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Forum topic by Estley posted 05-31-2011 10:42 PM 4190 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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65 posts in 3203 days

05-31-2011 10:42 PM

So, I’m going to be in the market for a benchtop drill press in the near future. As far as I can tell my options are:

Grizzly G7943 for ~$340 shipped
Shopfox H0626 (oscillating, which is of little interest to me) for the same money
Craftsman 21914 for ~$220
delta DP300L 12, $200+shipping

any other suggestions?

22 replies so far

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2494 days

#1 posted 05-31-2011 10:51 PM

Let me advise you on what I see as a shortcoming of some, but not all, bench top drill presses – the amount of spindle travel.

I’ve seen bench top drill presses with less than 2.5” of spindle travel. In my opinion, you need more than that.

When comparing products, check out spindle travel.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View Tedstor's profile


1625 posts in 2052 days

#2 posted 05-31-2011 10:58 PM

Yep. Rich beat me to it.
If you’re getting a benchtop model, spindle travel should be a top consideration. I think Harbor Freight sells a model that has 3”+ of spindle travel.
Another option is used. I have a vintage Craftsman benchtop DP (circa 1960ish). Its got 3 1/8” spindle stroke (i think). Its usually enough, but not always. Either way a good, used, industrial quality benchtop DP can be had for $150-200 on craigslist. Sometimes less.

View Estley's profile


65 posts in 3203 days

#3 posted 05-31-2011 11:14 PM

interesting… hadn’t tought of that…

so the Shopfox travels 3 1/4
delta 2 3/8
grizzly also 3 1/4
craftsman no idea…

So I guess that’s a starting point…..

View crank49's profile


3979 posts in 2390 days

#4 posted 06-01-2011 12:19 AM

I got a 10” bench top, 12 speed, 1/2 hp.
Speed range from 200 rpm to 3000 rpm.
This machine had been $179, and I got it on sale and with 25% off coupon for $79.
I forgot to check the spindle travel.
It was 2 1/4”.

It is a great machine. Would be fine for metal work where you normally don’t drill anything thicker than 1/2”.
For a wood shop, it’s my worst great deal ever.
I plan to make a spindle sander out of the bench machine and get me a Delta 16 1/2” inch floor model with
4 3/8 spindle travel. The one with the nice big table for wood working. It’s about $400.

-- Michael: Hillary has a long list of accomplishments, though most DAs would refer to them as felonies.

View chrisstef's profile (online now)


15459 posts in 2425 days

#5 posted 06-01-2011 01:57 AM

I have an older craftsman 1/3 hp .. i swear i can stop it with my hand .. depending on what you plan on drilling make sure you get enough motor to get through it. thats my 2 pennies.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2390 posts in 2341 days

#6 posted 06-01-2011 02:58 AM

I have that grizzly and I like it.

-- "You may have your PHD but I have my GED and my DD 214"

View ajosephg's profile


1878 posts in 2980 days

#7 posted 06-01-2011 03:44 AM

I have a Delta DP300 (it’s for sale) that I don’t think highly of. (Excessive chuck slop.)

Spend the extra money and get a better one.

-- Joe

View Bearpie's profile


2601 posts in 2437 days

#8 posted 06-01-2011 04:51 AM

The bench top and floor models both have similar sized foot prints plus or minus a few square inches but you will be able to do a whole lot more with the floor model than you would the bench top. Unless you are mainly drilling thin pieces for scroll sawing, the bench top would be ok. I have a 20” floor model and would never consider a bench model after having this one. Just my input.

Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

-- Erwin, Jacksonville, FL

View gillyd's profile


136 posts in 2065 days

#9 posted 06-01-2011 05:11 AM

Might want to consider a floor standing one. I found that the prices were very similar. In fact, you can look at my review of the one I bought for more options.

View Steven H's profile

Steven H

1117 posts in 2479 days

#10 posted 06-01-2011 06:51 AM

Ill go for the Shopfox H0626.

But if can get the floor model, it would be better.

View live4ever's profile


983 posts in 2429 days

#11 posted 06-01-2011 07:57 AM

I will echo what Rich, Tedstor, and Joe said. I have the Delta 300L, and have had projects where I had to drill holes from both sides because the spindle doesn’t travel far enough. Also have noticed the chuck slop Joe mentioned.

If I were to do it again I’d get a floor model.

-- Optimists are usually disappointed. Pessimists are either right or pleasantly surprised. I tend to be a disappointed pessimist.

View Estley's profile


65 posts in 3203 days

#12 posted 06-01-2011 07:46 PM

is the benefit of the floor standing vs bench top unit, the longer spindle travel only or is there more to it?

View ajosephg's profile


1878 posts in 2980 days

#13 posted 06-01-2011 09:46 PM

Estley: Floor Standing should get you a 5/8 inch chuck (vs 1/2 inch for bench top), larger throat depth, more speeds, more robust construction, and higher horsepower. Another benefit is the working height. My floor standing shaft handles are 54 inches from the floor, my bench top handles are 66 inches when mounted on a 39 1/2 inch cart. I like the lower height better.

-- Joe

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 2494 days

#14 posted 06-01-2011 10:08 PM

You’ll almost always get more clearance from the bit back to the post on a floor model. There are situations where that extra clearance is a big advantage.

Typical bench tops only have 5 speeds and most floor models have 12 or more. In my opinion, you don’t really need 12 speeds, but in my work I need a slow speed for running big bits (up to 3”). My floor model will go down to 250 rpm. The bench top model I had at one time would not go below 620 rpm. Of course, you don’t usually use big bits on a bench top.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View Bertha's profile


12989 posts in 2112 days

#15 posted 06-01-2011 10:17 PM

I’ve got the Delta and I haven’t been terribly impressed with it, but I don’t use a press often, and it cuts holes with under a 3” travel. If that is what you need, the price and availablity is right. Have you CL’d older floorstanders? The footprint isn’t really that bad and you don’t have to find somewhere to hide an awkward little machine.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

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