In this guide we’ll look at the best drill presses.
We’ve compared weight, jaw width, clamping capacity and cost
to give you our top recommendations.

What Is The Best Drill Press for the UK Market?

IMAGERECOMMENDED PRODUCTSPRODUCTFEATURES
  • Variable speeds: None, fixed at 450 rpm
  • Drilling depth: Up to 330 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm
  • Wattage: 1200
  • Weight: 12 kg
  • Tilting table: No
  • Variable speeds: 200-2500 rpm, digitally selected
  • Drilling depth: up to 275 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm
  • Wattage: 710
  • Weight: 11.2 kg
  • Tilting table: No
  • Variable speeds: 480 – 3000 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 100 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 16 mm
  • Wattage: 550
  • Weight: 23 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes
  • Variable speeds: 620 – 2620 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 50 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm, allows for B16 tapered bits
  • Wattage: 350
  • Weight: 15.8 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes
  • Variable speeds: 280 – 2350 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 50 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 16 mm
  • Wattage: 500
  • Weight: 18 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes

More Detailed Drill Press Reviews

Evolution Power Tools EVOMAG42 1200W Industrial Steel Magnetic Drill

FEATURESRATINGPRICE
FEATURES
  • Variable speeds: None, fixed at 450 rpm
  • Drilling depth: Up to 330 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm
  • Wattage: 1200
  • Weight: 12 kg
  • Tilting table: No
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Evolution Power Tools EVOMAG42 1200W Industrial Steel Magnetic Drill Review

This Evolution EVOMAG42 steel drill is the best drill press in terms of its sheer power. Easily drill up to 42 mm holes through solid steel with the included cutters, or swap for its traditional chuck for regular twist drill bits.

What sets this drill apart from the rest is its ability to electromagnetically fasten itself to steel frames, which makes it the best drill press for metal working by far.

Bosch PBD40 710W Bench Drill

FEATURESRATINGPRICE
FEATURES
  • Variable speeds: 200-2500 rpm, digitally selected
  • Drilling depth: up to 275 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm
  • Wattage: 710
  • Weight: 11.2 kg
  • Tilting table: No
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Bosch PBD40 710W Bench Drill Review

The Bosch PBD40 is the best drill press for the serious DIYer or home workshop user. With an inbuilt LED screen showing the digital drill speed and depth, work light and even a handy laser to guide the drill bit, it takes the guesswork out of accurate drilling.

With two torque settings, and the ability to change drilling speed during operation, the Bosch is the best drill press for woodworking projects of all kinds. Hold down workpieces with the integrated clamp and drill dowels with the clever “v” shaped groove in the table.

Zerone 550W Bench Pillar Drill Press & Steel Vice

FEATURESRATINGPRICE
FEATURES
  • Variable speeds: 480 – 3000 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 100 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 16 mm
  • Wattage: 550
  • Weight: 23 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes
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Zerone 550W Bench Pillar Drill Press & Steel Vice Review

This Zerone pillar drill is ready for working on a variety of materials, and comes with an added machining vice that makes it one of the best bench drill press accessories available on this list.

The table tilts using a clever locking system, meaning you can drill accurately at angles up to 90 degrees from vertical. You’ll have no problem seeing with its integrated work light and accurate laser.

Clarke CDP5RB 350W Bench Mounted Pillar Drill

FEATURESRATINGPRICE
FEATURES
  • Variable speeds: 620 – 2620 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 50 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 13 mm, allows for B16 tapered bits
  • Wattage: 350
  • Weight: 15.8 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes
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Clarke CDP5RB 350W Bench Mounted Pillar Drill Review

Clarke is well regarded in the UK for reliable tools, and it’s no different with the CDP5RB Pillar Drill. Featuring a unique tapered chuck, you can fit specialist woodworking drill bits that make this the best home drill press for hobbyists and model makers.

Safety is taken care of as well with a permanent spring-loaded Perspex guard plate, and a safety release switch ensures that there won’t be any false starts if mains power fails.

SwitZer 500W Pillar Press Drill Bench Top Table Stand

FEATURESRATINGPRICE
FEATURES
  • Variable speeds: 280 – 2350 rpm, belt driven
  • Drilling depth: 50 mm
  • Max drill bit size: 16 mm
  • Wattage: 500
  • Weight: 18 kg
  • Tilting table: Yes
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SwitZer 500W Pillar Press Drill Bench Top Table Stand Review

This SwitZer Drill Press is fitted with a solid cast iron base allowing for stable and quiet drilling across a wide range of speeds, making it the best benchtop drill press for eyeline work at the lower end of the budget on this list.

With handy depth marks are etched onto the operating handles, you can clearly see how far you’ve drilled, or use the built-in depth stop for creating uniform holes.

Drill Press Buyer’s Guide

One of the hardest things to do when making lots of holes in your workpiece is to keep them uniformly at the same angle and at the same depth.

The best drill press like Zerone 550W Bench Pillar Drill Press defeats the age-old problem that anyone who has tried to drill a hole has come up against- keeping it straight.

If you have a lot of holes to drill and you want to do it properly, read on for some useful advice.

Drill Press FAQ

What is a drill press?

Otherwise known as a pillar drill in the UK, this versatile tool is a drill connected to a fixed frame, allowing for precision work and ganging up processes.

What is a chuck?

A chuck is what connects your drill motor to the bit that you want to use. It can be opened and closed to allow for different sizes of bits, depending on the operation.

Why do I need variable speeds?

Depending on the material you want to drill, and the size of the hole you need to make, variable speeds allow you to get the most out of your drill press

Construction

When buying the best drill press, you have to weigh up the initial cost against build quality, features and durability. A heavy cast iron base like SwitZer Drill Press or LCD display found on the Bosch PBD 40 might be more expensive, but if it improves your accuracy, it’s money well spent.

Usage

Although they all drill holes in materials, the best benchtop drill press for you depends on your specific needs.

The Evolution EVOMAG42 is the obvious choice when drilling steel above your head, but if you are more of a hobbyist then something more versatile such as the Clarke CDP5RB is easy to use and can be bolted to your workbench for stable drilling.

Safety

When using any tool, you need to wear the proper protective equipment. This includes safety glasses and hearing protection at all times when operating a drill press.

Never wear loose fitting clothing or ties, or even gloves when using rotational tools. Always follow the safety advice on your tools, it only takes a moment to cause life-changing injuries.

Always clamp your workpiece down to the bench to make sure it doesn’t slip when drilling, and never just hold it with your hand.

How To Use a Drill Press

By using a drill press correctly, you can make sure all of your fixings are dead square. Don’t try to drill through your workpiece in one go, bounce the drill bit gently in and out of the hole to remove the swarf.

Never push down too hard, light drilling techniques will make sure your bits last longer and your drill motor isn’t put under too much strain.

To increase the accuracy of your drilling, use a centre punch when dealing with hard materials such as steel or hard plastic. Use it to create a small mark in the workpiece, which will work as a reference point and help to stop the drill bit from wandering.

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