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Best 1/2 HP Drill Press Reviews

Last Updated: 10.08.20


What are the best 1/2 hp drill presses in 2020?


If you don’t have the time to go through our buying guide and you just want to find the best ½-HP drill press, this short paragraph is all you need to read. After extensive product research and comparison, we have found what we believe is the number one product on the market, the Shop Fox W1669. This model stands out because it offers a powerful range of speeds between 550 and 3,470 rpm to handle tough drilling applications. Easily the handiest and most versatile drill press for the modern workshop, this radial model has both a tilting head and a 90-degree tilting table that ensure trouble-free drilling at an angle while also enabling use as a horizontal boring machine. The ½-HP motor ensures sustained capability for the machine to carry out its functionality. If the SHOP FOX W1669 is unavailable, you could get the second best option, the Shop Fox W1667.



Comparison table


The Good
The Bad



Buying guide


While a standard benchtop model can be used for average drilling tasks, you will need a more powerful radial or oscillating drill press with a swing of at least 8 inches or so to allow angled drilling. The wider swing lets you cut through broad stock. These are the aspects to look at in a radial drill press.


Look into models with a ½ hp drill press motor

Enabling angled drilling, machines with a ½-hp motor offer enough power and torque to plow through tougher material than a regular benchtop drill press. ½-hp motors are what radial dress presses typically come with.

Because of the sophisticated operations that oscillating drill presses can carry out, i.e., angled drilling, a ¼-hp motor may not be able to deliver the same level of torque as a ½-hp motor does. What is important as well is dependable and consistent performance for years of use.



Look at models in the best ½ hp drill press reviews that offer versatility

The drilling capability and power of a radial drill press are determined by its spindle speeds. Since you will basically be working with a variety of materials, it is best to get a radial drill press with variable spindle speeds.

This enables the machine to use a variety of speeds appropriate for the material to be used. Some types of workpieces like wood require faster spin speeds for clean hole cutting. For drilling into metal, slower spin speeds are ideal to minimize friction during entry into the material.

The variable speeds also allow a machine to drill holes of varying sizes while preventing damage to the stock and the drill bits. You can drill deeper holes with a machine equipped with a greater spindle travel.



Even the best powerful drill press should ensure consistent work results

A depth block or depth-stopping mechanism provides accurate stopping of the quill once the exact dimension is reached. It ensures that even when you continue pressing the quill down, the machine won’t go on cutting a deeper hole anymore.

Some models enable the integration of fences for drilling multiple holes. A fence attachment lets you drill uniform holes on the same plane while also providing support for larger workpieces.

You should be able to lower and raise the table along the length of the column to enable you to handle oddly-shaped or various sizes of stock. The unique headstock of a radial drill press should slide in and out, can tilt 90 degrees left and right and swivel 360 degrees around the column.

The combination of table adjustability and headstock adjustability allows drilling into large and odd-shaped projects at nearly any angle.


3 Best 1/2 HP Drill Presses (Updated Reviews) in 2020


Although there is a large variety of radial drill presses on the market, you shouldn’t despair that you won’t be able to find the perfect one for your needs. Let the above buying guide help you make a great decision, and the highlighted models below allow you to pick the exact machine for your needs.



1. Shop Fox W1669


Geared to deliver a 34-inch maximum swing, the SHOP FOX W1669 is outfitted with a robust ½-hp, 110-volt, 5-amp motor that drives it to deliver 5 speeds in all. Choose from 550, 880, 1,520, 2,490 and 3,470 RPM to suit the application you have in mind.

This model is handy and versatile thanks to the tilting headstock and table that enable you to drill at any angle needed to complete your project. This unit also doubles as a horizontal boring machine.

Outfitted with a horizontal sliding headstock, this model lets you drill wide stock up to 34 inches in diameter so you can simply slide the headstock in and out to obtain up to 17 inches more distance between the column and the drill chuck.

The articulating table is made of precision-ground cast iron so you can adjust its angle 90 degrees left and right. It adjusts both in angle and height to enable the unit to handle a variety of projects. The safety paddle switch provides a large level of safety compared to models with 110-volt switches.

The oversize paddle won’t easily turn on and off because of the removable lock-out key. There’s’ no need to fumble around to find the off button because you simply slap the paddle down to kill the power.

Buy from for ($399.99)




2. Shop Fox W1667


This benchtop oscillating model carries a compact design that enables it to work as both a drill press and a rotary sander. It is capable of carrying out sanding and drilling operations for versatility. The precision-ground oscillating sanding spindle integrates nicely with sanding drums with 1 to 2 inches diameter and a length of 4.25 inches.

Able to provide a better finish along with longer-lasting abrasives due to the oscillating sander feature, this machine proves to be a versatile addition to any workshop. The paddle switch also ensures added safety compared to other types of power switches because it can’t be accidentally bumped to turn the unit on thanks to the removable lock-out key.

Just slap the paddle down and the machine switches off, so there won’t be a need to find the off button quickly. Outfitted with an easy-to-read depth stop that enables hole drilling at your preferred depth, this machine is also geared with a ½-hp motor that drives the spindle to deliver the needed speed for any project.

The 90-degree tilting table lets you sand surfaces at varying angles. The workpiece gets added support from the table inserts. The 2 ¼-inch dust port integrates easily with a dust collection system to ensure a clean work area.

Buy from for ($200)




3. Shop Fox W1670


Easily the most versatile and handy drill you can have in your shop, the Shop Fox W1670 is also a horizontal boring machine. Its large swing enables you to bore a hole in the center of a 34-inch-wide stock.

Offering the best value in a powerful drill press, this model offers versatility and angled drilling capability. The head tilts dually at 90 degrees and 45 degrees right and left, respectively. The 110-volt, ½-hp motor drives the drill press to run at five various speeds.

This ensures that the machine is able to handle a variety of projects. Choose from 550 to 3,470 RPM to suit the application you are working on. Made of precision-ground cast iron, this model has an overall height of 64 ½ inches so you can adjust the table to your desired height to handle irregularly-shaped and unusually large projects.

The 12 ¼-inch round worktable tilts left and right and swivels around the column to carry out drilling at an angle, ensuring professional-looking results. The oscillating design offers the convenience of two machines packed into a small work area for unparallelled versatility.

The drill chuck accepts drill bit sizes ranging from 1/16 inch to ⅝ inch to enable you to drill into a variety of materials.

Buy from for ($639.52)