Little Machine Shop Drill Press
#1
I took delivery of this drill press from Little Machine Shop on Monday. It's not going to win any quality awards but we'll see how it performs once I get it set up on its stand.

Some observations so far:
The column tube is very thin at only .0655".  Yikes
The mount that the column is attached to is rather skimpy. At first I thought it was made from cast pot metal but it's some type of steel, just not very stout.
The column appears to be press fit into the mount since I can't see any welds or mechanical fasteners holding the two pieces together. That's a bit scary.  Jawdrop
The drill chuck and arbor that came with it look very cheaply made but I'll install them and check for run-out before I go looking for better ones.

Some good points:
It has some decent specs such as a 3.1" stroke which isn't too bad for a drill press of this size.
It has an MT2 spindle.
It has a 3/4hp motor. Most of the other small drill presses that I looked at had either a 1/3 or 1/2hp motor.
16 Speeds 220 - 3600 RPM. I just wish the lowest speed was 150 instead of 220.

I can't quite get the head onto the column by myself so I'm going to remove the motor pulley so I can get the motor off. Then I should have no trouble installing the head unassisted.

Ed


         

         

   
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#2
(06-09-2021, 04:00 PM)EdK Wrote: I can't quite get the head onto the column by myself so I'm going to remove the motor pulley so I can get the motor off. Then I should have no trouble installing the head unassisted.

Ed

Maybe put the head on the column with everything laying on it's side (on the bench) and then stand it up? Chin

That's what I had to do with my 20" floor standing drill press. Pulled it upright with a come-along and a couple of lift straps. A friend and I couldn't lift the head high enough to get it over the column with it standing up. Too much weight and not enough head room. Smiley-gen151
Willie
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#3
(06-09-2021, 07:16 PM)Highpower Wrote: Maybe put the head on the column with everything laying on it's side (on the bench) and then stand it up?  Chin

That's what I had to do with my 20" floor standing drill press. Pulled it upright with a come-along and a couple of lift straps. A friend and I couldn't lift the head high enough to get it over the column with it standing up. Too much weight and not enough head room.  Smiley-gen151

The stand is only big enough to hold the drill press standing up so I can't lay it on its side to assemble it. I've got a pulley puller arriving tomorrow from Amazon so I should be able to get the motor off. Head room may be another issue. I took a measurement and I might be able to get the head on without mangling the ceiling tile. If not I'll move the stand into the living room where the walls are 8' tall. The stand is on casters. Then I'll move it back into the laundry room/work shop. Quite an adventure so far.

Ed
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#4
The column mount IS skimpy. I bought a base and mount for use as a tapping machine. Tapping the column in, I cracked the mount (split right in half!), resulting in no way to hold the column square to the base. Not so good for a tapping machine OR a drill press. I started making a new mount, but other projects got in the way.
Full of ideas, but slow to produce parts
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#5
I bought a cheap drill press nearly 30 years ago, I think they probably all come from the same bloodline- I've cursed the thing for nearly 30 years but I have also drilled a lot of holes with it.
If you're removing the motor pulley, might you have a look at the possibility of chucking it in a lathe and reducing the diameter of the smallest pulley, to get a bit lower lowest speed?
Lathe (n); a machine tool used in the production of milling machine components.

Milling Machine (n); a machine tool used in the production of lathe components.
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#6
(06-10-2021, 05:59 AM)rleete Wrote: The column mount IS skimpy.  I bought a base and mount for use as a tapping machine.  Tapping the column in, I cracked the mount (split right in half!), resulting in no way to hold the column square to the base.  Not so good for a tapping machine OR a drill press.  I started making a new mount, but other projects got in the way.

I bought my drill press a long time ago after Sears had put them on sale. Had to drag it home hanging out of the back of my little Toyota Tercel hatch back. Opened up the box and saw the column mount pre-split into 3 pieces. The box had obviously been dropped hard on that end because the Styrofoam lining inside the box had exploded as well. I called Sears and asked if I could just bring back the mount flange and exchange it for one in another box. NO - of course not! Had to re-box the whole thing (320 lbs.) and drag it back to the store to exchange the whole box. Rant

On the other hand, the column for my Harbor Freight pedestal stand I bought for my carbide grinder fit in its base like a hot dog thrown down a hallway. Several useless pinch bolts in the base are supposed to hold the column in place but it still wobbled all over the place. I ended up filling in the gap between them with epoxy and clamping the column square to the base until the epoxy cured then re-installed the pinch bolts.

Ed is right. It's always an adventure. Slaphead
Willie
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#7
(06-10-2021, 05:59 AM)rleete Wrote: The column mount IS skimpy.  I bought a base and mount for use as a tapping machine.  Tapping the column in, I cracked the mount (split right in half!), resulting in no way to hold the column square to the base.  Not so good for a tapping machine OR a drill press.  I started making a new mount, but other projects got in the way.

I can probably make a new mount using my mini lathe and the drill press. Chin

Ed
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#8
(06-10-2021, 11:49 AM)Highpower Wrote: ended up filling in the gap between them with epoxy

I'm thinking of filling the column with something to add rigidity to it. Not cement though, that would be way too heavy.

Ed
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#9
(06-10-2021, 12:27 PM)EdK Wrote:
(06-10-2021, 11:49 AM)Highpower Wrote: ended up filling in the gap between them with epoxy

I'm thinking of filling the column with something to add rigidity to it. Not cement though, that would be way too heavy.

Ed

Sand maybe?   Smiley-think005

Helps to keep tubing from kinking when bending it. Might add a bit more rigidity and it wouldn't be something permanent that you are stuck with forever. I have some epoxy that is filled with stainless steel beads that is super strong, but boy howdy - that would be crazy expensive!
Willie
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#10
Doesn't sand contain moisture? Not sure I'd want that in the thin column.

You're trying to get the column on the head? How about upside down - column sticking up?

A friend of mine bought an HF benchtop drill press and was really disappointed that the base was no longer cast, it was pressed metal. Really flimsy.

I bought one from Cummins Tools, remember the semi truck would park somewhere for a day and sell tools and small machines. It was good and sturdy, good heavy base. Then I found a floor standing model on craigslist for $50 that wouldn't spin unless you turned it on and gave the spindle a good spin. Yep, you guessed it. Motor cap. But the cap wasn't bad, the wire fell off of it! Sold my Cummins model to the neighbor for $30 making mine a net $20.
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