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The first time I saw this photo, I thought someone had taken a picture of my shop and posted it to the Flickr pool. I use this same setup, including the Irwin clamps and the Delta drill press, in my shop at home.

It actually works pretty well, all things considered. Just clamp wood in position, as shown here, and off you go. Sometimes I clamp another piece of wood on the other side of the table for added bracing — but in any case, it was funny to see someone else performing the same acts of “make do with what you got” that I do.

Toolmonger Photo Pool [Flickr]


4 Responses to Cheap-Ass Tools: DIY Drill Press Rig

  1. james b says:

    I do something like this, only with C-clamps and a cheapo half-vicegrip type hold down. I had to weld a bolt on the bottom of the vice grip where there was some sort of round screw eye, and then grind it to fit my T-slot. But the clamps, like shown above, are a great way to keep things from spinning around and the locking plier keeps it from lifting up.

    I tend to mess up my tender flesh quite a bit with drill presses and belt sanders. They don’t have the fear factor of a table saw or jointer, so I get slack and wind up bleeding – though I’m starting to learn.

  2. johnnyp says:

    Here is something cheap and easy. Join 2 pieces of stock at right angles, cut slots in horizontal piece in line with table slots, use small carriage bolts w/ washers and wing nuts. With this setup it is now dedicated to to your press and it can also be used parallel to slots.

  3. ToolFreak says:

    Am I missing something? Isn’t this how an inexpensive drill press is used?

  4. Gareth says:

    That my shop in the pic. The aluminum part is the landing gear for the airplane I’m building.

    Honestly, I never really had much exposure to a drill press before I started this project. At first I was just using the clamps to hold things down. For small parts, really large parts or oddly shaped things clamps wont work. I was holding the really small bits with my hand and you can guess how well that worked.

    Then I realized that I needed a fence to stop the work piece from rotating. I still hold some of the small bits down by hand but I have the fence to help out.

    Later I may do something that better fits my needs with a T-track and some toggle clamps. For now this is an 80% solution.

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