Picture of Easy Drill Press
So I woke up with this incredible urge to own my own drill press without paying for one (and I don't mean by stealing one). I wanted a drill press since I make my own PCB's and it would be a lot easier to use a steady drill press than just a handheld drill or dremmel. It occurred to me that I had 2 dremmels, so why not use the older one to make a permanent drill press.... I definitely over-planned this process. Kinda went for the whole measure twice and make once design, but the make step used the measurements from the third measuring step (the one I didn't do). So in other words, I designed two drill presses and then made a completely different one. I will post the design that I made and then explain what I actually made (since it was a lot easier and was missing pieces)

The way I actually made the drill press requires these materials:
  • dremmel
  • drawer slider (any slide length)
  • plywood (any thickness, make sure its flat and smooth, I used 3/8")
  • wood (any dimensions; 2x4's and 2x6's work best)
  • stick (or pvc)
  • spring
  • gorilla glue (most helpful stuff on the planet!)
  • A metal rod (once you see what it is for, it is easy to see alternatives such as a 3" screw)
The materials I would have additionally needed for the original design are just screws of the appropriate length (which I didn't feel like buying since this was supposed to be free for me). I also decided to incorporate metal into the design, but I would recommend not doing that unless you can weld the channel pieces together better than I could. The metal ended up making the entire structure crooked, so I used gorilla glue to shim it up straight.
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Dardaro2 years ago
that switch is dangerous in deed, you should try a microswitch or even a doorbell switch activated by the lever
suvinks2 years ago
Good one.
I created a similar one with draw slides, steel pipes & flanges. No handle though :)
very nice!
Thanks :)
Great instructable. I just upload a drill stand too :-) (cheap-precision-drill-stand)
I had thought to sliders for mine too, but I hadn't them available.
Don't worry if lot of people had already design this, it's always interesting look how our brains works! And the switch idea it was great!
I've only some notes to make about your project. You shouldn't have disassemble the drill, it should have been enough make another circuit with a switch (which it should had press by the lever) at which connect the original plug of the drill.
aeszok2 years ago
I'd love to make one of these, but make it hot-swappable, so that i can take it out and put it back in if I'd like. Great instructable, looks like you saved a bomb on a proper drill press. One thing though; most dremels don't tend to have the torque of a proper drill press or even screw driver, so watch what your drilling.
shazni2 years ago
ok...what i want to know is will this work for a normal drill? of course i'm not going to wire it up and all...i just want to know if your contraption will work with a normal drill...not the light weight dremel type. I've been working on a portable drill press for my just wondering if this will work too :-)
Onyx Ibex (author)  shazni2 years ago
The mechanism should be exactly the same.
Excellent idea but why do you want to work it with a sort of micro switch? All the drill presses I used were running all the time when you use them. If I make printed cards then it will be troublesome to keep the switch down when I got to remove copper from unwanted areas. It is also not too healthy to start / stop the Dremel as the commutator get pitted. I lost a cheap unit this way. The English B+D was used maybe that was the reason but if you are scared of electric shock, get yourself a INSULATION transformer.
Beergnome2 years ago
umm, my Dremel 220-01 Rotary Tool Work Station cost me about $30 from Lowes... .just saying :D

I like your press, it reminds me of the monster I have out in the outside workshop.

the monster is a 1/2" industrial hand drill. It's from the 50's low speed, tremendous tourque, and it's design purpose is to make very large holes in very thick hardened steel.

but it also has a tabletop press attachment. and that thing is comprised of three 1" steel pipe, the two outer ones are guides for the drill carraige that the drill itself clamps into. the center tube holds the drill carriage, the pivet for the cantilever. and a big return spring.

The cantilever arm is made so you can put any length of steel pipe you want as a handle. longer the handle, the more the leverage.
Cool.! =////=======> I have a "60"s Craftsman Aluminum Drill Press for a 1/4" Aluminum bodied Craftsman drill, Press Model 335.25921, that I can Do a bit of shimming to work with My Dremil, It comes out good & square with a bit of fooling around. I checked on Ebay and there's a same Model Press with a 1/4" Drill included and shows setup. It's also Model 25921, with a Buy It Now of $ 29.95 plus about $ 20.00 Shipping. It's offered by seller I.oppleman Item # 280965909827. No bids so far with a bit over a day left. Time here now Pacific Mtn. time = 9:18 P/M 10/11/2012. Just thought I'd mention It. G-G
Probably very similar! the one I have is also Aluminum bodied. and mine is the Home-utlity 1/2" electric drill 110v ac-dc 2.9amperes 375 rpm Model #1
patent pending by the black & decker Mfg. co. Towsen MD USA.

and I'm sorry folks, I completely misrepresented what the stand looks like, it is simple one pipe that the drill and spring carriage rides on.
no side guide tubes. I have no idea why I thought of it that way when I was describing it earlier, well besides I was hanging out at the pub after work in the brewery...
but, in any case, I was inspired to go out yonder to the garage to visit the beast to take a pic.
the first pic shows how the assembly works, the second show the data plate of the drill itself. she still works very well, but the smallest bit I can work into the is a 5/32 which, conveniently enough, is the last largest bit I cant fit in the dremel.1/8 being the largest a standard dremel chuck or keyless dremel chuck will take.
Yup looks basically the same, the nose of the 1/4" drill goes into a "Tapered Socket" designed for the drill to sit in, then theres a brase from the single pipe to the top of the drill to help square it, then long 1/4" u-bolt with a "Notched Bend" = } on top to fit the top of the drill and the U-bolt runs down each side to ttighten Er' down. But very much like Your's. I'll try add image, never done that yet. G-G
adding images is a simple prospect, just click the add images button under the reply field. and that should lead you the rest of the way ;) and you sure you don't meen a 3/8" drill instead of a 1/4"?
I did that and thought it worked. The one for saale at Ebay stated 1/4" I have tryed 3/8" drills and they don't fit. I'll try the photo again. G-G Yup I see it.
Picture 13.jpg
TheGeek19842 years ago
Great idea, and thumbs up for making it real! But I think that if I were to build this, I'd just use the on/off switch on the tool itself rather than the open switch. I'm the kind of person that would forget it was on and an ER visit would follow...
I don't make many comments but I have to echo the concerns of some of the other people here regarding the open switch and the hazards from it. While an automated on/off function is a neat idea and I applaud you making it work, it's extremely dangerous. I think it's especially dangerous in a series of instructions that are meant to be followed by other people. I know you've put in a fairly clear disclaimer about how people shouldn't use it if they're not comfortable with it etc but if I were you I'd take that part out of the instructable. There are people out there who will not head the warning and either think they understand the danger involved and don't or they'll accidentally touch an area on the completed project by accident and get shocked or worse. Or, someone else will use the completed project (family member, child, etc) who doesn't know about the dangerous area and they could get hurt. I certainly wouldn't want instructions of mine out there for a project that had even the potential to cause injury if I could help it by simply changing the plans a bit.
Why not a microswitch an optionally a relay to power on the drill?

Could be magnet/reed based or an actual physical switch with a tang to press it at the right place. Seems a lot safer.

Just cos something works doesn't mean it can't be improved.
Onyx Ibex (author)  criggie2 years ago
I really like this idea. Perhaps I will upgrade when I get a chance!
ccoslor2 years ago
Hey, an ACS blanket. Nice!
Onyx Ibex (author)  ccoslor2 years ago
c-face2 years ago
nice simple idea!
I like it.
Tasmanian2 years ago
what an amazing build...Ive always wanted one so thank you for the idea. I will have to start planning mine soon.
nigeltech2 years ago
Hey, very nice, I like the sliders, if you slightly twisted them so they were not exactly flush across the front face you would take out a fair bit of backlash too.
About the switch, I obtained a cheap cupboard door switch (you know the ones for a cupboard light?) and with a couple of pieces of wood made a floor mount for it. then cut the phase wire out of the middle of a short extension lead and wired it to the switch contacts. This is now my all-purpose foot switch for the drill press and pretty much anything else (my router has a hairy on/off, so use it there too). Please don't take the dremel switch out.
juz4kix2 years ago
THIS is what Instructables is about. I can make this without specialty equipment or hiring out the labor.


Great project, great Ible.

I use my drill press a lot in my workshops for children. With the right templates It makes accurate drilling accessible for them and they love using it.

But while it is relatively easy to round up extra power drills, it isn't for drill presses. So the drilling is often a bit of a bottle neck with 20 kids in the workshop. So this will come in very handy to build more drill presses on a very low budget.

Thanks for sharing!
comp_wiz1012 years ago
Worst. Wiring. Idea. Ever.

Still, if anyone wants to do this properly, crib an old idea - the rear brake on old motorcycles.
What you do is find a large lever type "Limit switch" they have a steel lever that is spring-loaded. Mount it so the dremel presses the switch when it is fully raised (and thus cutting power). When you lower the arm, it allows the contacts to close and the dremel will turn on.

...all without killing the operator! :)
good work. sec switch design is awesome. good work
Wild_Bill492 years ago
This is a very good Instrutable. Thank you
veeguy2 years ago
Nice project, that a lot of scroungers will be able to make from already saved material! If you want a safer "turn on while drilling feature" I'd suggest skipping the exposed shock hazard, and scrounging a mercury switch from a washing machine lid, or trunk light switch from an automobile. This would give you the power while pulling the handle, without exposing you to any hazards. Either way, I like your "out of the box re-purposing" of the drawer slides.
Darn good idea..! Now the only risk is a broken spring..HAR.?
asfi2352 years ago
I concur with the other commenters -- this is SCARY AS HECK.
mikolynn2 years ago
Nice project, and really clever!
happyhadder2 years ago
I really like this project. Good thinking! If you wanted to, you could skip all the wiring and just use the regular switch on the Dremmel tool. You could fasten down the Dremmel to its "sled" by means of a large hose clamp or two. That way you could easily remove the tool for other uses, but it would have a sturdy mounting for this application. To keep the power cord out of your way, you could use eye hooks (or cup hooks) near the top of your apparatus. You could also use an actual electric drill in place of the Dremmel, for more power.

Thanks again for the great idea!
Wow. That switch will kill your cat if you are not careful! And gorilla glue? Really? There's no way that can work long term....
profpat2 years ago
nice project!
jbrecken2 years ago
Perhaps you'd be safer if you changed it so your switch was a separate low-voltage DC circuit that tripped a solenoid on the AC line.
Very nice!

I was thinking of doing something very similar with an old drill to achieve the same result (using draw slides on a vertical frame with a leaver handle to make a drill press).

I managed to get my hands on a drill stand for around $10 which was about the cost of materials I was looking at to build one (for good draw slides, and so on), so it never happened.

Simple idea, great result!
rimar20002 years ago
In general, clever use of those drawer slides, and good design.

BUT: it is not clever expose 110 or 220 Volts for make a switch. I advice you use a foot switch, or nothing. CURRENT CAN BE MORTAL.
useraaaaa2 years ago
if you can find "dremmel (probably can find one for $10-15"
that you can find real drill press for 25 (that is what i did)
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