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what does spindle travel of a drill press mean? Answered


An interesting trick I read somewhere for drilling a hole in a ping pong ball is to slowly drill down with the bit twirling in reverse. It pulls the plastic pieces out – it works for drilling plastic or thin materials, too. pls visit http://drillpressselect.com

Another thing to remember is that some refer to the 'spindle' as the 'quill'. So 'quill travel' would essentially be the same as 'spindle travel'... Good luck sir.

If you have a spindle travel of 2" then you can only drill a hole 2" deep, unless you drill then raise the table with the drill bit in the hole you already drilled. However, if you need a precise hole that two step system will not be good enough and will have some random angles in in.
if you are really good at lining things up though you might be able to flip the piece over, assuming it is less than double the spindle travel, and meet in the center.

good morning sixsmith, mahalo for the detailed and informative description!! now i can proceed with the drill press hunt with knowledge, as I believe knowledge is power, have a great day, mikel

Good Morning sixsmith! Mahalo for all the good and well explained information. If it is not too much to ask, what is the "swing" of a drill press? I am in the market for a drill press and the two terms I was not familiar with were spindle travel and swing. Have a Great day, mikel.

The swing should be the distance from the center of the chuck to the support at the back of the drill press. It determines how wide of an object you can drill into. For example, if you have an 8" swing and want to drill a hole into the center of an 16" board, no theoretical problem. however, if you need to drill into the center of a 20" board you would need at least a 10" swing drill press.
Sorry I didn't reply earlier, it seems I don't get comment notifications via email.


3 years ago

A Gif showing a spindle travel Mike


Good morning iceng!! Mahalo for the wonderful animation. I must say the responses from this forum have been so informative,friendly and prompt! I am in the market for a drill press and stumbled on both the term "spindle travel" and now "swing" . Perhaps you could explain this one as well? Have a great day, mikel

Take your pick of "Swing" :-)


Seandogue said correct, it means the max travel of the spindel, basically how deep you can drill.

Usually bench models allow for enough travel for 10-15mm drill bits, the big stand alone models sometimes offer a few more cm.

It really only matters if you have to make deep drill holes or need to use extra long drill bits to reach areas inside something like a machine part.

Good Morning Downunder35m! Mahalo for the information. I was really pleased with the responses from you and sixsmith! This is the first time I have used this forum and and so pleased with the prompt, informative and friendly responses. Have a great day, mikel

I believe it means how far the spindle will travel (or is set to travel) from fully up to fully down position.

Usually, there are "stops" on the drill press that allow the user to set the working travel, but for discussion about purchasing, it simply means the maximum distance the drill can plunge.