Best drill press for metal work

Last Updated: 22.05.19


What are the best drill presses for metal in 2019?


If you don’t have time to look into buying guides and expert review sites to find the best drill press for metal work, this short paragraph should give you precisely what you need. We have done the hard research ourselves to find the best drill press for metal work, which is the JET J-2530. Boasting a solid construction, this drill press is equipped with a cast iron head and a large ground steel column diameter to ensure maximum head and table support, giving you years of dependable use for a variety of applications because of the tiltable head and assurance of accuracy. If the JET J-2530 is unavailable, you should grab the second best option, the WEN 4208.



Comparison table




Buying guide


Best drill press for metal work 1000


Working with metal using a drill press


Any self-respecting do-it-yourselfer knows that to ensure a job well done, you have to use tools effectively and safely for great results every time. In addition, you need to work with the proper tools and materials, so when you want to explore what your drill press can do, you should make sure you have the best drill press for drilling metal in your workshop. Make sure the drill bit is held securely in place by the Jacobs chuck of your machine. Use the chuck key for this purpose to tighten the bit in. Remove the chuck key before drilling. Make sure you’ve made a center punch mark on your workpiece through which to drill.

Stay safe and do not attempt to drill with one hand and hold the metal workpiece with the other hand. Remember to use a drill vise or clamp to prevent the stock from spinning. The bit should cut the metal and not grab it, which can be very dangerous since the workpiece can launch or spin.

The drill press should have a start/ stop button within easy reach during operation. The drill press should make it easy for the operator to lubricate the drill bit, which is highly important when drilling metal since the metal bit-to-metal workpiece contact can generate a large amount of heat.

Metalworking drill presses also have large motors, around ¾ horsepower at least. You want a tiltable worktable for angled drilling, preferably square-shaped and larger than average.
The drill press should allow you to adjust the drilling pressure easily once the bit breaks through the workpiece. Reducing the drilling pressure at this point also prevents the drill from breaking or pulling into the stock. The guards should stay solidly in place and in good working order even after years of use. The drill press controls should enable you to stop the rotation of the spindle and chuck, and not force you to use your hand to do that.

You want a drill press with slower speeds than higher ones when working with metal. A drill press with more spindle speeds should work fine for this purpose. You want spindle speeds of 500 RPM or slower for hardware-grade or mild steel stocks. You can go faster when you use a smaller bit. Make sure your choice of drill bit and the machine’s RPM setting match the material. When you have the right RPM setting and decent steel material, you can get smooth and easy cutting action. Smoking or rattling is not a sign of optimal metalworking with the machine. If there is grinding or squealing, stop the machine and recheck the configuration.



Our recommendations:



JET J-2530


1.JET J-2530The 3/4 -HP JET J-2530 offers versatility, stability and accuracy, making it the best benchtop drill press for metal. Belonging to a high quality line of JET drill presses, this model features a wider range of spindle speeds compared to other machines in its class. It is equipped with a solidly built base to ensure stability and support while drilling.

Four permanently lubricated ball bearings support the enclosed spindle assembly to deliver accuracy and precision. The cast iron head ensures many years of use, while the large ground steel column delivers maximum head and table support. This model has a large quill to give you greater accuracy while drilling.

To empower you to work on a variety of drilling applications, including angled drilling, this drill press has a worktable that tilts 45 degrees so you can enter the workpiece at an angle when needed. The machine is usable for deep hole applications thanks to the 3 ⅛ inch stroke. Drill holes to precise depths with the accurate depth stops.

The telescoping safety spindle guard allows you to set the spindle speed securely. The ball bearing spindle assembly is permanently lubricated to prevent bit breakage and overheating.



This is a corded, electric drill press that runs consistently and with sustainable power so it can complete the drilling task with uniform results every time.

The cast iron head delivers years of service due to its durable and solid build that will not give way to rust while being able to handle sophisticated drilling tasks.

The large quill guarantees great accuracy with its ability to use a variety of drill bit sizes and its driving power to cut into many different types of materials.

The head casting is equipped with a permanently lubricated ball bearing spindle assembly that employs four heavy-duty ball bearings in an enclosed quill to deliver a longer tool life as well as smooth operations.

The large, ground steel column diameter provides maximum head and table support to enable you to raise and lower the table to the exact drilling height while having enough support between the head and the base.



The head section is quite heavy so lifting the machine can take one really strong person or a bit of assistance from another individual.

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WEN 4208


2.WEN 4208There was a time when power tools were genuinely powerful and the WEN 4208 ensures that this is still true now. Equipped with a ⅓ horsepower induction motor, this model offers an RPM range between 620 and 3100 to suit any application. Choose from 5 different speeds that let you work on various materials and thicknesses.

The drill press ships with a ½-inch keyed chuck for easy fastening of different drill bit sizes, a chuck key for tightening the bit securely plus the needed tools for assembly. The 2-inch spindle travel makes it easy to raise and lower the bit.

The linear depth stop locks the chosen depth to allow repeatable and accurate drilling operations. Get more than enough torque and power from the motor to handle any drilling application.

The generous 6 ½ inch by 6 ½ inch work table provides an ample surface area on which to position the stock. The cast iron table is solid and is height adjustable to accommodate various sizes of workpieces. It also enables angled drilling with its beveling ability to 45 degrees both left and right.



This 8-inch drill press is a compact machine that is small enough to fit into a tiny spot on your work table, helping you make the most of every inch of your work space.

The ½-inch keyed chuck accommodates a variety of sizes of drill bits to ensure versatility, allowing you to work on a range of materials to expand your productivity in the workshop.

To prevent misplacing the chuck key, this model features an attached key storage to ensure the component is always there when you need it.

The machine runs at five different speeds namely, 740, 1100, 1530, 2100, and 3140 RPM, enabling the user to drill into different materials using the proper speed to prevent costly mistakes.

The spindle travels up to 2 inches to enable controlled descent of the quill, and a faster completion of drilling tasks, with the linear locking depth stops allowing repetitive yet accurate drilling operations.



Because the work platform on this model is not affixed to a track, making adjustments tends to rotate the work surface.

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Rockwell RK7033


3.Rockwell RK7033Hefty at 48.5 pounds, the Rockwell RK7033 ensures strong and stable support every time you drill.

Outfitted with a ⅔ HP, 6.2 Amp motor, this drill press can handle various drilling applications to help you expand your creativity and productivity in the workshop. Get dependable performance from this model, which boasts 5 speed settings to give you the best results when working with different materials including plastic, wood and metal.

The table bevels right and left to 45 degrees so you can handle angled drilling or when you have to enter the stock at a specific angle. The table height can be adjusted using the rack and pinion mechanism for easy and hassle-free raising and lowering to accommodate various sizes and shapes of workpieces.

To ensure operator safety, the unit features a keyed safety switch that prevents accidental activation. This 10-inch drill press comes with a 2-inch spindle travel for convenient and practical setting up of the workpiece every time. Designed for repeatable and accurate cutting, this drill press ships with a chuck key and allen wrench for easy assembly and set up.



Outfitted with a 6.2-amp, ⅔-HP motor, this drill press is engineered to deliver a dependable performance and consistent hole drilling results.

The five speed settings enable you to drill into a wide range of materials including wood, plastics, and metal, expanding your potential to create and build in your workshop.

The table bevels 45 degrees to the left and right, which allows you to work on different shapes and sizes of stock and elaborate projects that leverage your creative juices.

The rack-and-pinion table height adjustment enables you to raise and lower the work platform to the desired height for precise and clean drilling results.

The two-inch spindle travel provides a measured or controlled means of managing the quill for worry-free, effortless drilling.



This model has a small base that does not offer enough support to hold the heavy head so the unit has to be bolted to a bench or stand for consistent stability.

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