Oak and Walnut Drill Press Table

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Project by HokieKen posted 05-27-2015 03:13 PM 2884 views 27 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my first project on LJs and I have to give many thanks to all who have posted their DP tables for me to “borrow” ideas from. I lurked as a guest for weeks while working on the design for this table and got many great ideas so thanks! This design wasn’t based on any one in particular but is more of an amalgamation of many.

I made a table prior to this which was a good learning experience. I picked up a laminated tabletop at Goodwill for a couple of bucks and it was pretty flat so I thought it would make a good table. Once I cut it to size and left the pine core exposed it didn’t stay flat very long though. I also realized from that first table that I didn’t need it to be as big as it was and size is a concern in my garage/shop. Finally, I learned that routing t-track may be fine for stop blocks but doesn’t work well for things like hold-downs that need a little bit of torque applied. So I decided to make one that would last and to spend some time and do it right.

After a few weeks of internet research (a great deal of it on this site) and iterating on my CAD model, I ended up on this design. The table top is 2 layers of 3/4” MDF laminated then covered with Formica. The sacrificial insert is 1/2” MDF. I made it square for ease of making new inserts and offset it from the spindle so I get 4 “fresh” spots on each side of an insert. The bottom of the table top has hardwood keys for consistent locating on the DP table and tee nuts inserted to bolt it to the DP table.

To (hopefully) help it maintain flatness, I made the drawer box below it as a sort of torsion box support. The bottom of the drawer box is another piece of 3/4” MDF and there are 4 1/2” MDF uprights running front to back and 2 more running left to right at the back (behind the drawers). I made one of the drawers to hold extra sacrificial inserts and other odds & ends and the other drawer to be a bit holder for Forstner bits.

The fence is just a “block” of 3 layers of 3/4” MDF and then covered with Formica on front, back and 2 ends. I installed t-track in the front of the fence and in the table top. In the table top, I offset the t-track so it’s more centered on the front for hold-downs and closer to the ends in the back for the fence bolts so the fence knobs don’t interfere with the DP feed handles.

I edged the table top with 3/4” oak and eased the top edge with a 45 deg. chamfer bit. The drawer box is wrapped with 1/4” oak ply on the sides, bottom and back. The drawer fronts and trim on the front of the drawer box is 4/4 walnut. Everything is finished with 2 coats of BLO.

Once everything was done, I was completely unhappy with the aesthetics of the piece of plywood I was using for a stop block and the black plastic knobs I had on the fence and stop block. So, I made a couple of stop blocks from walnut. I made the fence knobs from walnut as well and the stop block knobs from oak to keep with the overall design of the table. The hold-down in the last picture is a “prototype” made of some scrap plywood. Once I settle on a size and geometry I like, I’ll make a couple of those from either oak or walnut depending on what’s in my scrap pile.

Thanks for looking and questions, critiques and comments are much appreciated!

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

13 comments so far

View WoodNSawdust's profile


1417 posts in 599 days

#1 posted 05-27-2015 03:17 PM

Great Looking Table!

-- "I love it when a plan comes together" John "Hannibal" Smith

View Notw's profile


445 posts in 1176 days

#2 posted 05-27-2015 04:19 PM

Time to move the drill press and table inside, too nice for the shop now! great job

View jstare's profile


8 posts in 1125 days

#3 posted 05-27-2015 05:08 PM

That drill press table looks fantastic, it almost a shame to get it dirty!

View Northwest29's profile


1470 posts in 1913 days

#4 posted 05-27-2015 06:23 PM

That’s one seriously good looking drill press table. It almost looks like a piece of furniture. Nice job.

-- Ron, Eugene, OR, "Curiosity is a terrible thing to waste."

View HokieKen's profile


1541 posts in 561 days

#5 posted 05-27-2015 06:41 PM

Thanks all for the nice comments!

Concerning moving it inside and it looking like a piece of furniture… I had the thought that the same design could be used with slight modifications to make a nice “lap desk” or hobby table to work on while watching TV. Not sure how practical it would be for me but if I ever find a use for such a thing I’ll know how to do it!

jstare, dirty’s not the problem – dirt wipes off. It’s the little scratches already showing on that black formica that make me cry a little! :) I wasn’t crazy about using the black on a work surface but it was free and handy when I needed it. The good thing about it is that touch-ups are only a Sharpie away.

-- Kenny, SW VA, Go Hokies!!!

View BurlyBob's profile


3485 posts in 1688 days

#6 posted 05-27-2015 06:59 PM

I have to agree with everyone else. That is just to beautiful to work on and get all dirty. You did a fantastic job.

View Blackie_'s profile


4527 posts in 1935 days

#7 posted 05-27-2015 07:18 PM

Patience and diligence pays off here, what a great piece and beautiful work.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View iminmyshop's profile


251 posts in 1417 days

#8 posted 05-28-2015 12:25 AM

That table is better than some living room furniture. Nice! Enjoy it.

View ColonelTravis's profile


1159 posts in 1317 days

#9 posted 05-28-2015 01:49 AM

Good Lord – that there is a nice drill press table.

View dorald's profile


49 posts in 1215 days

#10 posted 05-28-2015 02:08 PM

Excellent ! ! ! Work of ART.

View Tim_CPWD 's profile


306 posts in 668 days

#11 posted 05-30-2015 04:44 PM

Beautiful table. Great job.

-- Tim Haenisch, San Diego Ca.

View Woodchuck2010's profile


465 posts in 281 days

#12 posted 03-05-2016 03:39 AM

Amazing work! How much? lol

-- Chuck, Michigan,

View jesinfla's profile


274 posts in 560 days

#13 posted 04-27-2016 09:02 PM

Wow, just amazing! Thx for sharing

-- They said I could be anything... So I became Sarcastic! They also said making drawers is easy... I think they lied :(

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