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    Using a pillar drill

    Summary: Learn how to use a pillar drill or a bench drill, use a pillar drill to drill wood or metal and use a pillar drill safely.

    A pillar drill is similar to the bench drill, except it is used for making larger holes. It is also free standing and requires more space in your workshop due to its size. The drill is fitted to a column which sits on a base on the floor of your workshop. A working plate is also attached to the column, below the drill, and it is on this plate that the material you want to work on is secured. A large turning handle is situated to the right of the drill head.

    How to use a pillar drill

    • Use your instruction manual in order to discover what each aspect of the drill does and how it can be used and adjusted. Make sure that you know where the emergency stop button is in case you need to cut the power instantly.
    • Practise using the machine on scrap material before you undertake a proper job. The material you are going to be drilling should be suitable for the drill and the drill bit. Unsuitable materials can damage the machine, so always check first.
    • Before starting the machine, you should make sure the chuck key is removed. It may shoot out and injure someone or at least cause some damage. Also lower the drill guard to prevent debris hitting the user or bystanders.
    • All drill users should wear protective goggles as an extra precaution.
    • Clamp the material you are drilling to the working plate and adjust the speed of the drill as necessary. Each model of drill varies so check the manufacturer’s manual to see how this can be done.
    • Always take your time when using the drill. Avoid rushing, which will only lead to a poor quality job or an accident.
    • When you have finished using the drill, remove the drill bit with a pair of gloves (or wait for it to cool down for half an hour) and sweep away the dust that has collected on the work plate and surrounding area.

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