good job but I've come across a problem. As a part time drummer, I've gotten into making my own snare drums. Part of the process is using the drill press to drill all of the holes into the drum shell for the hardware pieces that get attached. The table top drill press gives me enough room to put the 14" diameter drum shell in place to drill holes except when I'm using the wider - and therefore longer - drill bits.

    I'm wondering if there is a way of converting the table top drill press to a floor standing model so I don't have the space limitation of fitting a drum shell between the bit and the table top base?

    One crazy idea I had was to find a used (and presumably no longer working) floor model drill press just to use the base and post with my motor. But then I wondered if the post diameters and raising/lowering mechanism is standard in the industry.

    Does this question make sense or do I need to post pictures?

    Thanks,

    -Mike

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Bradford, Vermont, MerryCanna.
    Posts
    18,751

    RE: Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    What you need, Mike, is a longer column.

    Or... to get that blamed foot out of the way. Am I right?

    Like... if you turned the drill press around on the bench, then rotated the head 180 degrees, you'd gain another few inches - the thickness of the foot (or the foot plus the table). If that's too much clearance, you could make up a wooden platform, of course, to support the drum shell.

    You could even "turn its back" to the edge of your bench, so the drill press looks over the edge to the floor. That'd get you another three feet.

    Replacing the column with a longer one might not be too difficult or expensive, although it should be machined to diameter. If you buy a "factory" column, it'll probably come with a "spat" that fits one certain base and it's probably not yours. You SHOULD be able to replace it with steel tubing, though... or at least add an extension near the motor head that'd give you more height.

    Alas, there's a LOT of disparity between drill presses, from brand to brand and model to model. Finding another (factory) column that fits your base, or with the same diameter so it fits your motor head... that could be very tricky indeed.

    -- Tim --

    The more aware we become,
    The better we realize
    That each of us is,
    On the whole,
    Right smack in the middle
    Of "average".


  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bartlett, IL, USA.
    Posts
    15

    RE: Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    Tim,

    Thanks for your reply. You obviously know exactly what I'm experiencing. If I can turn the head (motor) and the table 90 degrees from the base without tipping things over, I'd have a lot more room (all the way to the floor) to work with the drum shell.

    Thanks for helping me think in a different way. Now that I know, it seems so obvious.

    -Mike

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Littleton, CO.
    Posts
    23

    RE: Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    Simply bolt the drill press to your workbench and it won't tip. If you don't want to bolt into your bench top, bolt the drill press to a wooden base and clamp it to your bench.

    Larry

  5. #5
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Huntington Beach, California, USA.
    Posts
    9,322

    RE: Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    If Sears offered that model in both a bench top and floor model, just go to parts and order a replacement column for the floor model.


  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Sugar Hill, Georgia.
    Posts
    1,471

    RE: Convert Table Top Drill Press to Floor Model?

    I've never done it, but I've heard of people replacing the column with some pipe from a muffler shop.

  7. #7

    My conversion

    I just converted my 12" Delta bench drill press to be a floor standing and wanted to share my experience. It was actually quite easy. At my local hardware store, I found that the mount holes on a floor flange for 1-1/2" black pipe lined up almost perfectly with the mount holes on the flange from the press that mounts the vertical column to the base. I widened the holes on the floor flange slightly with an 11/32 drill bit to accept the 1" long 5/16 bolts.

    The base of the press is tapped for M8-1.25 bolts. I widened the floor flange holes with a 3/8 drill bit to line up the threads properly. For the height, I then used a 30" long black pipe which was already threaded. All totaled the cost for materials was less than $40.

    I plan on drilling and tapping the floor flanges and pipe to allow me to add a set screw that will lock the pipe into place and prevent twisting. I also have not addressed the table that I will need to use with the new extension. I am still able to use the attached table which conveniently swings out of the way. Most-likely I will use a piece of 3/4" plywood with a reinforcing frame attached to a standard hose clamp.

    The press is very stable, but I am concerned that the base is too narrow. I plan on adding outrigger supports attached to the base for stability.

    Of course your measurements will vary, but adjustments to this setup can be made very easily. The floor flange that I found was solid steel, so that it had a nice flat bottom surface rather than the stamped variety where only the outer edge would be a contact surface for the drill press flange. If the mount holes did not line up for me, I could have easily drill new holes in the floor flange.

    One change that I may make is to use a shorter riser pipe and attach a union to that pipe. Then I can use another floor flange and union mounted to my bench to enable me to easily move the drill from floor to bench. This may add an additional $20 to the cost.

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