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My Garage/Work Shop Makeover #14: New Drill Press Table

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Blog entry by MT_Stringer posted 331 days ago 2810 reads 13 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 13: Drill Press Makeover Part 14 of My Garage/Work Shop Makeover series Part 15: Under Table Wheeled Tool Storage Drawer »

For several years, I have had a small bench top drill press. I made a table for it out of 3/4 inch plywood. It worked OK, but just wasn’t as good as could have been. When I upgraded to my current drill press, I transplanted the table and sold the other press to a friend.

Since I am building a rolling stand for the drill press, I decided to upgrade the table also. I chose the plan from Shop Notes Issue #94.

Features of this table include the following:
  • large work surface (15×28 inches)
  • two “T” tracks used to attach a fence and/or clamps, hold downs and/or jigs. The track is the Rockler universal style which accepts 1/4 and 5/16 inch flange bolts.
  • four slots cut through the table which allow the use of common bar clamps.
  • custom dust collection box.
  • fence with “T” track which is useful to set up stops for repeat drilling operations. (future project coming soon)
  • custom inserts – I still have to make them for drilling or when the the drill press is used for sanding operations. Inserts can be easily replaced.

So, here it is.


All sorts of clamps and hold downs can be used with this table. In this picture, I have a Kreg Klamp in one track and a Rockler hold down in the other. Two quick release bar clamps hold down the front of the sample piece of 3/4 plywood.

In this picture, I have a custom piece made to connect my Shop Vac to the dust collection box. I got a good fit by slicing the pvc and then reshaping it it with a heat gun.

Note: The plan called for a small drawer in the box under the table, but I decided to skip it. I blocked off part of the interior just ahead of the insert opening. I might cut an opening later but I doubt it.

As a bonus, the added height of the dust collection provided just enough room for the crank handle to clear without having to cut part of the table away.

—————————-
And here is how I did it! :-)

The plan calls for laminating two pieces of 3/4 inch Baltic Birch but I can only buy it in full sheets…and that is expensive. I suppose I could have used regular plywood, but I recently bought a 5×5 piece of 1/2 inch BB, so I made my table out of two pieces of the 1/2 inch glued together.

Lots of clamps and some drywall screws.

To make the slots, I drilled holes on each end of the slot with a 1 1/4 inch forstner bit.

Then I cut out the waste with a jig saw and I used my router jig to route the area between the holes. They are kinda smooth but not perfect.

I made a pattern for the filler pieces, then cut out four identical pieces.

I installed “T” nuts and bolted the bottom of the DC box to the drill press metal table.

Per plan, I made filler pieces to fill in the area under the metal table so it will be easier to clamp to.

Dust Collection fitting test fit.

Final dry fit of all pieces.

Preparing to cut the opening for the insert.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas



6 comments so far

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

4684 posts in 1429 days


#1 posted 330 days ago

Mike,

I ‘m going to do a drill press table build in the near future. I’ve seen a few interesting home shop builds. I plan to use my new out of the box bought in 2004 delta mortising attachment. Have you any plans to use hold downs? Where did you purchase your rails? Any plans for a back support and stop blocks for this tables future?

What would you do different? LOL!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

1767 posts in 1818 days


#2 posted 330 days ago

Doc, The blue tracks are from Rockler. I bought two 36 inch pieces of the universal track (for 1/4 or 5/16 flange bolts or 1/4 inch hex bolts). I cut one piece to fit the table and had a little piece left over.

I am still undecided about the fence. I have a few pieces of maple that might work and I have more Baltic birch. I can always glue up a 1 inch thick fence that is about 2 1/2 – 3 inches tall. Then rout a groove for the track and install it.

For your mortising attachment, it might be better to make your table 1 1/2 inches thick because of the downward force you will be applying when cutting the mortises.

A thicker table would provide more room for longer screws when attaching the T track. I could envision you making a jig that would span the two tracks and be positioned near the front of the table. Several toggle clamps securely mounted to the jig should help keep your wood in place when you remove the bit. At least that is my thinking.

I will have to get more use out of this table before I can make any comments about what changes I would recommend.
I struggled with my old table because I couldn’t get clamps in the right position. That happened time after time. It appears I have solved my problem with this design.

I found some plans on Plans Now that look a lot like the table I built. The dust collection box is practically identical to the one I built. The table is not as fancy but that can be modified to fit your needs. The fence looks like what I will probably build.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View DocSavage45's profile

DocSavage45

4684 posts in 1429 days


#3 posted 330 days ago

Thanks!

Considering Rocklers hold down kits.

Also hope to mortise on angle so I would most likely need a jig set at correct angle or adjustable angles. Did you consider mdf w/ melamine as it seems many tables have that?

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

1767 posts in 1818 days


#4 posted 330 days ago

“Did you consider mdf w/ melamine as it seems many tables have that?”

I did but I didn’t!

I went with the BB because I had it on hand. However, I think two layers of 3/4 mdf would do you just fine. That is white Formica I put on my table…because I had it on hand also. :-) Weldwood contact cement is what I used to glue it to the table.

I don’t see why you couldn’t glue it to both sides. Should make it even better.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

1767 posts in 1818 days


#5 posted 320 days ago

My redneck table extension! I needed some support while drilling some recesses for screws on the toy box sides (18×30) so I came up with this idea…and it worked great!

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

View MT_Stringer's profile

MT_Stringer

1767 posts in 1818 days


#6 posted 320 days ago

More drill press action.

-- Handcrafted by Mike Henderson - Channelview, Texas

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