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Andy writes – “Hey guys- great site and mag! Anyway, I was piddling around in the workshop yesterday, and I wondered if my drill press could do some basic plastic and maybe wood machining with the right bit and setup. I put a flat router bit in the drill press and put some PVC pipe in my vice, and lo and behold it handled it very nicely. So then I figured I just needed a worm gear table to control it once the piece is ‘under the knife’, so I went looking around and found this little item. It will allow you to clamp a piece down and then move it around carefully under the bit. Neat! No replacement for a Bridgeport, but I don’t have a spare 5 grand for such an item. I ordered one that should be here next week. See you at Maker Faire! Coming all the way from Michigan!”Link. Not bad for $79.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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Comments

  1. NickCarter says:

    This comes up a lot on the metalworking forums (do a Google Groups search for “milling on a drill press”.
    Generally speaking it is hazardous and doesn’t work that well, but some people have persevered and made it work by modifying their drill presses a bit.

    Jose Rodriguez does have a DVD on the subject:
    Milling On A Drill Press Technical Video rental has it for rent as well as a similar vid by the late great Rudy Kouhoupt.

  2. Windell_Oskay says:

    There’s a big difference between how tool bits are held for drilling (in a drill chuck), and how they are held for milling (in a collet). Use extreme care to make sure that you can’t get hit by a flying tool bit.

    That said, a gizmo like this, but designed for metalworking, is usually called a “compound slide table” or “compound milling table.” They typically are much more rugged, rigid, and precise than the woodworking variety. Readout is via dials on the handles, usually calibrated in 0.001″ increments.

    You’ll find them on eBay or many machine tool sites starting at around $60, vise not included. (One is model 201-2826 from Enco, currently $69.)

  3. Windell_Oskay says:

    There’s a big difference between how tool bits are held for drilling (in a drill chuck), and how they are held for milling (in a collet). Use extreme care to make sure that you can’t get hit by a flying tool bit.

    That said, a gizmo like this, but designed for metalworking, is usually called a “compound slide table” or “compound milling table.” They typically are much more rugged, rigid, and precise than the woodworking variety. Readout is via dials on the handles, usually calibrated in 0.001″ increments.

    You’ll find them on eBay or many machine tool sites starting at around $60, vise not included. (One is model 201-2826 from Enco, currently $69.)

  4. BrK says:

    I have a similar vise, it’s much like the one you pictured but has more X and Y travel.

    What you are attempting to do will “generally” work, but you’ll find that the screws are actually going to be too sloppy to do anything with even a moderate amount of precision.

  5. Dennis Moore says:

    I do have this vise.Not one similar,but this one.It does do precision work on wood but I also use it on alluminum & delron.I love mine & recomend this accross the board.

  6. Dennis Moore says:

    I do have this vise.Not one similar,but this one.It does do precision work on wood but I also use it on alluminum & delron.I love mine & recomend this accross the board.

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