This woodworking tips card is about setting a depth stop. When you are working on the drill press, using the depth stop feature is a must. If you are not drilling completely through a piece, you can easily set the depth so you do not have to guess. Here is how.
Setting a Depth Stop for the Drill Press
Many times, you are only going to need to drill through a piece of wood partially. In a case like this, using the depth stop on the drill press will give you a much more accurate hole. I used this feature on when I made my Wooden Candle Holder.
With the drill off, chuck the bit that you will be using. Then, move the table top up or down to allow room for the piece that will be drilled.
Again, with the drill off, lower the head until the drill bit is at the depth that you want to drill. If this is a very specific measurement, then mark the piece first and use that as a reference when lining up the bit. If not, just eyeball it.
With the head lowered, locate the drill press depth stop. Use the controls to lock the head and prevent it from advancing any farther than it is. Check the motion of the head by raising and lowering the drill. It should raise freely, but stop suddenly once it hits the target depth on the setting. If you need to make an adjustment, do it now. Once you are satisfied, you are ready to drill.
Drilling With the Depth Stop In Use
When you are drilling and the depth stop is being used, you need to be a little more careful about the pressure you apply. Sometimes, a little too much pressure can press the stop past where you set it. This can be a bad thing.
As you are getting close to your depth, slow down a little. Feel the stop as it happens, and then retract the head and bit. Check your hole, and measure if needed. If you are satisfied that you hit the target depth, then you are done.
If some reason the hole is too deep or too shallow, make an adjustment to the depth stop and try again. I recommend using scraps until you get the process down. Some drills are a little more to work with than others. Once you know your tool really well, you will know what you need to do for your settings.
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