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
OUR RATING
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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 stand apart from other benchtop drill presses 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
OUR RATING
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Bosch PBD40 710W Bench Drill Review

The Bosch PBD40 is one of the best drill presses 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, this Bosch pillar drill takes the guesswork out of accurate drilling. Hold down workpieces with the integrated clamp and drill dowels with the clever “V” shaped groove in the table.

With two torque settings, and the ability to change drilling speed during operation, we think the Bosch pillar drill is the best drill press for woodworking projects of all kinds.

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
OUR RATING
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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 our list.

The table tilts using a clever locking system, meaning you can drill accurately at angles up to 90 degrees from vertical. The integrated work light and accurate laser ensure an extra level of precision.

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 to 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 the 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 drill them at the same distance apart, at the same angle and at the same depth.

Our selection of best drill presses defeat this age-old problem.  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’s

What is a drill press?

Otherwise known as a drill stand or pillar drill in the UK, this versatile tool consists of a conventional drill connected to a fixed frame. This allows for precision work and ganging up processes to take place.

What is a chuck?

A chuck connects your drill motor to the drill bit. It can be opened and closed to accommodate different bit sizes, depending on the operation.

Why do I need a variable drill speed?

Depending on the material you want to drill, and the size of the hole you need to make, variable speeds allow you optimise a precision finish from 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 that featured on the SwitZer Drill Press or the 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 will depend on your specific requirements.

The Evolution EVOMAG42 drill press is the obvious choice when drilling steel above your head, but if you are more of a hobbyist then a more versatile drill stand 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 by hand.

How To Use a Drill Press

Correct use of a drill press will ensure all 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 to create a small mark in the workpiece when dealing with hard materials such as steel or hard plastic. This will work as a reference point and help stop the drill bit from wandering.

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