Metalworking (rec.crafts.metalworking) Discuss various aspects of working with metal, such as machining, welding, metal joining, screwing, casting, hardening/tempering, blacksmithing/forging, spinning and hammer work, sheet metal work.

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Ronnie Lyons, Meridian, Idaho
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I
can do with a mill-drill, other than cut slots in stuff. Can I do most
of my drilling with a mill-dril? Thanks!
Ronnie
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Grant Erwin
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

My idea of "big drill press" and yours may differ somewhat. To me, a big
drill press would weigh several thousand pounds. You may be talking about
something like a 17" import floor model, though. Assuming the latter, then
I recommend you go with the mill-drill as long as it's in decent shape. You
should be able to learn a lot about it by looking at it carefully, running
it, and listening. Don't worry about incidental dings in the table, these
can be stoned flat and they won't hurt anything. Do worry if the quill is
real sloppy or if the table is real loose. I'd personally accept backlash
in the table feedscrews up to 180, it doesn't matter very much.

A mill-drill makes an excellent drill press. I would recommend buying a
really good quality chuck with integral R8 taper (assuming the MD has R8,
else integral #3 Morse taper or whatever it does have). You won't be
able to axially drill down into the end of a broomstick, but you will
be able to make a little bushing that slips over your broomstick so you
can use a hand drill - you get the idea. You can also do light milling
with a mill-drill.

Grant Erwin

Ronnie Lyons, Meridian, Idaho wrote:

if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I
can do with a mill-drill, other than cut slots in stuff. Can I do most
of my drilling with a mill-dril? Thanks!
Ronnie


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Bob May
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

If I just needed a drill press, I'd go with the drill press. If I didn't
already have a mill, the mill/drill would be a better choice.
The problem with the mill/drill is that it won't have the depth of drilling
available that the floor mounted drill press will have. As to milling, the
machine is a lightweight mill so you aren't going to be swinging 6" face
cutters or other such stuff but anything that you can do with a larger
machine, you can do within limits on the smaller machine.

--
Bob May
Losing weight is easy! If you ever want to lose weight, eat and drink less.
Works every time it is tried!


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Toolbert
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

"Ronnie Lyons, Meridian, Idaho" wrote in message
om...
if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I
can do with a mill-drill, other than cut slots in stuff. Can I do most
of my drilling with a mill-dril? Thanks!
Ronnie


Just some HSM perspective. For the various drilling & boring needs I have
two lathes, two mills, a sturdy (300 lb) old Rockwell floor drill press and
a small (300 lb) mill/drill. The two real mills have been in storage the
last 4 years and for the stuff I have been doing (odd home construction and
equipment repairs) I have done OK without them.

Recent tasks on the mill/drill:

Machining 1/4" off the edge of 6 feet of 1" thick of cast iron drain
gratings, couple gallons of chips. Messy job, nice to not gunk up a real
mill. Worked great though, side cutting with a roughing end mill.

Boring some accurate 4" holes in high-density particle board using a fly
cutter - really not safe on a typical drill press, just too much side load
and too hairy at the lowest speed of most drill presses.

Drilling hot rolled angle and flat stock - 3/8" and 1/2" holes, could do in
the drill press but easier and more controllable on the mill/drill.

I do a lot of large forstner bit cutting, for the most part that would work
OK at the lowest drill press speed.

Drilling several 1-1/4" holes in 3/4" steel plate for a friend - was beyond
the safe limit of the mill/drill but I did it anyway. Better done on a
real mill or I suppose with a mag drill. Drill press out of the question.

I do a lot of messy work on it, that gets particle board and plywood sawdust
and plastic chips in the ways and all over the machine.

It is nice to have the built-in X-Y table. for drilling.

It is nice to have a real milling vise on the mill/drill for clamping work
more securely than a typical drill press vise.

The headroom is the limit - with a drill in a chuck, can't get the drill
point more than about 8" above the table. Before I had the drill press, I
would swing the head out over the floor and drill material clamped to the
side of the stand.

Recent tasks on the drill press:

The speed range is 250 to 4000 rpm. I pretty much use it for wood and for
drilling holes in metal up to about 3/8". Above 3/8" it's hard to prevent
the belt from slipping, but that's because it has only a single belt
reduction not the double reduction like a similar size modern import. So
at least in this example if I had only a drill press I'd have been better
off with the import.

But I'd still take the mill/drill over the drill press, and just deal with
the headroom problem.

I have been keeping an eye out for an old gear-head drill press in the ~
1000 lb range - something with at least the drilling power of the
mill/drill, but with 3'+ of headroom.

Bob


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Kelley Mascher
 
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Default Mill, drill machine


I have both and generally the mill/drill is the first choice for
drilling steel. It has lower speeds available than the drill press.

The mill/drill can be used to drill long items (broomsticks etc. ;^)
by swiveling the head 180 degrees opposite the table.

Cheers,

Kelley

On 15 Jan 2004 10:23:34 -0800, (Ronnie Lyons,
Meridian, Idaho) wrote:

if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I
can do with a mill-drill, other than cut slots in stuff. Can I do most
of my drilling with a mill-dril? Thanks!
Ronnie




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Charles A. Sherwood
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I


In my opinion it depends on what you are doing. It depends on the accuracy
you need and the size of your projects and maybe your skill level as well.

For low accuracy the drill press is adequate, fast and cheap. If you can
locate your holes with a ruler and center punch, all you need is a drill
press.

I feel that I can achieve more accurate and faster results with a mill/drill.
If you need to drill a hole and you only have a drill press, you must
lay out the part, center punch the hole and hopefully drill a hole where
the centerpunch mark is located. There are lots of oppurunity for mistakes
and for errors to build up in this process. With the mill/drill I can
accurately located a hole by finding an edge and then using the leadscrews
to position the spindle where I want the hole. Fewer steps, less chance
for error and less skill required.

As other have stated, you can do larger projects on a drill press
and you can do simple low precision projects faster on a drill press
which is the only time I ever use my drill press.

chuck
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Gary Coffman
 
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Default Mill, drill machine

On 15 Jan 2004 10:23:34 -0800, (Ronnie Lyons, Meridian, Idaho) wrote:
if you had a choice between a big drill press, or a mill/drill machine
for another $150, which would you take?. I'm not quite sure what all I
can do with a mill-drill, other than cut slots in stuff. Can I do most
of my drilling with a mill-dril? Thanks!
Ronnie


As Grant said, it depends on what you mean by a big drill press.
A friend of mine has a drill press that weighs about 20 tons (out
of a railroad repair shop). That's a big drill press. It can easily
drill a 4 inch diameter hole 36 inches from the edge of a piece
of 2 inch thick plate in one go.

OTOH I have an old Rockwell drill press that doesn't weigh much
over 250 pounds. Compared to a hand drill, that's a big drill press,
but a half inch hole in mild steel is about all you can ask of it.

If you mean the latter, then a mill/drill is a better choice (my
mill/drill weighs about 700 pounds). Crude rule of thumb with
machine tools, mass is your friend. When choosing between
machine tools, the heavier one will almost always be the better
choice.

I use my mill/drill for drilling much more often than I use my
drill press. As a matter of fact, I set up a joint jigger on the
drill press a couple of years ago to fishmouth some long pipe,
and it is still there. In other words, that's the only thing I've
done with the drill press in the last couple of years. Everything
else is either drilled with the mill/drill, or with my Bridgeport
style knee mill.

The one advantage of my drill press is that it is light enough to
drag out in the middle of the shop for drilling holes in very long
or awkwardly shaped pieces that would be difficult to position
on either of the mills. That's because the mills are lined up
along the walls of the shop along with the lathes and other
heavy tools, and would interfere with each other when working
on very long pieces.

But that's very rarely been an issue in my shop. The pipe was
the last example where that applied. If you'll mostly be drilling
near the ends of long stock in a crowded shop, that might be
more important to you than it is to me.

Gary
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