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Should I buy a £90 pillar drill?

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Triggaaar

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I was planning on getting Axminster's £12 drill guide (for a small project), as I don't often need a pillar drill. But the only drill I have to use with it is an old green bosch, which is out of line, and I'm wondering whether I should get more use out of a pillar drill, like making tenon joints which I'll want when I eventually build a workbench etc.

So, are lowish cost pillar drills like this Axminster one or this Sealey worth it?

Thanks
 

Elapid

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Lower price ones are fine if you are lucky enough to get a decent one. I have a really cheap Faithful pillar drill but I fluked getting one that is very accurate.

I think most of the cheap ones are all from the same factory just painted and labelled differently.
 

Triggaaar

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Elapid":3h38d813 said:
I think most of the cheap ones are all from the same factory just painted and labelled differently.
Ah yes, the Draper, Sealey, Silverline and Wickes all look very similar. The Axminster is different though (250W vs the other 350W)

Lower price ones are fine if you are lucky enough to get a decent one. I have a really cheap Faithful pillar drill but I fluked getting one that is very accurate.
So your advice is to hope :)


EDIT - blimey, I've just seen the drilling capacity of these things is 13mm in wood! That's not much good.
 

Cheshirechappie

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It depends what you expect of it, really. If you're looking for something a bit better than a hand-held electric drill, and accept that anything made to a budget price will have limitations, then it'll be OK, and if you get a real rough 'un, Axminster are generally pretty good at supporting their customers, so they'll swap or refund. However, if you're looking for something to drill accurate, straight holes in metals (especially really small ones), maybe not. As a comparison, even quite elderly secondhand specimens of the likes of Fobco, Meddings etc. drills can fetch £200 to £250. If you need the kind of accuracy and performace they provide, then the Axi will probably disappoint. For DIY or a bit better in wood, it'll do.
 

Triggaaar

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I can't see myself needing it for any metal use, but I am surprised by the 13mm wood limit spec, even cordless 10.8v drill is rated at 19mm.

By the way, how do people drill dog holes for their work bench - just by hand?
 

RogerP

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Triggaaar":3lrf6qld said:
By the way, how do people drill dog holes for their work bench - just by hand?
As cheap and cheerful as they may seem I've found one on these drill stands very useful for that sort of job.
 

Triggaaar

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Triggaaar":2doxd4ia said:
I was planning on getting Axminster's £12 drill guide (for a small project), as I don't often need a pillar drill. But the only drill I have to use with it is an old green bosch, which is out of line
RogerP":2doxd4ia said:
As cheap and cheerful as they may seem I've found one on these drill stands very useful for that sort of job.
Yes, that's been in my basket for a week, but while reading other threads here I saw a comment saying 'all workshops should have a pillar drill' and I thought they may be right, so wondered whether I should get a complete drill instead. Not that a complete drill would help with dog holes.
 

Triggaaar

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Just looking at things on ebay, I don't suppose this is any good is it?
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Power-Craft-5 ... 2ec0cc74b3
I believe it's available for £100. Some power, but only 50mm chuck travel.

What do you think of these ebay options (nearest first) - and which need motor changes etc :)

Sealey
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Sealey-Pillar ... 27c9ed1faf

Progress
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/floor-standin ... 4d03beeb49

Meddings
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/pillar-drill- ... 1e70b97c70

Ajax
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Classic-Ajax- ... 3f1ad41a17

Or should we all own a Fobco :)
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Electric-Pill ... 19d4152d6b


Thanks :)
 

misterfish

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Triggaaar":32xrt636 said:
blimey, I've just seen the drilling capacity of these things is 13mm in wood! That's not much good.
This is the capacity of the chuck - it will hold up to 13mm drill shanks, but larger drill bits have a reduced shank size (just like forstner bits). I've still got my old small Axminster 'white' bench drill that I used with a 2 inch hole saw and 35 mm forstner bit. This was about the limit of its capacity and I had to drill at a 'steady' pace.

I replaced this with an old Fobco Star bench drill which is a different level of engineering - accurate with no play in the quill. It is also VERY heavy, so if you go for the used ones on ebay ideally take a friend when you collect your purchase.

Of those you list I would steer clear of those with chipped pulleys or needing work to get them going properly. The Sealey I'm not sure about - the old ones were (apparently) excellent while new ones are good but not as good as they used to be.

Misterfish
 

Triggaaar

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Thank you for the help.
misterfish":2oq09xk3 said:
This is the capacity of the chuck - it will hold up to 13mm drill shanks
Mm, I know the difference and don't think I made that up, but can't find the spec now. It's possible I the limit wasn't specific, but meant for metal. I'll try and find it.

I've still got my old small Axminster 'white' bench drill that I used with a 2 inch hole saw and 35 mm forstner bit. This was about the limit of its capacity and I had to drill at a 'steady' pace.
Cool, thanks. I just called Axminster and they don't have a max spec, but the guy speculated at about 40mm with a forstner bit.

I replaced this with an old Fobco Star bench drill which is a different level of engineering - accurate with no play in the quill. It is also VERY heavy, so if you go for the used ones on ebay ideally take a friend when you collect your purchase.
Yes, I'm tempted to get something like a Fobco or Meddings, but I'll need to start a project thread here for advice on how to sort the motor and switch out, as I've never done anything like that.

Of those you list I would steer clear of those with chipped pulleys
I'm not sure what that means, did some of them say that had chipped pulleys?
The Sealey I'm not sure about - the old ones were (apparently) excellent while new ones are good but not as good as they used to be.
I can believe that. The Ajax doesn't look suitable, the Progress is probably massive, my favourite of those is the meddings.
 

RogerP

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A drawback of many cheaper pillar drills is short maximum chuck travel of only 50mm.
 

Triggaaar

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RogerP":1ppoqoz5 said:
A drawback of many cheaper pillar drills is short maximum chuck travel of only 50mm.
Yeah I've seen that, thanks. Probably not a big deal for metal workers, but I'll only really use it for wood, so I'm after more, like the AWBRD550 does 80mm.

I'm probably ordering the Axminster drill guide for £12, and then watching the bay for a decent old one.
 

Steve Maskery

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Go for the Meddings or the Fobco - though it will cost you a darn sight more than £25 and probavbly more than your £90 budget.
I know they look a bit shabby, but they are easy to clean up and the engineering will be in a totally different league to the others.
A few years ago I bought a Meddings on eBay. I paid 160 for it, which was probably a bit OTT. The guy would have been happy with £100. It was shabby but sound. I stripped it down, fitted a new NVR switch, gave it a new paint job and rebuilt it. It had already had new bearings. I now have a machine I wouldn't part with for £500. My uncle Tom reckoned that the quill would have been fitted to a tolerance of a tenth of a thou. You are not going to get that on a budget one.
HTH
Steve
 

RogerS

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Most of the cheap drills have a large amount of slop in the bearing when the drill is down at it's fullest extent.....and often even before it gets there.
 

Grahamshed

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I am also looking at Axi drills. A bench model for £220 and the radial arm drill for £170. It would be interesting to know what price you need to go to for a little quality to start showing its pretty face.
 

RogerP

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Grahamshed":ub5v3tj0 said:
I am also looking at Axi drills. A bench model for £220 and the radial arm drill for £170. It would be interesting to know what price you need to go to for a little quality to start showing its pretty face.
I bought a Ryobi EDP5530L a while back and have been very happy with it. It's very accurate and ticks all the boxes for me. Unfortunately it's risen sharply in price since I got mine.
 

Triggaaar

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Steve Maskery":lb725ln2 said:
Go for the Meddings or the Fobco - though it will cost you a darn sight more than £25 and probavbly more than your £90 budget.
I don't really have a specific budget in mind. If the £90 options do all I need, then I shouldn't pay more. It's the 50mm chuck travel that I think is the main problem with those. Being such a novice I'm not sure how much use I can get out of a pillar drill. I'll see what happens on the bay.
Mike Wingate":lb725ln2 said:
They make useful drum sanding stations.
I don't even know how that works :)
RogerP":lb725ln2 said:
I bought a Ryobi EDP5530L a while back and have been very happy with it. It's very accurate and ticks all the boxes for me. Unfortunately it's risen sharply in price since I got mine.
Yes I saw these in my searching, they were going for £145 last July, and now they're another £100 on top of that.
 

samthedog

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Drills are not really complex and second hand is not a big risk if you are mechanical. For the most part they have simple switches and circuits and in my experience they rarely fail in these areas. That leaves bearings and rust. I bought an old Ixion that was a little rusty but it had good bearings. The cables needed changing which was easily done. For 100£ and 5 hours work I had a drill that was worth 5 times that new. It runs extremely smoothly and is very heavy and rigid.

Even though you don't expect to use it on metal, I would still buy one that will be able to handle this task. This means you want rigidity, higher power rating on the motor and low speeds. Most drills I have seen have a speed range of about 100 - 1200 rpm. This is reasonable for most metal / wood related drilling.

In my humble opinion, no workshop should be without a pillar drill and you won't realise how useful it is until you get one. Just make sure that whatever you choose, you get it with a table that has T slots. This opens the options for many different types of workholding.

Paul.
 

Triggaaar

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samthedog":35kcbe6h said:
Even though you don't expect to use it on metal, I would still buy one that will be able to handle this task. This means you want rigidity, higher power rating on the motor and low speeds. Most drills I have seen have a speed range of about 100 - 1200 rpm. This is reasonable for most metal / wood related drilling.
I've been guessing that a decent drill is a decent drill and would work well on both materials. The cheap modern ones don't seem to go anything like as slow as 100 rpm, they're often from 650.

In my humble opinion, no workshop should be without a pillar drill and you won't realise how useful it is until you get one.
Although my projects are quite rough compared to the beauty I see in the projects forum, I can't help thinking you're right.

Just make sure that whatever you choose, you get it with a table that has T slots. This opens the options for many different types of workholding.
Er :oops: could you explain what to look for and what you can do with them please :)
Are they for attaching hold-down clamps and small vices etc?
 
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