This is perhaps the most misunderstood function of the Shopsmith. Woodworkers aren't accustomed to using a horizontal boring machine, and so they never give this function a lot of thought.
Drilling a hole in the end of a post is a snap with the ShopSmith. The post is supported in all three dimensions-the fence acts a stop to keep it from moving away from the bit. The miter gauge keeps it parallel to the bit. Adjusting the table height makes sure that the bit is exactly where it needs to be. This is really handy when I have to drill several holes in boards of the same thickness.
Just for kicks, I took the same post to my drill press to see what would happen. The first problem is that trying to keep any post in position while it's balanced on its end is all but impossible. However, this particular post is too long and exceeds the capacity of my drill press. The Shopsmith can easily handle much longer posts, and with a little ingenuity can handle a post of almost any length.
Here is another good example of an operation that's a whole lot easier because I have a Shopsmith-drilling holes for the bracket shoes in a banjo rim. I'll need to precisely drill 26 holes in this rim, and the Shopsmith adds to the speed and precision of this operation.
This coffee table is held together with dowels, and the holes were drilled using the horizontal boring function of the Shopsmith.
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This page last updated 11/08/03
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