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Having decided to search for lower-priced, full-height drill presses that might be a good choice for a home shop, I came up with nine 15-in. to 17-in. models to review.
To evaluate and compare them, I noted the condition of each after shipping and the ease of assembly. I looked at chuck-to-post distance, table size, overall height, motor rating, speeds, length of quill stroke, finish, and stability. I tested the accuracy of each machine out of the box: runout on the chuck and spindle-to-table perpendicularity. Finally, I looked at noise level, vibration, table-height adjustment, speed changes, depth adjustment, quill-return tension, and the presence or absence of a quill lock.
The Ridgid had the smallest table at 11 in. square and the smallest chuck-to-post distance at 7-1/2 in. On the other hand, it had a tool-caddy accessory and nearly impeccable fit and finish. In addition, it was the only machine with the option to change the quill handle, or feed lever, from the right side to the left. Priced the lowest in the bunch, the Ridgid was my second favorite, after the Delta.
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