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Best Floor Drill Press in 2020 – information and Reviews

The beast of the drilling world, the floor press is generally found in engineering and machining workshops. You will normally only find these units in commercial premises, because of their weight, size — and price. With remarkable power and accuracy, they are installed professionally in most cases. Read our best floor drill press reviews, recommendations and advice, to determine if this drill type is for you.

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Powermatic PM2800B Product Image
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Things To consider before buying a Floor Drill Press


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Good For

Drilling through tough materials is never an easy task, especially if you need an accurate and clean finish. A floor drill press is a great heavy-duty tool, which allows you to tackle a demanding drilling job with ease. It is designed to go through anything you put in front of the chuck, within the machine’s capabilities, of course.

Are you a keen DIY enthusiast, considering turning a hobby into a career — or a commercial or professional user? If the answer is yes, this type of drill press could be just what you’re looking for.

These units aren’t too complicated to use, as long as you have some previous experience of using a heavy-duty drill. One of the main advantages of a floor drill press is its stability. Despite high speed levels, it will remain stable. This factor also means the amount of vibration is at a bare minimum most of the time, which allows for a better user experience and more precision. 

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Not Recommended For

As mentioned, these tools are not recommended for those who lack experience with heavy-duty drills. Even though these are relatively simple to get the hang of, they are still a safety hazard for people who are unaware of the risks. 

As an industrial tool, we wouldn’t recommend a floor drill press for the occasional project or the general DIYer. The cost will far outweigh any other benefits you could achieve from the tool. If you’re on a tight budget, it’s better to go with something smaller. These tools are expensive, although you might find cheap models out there — however, you’ll soon find that they lack features, quality, and consistency.

Top-Rated Floor Drill Press


Delta 18-900L – Editor’s Choice


Our Rating: 4.7

If you’re looking for a strong motor and robust performance, this model might be a good one to look into. It features a ¾ HP heavy duty motor, which provides enough power for a wide variety of applications. It’s a great solution both for professionals and serious hobbyists. It’s not a complex piece of equipment, but it’s still capable of tackling a demanding project without too many issues.

When it comes to the design, there are plenty of additional features. For example, this unit features a flexible LED work light, designed to illuminate the work surface for better visibility. Twin lasers are also a neat addition as they project a bright red crosshair onto the table at the point of bit contact.

The work table is slightly different from the others in this category. It is oversized, with a patented design which bevels at a 90-degree angle both to the left and right. It can also tilt forward 0-48 degrees, features T-slots for clamping, and a removable center insert. 

As far as downsides go, the first thing some users mention is the issue with belt tensioning. The auto-tensioning system works fine, but it doesn’t do enough. Therefore, you might end up investing in shorter belts if you need better tension. 

This is a versatile machine and a great solution for professional purposes as well as those who carry out frequent DIY projects. The price is a bit on the premium side, but it’s good value for money, nonetheless.

Shop Fox W1848


Our Rating: 4.5

For a decent floor drill press with quite a bit of features, Shop Fox has a few that might be of interest to an average Joe. The W1848 model is a good tool, both for keen enthusiasts and avid professionals. It features a ¾ HP motor, with a speed range of 250-3050 RPM. It also features a unique oscillating spindle for efficient contour sanding.

The design is pretty conventional, although there are a few notable features. First of all, it can be converted from drilling operations to sanding operations within seconds. On top of that, you don’t need any additional tools to fine tune the unit as it features tool free adjustment mechanisms. 

The overall height of this unit is 63 inches which is more than enough for most applications. The table can tilt 90 degrees to both left and right, and also features a 2-inch dust port — this allows you to connect a vac and extract debris and sawdust. You can also move the table completely out of the way and utilize the base as one. The kit includes a 3-piece spindle sander with a mandrel.

The biggest complaint from reviewers is regarding the quality of the base. Even though the materials used in production are sturdy and reliable, the base doesn’t seem that way. In fact, it looks quite fragile and vulnerable, which makes the drill appear to be underwhelming and cheaply made. However, at the end of the day, it’s a versatile machine with a decent amount of options for the price.

Shop Fox W1848


Our Rating: 4.5

For a decent floor drill press with quite a bit of features, Shop Fox has a few that might be of interest to an average Joe. The W1848 model is a good tool, both for keen enthusiasts and avid professionals. It features a ¾ HP motor, with a speed range of 250-3050 RPM. It also features a unique oscillating spindle for efficient contour sanding.

The design is pretty conventional, although there are a few notable features. First of all, it can be converted from drilling operations to sanding operations within seconds. On top of that, you don’t need any additional tools to fine tune the unit as it features tool free adjustment mechanisms. 

The overall height of this unit is 63 inches which is more than enough for most applications. The table can tilt 90 degrees to both left and right, and also features a 2-inch dust port — this allows you to connect a vac and extract debris and sawdust. You can also move the table completely out of the way and utilize the base as one. The kit includes a 3-piece spindle sander with a mandrel.

The biggest complaint from reviewers is regarding the quality of the base. Even though the materials used in production are sturdy and reliable, the base doesn’t seem that way. In fact, it looks quite fragile and vulnerable, which makes the drill appear to be underwhelming and cheaply made. However, at the end of the day, it’s a versatile machine with a decent amount of options for the price.

JET J-2500


Our Rating: 4.4

The J-2500 model offers great accuracy, ease of use and — most importantly — an affordable price. It features a ¾ HP, 115V single-phase motor and 16 spindle speeds, which ensure consistency, versatility, and adjustability. The speed range is 200-3630 RPM and the ball bearing spindle is permanently lubricated, thanks to the innovative mechanisms inside the unit.

The materials used for the design are among the best and toughest we have covered thus far. The head is made of cast iron, which guarantees longevity and stability. The overall weight of this unit is about 170 pounds, giving it more than enough weight to ensure stable and consistent performance. The work table weight capacity is 44 pounds, enough for processing large workpieces.

The table tilts 45 degrees — this is okay, but far from perfect. It’s not a bad feature, but most other models come with a table that can pivot 90 degrees to both left and right. Therefore, while you can drill at an angle with this unit, it’s quite limited. 

Users complain that it doesn’t have a laser or any other function to help alleviate the hassle with accuracy and tuning. On top of that, the chuck uses a somewhat obsolete size of key — so you’ll probably have to buy a new chuck if you lose the key. It does feature a conveniently positioned light, but it’s not LED, instead it utilizes normal light bulbs up to 60W.

WEN 4227


Our Rating: 4.3
WEN is a well-known manufacturer of heavy-duty tools, including floor drill presses. The 4227 model is a great solution for a vast variety of applications as it is one of the most consistent and stable units within this price range. It’s good for professional purposes, but it would be overkill for an average DIYer due to price and overall complexity. In simpler words, there are some other models that offer similar performance for less money.

The three-spindle design offers twelve speeds with a range of 180 to 2940 RPM. As you can tell, it is quite a versatile machine with more than enough power to tackle any tough project without breaking a sweat. On top of that, the design includes a precision laser which is great for sensitive applications that require high accuracy. The onboard key storage is a neat addition, but it’s not particularly useful due to the lack of capacity. The work table is quite spacious as it measures 14 by 14 inches. It is capable of pivoting up to 45 degrees both to the left and right. It is made of cast iron which guarantees reliability and most importantly – longevity. Thanks to the vast speed range, one can accommodate metal, hardwood, plastic, softwood, and etcetera. The 13-amp motor is a great solution if you’re planning on processing particularly tough materials.

The biggest upside of this particular model is the fact that it doesn’t have many downsides. It may sound impossible and peculiar, but it’s actually true. The only thing most people complained about is the poorly written manual and assembly instructions. Therefore, if you don’t have much experience when it comes to putting heavy-duty tools together, make sure to do some research before messing with your new tool. It’s essential that you put it together in a correct manner or else it becomes a massive safety hazard.

WEN 4227


Our Rating: 4.3
WEN is a well-known manufacturer of heavy-duty tools, including floor drill presses. The 4227 model is a great solution for a vast variety of applications as it is one of the most consistent and stable units within this price range. It’s good for professional purposes, but it would be overkill for an average DIYer due to price and overall complexity. In simpler words, there are some other models that offer similar performance for less money.

The three-spindle design offers twelve speeds with a range of 180 to 2940 RPM. As you can tell, it is quite a versatile machine with more than enough power to tackle any tough project without breaking a sweat. On top of that, the design includes a precision laser which is great for sensitive applications that require high accuracy. The onboard key storage is a neat addition, but it’s not particularly useful due to the lack of capacity. The work table is quite spacious as it measures 14 by 14 inches. It is capable of pivoting up to 45 degrees both to the left and right. It is made of cast iron which guarantees reliability and most importantly – longevity. Thanks to the vast speed range, one can accommodate metal, hardwood, plastic, softwood, and etcetera. The 13-amp motor is a great solution if you’re planning on processing particularly tough materials.

The biggest upside of this particular model is the fact that it doesn’t have many downsides. It may sound impossible and peculiar, but it’s actually true. The only thing most people complained about is the poorly written manual and assembly instructions. Therefore, if you don’t have much experience when it comes to putting heavy-duty tools together, make sure to do some research before messing with your new tool. It’s essential that you put it together in a correct manner or else it becomes a massive safety hazard.

Powermatic PM2800B


Our Rating: 4.2

This particular model is renowned for its performance, precision, and efficiency. It features a powerful motor with a speed range of 250-3000 RPM. Changing the speed is done via mechanical means, so you don’t need to change the belts in order to fine tune the RPM output.

The design of this unit is among the best we have seen. Everything is neatly positioned and easily accessible. There are several additional features that deserve to be mentioned. The most notable one is the LCD screen, located on the top of the casing, which is designed to display the current RPM.

The work table features an adjustable fence which is perfectly positioned for rapid alignment of stock. This enables you to process multiple pieces of material at the same time, without having to adjust them one by one. The unit also features an adjustable material stop, making repetitive actions much easier. Reviewers praise the product’s overall smoothness of performance. It’s an ideal tool for avid professionals as it offers versatility, while remaining consistent and efficient.

On the other hand, you should also be aware of some faults before you invest in this particular unit. While many people praise keyless chucks, they aren’t always the best choice for these kinds of heavy duty tools — they can accidentally release the bit and break it. It’s not a common occurrence but is a possibility. 

Furthermore, some consumers expected higher quality, considering the premium price. While it’s not a cheap piece of equipment, it is good value for money as far as we are concerned.

Quick Product Comparison


 VoltageSPEEDWEIGHTPRICE 
Delta 18-900L Product Image

Delta 18-900L

120V170 - 3000 RPM240 lbs$$$Check Price
Shop Fox W1848 Product Image

Shop Fox W1848

110V250 - 3050 RPM122 lbs$$Check Price
JET J-2500 Product Image

JET J-2500

115V200 - 3630 RPM167 lbs$$Check Price
WEN 4227 product image

WEN 4227

120V180 - 2940 RPM214 lbs$$Check Price
Powermatic PM2800B Product Image

Powermatic PM2800B

115V250 - 3000 RPM246 lbs$$$$Check Price

Before You Buy: How a Floor Drill Press Work?

It’s important to become familiar with the basic concepts and principles of these tools before you even start planning a purchase. If you aren’t sure about the importance of various aspects of the floor drill press, take a few minutes to read this guide.

Stability

Floor drill presses are known for being one of the most stable power drills out there. Most models are particularly stable because they are heavy. On top of that, the vast majority of drill bases are made of cast iron or other solid metals, ensuring stability.

The amount of vibration is also significantly reduced in comparison to other types of drill. If you’re looking for a stable, sturdy power tool, a floor drill press is a good choice.

Versatility

One of the additional features of most floor drill press machines is their capability to utilize a bit that allows the user to mount sandpaper. In other words, one can count on sanding applications as well as drilling with most of these models. 
On top of that, nearly every work table pivots to both sides by at least 45 degrees, but most commonly it is 90 degrees. That means you can drill or sand at an angle, by simply adjusting a lever and without using any proprietary tools.

Usability

Even though these drills are quite versatile, most of them are recommended for heavy-duty projects. Therefore, if you’re just a hobbyist in need of a good drill, a floor press might be expensive overkill. On the other hand, if you’re an avid professional who utilizes these machines on a daily basis, we strongly recommend that you read on to find out whether this is just the product you’re looking for.

Finding The Best Floor Drill Press – Buying Guide


As with any other power tool, it’s essential to learn the pros and cons before you decide to invest money. In order to find the best product for your needs, you should be aware of the things you should be looking for. If you’re struggling with too many choices, refer to this buyer’s guide. We wrote it to help you solve some of the most common predicaments regarding various aspects of your potential choice.

Power


The first thing to consider when choosing a floor drill press is the total amount of power it offers. While there’s no “perfect” value, there are some things you should avoid. For example, it’s best to avoid any model that offers less than ¾ HP. If you’re dealing with amps, we recommend that you look for at least 8 or 9 amps, otherwise it may be underpowered. The rule of thumb is to choose a machine with slightly more power than you typically would need — to make sure that everything runs smoothly.

Design


For many people, this isn’t an important step as most units seem quite similar to one another. However, there are some subtle differences to be aware of in order to avoid expensive mistakes.

The first thing you should be looking at is the overall weight of the unit. If it’s not particularly heavy, there is a real possibility that it will struggle with stability.

The materials used in the design are also crucial. Some models on the market are built with hard plastic, aluminum, and cast iron. While these materials aren’t necessarily bad, we advise against buying a model with too many plastic parts.

Even though hard plastic is not the typical plastic you see every day, it’s still not the ideal material for heavy-duty tools, as it’s more prone to wear and tear than other materials.

quality designed drill press

Price


Unlike most other drill presses on the market, the floor drill press is, in general, quite expensive. Just like with any other major investment, you should be aware of the risks involved. More expensive doesn’t necessarily mean better quality. This is why it’s important that you don’t judge a model by its price, but by its features and capabilities instead. 

However, the more costly units often come with longer warranties, better quality control, and good customer support. Therefore, if you opt for a more affordable unit, you might not get as much support as you would when buying an established brand. 

It all comes down to your budget. If it’s limited, make sure you look for quality instead of quantity. Conversely — if money is no object or your budget limite is generous — aim for reputable brands that are already established and respected in the industry.

floor drill press handle

Variable Speed


This function is often overlooked by many users even though we feel it’s essential. If you’re unaware of the reason, the variable speed function offers multiple settings. This allows you to process different types of materials, such as steel, wood, plastic, etc. Single-speed drills aren’t as proficient with different materials, meaning they may underperform under certain conditions.

Conclusion


While it’s not easy to find the perfect model for your needs, acquiring product knowledge beforehand will reduce the risk of you ending up with a machine that doesn’t meet your expectations. It’s important to follow some, if not all, of the advice we have given above, to ensure you buy the right product at the right price.

As far as recommended models go, we covered the machines that have already proved their consistency and quality. Follow some of the tips and tricks from our buyer’s guide to help you decide on the features you need. Then take time to go through the list of best floor drill press reviews we wrote, before making that crucial, final decision.

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