Complete drill press milling setup tutorial with details and links (2 Viewers)

allforcharity

Royal Flush
Supporting Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2017
Messages
15,376
Reaction score
17,265
Location
Burnaby (Greater Vancouver), BC
This instructional thread could not have been better. I am so happy that @Eloe2000 put this together. I don't know what I would have done to prepare these roulette's for a labeling. And I have box upon box of chips that are waiting in Colbert, WA that I can't access until the borders open. This was such a fun project and it certainly took some patience with trial and error getting the bit centered. I was able to get down to about 10 mins per barrel and found the process to be quite soothing. So thanks again and once I get my labels made up and all of the other chips I will post more pics.

Nice work! I probably would have gone for a 1" diameter with a Roulette mold.
 

BarrieJ3

Straight Flush
Joined
Nov 22, 2018
Messages
8,144
Reaction score
12,269
Location
Captain of the Winnebago Eagle-5
Crazy helpful thread. Are then any updates between May 10th and now? I am not handy, as in I can tighten a screw and put gas in the car.

But this looks like a necessity and good starting point. Let me know if there's anything additional you've come across to help with the setup!
 

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
6,890
Reaction score
16,965
Location
Casa Mango, FL
Crazy helpful thread. Are then any updates between May 10th and now? I am not handy, as in I can tighten a screw and put gas in the car.

But this looks like a necessity and good starting point. Let me know if there's anything additional you've come across to help with the setup!

No updates from me. I put this together after some time and experience with milling a couple thousand chips. Not a ton, but enough for a consolidated thread. When I get back home after Covid-cation I do plan to explore milling inlaid chips more though. Of course let me know if you have any questions!

But @GenghisKhan has been doing a lot of milling lately and had success adding an x-y table to the press. He has a thread somewhere on that.
 

Kyle

Full House
Joined
Nov 26, 2015
Messages
3,431
Reaction score
3,818
Location
Centennial CO
Sorry if this has been asked already.

Have you tried milling RHC chips? Would like to see that also.
 

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
6,890
Reaction score
16,965
Location
Casa Mango, FL
Sorry if this has been asked already.

Have you tried milling RHC chips? Would like to see that also.

Unfortunately there isn’t a bottom cleaning bit made of the correct size for drill presses. You could theoretically use a CNC but I can’t speak to that. A workaround is to use a correct sized Fostner bit that will leave a nub in the center which would require a second pass with a smaller bottom cleaning bit. I acquired one of these bits but haven’t tried it yet.

My other attempts with RHC can be seen here:

https://www.pokerchipforum.com/threads/inlay-removal-by-milling-with-a-drill-press.51172/
 

Gear

Full House
Site Vendor
Supporting Member
Joined
Oct 31, 2014
Messages
4,429
Reaction score
7,180
Location
Mission BC Canada
A workaround is to use a correct sized Fostner bit that will leave a nub in the center which would require a second pass with a smaller bottom cleaning bit.
Uh, that's backwards. A Forstner bit will leave a hole in the center, not a nub.

1607356271858.png
 
Last edited:

djfayze

3 of a Kind
Joined
Oct 11, 2020
Messages
727
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Orlando, FL
Going to finally get going on milling some solids I have! Ordered everything except the drill press, which I need to go pick up from Harbor Freight. Been waiting for a coupon but looks like they don't really do them anymore. Going to have to suck it up and buy full price!
 

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
Going to finally get going on milling some solids I have! Ordered everything except the drill press, which I need to go pick up from Harbor Freight. Been waiting for a coupon but looks like they don't really do them anymore. Going to have to suck it up and buy full price!
They don’t do coupons fo the drill presses, but they do put them on sale every so often.
 

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
6,890
Reaction score
16,965
Location
Casa Mango, FL
Going to finally get going on milling some solids I have! Ordered everything except the drill press, which I need to go pick up from Harbor Freight. Been waiting for a coupon but looks like they don't really do them anymore. Going to have to suck it up and buy full price!
Out of curiosity I just checked and back in Sept 2019 I paid...

EE92FBB6-E7C1-4F20-BD91-9E3FAFB0B04A.jpeg
 

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
That 8” one I got during their sale last fall for $53. The regular price is $75. Even at full price it’s a good deal.
However, the press right out of the box needs some adjusting for it to perform well and with less noise. At the factory, they must not do ANY setup at all.
This video is great at helping set it up and adjust it so that there’s no wobble in the chuck, and it doesn’t make a ton of noise:
 

djfayze

3 of a Kind
Joined
Oct 11, 2020
Messages
727
Reaction score
1,803
Location
Orlando, FL
That 8” one I got during their sale last fall for $53. The regular price is $75. Even at full price it’s a good deal.
However, the press right out of the box needs some adjusting for it to perform well and with less noise. At the factory, they must not do ANY setup at all.
This video is great at helping set it up and adjust it so that there’s no wobble in the chuck, and it doesn’t make a ton of noise:
I’m going to give that a watch and set it up tonight! I paid $75 today. It’s not expensive or anything, I just hate buying stuff I know I’m going to use once ha. Especially when they used to always have a coupon (just recently found out harbor freight doesn’t do coupons anymore). Maybe I can offer my services someday to offset the cost :ROFL: :ROFLMAO:
 

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
I’m going to give that a watch and set it up tonight! I paid $75 today. It’s not expensive or anything, I just hate buying stuff I know I’m going to use once ha. Especially when they used to always have a coupon (just recently found out harbor freight doesn’t do coupons anymore). Maybe I can offer my services someday to offset the cost :ROFL: :ROFLMAO:
I would follow the video’s advice and don’t use the included instructions for setting the chuck. The instructions tell you to press the chuck in by pushing down on it into the platter, which could bend it. I almost bent mine doing it this way. Much better to swing the platter out of the way, then use a rubber mallet or wood and hammer to set it.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
@Eloe2000 Thanks Evan! What a great tutorial! Happy Father's Day! And since today is Father's Day, it's the last day to use my Harbor Freight 20% off coupon. I have been thinking about doing a milling setup for a while now, so what better reason than Father's day and a nice coupon? I will eventually read this whole thread, but before I head out to pick up a drill press, I have a couple quick questions.

First, do you see any shortcomings in the 5 speed drill press (retail $75) that would be alleviated by the 12 speed ($150) press? I don't mind spending a little more if I end up with a better tool. You did say that you use the lowest speed when milling, and I see that the 12 speed does go lower than the 5 speed.

And regarding that speed, any idea why the lower speed works best? I was discussing with my son, @alecnetwoodworks and he was saying that usually router bits like the one you are using work best at high speeds.

Second question is the size of the cutout on the jig. Would it be worthwhile to create multiple jig cutouts for different chips? I have Paulson chips that are just barely 39mm up to 39.25mm. I also have ASM and BCC chips that are 39.7mm. Is that enough of a diameter difference to cause the smaller chip to wobble if used in a cutout that would hold the larger chip? Seems like it would be an easy task to create two of those cutout pieces. Or is 0.7mm just too negligible of a difference to make a difference?

Thanks again bud!
 

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
6,890
Reaction score
16,965
Location
Casa Mango, FL
@Eloe2000 Thanks Evan! What a great tutorial! Happy Father's Day! And since today is Father's Day, it's the last day to use my Harbor Freight 20% off coupon. I have been thinking about doing a milling setup for a while now, so what better reason than Father's day and a nice coupon? I will eventually read this whole thread, but before I head out to pick up a drill press, I have a couple quick questions.

Happy father's day! Treat yo' self!

First, do you see any shortcomings in the 5 speed drill press (retail $75) that would be alleviated by the 12 speed ($150) press? I don't mind spending a little more if I end up with a better tool. You did say that you use the lowest speed when milling, and I see that the 12 speed does go lower than the 5 speed.

I had not tried both, nor have I looked closely at both since I bought mine. But, I would say to stick with this cheap one unless you really want to step up to the plate and get a much nicer one built by a more respectable manufacturer. I would say the only "complaints" that I have seen about this press have been related to some experiencing wobble in the head which requires tightening/calibration. I will note that I haven't had this issue and started using mine right out of the box as far as I recall. But, you I don't think you would improve upon this issue with the slightly more expensive press from the same manufacturer. Whereas, if you plan to use this press for other projects in the long term then it might be worth the investment to get a better built one from a quality manufacturer.

That being said, I am happy with purchase given my limited use just for milling a small to moderate amount of chips.

And regarding that speed, any idea why the lower speed works best? I was discussing with my son, @alecnetwoodworks and he was saying that usually router bits like the one you are using work best at high speeds.

I am not really sure. But what made the lower speed "better" for me was the cleanliness with which the chip material was removed and the cleanliness of remaining surface. Slower speeds produced larger cleaner shavings whereas higher speed produced a larger quantity and smaller shavings and sometimes the surface was sort of rough (not sure how to describe this and I didn't take any photos). So I think this is relevant to the material. I assume clay has different properties to wood in that regard. Wood isn’t a uniform material but has grain whereas clay is uniform but has its self adherence properties. I don’t know what this is called but the “roughness” I would sometimes experience at the higher speeds was like when you peel or pull apart play-doh. But I don't want to overstate this as an "issue" as it wasn't really an issue. I would have been fine using the highest speed as well. Just in comparison it seemed slightly easier at slower speed to quickly achieve the clean results. YMMV

Second question is the size of the cutout on the jig. Would it be worthwhile to create multiple jig cutouts for different chips? I have Paulson chips that are just barely 39mm up to 39.25mm. I also have ASM and BCC chips that are 39.7mm. Is that enough of a diameter difference to cause the smaller chip to wobble if used in a cutout that would hold the larger chip? Seems like it would be an easy task to create two of those cutout pieces. Or is 0.7mm just too negligible of a difference to make a difference?

Initially my goal was to create a snug jig so that the pressure of the press and the usage of the silicon base inside of the snug jig would create enough friction that I would not need to apply manual pressure to the chip itself to ensure it would not spin. This did work at first but after placing and removing chips the jig wore down enough that eventually I did need to apply pressure using a chip or tool to ensure the chip did not spin. I created another jig and the same thing happened. Eventually I just gave up and started applying pressure using another chip. You can see this in the various videos of me milling above. There is enough difference in various Paulson chips let alone ASM or CPC plus considering eventual wear that you would need a ton of jigs to always ensure an absolute snug fit for each chip.

If the chips are on the smaller side in the jig then while you are calibrating it for that run of chips (which I do for each new session or each different kind of chip) apply pressure to the chip and just make sure you align the jog to the bit appropriately.


Thanks again bud!

Cheers!
 
Last edited:

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
Just a heads up, Harbor Frieght usually has exclusions on their coupons, and the Central Machinery drill presses don’t qualify.
You may be able to get their sale price if they we’re recently on sale and get a nice manager.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
Just a heads up, Harbor Frieght usually has exclusions on their coupons, and the Central Machinery drill presses don’t qualify.
You may be able to get their sale price if they we’re recently on sale and get a nice manager.
Too late. I already had a knock down drag out argument with a local HF manager. Absolutely ridiculous to exclude what is basically their house brand from the coupon. If there were anything else similar for close to their regular price, I would have told them to stick it on principle. I will still do some looking around, and I will also give this a VERY thorough testing while it is still under the 90 day warranty.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
Too late. I already had a knock down drag out argument with a local HF manager. Absolutely ridiculous to exclude what is basically their house brand from the coupon. If there were anything else similar for close to their regular price, I would have told them to stick it on principle. I will still do some looking around, and I will also give this a VERY thorough testing while it is still under the 90 day warranty.
That sucks. But even at their full price, its still a good deal.
To get the most from this drill press, check out the video from my post above (#101). Great setup tips from that guy on this press.
 

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
After shipping, that Magnate router bit comes out to nearly $30. Anybody try any cheaper alternatives? I'm totally ignorant regarding routers and bits. Any idea if this will work just as well?

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N6HIN8...colid=LSTQ6DK38Q7V&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Or this one. Not sure if these are the same thing.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ES1V4O...colid=LSTQ6DK38Q7V&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it
I do know the magnate bit leaves a virtually perfectly flat cut, leaving behind a very small "nipple" in the center that can be scraped away with a small blade. I removed it on all the chips using a small sharp chisel, just pushing it lightly over the surface at an angle. Removing this little bump is required, as youll still feel it after a label is applied. It's not hard to do, its just another step.

The other bits (like the ones on amazon) may not leave it as flat, more concave or convex than is desirable.

Also, the Harbor Freight drill press accepts bits with a shank up to 1/2". Magnate was out of the 7/8" bit with 1/4" shank, so I got the one with a 1/2" shank. Works great.
 
Last edited:

Eloe2000

4 of a Kind
Supporting Member
Joined
Jun 23, 2019
Messages
6,890
Reaction score
16,965
Location
Casa Mango, FL
After shipping, that Magnate router bit comes out to nearly $30. Anybody try any cheaper alternatives? I'm totally ignorant regarding routers and bits. Any idea if this will work just as well?

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N6HIN8...colid=LSTQ6DK38Q7V&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Or this one. Not sure if these are the same thing.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01ES1V4O...colid=LSTQ6DK38Q7V&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Get the Magnate. It is the flattest. I didn’t seem to have as severe a concern using the other brand bits as some people but the Magnate is definitively the flattest of the ones I have owned.

Here is the Magnate (grey) against the two most common Amazon brands; Yonica in yellow and Excel in blue I think.

FC747473-3415-4A8A-86A5-DDFA606EA081.png
F3C78CF4-FDAE-4CF4-91F4-88DB775FD7D7.png
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
Get the Magnate. It is the flattest. I didn’t seem to have as severe a concern using the other brand bits as some people but the Magnate is definitively the flattest of the ones I have owned.

Here is the Magnate (grey) against the two most common Amazon brands; Yonica in yellow and Excel in blue I think.

View attachment 723753View attachment 723754
Sorry you had to buy them all to find that out. But thank you!
 

joshuagb

Pair
Joined
Jan 25, 2015
Messages
107
Reaction score
53
Location
The South
The noise isn’t that bad, especially when it is just running. The sound intensifies when you strike the chip but definitely way less than a vacuum cleaner or a circular saw or something. Maybe on the equivalent of my Roomba.

The debris is kind of like pencil or crayon shaving. Personally I just blow out any debris from the jig every once in a while but I have thought about adding a cheap clip on fan. Some people have told me they have mounted their shop vac house to the jig. But that seems like overkill to me and the noise of the shop vac would drive me nuts.

I don’t use a mask, but perhaps if you have one you could try it especially if you are indoors.

The debris it creates...
View attachment 448818
Looks like the beginnings of a superfund site. Seriously keep your kids far away from that and wear an N95.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
@Eloe2000 FANTASTIC tutorial. Got my rig set up. Did one chip, and realized the underneath wood block was not level, neither side to side or front to back. Got it all level and did the second chip. Close to perfect! (on left) Maybe still a touch shallow? I will eventually replace that 2x4 on the bottom with a thinner, flatter piece of wood.

Anyway, thanks so much! This is not just easy, but fun!!! Yeah, that first chip is eff'd up. It may be the first, but I doubt it will be the last.


20210703_160241.jpg


20210703_152530.jpg
 

Colquhoun

Flush
Joined
Apr 4, 2020
Messages
2,101
Reaction score
3,814
Location
Long Island, NY
@Eloe2000 FANTASTIC tutorial. Got my rig set up. Did one chip, and realized the underneath wood block was not level, neither side to side or front to back. Got it all level and did the second chip. Close to perfect! (on left) Maybe still a touch shallow? I will eventually replace that 2x4 on the bottom with a thinner, flatter piece of wood.

Anyway, thanks so much! This is not just easy, but fun!!! Yeah, that first chip is eff'd up. It may be the first, but I doubt it will be the last.


View attachment 731186

View attachment 731187
Looks great!
Yes, getting it level is important. Also beware of blobs of dirt on the underside of the chip that may throw off level as well.

Regarding centering, I’ve found most molds are not centered on the outside circumference of the chip to begin with. So if the milled recess is centered on the outside edge, it may appear off center compared to the mold.

To correct this, I’ve found placing the chip a certain way can help. Look at each chip as you place it in the jig, and notice if the mold is closer to one edge or the other. It will take some trial and error, but you’ll find the best way to line up the chips so that the milled recess is right in the middle of the mold. Hope that made sense.

To get the depth right, check it with a label if you have one. I’ve found less milling is usually better, but you don’t want any spinners!
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
Looks great!
Yes, getting it level is important. Also beware of blobs of dirt on the underside of the chip that may throw off level as well.

Regarding centering, I’ve found most molds are not centered on the outside circumference of the chip to begin with. So if the milled recess is centered on the outside edge, it may appear off center compared to the mold.

To correct this, I’ve found placing the chip a certain way can help. Look at each chip as you place it in the jig, and notice if the mold is closer to one edge or the other. It will take some trial and error, but you’ll find the best way to line up the chips so that the milled recess is right in the middle of the mold. Hope that made sense.

To get the depth right, check it with a label if you have one. I’ve found less milling is usually better, but you don’t want any spinners!
This batch are all hot stamps, so I'm only milling until the stamp is gone. I have some thick Gear labels that I'm removeing off of other chips that I can use to gage the depth.
 

TX_Golf_N_Poker

Full House
Supporting Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2020
Messages
3,905
Reaction score
4,947
Location
Humble, TX
I spent a little time last night on the milling rig. Got everything all dialed in. The drill platform was not level. It has a side to side adjustment that I could make, but it was also off front to back, so I had to shim the jig a little bit. Then I found a box that it would fit into. Got everything pretty well centered and ran through about a barrel of chips. Smooth sailing, and I am pretty happy with how closely I got it centered.

20210806_132901.jpg

20210806_132927.jpg

20210806_131544.jpg
 
Top Bottom