Looking for new drill press

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
I currently have the Dremel rotary tool and press to drill my PCBs. I am only marginally happy with it. Seems to be OK down to .6mm but after that the run out is just too great to drill an accurate hole. Add to that the vibration in the press just makes it a challenge to use.

I have a full size bench press that does a better job but the Dremel beats running down into the basement to use the press.

Two I found that get mixed reviews are:

Proxxon

http://www.amazon.com/Proxxon-28606-MICROMOT-Drill-Stand/dp/B000209ZAE/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1450577225&sr=8-6&keywords=proxxon


and this one

http://www.amazon.com/SE-97511MDP-3-Speed-Jewelers-Hobbyists/dp/B0040YJTTU/ref=cm_cr_pr_bdcrb_top?ie=UTF8

I kind of like the fact it is all one unit. Seems it would be more stable.

Any one use either or have other suggestions?
 
This
video pretty much compares the two.

I haven;t drilled any PCB holes, but I have the Proxxon stand with the Dremel tool. The Dremel can be used in the Proxxon press with relatively hard to find adapters.

I'm in the process of making some upgrades that I don't know as of yet how well they will turn out except 1. "O-rings" on the lock which is mentioned in the video.

Plans are;
1. Replace the drill rod.
2. Add an x-y table
3. I have an easy means to lock the downward movement for ersatz milling.
A releasable shaft collar that uses no set screw.
4. Possible chuck upgrade using a 1/8" carbide shaft.

All have been procured. Just not installed.

The Z movement will be course, but that's OK with me.

Clamping is a big issue.

Slow speeds are no good for drilling small holes. The shop I had access to at one time had a nice high speed press. It was solid, but hard to adjust the height. A drill press with a 1/2" chuck with 3 speeds or so. The workhorse. A larger drill press.
A milling machine and a lathe. All can be used for drilling, A sacrificial piece of plexiglass was generally used on the mill.

I set someone up to drill about 125 closely spaced 1/4' holes into a 3/16 piece of Molybdenum on the mill. I used a ball end mill and set the machine up for auto drilling,
All the person had to do was move the X-Y stage (readout available) and basically push go for every hole. He was a totally inexperienced mechanical engineering student.

The hard part is usually the set-up. That's how I learned. An experienced machinist set the machines up for me when I had a particular operation to do. Eventually, I had 24/7/365 machine shop access.
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
100% yes. I like some of the Dremel adapters though. It even vibrates too much for a hand tool. The design of one of them was so bad, I told Dremel I didn't wanto fix it, I just bought and bought another, newer model. Unfortunately, I had to buy a kit and not just the tool.

It looks like they created a new drill press: http://www.proxtools.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=286

Yes I am trying to figure out the differences and seeing if it is worth the the extra $50. The new press does look a lot more attractive and professional. I am leaning toward Proxxon now instead of some generic China brand press.
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
100% yes. I like some of the Dremel adapters though. It even vibrates too much for a hand tool. The design of one of them was so bad, I told Dremel I didn't wanto fix it, I just bought and bought another, newer model. Unfortunately, I had to buy a kit and not just the tool.

It looks like they created a new drill press: http://www.proxtools.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=286
Nice find. Those are really nice prices. Much better than Amazon or Ebay.
 

Picbuster

Joined Dec 2, 2013
990
All mechanical issues are caused by instable machines. Each motor is wobbling so are the drills.0,001 mm for the motor and same for the drill give you 0,002 + momentum.

Running drills<0.6 mm then speed should go up to > 60000 rpm use cold, not condensing, air. Each machine should have a big mass to absorb vibration and produce stability. I know this is for the hobbyist a problem. However; if to buy an old drill/mill machine and replace the mill head with a high speed dc motor and drill holder your problems are solved.

It is also better to use a 2 cutter mill to drill holes in PCB’s. A normal drill will lift the pcb a strait 2 cutter mill not.

Dremmel is a nice thing to play with but no way to produce accurate work.
 

Robin Mitchell

Joined Oct 25, 2009
819
In my experience with drilling any bit below 0.6mm will become problematic if you are manual drilling. Your best bet is a CNC machine. I have seen some of those hobby machines called CNC3020. Check them out!
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
In my experience with drilling any bit below 0.6mm will become problematic if you are manual drilling. Your best bet is a CNC machine. I have seen some of those hobby machines called CNC3020. Check them out!

$500 - $600 ??? My holes don't need to be that straight. ;)

Though it might be nice for milling PCBs. Still a lot of money.
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
Looks to me like they're the same as the SE 97511MDP. My son got me one for Christmas a couple years back, ended up returning it because the quality was just awful.

The second time you saved me in the week. ;) Thanks for the heads up. I am leaning more toward proxxon. With the link that KISS provided I might go with the newer press. A link right from their website BTW. Who would have thought the company source is cheaper than elsewhere?
 

OBW0549

Joined Mar 2, 2015
3,150
Good luck with your drill press quest. I finally gave up trying to find something that would work well enough that it wouldn't endanger my blood pressure.
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
Good luck with your drill press quest. I finally gave up trying to find something that would work well enough that it wouldn't endanger my blood pressure.

Now that I am thinking about it, I like Mitch's idea. My hands aren't that steady and the older I get they don't get any more steady. Not like I can't afford another really cool tool.
 

nerdegutta

Joined Dec 15, 2009
2,676
I have a Dremel, in a Dremel press, clamped to my workbench for stability. I'm satisfied with the quality, but the drillwaste is annoying. Sometimes I use some tape on the chuck with a flap, so it's acting like a fan. I place it on the chuck, so the drill bit won't wiggle too much.

I also have a PROXXON drill, without a press. I use this for small cutting and, when I've forgotten one or two holes.

The clamping was a tremendous improvement.

This looks nice, though...

http://www.proxtools.com/store/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=61&idcategory=20
 

tindel

Joined Sep 16, 2012
701
Have you guys thought of looking here?

http://denver.craigslist.org/search/sss?sort=rel&search_distance_type=mi&query=drill+press I'm not much of a mechanical guy. but this is the first place I go for stuff that I'll only use a few times, then harbor freight, and then somewhere else.

Thanks for the video of the proxxon vs dremel. I have been thinking about buying a dremel tool for Christmas with the thought that I could get the drill press someday in the future. I think I'll look at the proxxon tools instead just in case I decide to get the drill press in the future.
 

Robin Mitchell

Joined Oct 25, 2009
819
I have owned one in the past. They are very reliable machines and do well down to 0.5mm drills. The only issue is scaling on the axis, might take a few attempts to get right ;)
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
I have owned one in the past. They are very reliable machines and do well down to 0.5mm drills. The only issue is scaling on the axis, might take a few attempts to get right ;)
Is that a one time thing or is it for every board?

Have you milled PCBs with them? Where you satisfied? What made you dump the CNC?
 

Thread Starter

spinnaker

Joined Oct 29, 2009
7,837
Mitch, I was thinking. Can you please respond to my thread Milling PCBs. Your answers might be valuable to others looking at CNC etching.
 
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