9 Best Drill Press for Woodworking (Power & Precision) Reviews

 Disclaimer: DrillingAdvisor.org is a reader supported site. We earn commission from products purchased using affiliate links. We value your support and read more about the affiliate program here. 


Irrespective of whether you are a hobbyist or a professional craftsperson, you know how important it is to own a drill as most projects require hole drilling.

But what if you want one specifically designed for wood? Well, in that case, you will need the best drill press for woodworking.

A drill press is a tool that can either be mounted on a worktable or stand on its own. This simple machine can effortlessly and quickly drill through all kinds of wood with a level of power and precision that a regular drill cannot match.

If you are looking to buy one, stick around because this review contains all the information you need to make an informed purchase.

Comparison of Top-Quality Woodworking Drill Presses

In a rush? Good news! We have a short and simplified list for your perusal below.

JET 20-Inch Step-Pulley Floor Drill Press, 1-1/2...
WEN 4225T 8.6-Amp 15-Inch Variable Speed Floor...
JET 354170/JDP Drill Press
WEN 4225T Drill Press
1-1/2 HP
1 HP
4200 RPM
3300 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
Variable Speed:
Prime Status:
JET 20-Inch Step-Pulley Floor Drill Press, 1-1/2...
JET 354170/JDP Drill Press
1-1/2 HP
4200 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
Variable Speed:
Prime Status:
WEN 4225T 8.6-Amp 15-Inch Variable Speed Floor...
WEN 4225T Drill Press
1 HP
3300 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size:
Variable Speed:
Prime Status:


Buying Guide 

As you search for the perfect drill press, you want to consider several factors.

Drill Press Type

When it comes to woodworking applications, we are looking at two main kinds of drill presses: floor and benchtop.


As you can guess from the name, floor drill presses are the ones that stand alone. They also come with a powerful motor and a large worktable. These machines are ideal for tough materials and huge projects, and they are more versatile and steady than their counterparts.


Conversely, benchtop drill presses feature a smaller worktable and a medium-power motor that can handle smaller projects. They are also lightweight and portable, hence making them ideal for small work stations or DIYs.

When it comes to pricing, floor models are more expensive because they are able to handle heavy-duty projects.

Your choice here will largely depend on the kind of projects you will be handling and your budget.

Motor Power

What kind of projects do you intend to work on? Are they heavy-duty or medium? You need to determine this as it will dictate the kind of motor you need your drill press to have.

Keep in mind that it may be worth it to choose a bigger motor than you initially require so that you can use the machine on tougher projects in the future.

However, if your budget is low, you can go for a less powerful motor.

Drill Versatility

Sometimes you need your tool to do more than just drill. Perhaps you want to polish, shape, or even cut your wood.

For that, you want your drill to have a chuck that can accommodate different bit sizes. These bit sizes are what will allow you to use your tool to achieve different results.

Sturdy Spindle and Chuck

As we have previously mentioned, the chuck is where you place your drill bits. The spindle, on the other hand, is what causes your drill to have a rotating motion. These two parts work together to guarantee performance.

As such, you want your drill press to have a sturdy spindle and chuck to prevent accidents and to be able to fit in drill bits.

Spindle Length

The length of your drill’s spindle is an important factor to consider as well. The length determines how deep you can go using your drill press. When the length is greater, you can achieve deeper holes. 

Variable Speeds

Most drill presses come with speeds ranging between 200-3,600 revolutions per minute (RPM).

Typically, you require lower speeds for tougher materials because they reduce the heat produced by the machine and ultimately help retain a sharp cutting edge.

For instance, it is possible to drill through some metals at low speeds, oak wood at medium speeds, and pine at high speeds.

Accessories & Attachments

Accessories and attachments make a drill press highly functional. From extra drill bits to mortising chisels and sanding kits, the right attachments can turn your drill press into a multi-purpose tool.

Other accessories include jigs and clamps to hold your workpieces in place for accurate and safe drilling.

Why Do You Need a Drill Press?

Turning wood into a beautiful piece of art is not an easy task, but with the right tools, it is certainly achievable.

Keep reading to find out how a drill press helps you get the most out of your woodwork.

Precision Drilling

If you want neat holes that are created with the highest accuracy and precision, consider getting a drill press. Just set your workpiece on a clamp, and drill away. That is all it takes to achieve the perfect results.

Saving Time

A regular hand drill performs quite well but it has to be manually operated, which takes up a considerable amount of time and effort.

With a drill press, you can drill numerous holes simultaneously in a lesser amount of time without having to exert too much effort.

Increased Productivity

Drill presses come with greater accuracy and speed than hand drills. With the increased speed and precision comes a decrease of cuts in wood and accidents, resulting in increased productivity.

Powerful Motor

Compared to regular drills, drill presses are generally fitted with motors that are more powerful which ultimately yields better results.

Better Inclination and Angle Flexibility

In your woodworking endeavors, you are likely to come across a few rough or curved workpieces. A drill press offers better inclination and angling, and this will help you achieve precision with your projects.


Review of the Best-Rated Woodworking Drill Presses

Picking the perfect tool is not an easy job. We are also aware that you may not have the time to go through the selection process. For that reason, we have taken it upon ourselves to review eleven top-rated drill presses for woodworking.

After reading through, we believe you will be in a better position to make the right choice.


1. Shop Fox W1668 Benchtop Drill Press

Shop Fox W1668 Benchtop Drill Press buying guide and reviews

Feature List

Voltage: 110 volts
Motor: 3/4 HP
Speed: 3,050 RPM
Drill Chuck: 5/8 inch
Swing: 13-1/4 inches
Item Weight: ‎‎60.15 Pounds




If you are in the market for a first-rate drill press, you are in the right place! The Shop Fox W1668 is a benchtop design that allows you to drill through both hard and softwood effortlessly.

It does not take up too much space, and this is one of the reasons why this tool made it to the top of our list.

What We Liked

Shop Fox W1668 3050 RPM Benchtop Drill Press reviews This tool comes with twelve adjustable speed levels that you can regulate according to the material you are working on. Additionally, this tool features speeds ranging from 250-3,050 RPM.

The lowest speed can drill through metal without overheating. It also has an adequate swing that allows you to handle wide workpieces effortlessly.

On top of that, this tool tilts at a right angle which gives you a better perspective as you work.

Its features a spindle reach of 3-1/4″, which simply means that you will be able to drill deeper holes.

What Could Have Been Better

Some users have complained about the high pricing of this tool, and while that may not be an issue for some people, we feel that the manufacturer should have tried to achieve some sort of balance with the pricing to make the tool accessible to a wider mass of people.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Variable speeds
  • Accurate
  • Compact
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Pricey

2. JET 354170/JDP Drill Press

JET 354170 JDP Drill Press review

Feature List

Voltage: 115 volts
Motor: 1-1/2 HP
Speed: 4,200 RPM
Style: ‎20-inch floor drill press
Item Weight: ‎‎282 pounds




If you are going to engage in woodworking often, you may want to get your hands on the JET 354170/JDP.

The tool comes with all the control and power you need to complete your woodworking projects rapidly and with a high degree of accuracy.

What We Liked

JET 354170 4200 RPM JDP Drill Press specs and review One thing that stands out when you look at this drill is its hinged lid. This provides easy access and allows you to change speeds rapidly.

It also features a 1-1/2-horsepower motor which is enough power to work on different kinds of wood and other materials without straining at all.

Moving away from that, this tool comes with a worktable that can hold up to 80 pounds and a depth stop that allows you to get the right depth.

What Could Have Been Better

Unfortunately, this drill press does not come with a built-in light bulb. This means that you will have to look for an alternative source of lighting when working in poorly lit areas.

We feel that the manufacturer should have included the light for better convenience.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Extremely powerful motor
  • Strong table
  • Rapid speed changes
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Does not feature a work light

3. WEN 4225T Drill Press

WEN 4225T 3300 RPM Drill Press review

Feature List

Motor: 1 HP
Speed: 3,300 RPM
Maximum Chuck Size: 13 mm
Spindle Travel: 4 inches
Chuck: 3/32 to 5/8 inch
Item Weight: ‎‎‎154 pounds




In the course of our research, we realized that WEN tools are quite popular when it comes to providing functionality and quality at accessible prices.

The WEN 4225T is ideal for a small workshop or your DIY projects. With an 8.6 amp motor and a spindle reach of 4″, this tool has the same capacity as models that cost twice as much.

What We Liked

Features of WEN 4225T 3300 RPM Drill Press and reviews This drill comes with an emergency switch and a depth stop gauge as standard features to guarantee your safety.

However, what we loved most about it is that it comes with a cast iron base to keep it sturdy and intact. To add to that, it features variable speeds that you can easily regulate.

Another thing we find likable about this machine is that it is heavy and designed to last. It may not have the detailing that most high-end machines have, but you can rest assured that you will not be replacing your tool soon.

What Could Have Been Better

At faster speeds, the vibrations of this drill are high which can be quite distracting and disturbing. We feel that the manufacturer should have put a vibration control mechanism in place to reduce the vibrations.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Sturdy build
  • Variable speeds
  • Powerful motor
Negative Reviews by Users
  • High vibrations

4. WEN 4214 Drill Press 

WEN 4214 Drill Press reviews

Feature List

Motor:2/3 HP
Speed: 3,200 RPM
Spindle Travel: 3-1/8 inches
Chuck: 5/8 inch
Item Weight: ‎‎‎89.1 pounds




This is another product from the WEN stable and this should not surprise you because we have already talked about the popularity of the company.

The WEN 4214 is a benchtop model and performs just as well, if not better, than its predecessor. With a 2/3 HP motor, this baby packs a punch. Simply put, this drill press has enough power to handle most drilling applications including woodwork.

What We Liked

3200 RPM WEN 4214 Drill Press reviews The WEN 4214 features speeds ranging between 580-3,200 RPM and this is enough to drill through half-inch-thick metal sheets. That is not too shabby because it only means that it delivers more when it comes to wood.

With a spindle length of 3-1/8″, this tool allows you to travel deeper in terms of creating holes for your DIY projects.

That, combined with a cast iron table that offers sturdiness and adequate space for you to work, means this drill press might just be the tool you are looking for.

What we love most is that the height of this table is adjustable and that the drill can tilt 45 degrees, right or left, to facilitate your woodworking.

What Could Have Been Better

This tool is termed as “semi-professional,” which means that it cannot handle tougher jobs and is not ideal for professional woodwork.

The manufacturer should have included more features and a more powerful motor to make it suitable for all kinds of jobs.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Digital readout meter
  • Variable speeds
  • Adjustable height
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Not suitable for heavy-duty applications

5. Delta 18-900L Laser Drill Press

Delta 18-900L Laser Drill Press reviews and specs

Feature List

Motor: 3/4 horsepower
Speed: 4,500 RPM
Chuck: 5/8 inch
Item Weight: ‎‎‎‎261 pounds




If you get the chance to use the Delta 18-900L, you are likely to agree that it is among the best tools to use when woodworking.

Although it costs a little bit more than the other options on this list, we are sure that you will not mind parting with a few extra coins for professional and accurate results.

What We Liked

Delta 18-900L Laser Drill Press for woodwork reviews The Delta 18-900L has the ability to handle a heavy workload; with this tool, you can manage commercial woodworking as well as metal drilling.

We love that it is loaded with features that deliver first-rate performance. For instance, this drill press features solid construction and a slim design that leaves more room for you to work.

Additionally, this tool comes with adjustable speeds and drills deeper due to its six-inch quill stroke.

What Could Have Been Better

If you are on a limited budget, this model may not be the right fit for you because it is a bit pricey. We feel that the manufacturer should have made it more budget-friendly to make it affordable for more people.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • 16 speed levels
  • Powerful motor
  • Adjustable worktable
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Pricey

6. SHOP FOX W1680 Drill Press

SHOP FOX W1680 Drill Press for woodwork reviews

Feature List

Motor: 1.0 horsepower
Speed: 1,720 RPM
Swing: 17 inches
Chuck: 5/8 inch
Item Weight: ‎‎‎‎‎‎178.51 Pounds




On a limited budget or not in the mood to splurge? Well, you may have found the perfect match in the SHOP FOX W1680 drill press.

Now, although this unit does not cost an arm and a leg, it does not compromise on quality. It features a horsepower motor that can complete most woodworking projects fast.

What We Liked

1720 RPM SHOP FOX W1680 Drill Press for woodwork reviews This drill press comes with great spindle reach that allows for a maximum of 3-1/4 inches of travel. Those are deep holes right there!

It also comes with a toggle switch that is easy to use, guaranteeing your safety.

Another great feature of this unit is that it comes with a worktable that is one of the best ones available; it turns at a right angle and allows you to work on any piece regardless of the shape.

We love that it is affordable as well. 

What Could Have Been Better

This unit comprises some plastic parts, which are likely to deteriorate faster, so you cannot rely on the durability of this tool.

We feel that the manufacturer should have used stronger materials to guarantee the longevity of this product.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Safety switch
  • Adjustable table
  • Great spindle reach
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Not as durable

7. JET JDP-17 Drill Press

Jet JDP-17 Drill Press .75 HP reviews

Feature List

Motor: ‎0.75 horsepower
Speed: 3,500 RPM
Chuck: 13 mm
Item Weight: ‎‎‎‎‎187 pounds




Arguably, the JET JDP-17 is the best tool for your drilling applications. How so? First, the company has a reputation for producing exceptional drill presses, and this is one of them.

It features a huge spindle range which allows you to achieve some of the deepest holes just by turning a handle.

What We Liked

Jet JDP-17 Drill Press .75 HP reviews and features As you get to learn more about drill presses, you will discover that most of them present an issue when it comes to adjusting the speeds. Fortunately, that is not the case with this unit.

With just one hand, you can easily and rapidly switch between its 16 speed settings.

This tool also features a massive upper limit, making it ideal for virtually any drilling project.

That said, what we found most appealing about this tool is that it comes with a huge, grooved table. This means that it can accommodate bigger projects that will be easier to line up.

What Could Have Been Better

The only flaw we found with this product is that its chuck key presents some difficulty when using. It makes bit changing tricky, and this can be frustrating.

We think that the manufacturer should have ensured that the chuck was properly fastened to hold drill bits in place before releasing the product to the market.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Huge spindle range
  • Different speed settings
  • Large worktable
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Difficult to use the chuck key

8. JET J-2500 Drill Press

JET J-2500 Drill Press specs and reviews

Feature List

Motor: 0.75 horsepower
Speed: 3,630 RPM
Chuck: 5/8 inch
Item Weight: ‎167 pounds




Jet is another great brand when it comes to the production of power tools, and you can tell that from the fact that they stock more than 40,000 replacement parts and offer technical service.

This unit comes with a two-year warranty as well and that says a lot about the credibility of the company and its products.

What We Liked

JET J-2500 Drill Press 3630 RPM reviews and descriptions Providing exact depth control and spacing, this drill press features improved flexibility and engineered durability to make it ideal for both DIYs and commercial applications.

It is a floor model that delivers a greater variety of spindle speeds than other drills in this category.

The product features a four ball bearing construction to guarantee longevity.

We love that this tool comes with a clear user manual to help you work faster and more efficiently; if you want precision drilling, this is a great tool to consider.

Another appealing aspect is that it comes with a two-year warranty to cover any malfunction within that period.

What Could Have Been Better

While this tool delivers decent performance, there are some issues as far as its workmanship and machining. For instance, the table surface is quite rough, and its transmission design does not do much to reduce vibration.

The manufacturer should have included a vibration-control mechanism to counter this and smoothened the surface to guarantee a better drilling experience.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Easy to assemble
  • Accurate
  • Different speeds
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Lacks vibration control

9. JET 350017/JMD-15 Drilling Machine

JET 350017 JMD-15 Drilling Machine reviews and specifications

Feature List

Motor: 1 horsepower
Speed: 2,580 RPM
Swing: 14-1/2 inches
Chuck: 1/2 inch
Item Weight: ‎440 pounds




If you are a semi-professional woodworker who deals with light machining and drilling, you want to look at the JET 350017/JMD-15.

This drill press is one of the most versatile on this list, and you can expect it to offer remarkable durability as well as power. We love that this tool delivers most of the working capabilities, features, and qualities of its industrial counterparts although it is compact.

Another thing that is appealing when it comes to this tool is that it is able to handle heavy-duty applications effortlessly.

What We Liked

JET-350017-JMD-15-Drilling-Machine-2 The JET drill press is laden with features, making it a high-end tool. It includes a heavy-duty motor, which when combined with a manual fine feed will be able to drill through all kinds of material without straining.

This product can operate as both a drilling and milling machine and comes with a single-piece cast iron column for support.

Additionally, it features a 360-degree swivel head, a big worktable, and large wheel knobs to facilitate better operation.

We love that the mill drill version of this tool offers a lighter substitute to a milling machine without compromising on quality.

If you are looking for a tool that is affordable and versatile, this drill press could be your best bet.

What Could Have Been Better

This tool is too heavy for a benchtop model and this could reduce its functionality. 

We feel that the manufacturer should have made it a floor model or used lighter material in its construction to maintain its usability.

Positive Reviews by Users
  • Strong build
  • Versatile
  • Heavy-duty motor
Negative Reviews by Users
  • Heavy

How to Use

Now that you have an idea of where to start your drill press search, it is important to learn how this tool operates. Here are the steps to using it.

1. Recognize its Mechanisms

It is not wise to start operating any tool without first learning its components and how it works. A drill press features gears for setting speeds and a motor to supply power.

It also has a chuck for holding drill bits and a table that can be adjusted for height and angle. When you learn about all these and what they do, it will be easier to operate the machine.

2. Fix the Speed

Most drill presses come with variable speeds that you can modify to match the material you are working on.

For instance, you want your speed to be lower if you are drilling through metals because of overheating and higher when working on wood.

To be on the safe side, consult your user manual to find out the speeds to use for particular materials.

3. Insert the Bit

Pick the drill bit you want to use, and slide it into the chuck. After this, you want to tighten the chuck using your hand and then reinforce it using a provided key.

Ensure that you detach the chuck when turning on your drill as it can injure you. 

4. Adjust the Worktable Height

Different drill press models allow for moving worktables at various angles. Some models move easily once the clamping lever is released, while others are modified using a crank.

Refer to manufacturer instructions on how to adjust yours. Consider your physical needs, height, and the task you intend to perform before doing this.

5. Measure its Depth

Depending on what you plan to do, it is important to adjust the depth gauge of your drill press. For instance, if you intend to drill holes in wood, you may not require any adjustments, but if you will be boring holes at various fixed depths, you may have to make some changes.

A depth gauge is a rod that determines the distance that the spindle can go. You adjust it simply by lowering your drill bit to the height you want and then modifying the nuts on the depth gauge to an appropriate stopping point.

6. Secure the Workpiece

Safety comes first when handling any machine, so before you begin using your drill press, you want to ensure that your workpiece is fixed and secured in place.

This is because as you drill, the workpiece is likely to spin or hurl out of place and ultimately injure you. Ensure that you clamp yours or brace it against a worktable.

7. Start Drilling

Once you have secured your workpiece in place and accurately mounted your drill press, you are ready to begin drilling.

This involves boring holes within a prescribed tolerance. Tolerance refers to the allowance given to deviate from the recommended standard size of holes.

What Does it Cost?

The price of an item has a lot to do with whether you are going to purchase it or not. Therefore, before we go any further, we feel it is important to let you know that a quality drill press for woodworking is likely to eat more into your pocket than a regular drill.

Benchtop drill presses tend to come cheaper than floor drill presses, and it is possible to get your hands on entry-level models for $150 or less. However, with these, your options and features will be limited.

On the other hand, floor-based drill presses go for an average price of $500 and above. Still, you can find entry-level models that cost lower than that.

To make the right choice, try to balance the features and price as this will help you get value for your money.

Frequently Asked Questions

At this point, you probably have several questions on this topic. We have answered some below that can give you better insight.

Is a drill press necessary for woodworking?

Yes, it is. When working on wood, accuracy is paramount. Granted, you can use a regular drill for the same function, but it will not give you identical holes.

A drill press allows for setting precise angles, depths, and widths when boring holes into surfaces.

What factors should I consider when purchasing a drill press?

There are several things you need to look at, but the first thing should be the size of the head as it will determine what material you can work on.

Other than that, you want to look at other crucial factors such as the motor capacity, speed variables, and quality of the build.

Are WEN drill presses any good?

Yes, they are, and you can tell from the several we have reviewed from the stable. Although most of their products are budget-friendly, we realized that they did not compromise on build quality or features. That says a lot.

These drills are also perfect for woodworking beginners because they are user-friendly.

What is an oscillating drill press?

Some drills come with the oscillating feature, which means you can convert from the drilling to sanding mode with several tool-free steps.

Oscillation works to prevent overheating and delivers a seamless finish after sanding.

Drill Press Safety Measures

You need to keep in mind that a drill press is a dangerous power tool that can cause time wastage, injuries, and loss of resources.

Therefore, whether you have used a drill press before or it is your first time, it is important to be cautious and practice safety measures.

Here are some useful safety tips to keep in mind:

  • Always read the user manual before attempting to operate the tool.
  • Use a soft-bristled brush to clean your worktable and workpiece for a neat job.
  • Turn the machine off when not in use.
  • Wear eye and face protection every time you use the drill.
  • Secure your workpiece using clamps for accurate work.
  • Avoid loose clothing and tie your hair up to prevent it from being caught in the machine.

Our Top Pick

After careful analysis and consideration, we feel that the best drill press for woodworking on this list is the Shop Fox W1668 Drill Press.

How did we come to this conclusion? Well, first off, this tool is a high-end model and that comes in a benchtop design that makes it easy to drill through any kind of wood seamlessly.

Additionally, it features 12 adjustable speeds that will match different drilling applications. The lowest speed setting for this machine can drill into different metals without overheating, and we are crazy about that!

Final Thoughts

From this post, it is clear that you need to look for certain standard features as you look to buy a drill press for woodworking. These include the speed range, motor power, and quality of the build.

Additionally, the tool should be comfortable and easy to operate, especially if you intend to work on lengthy applications. You do not want to get tired in the middle of a project.

Now, all the drill presses we have talked about offer decent performance even though each has a drawback or two. With any of them, you get accuracy and efficiency. Some of them are even suitable for heavy-duty projects.

We have done all the hard work for you, so it should be easier to make the right choice.

Leave a Comment