Most people looking for the best floor standing drill press for woodworking face lots of frustrating issues. I mean, the majority of these machines come with:
- Low potency motors that don’t provide the needed horsepower for both small and large woodworking projects
- Limited speed range and number of speeds that make the tool inconvenient for drilling on different wood types
- Weight issues: they either are too bulky and heavy or lightweight but unstable. There are very few drill presses with the perfect mix of weight and stability
Lucky for you, I took the time to research and test multiple floor standing drill presses to arrive at the following list of the best ones we could find for woodworking applications.
List of The Best Floor Standing Drill Presses for Woodworking
After thorough research and testing, this is the list of the best floor standing drill presses I arrived at:
- 1. Shop Fox W1848 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 2. JET J-2500 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 3. WEN 4214 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 4. JET JDP-17 716300 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 5. Powermatic PM2800B Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 6. Sunex 5000A Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 7. SHOP FOX W1680 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 8. Klutch Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- 9. JET J-A5816 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
1. Shop Fox W1848 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
There’s no better way of knowing the money you spent on a floor standing drill press for woodworking was well invested than by making sure it has sufficient drilling power.
This is why I like this Shop Fox W1848 floor standing drill press as it has features such as its 3/4 HP motor that delivers a speed range of 250 to 3050 RPM at 12 different speeds. As a result, drilling on wood planks of different sizes and densities becomes very easy.
Even though it might be a bit too bulky for some workshops, this drill press has other convenient attributes difficult to find in modern floor drill presses for woodwork projects, such as:
- A spacious work table that tilts to different positions to allow drilling from different angles which is key for most woodworking projects
- The possibility to go from drilling to sanding in seconds thanks to its oscillating spindle
- Oscillating spindle for contour sanding (turns from drilling to sanding in seconds!)
- Workbench that tilts 90-degrees to both left and right for drilling flexibility
- 12 convenient speeds with a speed range of 250 to 3050 RPM which makes it perfect for various woodworking projects
- Sufficient table size of 12-3/8″ diameter
- Powerful motor of 3/4 horsepower
- Might be a bit large if you have a small workshop
- No built-in light
2. JET J-2500 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
The drilling power this JET floor standing drill press provides blows other similar machines out of the water.
I mean, we’re talking about a 3/4 HP motor that outputs a speed range of 200 to 3630 RPM in 16 different speeds letting woodworkers adapt the drilling speed to the application at hand. This not only saves power but improves the accuracy and quality of the finished drilling job.
Some people like to complain about its heaviness, but I don’t find it to be that bad. I’d say I prefer it that way as it has a heavy cast iron head that guarantees drilling-stability and durability, both attributes tough to find in similar machines.
In terms of convenience, this floor drill press comes with a large workbench that tilts to allow drilling from different angles which is a feature we’re starting to see in most modern machines due to its importance for carpenters and woodworkers.
- Easy to assemble
- Powerful motor that delivers 3/4 Hp and offers a speed range of 200 rpm to 3630 RPM
- Cast iron head guarantees ruggedness and durability
- 16 spindle speeds, which is above average and very convenient for adapting drilling speed to different woodworking projects
- Large quill improves drilling accuracy
- The drilling bench tilts 45 degrees which substantially improves drilling flexibility
- 2-year warranty
- On the heavier side because of its cast iron base, table, and head unit (but definitely durable!)
- A 3-1/8-inch stroke might not be sufficient for some people, but it is for most woodworking applications
3. WEN 4214 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- Motor: 2/3 HP
- Speed Range: 580 to 3200 RPM
- Number of Speeds: Variable speed selection (I loved this!)
- Weight: 89 pounds
Drilling on different woods with different drill bits requires different speeds. And, if your floor standing drill press doesn’t make changing speeds quick and easy, it can become a huge headache in the long term.
In that context, this WEN 4214 floor drill press comes with variable speed coupled with a digital readout regulated with a convenient lever to infinite speed settings. Moreover, its speed range complements this feature as it starts at 580 RPM ending at 3200 RPM which is more than enough drilling speed for most hobbyists and professional woodworkers.
Although there are some complaints about the motor humming for a bit when it starts at lower velocities, this drill press surpasses expectations as this same engine offers 2/3 HP which is sufficient drilling power to drill on all types of woods of all sizes.
- Variable speed with regulating lever and digital speed readout gives infinite speed options that range from 580 to 3200 RPM
- It takes around 15 minutes to assemble
- Powerful motor delivers 2/3 HP
- Precision x-/pattern laser for drilling accuracy
- Work bench conveniently tilts up to 45 degrees for drilling in angles
- The motor might get hot after drilling continuously for 1 hour
- If the variable speed is set at lower rpm it occasionally will hum a bit when started. This is a minor detail though.
4. JET JDP-17 716300 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
Woodworkers need torque to drill through the densest types of woods. This JET floor standing drill press comes with a 3/4 HP motor that outputs a maximum speed of 3500 RPM which is enough for most woodworking applications.
With this floor drill press, I can comfortably work on any wood-based project as it comes with a spacious workbench and a depth stop that makes repeated drilling much easier.
Additionally its above-average spindle travel of 5″ is enough for drilling on large wood planks which makes tackling larger woodworking projects much easier.
- The unit runs smooth and quiet
- Roomy work table (14″ x 19″) that can keep up with big woodworking projects
- One-handed belt tensioning allows fast speed changes (16 in total) ranging from 210rpm to 3500rpm
- Depth stop feature that makes repeated drilling much easier
- Powerful 3/4 HP makes drilling on hardwoods a piece of cake
- 5″ of spindle travel (above average)
- Integrated LED light
- White pilot light that stays ON when plugged in which might get annoying for some people
5. Powermatic PM2800B Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- Motor: 1 HP
- Speed Range: 250 to 3000 RPM
- Number of Speeds: Variable Speed
- Weight: 266 pounds
The best way to make sure you’re not gonna regret spending hundreds of dollars on a floor-standing drill press is by making sure it delivers enough drilling power to help you finish your woodworking projects.
Knowing this, the Powermatic PM2800B floor standing drill press stands apart as its motor outputs 1 horsepower (substantially higher than the competition) and its range speed stands between 250 to 3000 RPM which is enough to give woodworkers the drilling speed they need for most of their projects.
Even though it lacks a power switch (which means you’ll have to unplug the machine to cut power), it has a mechanical variable speed which gives the user the possibility to adopt infinite speed variations without the need for belt changes. This feature really makes a difference.
- Mechanical variable speed with digital readout offers infinite speed settings (ranging from 250 rpm to 3,000 rpm) without the need for belt changes
- Durable 1 Hp motor that outputs sufficient drilling power for a wide range of woodworking applications
- Press handles can be installed on either side of the machine
- Laser guides for drilling accuracy
- You might need a bit of help to assemble it
- It has no power switch, so the RPM counter is always on
6. Sunex 5000A Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
In order to guarantee maximum torque, this Sunex 5000A floor standing drill press comes with a motor that outputs 3/4 HP and a maximum speed of 3850 RPM which is considered “above average” in the industry.
In this context, this drill press offers a wide speed range of 200 to 3850 RPM with 12 speeds which lets woodworkers adapt the drilling speed to the woodworking project they’re currently working on.
This floor drill press surpassed my expectations in terms of convenience too, as it comes with a big workbench that rotates 360 degrees and tilts up to 45 degrees allowing drilling from different angles which is essential for some woodworking projects.
- 5/8″ drill capacity which is more than enough for most woodworking applications
- Quick speed transition thanks to belt tension lever
- Work bench rotates 360 degrees and tilts 0 to 45 degrees to facilitate drilling from all angles
- Instalation instructions can be tricky
7. SHOP FOX W1680 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
I’m used to asking the most out of the machines I test which is why I loved this SHOP FOX W1680 drill press.
With its 1 HP motor, this machine outputs a speed range of 140 to 3,050 RPM at 12 different speeds. This maximizes productivity as it allows the user to adapt the drilling speed to the task at hand.
Moreover, this floor drill press comes with convenient attributes such as:
- 3-1/4-inch spindle travel which coupled with the right drill bit allows for deep drilled holes sufficient for most woodworking projects.
- A 14-inch diameter workbench spacious enough to allow drilling on large wood planks which can also be tilted to allow drilling from different angles
- Reliable and powerful 1 HP motor that outputs up to 3,050 RPM which is enough to drill on hardwoods
- Instructions are straightforward and easy to follow
- 3-1/4-inch spindle travel which is perfect for most woodworking projects
- 12-speed settings let adapting the drilling speed to the task at hand
- 2-year warranty
- Solid and large (14 inches of diameter) cast-iron workbench that tilts allowing drilling in angles ranging from 0 degrees to 90 degrees
- Heavy unit. Needs 2 people to assemble.
- Knobs to pull down the press are made of cheap plastic. Not a big issue but I thought it was worth mentioning.
8. Klutch Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- Motor: 1 1/2 HP
- Speed Range: 600 to 2,400 RPM
- Number of Speeds: 12
- Weight: About 220 pounds
Isn’t it the best when you buy an expensive machine for your workshop that is worth the money you spent?
Well, that’s precisely what I felt with this Klutch floor standing drill press as it has a strong 1 1/2 HP motor that provides enough drilling power to tackle any woodworking project you might think of doing, regardless of its size.
Moreover, it has a speed range of 600 to 2,400 RPM and 12 speeds that, in combination, deliver the possibility to save on power and adapt the drilling speed to the application at hand.
This floor drill press shines in terms of convenience too as it has a gooseneck led light that illuminates the surface you’re drilling on and a depth lock that allows for precise repeated drilling which comes in handy very often.
- The spindle runs smooth
- Digital readout speed makes it very easy to change to suitable speed depending on the material one is about to drill on
- Powerful 1 HP motor
- Roomy 14 inch by 14-inch work table that tilts offering multiple drilling angles
- Depth lock for convenient repeated drilling
- Gooseneck LED light for drilling with maximum clarity
- Might be a bit heavy to assemble
9. JET J-A5816 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
- Motor: 1 HP
- Speed Range: 400 RPM to 5000 RPM
- Number of Speeds: Variable Speed (infinite possibilities)
- Weight: 426 pounds
Getting a floor standing drill press without the drilling power necessary to help you finish your woodworking projects is something to avoid, right?
Well, in that case, you’ll love this Jet drill press as it has a 1 HP motor that outputs up to 5000 RPM which is enough drilling power to comfortably drill on most types of woods.
Even though its assembly might require two strong men, I still believe it’s a worthwhile investment. I mean, it has a variable speed mechanism that lets one adopt infinite speed-setting to adapt the drilling speed to any type of wood. Impressive, right?
- Large 2-1/4″ quill allows perfect accuracy thanks to resulting spindle stiffness
- Variable speed mechanism with handwheel adjustment allows infinite speed settings to adapt drilling speed to different woodworking applications
- 6-inch quill depth is awesome for woodworking
- Powerful 1 HP motor with no vibrations when in use, very smooth
- Assembly is a two-man job, definitely
My Verdict: The Best Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
Shop Fox W1848 Floor Standing Drill Press for Woodworking
If you’d like to know why I chose this Shop Fox W1848 floor standing drill press as the best one for woodworking applications then I’d advise you to click the button down below and read its review.
Quick Comparison Table
How Did I Test The Best Floor Standing Drill Presses for Woodworking
For those curious about how I selected the standing drill presses listed in this article, these are the tests I performed:
During this test, I made sure to test each floor drill press by drilling on hardwoods to see whether they delivered sufficient drilling torque or not.
Those machines that easily passed this test were selected for further testing.
Different woodworking projects require different drilling speeds, that’s a given.
This is why I made sure to test the same floor drill press in different woodworking projects to see if they offered an adequate speed range and to analyze how easy these speeds were to change. Of course, the drill presses that performed the best in this test were those that didn’t require any belt changes.
Must-Have Features of The Best Floor Standing Drill Presses for Woodworking
This is a list of features I consider essential for floor standing drill presses. Let me share it with you:
Drilling on woods of all types can be burdensome for most floor standing drills, especially those manufactured with low quality motors. Thus, I recommend getting a floor drill press that has a 2/3 HP motor, minimum. That way, you’ll be sure the drilling power you could get out of said drill press is enough for the majority of woodworking applications.
Respectable Number of Speeds
When getting a floor standing drills press you’ll want to make sure it has features that make drilling on different types of wood something easy.
In that sense, I recommend looking for drill presses with at least 10 speeds or a variable speed mechanism that offers infinite speeds. Why? Well, because of the simple fact that with the more speeds the easier it will be to adapt the drilling speed to the woodworking application you’re working on.
Furthermore, making sure changing speeds is easy is another attribute I look for in these types of machines. I mean, you don’t want to end up frustrated in the middle of drilling because changing speeds is a pain in the you-know-what, right?
Wide Speed Range
Having a wide speed range is another feature I recommend woodworkers and carpenters to look for in their next floor standing drill press. The reasoning behind this is that it gives woodworkers the possibility to drill on different woods and use different drill bits without issues.
As you may already know, the wider the speed range, the more you’ll be able to adapt the drilling speed to the woodworking application at hand. Hardwoods and metals require lower revolutions per minute (RPM) to be drilled while a higher drilling speed is required to drill on softer woods.
In that context, going for a floor drill press with a speed range that starts at 200/400 RPM and ends in 2,500/3000 RPM is enough for most woodworking applications (although a higher maximum RPM is never bad news!).
Deep Spindle Travel
A quality standing floor drill press must drill efficiently both in soft and hard types of wood. And, more importantly, the length of the hole drilled must be sufficient in terms of the type of project you’re working on.
In that sense, the length of the drill bit and the spindle travel is what’s gonna define how long the hole you’re gonna drill is going to be. Thus, if you want to be sure you’re not gonna fall short I would recommend a floor drill press with a 3″ to 6″ spindle travel as, in my experience, it’s enough for most serious woodworking undertakings.
The chuck is the clamp you attach the drill bits into. The bigger the chuck, the bigger the drill bits you’ll be able to use. Do you see where I’m going?
If you want to make sure you’ll be able to drill with most drill bits, then going for the bigger chuck you can afford is the best idea. However, at the end of the day, it’s you who’s gonna use the machine. So, I’d recommend researching what drill bits you use more often in your woodworking projects and making sure these are compatible with the standing floor drill press you’re thinking of getting.
Convenient Work Table
The feeling you get when you work on a stable and roomy workbench that lets you drill comfortably and without vibrations is awesome.
Knowing this, I don’t have many options but to recommend you to invest in a floor drill press with a spacious worktable of at least 14″ by 14″ made of quality materials such as cast iron and the sorts. This combination will guarantee not only enough surface to drill but also that the vibrations of the motor will not transfer to the work table.
Additionally, if I were you, I would give extra points to those floor drill presses with a tilting workbench as most woodworking projects sometimes require drilling from different angles, which can become a huge headache without this feature.
The annoyance of not seeing where you’re drilling on is very uncomfortable and a big issue for detailed-oriented woodworkers. I mean, most workshops are not sufficiently illuminated which is an unfortunate problem lots of woodworkers suffer.
Going for a standing floor drill press with a built-in led light that properly illuminates the surface being drilled appears as the best solution in this context. However, most of them don’t come with this inexpensive attribute.
Some of these floor drill presses come with the light connector but without the lamp built-in which is still a big advantage as you’d only need to install a cheap led bulb once.
Weight & Portability
The positive relationship between the bulkiness of a floor drill press and its drilling power is a big problem for most carpenters and woodworkers.
The bigger and heavier the floor drill press is, the bigger its motor and the more quality materials it is made of. However, the bigger the machine is, the bigger space it’s going to use in your workshop and the more complicated it will be to assemble and transport.
As a result, it’s very complicated for me to generalize on how big and heavy your next floor drill press must be. But, I will tell you this: it’s better to have a tool that’s bulky and powerful than a small and weak one. In other words: get the biggest and baddest one you can!
Knowing the standing floor drill press you spent hundreds of dollars in has a strong warranty program is mind-freeing. I mean, you don’t want to find yourself calling and sending hundreds of unanswered emails to customer service because your floor drill press broke after a couple of months of light use, right?
Well, if you want to avoid that, going for a floor drill press with recognized customer service and a strong warranty of at least 2 years is the way to go.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are various questions woodworkers have, both rookie and professionals, in terms of the best floor standing drill press. This is my attempt to answer most of them:
What is a floor standing drill press good for?
Precision. It’s all about precision.
With a floor standing drill press, you’ll be able to drill all types of woods with impeccable precision which cannot be achieved with a hand-held drill (both corded or cordless). This, in turn, will substantially improve the quality of your finished projects.
Moreover, floor drill presses are known for extending their usage beyond just drilling: sanding, grinding, measuring, and cutting wood are some additional functions this type of machine offers.
How big should a floor standing drill press for woodworking applications be?
No one wants a floor standing massive press drill. However, the following rule still applies with most modern drill presses:
- The bigger the machine is, the greater its motor and to stronger its drilling power
Knowing this rule, it seems one should try to find the biggest floor standing drill press they can put their hands into. However, not everyone has unlimited space in their workshops. Thus, my recommendation would be to measure the maximum space you could destine for a machine like this, and choose accordingly.
What’s the process of cleaning a floor standing drill press?
It’s a very easy process.
From time to time, make sure to control wood shaving build up in your floor standing drill press. If you see a considerable build-up in one or several parts of the machine just follow this process:
- Take a clean cloth and spray it with WD-40
- Remove sawdust with the cloth
- Done! your floor standing drill press will be as good as new!
What types of woods can I use a floor standing drill press on?
Being wood, not a highly-dense material (such as metal, for instance) I would say that a quality floor standing drill press should easily drill through any type of wood.
Just make sure its workbench and quill travel are appropriate for the woodworking projects you want to embark on as these are features that commonly limit drilling depth and the size and width of the wood you can drill on.
How difficult are floor standing drill presses to assemble?
The risk of getting a hernia from assembling a floor standing drill press is positively related to its size and weight. In other words, the heavier the machine is, the more you’ll need an extra pair of hands to help you assemble it.
However, I don’t consider this to be a big issue, you just have to assemble it once and leave it there. An easy-to-follow instruction manual is key for making things easier though.
Do floor standing drill presses need additional accessories to work?
The only “additional” accessory you need is drill bits. Other than that, there is no additional accessories floor standing drill presses need to start operating. You just need to assemble the machine, install the desired drill bit into the chuck, and that’s it!
What is the “spindle depth”?
The spindle is the rotating shaft to which the chuck is mounted to. The spindle depth is the length the spindle travels when the drill press is used.
Thus, the bigger the spindle depth and drill bit used, the longer the drilled hole is gonna be, understand?. This is why in a previous part of the article I told you to make sure to know how deep the holes in your project should be before pulling the trigger on a floor drill press for woodworking applications.