• Welcome to our site! Electro Tech is an online community (with over 170,000 members) who enjoy talking about and building electronic circuits, projects and gadgets. To participate you need to register. Registration is free. Click here to register now.

Small Drill Press

Status
Not open for further replies.

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
A small drill press is essential if you are making printed circuit boards or custom tag-boards where fine twist drills of typically 0.8mm and 1 mm are used.

A standard drill press is a bit bulky and typically does not have a sufficiently high speed or suitable chuck for small drills. And hand drilling inevitably ends in misplaced elongated holes and broken drills.

We started discussing this topic on another thread but thought the information would be more appropriate in this new thread.

What do you use. Have you built a small drill press?

spec
 
Last edited:

Les Jones

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
This is a link to a small drilling machine that I have been thinking of buying. I first saw it on another forum where someone had modified it for drilling PCBs. They had inverted the head so the chuck was poining upwards and mounted a flat platform above it with a hole in that lined up with the chuck. Above this was mounted a low power microscope with cross hairs that lined up with the drill bit. The PCB being drilled was held on the platform and the position for the hole lined up with the cross hairs. The drill then drilled the hole from underneath the PCB.

Les.
 

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
This is a link to a small drilling machine that I have been thinking of buying. I first saw it on another forum where someone had modified it for drilling PCBs. They had inverted the head so the chuck was poining upwards and mounted a flat platform above it with a hole in that lined up with the chuck. Above this was mounted a low power microscope with cross hairs that lined up with the drill bit. The PCB being drilled was held on the platform and the position for the hole lined up with the cross hairs. The drill then drilled the hole from underneath the PCB.

Les.
Looks good Les, and reasonably priced too.:cool:

spec
 

MikeMl

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I have one of these. Not a high quality tool, by any means, but it works just fine for drilling pcbs. The chuck on this thing will hold the smallest bits I own... It spins fast with the belt in the fastest groove...
 

shortbus=

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
This is a link to a small drilling machine that I have been thinking of buying. I first saw it on another forum where someone had modified it for drilling PCBs. They had inverted the head so the chuck was poining upwards and mounted a flat platform above it with a hole in that lined up with the chuck. Above this was mounted a low power microscope with cross hairs that lined up with the drill bit. The PCB being drilled was held on the platform and the position for the hole lined up with the cross hairs. The drill then drilled the hole from underneath the PCB.

Les.
I was going to do something similar. But instead of a scope with cross hairs, was going to use a small laser pointer mounted to shine where the drill would be.
 

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I have one of these. Not a high quality tool, by any means, but it works just fine for drilling pcbs. The chuck on this thing will hold the smallest bits I own... It spins fast with the belt in the fastest groove...
Hmm, that drill press looks good too Mike.:cool:

spec
 

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I was going to do something similar. But instead of a scope with cross hairs, was going to use a small laser pointer mounted to shine where the drill would be.
Good idea SB. I have seen similar on expensive pro drilling machines but in those days with a focused light beam, rather than a laser.

spec
 

Mosaic

Well-Known Member
I use a proxxon with a proxxon mini press.
http://www.proxxon.com/us/micromot/38472.php

Used a Dremel 395 and Dremel mini press for a few years but ...the runout started to get costly with small carbide bits...

So now I use the dremel for grinding, polishing or cutting and the high speed Proxxon for PCB work alone.
Modified the Proxxon press with a white light LED shining up from the base hole to back light PCBs when drilling, also modified the movable V clamp ( with an additional clamping screw) to allow for drilling concentric holes in small connectors to allow for wider diameter cabling.

I use a benchtop press with a laser cross hair for handling metal and wood working items upwards of 1/8" diameter.

This documents how I do PCBs...
https://hackaday.io/project/7938-pcb-smt-maker-lab-home

Including cutting the boards and handling the dust as well as laser cut stencils for solder paste application.
 
Last edited:

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I use a proxxon with a proxxon mini press.
http://www.proxxon.com/us/micromot/38472.php

Used a Dremel 395 and Dremel mini press for a few years but ...the runout started to get costly with small carbide bits...

So now I use the dremel for grinding, polishing or cutting and the high speed Proxxon for PCB work alone.
Modified the Proxxon press with a white light LED shining up from the base hole to back light PCBs when drilling, also modified the movable V clamp ( with an additional clamping screw) to allow for drilling concentric holes in small connectors to allow for wider diameter cabling.

I use a benchtop press with a laser cross hair for handling metal and wood working items upwards of 1/8" diameter.

This documents how I do PCBs...
https://hackaday.io/project/7938-pcb-smt-maker-lab-home

Including cutting the boards and handling the dust as well as laser cut stencils for solder paste application.
You are obviously into PCB manufacture in a pretty comprehensive way Mosaic- there is something very satisfying about doing the whole make process yourself.:cool:

spec
 

ericgibbs

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I use the same type as post #6, adjusting the belt pulley to suit the job.
You can buy 0.8mm and 1.0mm Dia drills with larger Dia shanks to suit the chuck.
E
 

spec

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I use the same type as post #6, adjusting the belt pulley to suit the job.
You can buy 0.8mm and 1.0mm Dia drills with larger Dia shanks to suit the chuck.
E
Do you have a link to a discount UK supplier Eric?

spec
 

ericgibbs

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member

ericgibbs

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member

RichTheDude

Active Member
Eric and Spec: ALDI sell those drill presses from time to time for about £50.
 

throbscottle

Well-Known Member
(copied from "the scoop on PCB layout software")
I made a nice little drilling machine (the automated one is on hold because it's feedback is crap) and use tungsten carbide bits (cheapo set) so lots of holes isn't a problem. I quite enjoy being able to drill lots of different sized holes...
 

KeepItSimpleStupid

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
The Dremel basically sucks: See

I actually have a Dremel mounted on a Proxxon Press. An adapter is available that can convert the Proxxon press to the Dremel tool.

I have mounted an x-y table and a vise to the bottom of the Proxxon and have increased the post length. Believe it or not, I still really haven't used it. I also got some solid carbide rods, so I can do some things with the chuck. I got these cool shaft collars that can be released with a push. The idea is to be able to use it for simple milling too. I don't know if it's going to work. I did straighten (mill) an edge on a piece of Aluminum without all of the modifications.

The most annoying thing with the Proxxon is the clamp handle getting in the way of the base as in the video. An "o-ring" fixes that.

I took my older Dremel apart and it was designed pretty bad. I "upgraded" to the 4000 series, but I had a hard time just finding the tool, so I had to get a set. The run-out issue on the Dremel will surely break a carbide PC drill easily.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Latest threads

EE World Online Articles

Loading
Top