Please help find a right pillar drill/ drill press/ drill stand for me

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Established Member
4 Oct 2020
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Can you put a decent extension on a flat bit.

Weld / glue a tube of 8mm steel over the top of a flat but to improve rigidity.

Just a thought.....


Established Member
27 Oct 2014
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Thank you very much guys, I am carefully reading all of your suggestions and I will check out all the options that were suggested in this thread.
You are awesome :-D Thank you for your support!
If someone else is going to read this thread and have a some other ideas or suggestions please let me know...

Hi, what size drill bit do you need I have some long ones that I think should cut to full depth, I can check depending on dia.

Regarding drilling through if you don't have a lathe you could hold the wood between two centres and rotate it with a hand drill and feed the bit into the work without rotating the bit, this is how gun barrels are bored out and the bit runs true to full length.

Fergie 307

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28 Dec 2019
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Sandy Bedfordshire
You can buy brackets on e bay to fit the collar on a regular mains drill so you can fit it to a bench. Then you would just need to make a sled type arrangement to bring your blank into correct alignment and enable you to feed it into the drill.

Graham Brazier

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2 Sep 2021
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Uk , Ely
This company does 400mm HSS drill bits various diameters
Look under Drilling - Formwork


9 May 2021
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You can get long drill bits - I got a set of 300mm spur point bits from Amazon in 5-12mm for about 15 quid. I bought them to use on my lathe in a tail chuck, and that's certainly the way I'd approach your problem, but I have the luxury of having a lathe which I realise isn't possible for you in your workspace. For pillar drills, I don't think you'll get close to that travel - I was lucky and picked up a Clarke CDP500f from Facebook Marketplace for £75 - it's one of the largest pillar drills you're likely to find, but even that only has something like 120mm of quill travel. As suggested already, you can mount it on the pillar drill, plunge to the max depth, stop the drill, slide the table/workpiece 'up' the shaft of the drill bit and plunge again, repeating until you get through. Take it slow, let the drill cut so it minimises the urge to follow the grain, and you should get through.

Good luck - and let's see some pics of your lights :)

John Hall

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19 Jan 2022
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Using masonry bits is just fine, no need to remove the tungsten ends just re grind them to suitable angles…needs a decent grinder though


Established Member
21 Jan 2021
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Thank you everyone for replying.
I haven't got a lathe. If I got so far in woodworking to have a lathe, I probably would already know the answer to my question.
All I have at the moment is a drill, grinder, vice and a saw. No workshop - that is a luxury for me. Doing everything in the kitchen cos it ain't got carpets. Drilling by hand.
I like your style, you can do so much with just a little. Here are a few tips, each one getting more involved. I'd recommend experiment on some scrap wood first. You will need a long spirit level - worth investing in they are not expensive, get one 0.8m or 1m long and probably some F clamps to hold jigs to your table.

First method. Using your existing drill and vice. Simplest way to try first.
This first method, uses a bullseye bubble level glued on the top of your drill to ensure its aligned dead vertical and you clamp the wood vertically in the vice and use your hands and eye to keep the bubble aligned. total cost is about £10


1. Buy a long lip and spur/brad point drill bit something like this. German Manufactured Extra Long 6mm x 250mm Brad Point Drill Bit, Suitable for All Wood Types : DIY & Tools


you may want to get the bit somewhat wider than the threaded rod so that you have slack to align the rod vertically in the hole.
2. buy a some round spirit level bubbles. Pack of 3 Mini Round Bullseye Spirit Level Bubble 12mm Vial : DIY & Tools

3. put the drill bit in the vice sharp end facing down, and align it absolutely vertically using your spirit level to check in both dimensions, use the vice to align left right and shim the table legs to align forwards and backwards. - have about 6 inches poking above the vice (125mm). then attach the electric drill to the bit, its now vertical. align the bubble on top of the drill so that the bubble is in the bullseye centre and then peal off the backing paper or super glue (better) the bullseye in place. see the top photos and here is an example on youtube 8 minutes into this video (buy the way this guy illustrates a jig type that I use with my drill brace - see later)
4. Now that the drill has the bullseye in place you can set up to drill the hole. Put the blank in the vice and align vertically using the spirit level as in step 3 but this time for you lamp blank.
5. stand on a raised tool to get enough height above the work piece to see the bubble/bullseye, a step that kids use in the toilet is good, but you may have a wide low stool. Then drill free hand keeping the bubble centred at the start. If it starts to wander, turn the blank over and drill from the other end to meet in the middle.
6. final tip - make the hole wider than the metal insert by more than the error in the drill ie 1 to 2mm and use the bolts at top and bottom to align the rod veristically in the hole.

Second method is to build yourself a jig that holds the drill in line with the lamp.
A bit like the one in the video in step 3 above at 5 minute in. I have one of these type of gigs with my drill brace, made from two bits of 4 by 2. You can cut a chunk off the bottom of the jig to allow for the lamp to sit slightly above the vice (not shown in the picture, but on the guys youtube). the drill bit rests in the corner. The key is to align the lamp vertically to the jig with a strait edge or the spirit level.


Third method - More complicated. - this is how I would try to make a bespoke jig
If you plan to make a lot of lamps then you may want to make a bespoke long jig to hold the lamp base and align the drill bit separately. Essentially you use the maths/physics that a perfect right angle joint will always align the hole.

I've just mocked one up on the bench, ignore the buffing disk (that is attached to the drill and its a pain to take off, imaging the brad drill is in its place, I've shown the drill in the picture using clamps!).

The key to this jig is you will need chock the base of the drill and the board holding your lamp separately to get them dead level using strait edge spirt level etc. The fence can then be moved to align whatever diameter lamp you have. It will take quite a bit of setting up, but then you can churn out lots of lamps. In the case YOU MOVE THE LAMP INTO THE MOVING DRILL slide it along the fence. Its similar to cutting a hole using a lathe, but using a drill.

- cheap clamp for the drill available from amazon /ebay and then you will have to find a way to align the drill to the lamp, maybe four bolts that allow you to adjust the feet of the board the drill is on to get it level in both axis, same with the lamp board. You will need about 4 F clamps this is more completed and will take a bit of shimmying to work.

Hope these are some help.
Best wishes


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