How to Use a Mini Drill Press

Written by jonra springs
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How to Use a Mini Drill Press
A mini drill press offers the same precision as this floor model. (Jupiterimages/BananaStock/Getty Images)

A miniature drill press is lightweight and compact compared to a floor model. The mini drill press sits on a tabletop or workbench for drilling into smaller stock. It offers variable speeds for different materials and depth settings. This tool is also a portable drill press for use between the home, shop or a neighbour's garage. A mini drill press offers the precision and control of a drill press for projects that use small parts such as jewellery and doll houses crafting.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

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Things you need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Hex key wrench set
  • Safety goggles

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  1. 1

    Unplug the miniature drill press before making any adjustments on the settings or changing drill bits. Use the provided chuck to loosen the chuck to change drill bits. Tighten the chuck around the chosen bit with the key.

  2. 2

    Loosen the crank screw or knob that secures the head of the mini drill press. Raise or lower the head to accommodate the height of the stock to be drilled. The tallest height setting for mini tabletop machines is typically less than 10 inches. Secure the head by tightening the crank at the desired height.

  3. 3

    Adjust the drill rotation speed with the speed setting dial on models that have this feature. Others drills have knobs that stop on two or three different speeds. Remove the cover over the pulleys, and slip the belt onto the other set of pulleys to change all the speed settings. Secure the cover and test the different speeds.

  4. 4

    Set the drilling depth stop by loosening the set screw or ring on the pull handle shaft. Set a digital depth gauge to zero before adjusting the depth. Adjust the drill bit down to the desired depth as shown by the digital gauge or stationary meter gauge. Tighten the set screw by the appropriate means. Your model may have a crank, Phillips or hex screw for securing the depth setting.

  5. 5

    Slide the table ledge to place the hole under the drill bit for drilling completely through stock. Leave the ledge on a solid space for drilling partly through items.

  6. 6

    Put on safety goggles, and plug in the portable drill press for use. Place a piece of stock on the table ledge, and pull the crank handle toward yourself to bring the drill bit down onto the stock. Place the bit on the exact spot you want to drill the hole. Hold the stock firmly in place, and turn on the mini drill press. Pull on the handle crank to lower the spinning drill bit into the stock. Drill to the desired depth and slowly allow the bit to draw out of the stock.

Tips and warnings

  • Clear the drilling table of all other tools, pencils and sawdust before placing stock on the ledge for drilling.Use a brush to sweep off sawdust instead of your hand or breath.
  • Turn off the portable drill press anytime you are not using it for drilling.

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