How to Build Your Own Drill Press

What You'll Need
Various nuts and bolts
Axle housing
Brake drum
1/4 hp electric motor
Break rod and fittings
Break lever
Angle iron
Wood block
Pipe brackets and mounts
Short drive belt
Long drive belt
4Double wheel spindles
6 inch loaded spring
Stove lid or 3/4 inch iron plate

You can make your own drill press at home with a few items bought from a local hardware store, including old car parts and galvanized plumbers pipe. This press will be quiet and run smoothly for years to come.

Step 1 - Main Assembly

The start of your drill press comes on the main assembly or central shaft of the device, as everything else is then mounted to this. Take the axle housing and attach it to the break drum, which then in turn will be bolted to the table your press is going to call home. Be sure to center it so that once finished, the working area of the press is easily accessible from the front of the work station.

Step 2 - Supports

On your drill press will be a number of supports, one for the drill work table, one for the pulley system, and three that will control your lever or control arm. These are going to be your under pressure parts of the press so you will want to be sure they are secured tightly to the main shaft you have bolted to the table.

Step 3 - Connect the Work Table

About six inches up, you are going to mount the arm and bracket that will hold your drill press work table in place. This will be the area you can clamp a wood piece to be drilled, and it needs to be stable. People in the past have used cast iron stove lids for this, however you can custom cut an old piece of metal and bolt it to the support arm, which is then bolted tightly to the main shaft.

Step 4 - Connect the Rear Pulley System

You will need a pulley system for your drill press to run the speed from your generator to the bit itself. This starts at the base with a double wheel on and axle that you bore and mount into the back of your main shaft. Mount your generator next to this and connect those two wheels together with a belt, it will be a shorter belt than your top one.

Once this is in place on your drill press, measure up from the bottom wheel to the middle of your main shaft, you will then install a bracket here with an axle holding one spindle on each side, this is where the belt will rest as it heads to the spindle attached to your bit.

Step 5 - Handle and Bit

Now add the break handle to the top of the main shaft on a pivot with the bit sliding through two other brackets on the face of your drill press. Your final spindle mounts on the base of your bit and is locked to the bar the bit is connected to, so that when the belt spins it will turn the bit shaft freely. The rear of your break arm can be loaded with a spring that will pull the press upward when released.