Increase the Precision of a Dremel Press Drill





Introduction: Increase the Precision of a Dremel Press Drill

This is probably going to be the shortest instructable ever but, hey, I'm new to this :)!

I used to drill my PCBs using a normal, heavy driller (I guess that's why the mm tick bits usually didnt last too long ;)). I had a Dremel but I didn't use it for that, because I was used to the heavier driller.

Then one day I saw this "Dremel Work Station" on sale, which is basically a drill press with a few extra features. Dremel's ads are always mentioning the excelent precision of their tools, and I thought that would be handy for PCB drilling. So I bought one.

Well, I must say that it was rather disappointing, at least for the price (~60euros). The press has a lag of maybe 1-2 mm, which seems little but is enough for you to drill completely out of the spot. When the rotating bit starts touching the PCB, the rotation makes the Dremel deviate 1-2mm (the lag) to one side, and you drill in the wrong place.

I wanted to return it to the store, but I still needed a simpler way of drilling... then an idea came to my mind. If the press always deviates to the side, then let's make the deviation permanent! The fix was easy; just attach a rubber-band! It pushes the Dremel body against the press's arm, completely removing the lag. You should attach a strong one or several of the "normal", weaker ones (as I did).



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    Thanks for the reminder to center punch. I am a neophyte jewelry designer and am getting ready to use my workstation for the first time. I will be drilling holes in segments of copper pipe I am using for pendants I am making. Any ideas or comments on drill press vises for the workstation? I would like to add one to mine for safety and stability. Thanks again, Lori

    I'm getting excellent holes with the Dremel 4000 + Dremel Work Station part# 220-01 (both brand new).
    Here's a video (really just an image) of my results with a 0.5mm drill bit held by Dremel collet part# 4485:

    NOTE: I didn't tighten any extra screws - just put it together as normal.


    Well, I think I've never used the 90º thing :)

    Anyways, forget the rubber band and just tighten the screws to the bare limit as amarquez originally suggested; this will remove the lag. I have mine so tighten that I can ear them scratching on the guide rods and it basically doesn't return to original position on itself.

    i have one also, and it has the same problem. the solution i found to drill pcb's was to lower as little possible so the lag wont be noticed, it works but if i have to get the handle all the way down it shifts. The rubber band ideia is very wise! but one question i ask to Nuno is; does it affect the 90º angle on the drill?

    I picked up one of these at lowes the other day. I had a gift card and was looking to finally spend it. It has the same problem. I was really surprised how cheaply made this thing is. I'd return it but it didn't cost me anything anyways. Will keep the rubber band idea in mind next time I use it.


    More recently I've also taken the tighten every screw on the damn thing, to the point just short of tightening it so much that it refused to return up path and I also agree that it helps a lot.

    I have been drilling some PCB's with my Dremel Press drill, which is older than the one on this Instructable. I had to tighten every screw on the damn thing, to the point just short of tightening it so much that it refused to return up... it helped somewhat. Dremel rotary tools aren´t so badly made, but their accesories are plain crap. I invite you to try to build a simple but excellent router table for the Dremel by using their 566 Tile cutting kit or 565 Multipurpose Cutting Kit as an attachment to hold the rotary tool, and a piece of 1/2" thick plexiglass rectangle of about 10"X6"" or so, and route a narrow circular cut centered on a one inch hole so that the attachment can be strongly glued to the underside of the plexiglass "table". It will be tremendously better than the absolutely crappy "231 Shaper/Router Table" or the equally flimsy "335-01 Plunge Router Attachment"... Generally speaking, most of the Dremel attachments are not worth their price (even halved!). Now, making a solid stable and precise drill stand is not easy, so we are stuck with the dremel brand one. One worthwhile reccomendation is to use Carbide numbered drill bits, because hi speed steel or even cobalt ones are not up to the task or drilling the phenolic or glass epoxi PCB material. Use the slowest speed possible ("1" on the Dremel) and place the drill bit quite close to the PCB so that you only have to lower the drill a fraction of an inch, so that you minimize the lateral movement of this poorly designed stand. Good Luck.

    Have you noticed the little rubber pads in bottom of the cup. They are about 1-2mm thick. I think your tool is compressing the pads and alowing the tool to wonder. I am using the B&D; - RTX in this tool which does not touch the pads and I get no deflextion. Leave it to dremel to make an acessory that that works better with their compeditors tools.

    Very good point. Any rubber connecting the Dremel is going to be a problem. I am thinking the best solution is to replace the rubber with solid metal and add an arm to the other end of the tool which holds it firmly in place. Then again, $50 for a good used drill press isn't a bad idea either!


    Rubber pads? I can't see none.... at least without disassemble the press, which I don't want to do now (have better things to do ;)). Everything is plastic or metal. Even without the Dremel in the press, the lag is there. The second metal pipe, where the drill attaches (and that holds the drill support, which is what I think you called "cup", the black round piece of plastic), has this lag and rotates around itself.