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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Clamping at the drill press

I used to be haphazard about clamping material to be drilled, not realizing how much torque is generated, even by fairly small drill bits.

When using a large bit, like this 2" Forstner, clamping is absolutely essential.  A shop-made fence makes it easier to clamp at the rear, and small spring clamps are ideal for this purpose.  To clamp at the front, or for drilling small pieces, I use a Kreg clamp that attaches through one of the slots in the table.  For larger pieces, I use conventional clamps and supporting boards, if needed.  For the project shown, my clamps were just deep enough to reach the workpiece.

With secure clamping, plus a backer board, you'll minimize or eliminate tearout, providing that your bit is sharp, of course!