Drill press table

This article contributed by Ronald Walters

I have a small Delta bench top drill press with a small cast iron table. This small table is quite adequate for drilling holes in metal and small parts but it does not provide the support and other features desired for the larger woodworking projects.

After searching the Internet and looking at many auxiliary tables, I selected the various features I wanted to incorporate in my auxiliary table. All of these functions must be convenient to use or you will not use them.

I don't think metal swarf and filings mix well with woodworking, so the auxiliary table had to be convenient to remove so I could still work on metal parts when necessary.

I framed the auxiliary table around the original cast iron table, which provided a very snug and positive fit. The cast iron table has tapered support webs on the bottom.

I utilized those tapered webs so the auxiliary table wedges tight as it slides into position.

I also added two locking knobs to secure it in place - just snug, not tight.

The auxiliary table is thick and rigid, made of several layers of plywood with a tempered hardboard top and the edges wrapped with oak. I used oil base polyurethane varnish.

The hand-crank was extended to the side so the table could still be raised and lowered.

T-tracks were installed to provide many clamping options and for attaching the low profile fence.

The low profile fence is quite adequate for most operations and does not interfere with the drill press feed levers.

T-nuts were used for attaching the t-tracks to prevent tear-out.

Slots through the table allow the use of bar clamps and other holding methods in close to the center.

The waste block was installed off-center so it could be rotated and flipped over for new positions to maximize the life of a single waste block.

T-track channels catch everything and they get packed tight with cuttings and sawdust. I find the t-track is not used that often and it is a pain to keep them clean. So I use wood strips that slide into the track and prevent material from getting stuck inside the channels.

I added articulating arms for the dust collection hood and work light. The light is wired into the drill press so there is only one cord to plug in. I used male & female plugs on the light so it can easily be removed if necessary.

The dust collector really works great and keeps the fine dust out of your face and collects the majority of the large cuttings as well. You really appreciate the efficiency of this system when drilling MDF or particle board with a Forstner bit.

The articulating arms are attached to a central stack of support rings, which were lowered over the support column after the drill press head was removed (a two man operation). A small locking bolt just keeps the support rings from wiggling around -just snug, not tight.

I have found I use my drill press much more since I built the auxiliary table and it drills more accurately (and safely) when the work piece is properly supported and clamped.

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