Harbor Freight Drill Press Reviews in 2022 with Buying Guide

Thinking of getting your first drill press or replacing the old one in your workshop? If so, then you probably know that not every piece will deliver the right performance.

With a multitude of different drill press retailers and suppliers calling the shots out there, finding the best option can be daunting.

But don’t fret because you’re in the right place. In this article, we’re going to conduct an unbiased Harbor Freight Drill Press review to help you make an informed choice.

We will also look at:

  • Features & benefits of each tool
  • Pros & Cons
  • Frequently asked questions
  • Different Harbor Freight reviews

Why Harbor Freight Drill Presses?

Harbor Freight Tools is a discount tool and equipment retailer that has been in operation for many decades. From hand to power tools, the company is known for stocking a wide range of top-quality products.

Moreover, Harbor Freight is popularly known for providing high-quality tools at the lowest prices. They claim to own test labs and factories which helps ensure their products can compete toe-to-toe with top professional brands.

What’s more? The retailer offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee, great customer service, and a hassle-free return policy on all of their tools.

Top-Rated Harbor Freight Drill Press Options – Comparison Table

Whether you’re a DIYer or a professional woodworker, investing in the right drill press for the job is important. So, here is a quick head-to-head comparison of the best Harbor Freight Drill Presses currently available.

5 Speed Drill Press
10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press, 12 Speed by...
Product Name
5 Speed Drill Press
10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press
Power Source:
Corded Electric
Corded Electric
Voltage:
120 Volts
120 Volts
Speed:
620 – 3100 RPM
300 – 2900 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
13 Millimeters
13 Millimeters
Special Features:
Cast iron base and head, Table rotates 360° and tilts 45° left and right, Heavy-duty ball-bearing motor
Table dimensions 7-5/8 in. x 7-5/8 in. , Table tilt (deg) 45° left and right
Prime?
-
-
5 Speed Drill Press
Product Name
5 Speed Drill Press
Power Source:
Corded Electric
Voltage:
120 Volts
Speed:
620 – 3100 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
13 Millimeters
Special Features:
Cast iron base and head, Table rotates 360° and tilts 45° left and right, Heavy-duty ball-bearing motor
Prime?
-
10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press, 12 Speed by...
Product Name
10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press
Power Source:
Corded Electric
Voltage:
120 Volts
Speed:
300 – 2900 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
13 Millimeters
Special Features:
Table dimensions 7-5/8 in. x 7-5/8 in. , Table tilt (deg) 45° left and right
Prime?
-

Harbor Freight Drill Press Buying Guide

1. 5 Speed Drill Press

Specification List:
  • Power Source: Corded Electric
  • Voltage: 120 Volts
  • Speed: 620 – 3100 RPM
  • Maximum Chuck Size: 13 Millimeters
  • Special Features: Cast iron base and head, Table rotates 360° and tilts 45° left and right, Heavy-duty ball-bearing motor

The 5 Speed Drill Press by Central Machinery is a popular pick from Harbor Freight Tools. It is just what any homeowner needs for general purpose drilling. And not just because it’s inexpensive, but also for its solid construction. That said, let’s check out its key features.

Range of Speeds

  • Featuring 5 speeds, this drill press will allow you to drill through different materials including iron, wood, and mild steel.
  • The speed ranges between 620 and 31000 RPM. Therefore, you’ll be able to adjust the speed to best suit your type of task.

Durable construction

  • Another important feature of this drill press is its solid construction. You see, both the head and the base are made from high-quality cast iron.
  • This material is tough and extremely durable. More so, the ball bearing motor is manufactured from heavy-duty materials.

Adjustable Table

  • Also worth noting is that the tool comes with an 8-inch adjustable worktable that is designed to lock in place.
  • Not only does the table rotate 360 degrees but it’s also designed to tilt 45 degrees both left and right. This allows you to find the perfect drilling angle which helps ensure accuracy and precision.

Depth Stop

  • The device is equipped with a depth-adjustment gauge to help you achieve precise drilling results. Simply put, this feature enables you to make a wide range of holes at a consistent depth with so much ease.
  • For instance, if you need to bore 10 holes at a 3-inch depth, the depth-adjustment gauge will ensure you get accurate results.

Chuck Capacity & Spindle Stroke

  • As if that’s not enough, the 5 Speed Drill Press also comes with a 1/2 -inch chuck capacity. This means that the tool can accept different shank sizes and accessories.
  • On top of that, it features a 2-inch spindle stroke which makes it ideal for general-purpose drilling tasks.

Buyer Review Section

Last updated: October 18, 2021

  • Based on actual customer feedback
  • Validated by our dedicated product reviewers
  • We gathered the best and worst reviews from major online retailers

Overall Rating – 4.5 of 5 Stars

Positive Reviews
  • Makes precise holes in wood
  • Powerful heavy-duty ball-bearing motor
  • Inexpensive
  • Solid construction
Negative Reviews
  • Not the most versatile drill press

2. 10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press

Specification List:
  • Power Source: Corded Electric
  • Voltage: 120 Volts
  • Speed: 300 – 29900 RPM
  • Maximum Chuck Size: 13 Millimeters
  • Special Features: Table dimensions 7-5/8 in. x 7-5/8 in. , Table tilt (deg) 45° left and right

Next, we’ve got this all-purpose bench mount drill press designed for home or workshop use. The unit is ideal for drilling different hole sizes in different materials.

Its able to deliver excellent performance courtesy of its robust motor. But what are its features? Let’s check them out.

Horsepower

  • With a 0.60 horsepower, there is doubt that this drill press can handle heavy-duty tasks without any problem.
  • Its excellent power output provides you with enough punch to drill through any kind of material.
  • More so, it allows you to drill larger holes with ease while also ensuring the durability of the tool.

Variable Speeds

  • One of the features that make this unit the best compared to other drill presses is its variable speeds.
  • The 10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press comes with 12 speeds ranging between 300 RPM and 2900 RPM.
  • Therefore, you will be able to drill through different materials and accomplish various tasks. You just need to choose the optimal speed depending on the job at hand.
  • For example, you can select a slower speed if working on tough materials like metal. But if working on wood, faster speed is the best.

Tiltable Table

  • The unit is equipped with a spacious and adjustable worktable for extra convenience and comfort.
  • Basically, the table can tilt 45 degrees left and right, thereby allowing you to drill into various materials at specific angles.
  • Consequently, this makes drilling a lot easier and way more precise.

Bench Mount Design

  • Also worth mentioning is that this device boasts a bench mount design.
  • Thanks to the design, it can fit conveniently on nearly any table or benchtop.
  • This makes the drill press more stable while also allowing you to comfortably store it in small spaces.

Spindle Speed

  • Spindle speed is the rotational frequency of the spindle of the drill press and is measured in RPM.
  • With this unit you get up to 12 spindles speeds to choose from ranging between 300 and 2900 RPM.
  • As such, you can select the right speed depending on the material you’re drilling for enhanced performance.

Buyer Review Section

Last updated: October 18, 2021

  • Based on actual customer feedback
  • Validated by our dedicated product reviewers
  • We gathered the best and worst reviews from major online retailers

Overall Rating – 4.2 of 5 Stars

Positive Reviews
  • Adjustable depth stops with gauge
  • Versatile and portable
  • Includes chuck key and hex wrenches
  • Stylish and durable chrome-plated design
Negative Reviews
  • Height adjustment for the table isn’t straightforward
  • The spindle is not completely centred

Buying Guide Tips – How To Choose The Right Drill Press

You may not know but the right drill press will determine the accuracy and precision of your projects. So here is a buying guide to help you find the best drill press option for your workshop.

Type of Drill Press

The most common types of drill press options available on the market are benchtop and floor drills. Each has its own pros and cons.

  • For instance, the benchtop models don’t take up much space and are very stable. However, they aren’t as powerful as their floor counterparts.

 

  • Floor units, on the other hand, deliver extra strength and horsepower. As such, they’re best suited for professional jobs. However, they are not very reliable and accurate when it comes to making small holes.

Horsepower

Also, worth considering is the horsepower of the drill press. Generally, units with higher horsepower can tackle tough jobs with ease. So, we recommend sticking to units with at least 1/2-horsepower.

Drilling Speeds

Another important aspect to look out for is drilling speeds. Different tasks require different output speeds.

For example, you would need a higher speed when working on wood and slower speeds for tough materials. Experts recommend choosing a unit with at least 5 speeds.

Construction Quality

Similar to any other tool, you must choose a device that is constructed from high-quality materials. This will help ensure the durability of the tool.

Cast iron and steel are considered to be some of the best materials as they are strong. Besides, they can resist warping or breakage.

Reviews – What Other People Are Saying

Reviews about Harbor Freight drill presses are mixed, although most of them seem to be positive.

The 5 Speed Drill Press has received a rating of 4.3 out of 5 on Amazon. However, on Harbor Freight’s official website, the tool has received a rating of 4.1 out of 5, with 87% of customers claiming they would recommend it to others.

In comparison, the 10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press has a rating of 3.1 out of 5 on Amazon. But on Harbor Freight official website, 83% of customers report that they would recommend the unit.

Frequently Asked Questions

That said, now let’s check out some of the most frequently asked questions about Harbor Freight drill presses.

Q: What is the best Harbor Freight drill press for the money?

A: Both the 5 Speed Drill Press and 10 in. Bench Mount Drill Press offers good value for money. However, the 5 Speed Drill Press is the overall best option.

Q: What should I look for when buying a drill press?

A: The horsepower, speed, durability, depth stop, and swing size are some of the key features to look out for.

Q: Which one is better between a benchtop and a floor drill press?

A: Well, both units have their advantages and disadvantages. However, if you’re looking for a more powerful tool, the floor drill press is the best option.

Which is the Best?

Overall, the 5 Speed Drill Press is our best choice. We love that it is an inexpensive tool and comes with a total of 5 speeds to choose from. More so, it has a fully adjustable worktable along with a depth stop for precise drilling.

Final Thoughts

Drill presses are a one-time investment product. Therefore, you must invest in a quality tool that delivers excellent performance. Harbor Freight offers a variety of drill presses. However, the above options are some of the best they have in terms of power, durability, and performance.

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