Ⓕ Turn Your Drill Press Into A Lathe - Scrap bin challenge (ep26)

  • Published on Oct 17, 2014
  • I had the idea to try and turn my drill press into a lathe of sorts. This is what I came up with. This was also a scrap wood challenge.
    Scrap Bin Challenge Participants:
    April Wilkerson - ru-clip.net/user/AprilWilkersonDIY
    Steve Carmichael - ru-clip.net/user/carmichaelworkshop
    Peter Brown - ru-clip.net/user/kludge1977
    John Heisz - ru-clip.net/user/jpheisz
    Fr. Thomas Bailey - ru-clip.net/user/monk1998
    Dominic Bender - ru-clip.net/user/DominicsWoodworks
    Manhattan Wood Project - ru-clip.net/user/ManhattanWoodProject
    Arzensek Andrea - ru-clip.net/user/ArzensekAndrea
    Steve French - ru-clip.net/user/blockyimage
    Jason Rausch - ru-clip.net/user/rauschww
    AdventuresInDIY - ru-clip.net/user/AdventuresInDIY
    Fabian's Tiny Workshop - ru-clip.net/user/swingguitar1950
    Nick Ferry - ru-clip.net/user/ferrynick
    Richard Morley - ru-clip.net/user/Trende1978
    Patrick's Work Shop - ru-clip.net/user/Patricksworkshop
    Darbin Orvar - ru-clip.net/user/darbinorvar
    Rock-n H Woodshop - ru-clip.net/user/rhwoodshop
    Carl Jacobson - ru-clip.net/user/haydenHD
    The Nomadic Polywright Show - ru-clip.net/user/johnzzhu
    McGinn's WoodShop - ru-clip.net/user/McGinnsWoodShop
    Jack Houweling - ru-clip.net/user/Jacka440
    Mike Fulton - ru-clip.net/user/mfwoodshop
    Ted Alexander - ru-clip.net/channel/UCGcDAiHsT2QD2gO4Oi_0etQ
    Average Joes - ru-clip.net/user/AverageJoesJoinery
    RJB Woodturner - ru-clip.net/user/RJBWoodTurner
    Chris Pine - ru-clip.net/user/TheChrisPineWorkshop
    Sterling Davis - ru-clip.net/user/SterlingsWoodcrafts
    If you liked the project please share the video!
    Check me out on
    My website
    My second channel
    Music: Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Ouroboros
  • Howto & StyleHowto & Style

Comments • 474

  • Karan Trivedi
    Karan Trivedi 2 days ago


  • lecarver
    lecarver 21 day ago

    Works well, cost less than $5 to create. Have just started to make wooden eggs so this makes it one hell of a lot easier to sand them down than holding them in your hand.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  20 days ago

      I’d imagine it’d be perfects for sanding them - good tip

  • agrafes6
    agrafes6 Month ago

    Nice 👍🏻🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

  • Mojima Channel
    Mojima Channel Month ago


  • Quirin
    Quirin Month ago

    I make fishing lures this way

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Month ago

      Nice - I’d imagine it’d be perfect for that

  • 738polarbear
    738polarbear 2 months ago

    This is great but may I suggest a roller race instead of a plain bolt as the centre.Those are nice S & P shakers.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 months ago

      For sure - I live center vs dead center would be a good upgrade

  • mosfet51
    mosfet51 2 months ago

    Fucking awesome

  • mike cooper
    mike cooper 6 months ago

    what size bolts are those?

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  6 months ago

      No problem - it would be perfect for the toggle as well

    • mike cooper
      mike cooper 6 months ago

      @Nick Ferry Thank you, I need to turn a handle for a bowsaw. This drill press method is perfect for that.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  6 months ago

      the tool rest was 1/2" and the centers were 1/4" if I remember correctly

  • CG Account
    CG Account 6 months ago

    Next challenge... turn a saw into a hammer...

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  6 months ago +1

      I'm pretty sure I've swung a saw at something before

  • Dbeaumont Resident
    Dbeaumont Resident 6 months ago

    This was a brilliant video!! I have a 1934 Delta DP220 and always looking for new ways to use it! Thanks!

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  6 months ago

      No problem, I’m glad you could get some ideas

  • sz42781
    sz42781 7 months ago

    Cruising for a brusing lol

    • sz42781
      sz42781 7 months ago

      @Nick Ferry Im from China, i am considered a very safe worker

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  7 months ago

      With and injury record like that at such a young age you may want to look at how safely you are doing things

    • sz42781
      sz42781 7 months ago

      @Nick Ferry and im 14 years old. Always wear your safety glasses

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  7 months ago

      You’ve got me beat

    • sz42781
      sz42781 7 months ago

      @Nick Ferry I have done way ballsier shit than this. Ive been wrapped around a chucked up piece of 1.25"x7' cold rolled steel and lived to tell. Ran my finger through a ridged pipe groover. Had a harbor freight handheld pipe threader snap in half in my bare hands. I know danger when I see it

  • Sampath Gamage
    Sampath Gamage 7 months ago

    good idea bro.. go head.. 🇱🇰

  • Tom Carson
    Tom Carson 7 months ago +1

    I have chucked small pieces of dowel into my drill press, but I never thought of using a T-nut as a center. I pride myself on being inventive, but 'hat's off' to the master! Thanks for the tip!

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  7 months ago

      Thanks - you’ll have to try it

  • Moephor
    Moephor 7 months ago

    Ive got an old small drill press wasting away. Im gonna try this. nice project

  • brockfiger
    brockfiger 8 months ago

    great idea! great job

  • PowerOf One
    PowerOf One 9 months ago

    I spose you could also rotate the drill press 90 degrees and have angled similar to a real lathe.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  9 months ago

      Thought about doing that - it would make the ergonomics a lot nicer

  • Grant Ardern
    Grant Ardern 9 months ago


    IZBLAB! 9 months ago

    Good stuff man. Thanks

  • triumphmanful
    triumphmanful Year ago

    Nice, I just made a Birch Spinning Top for my wife. She saw one at a flea market and remarked that she had one as a young girl. They wanted too much money for them. They were original classics from the 50s. It took forever with stock removal technique on my band saw and belt grinder. But I made it. Now I will try this idea and make one a lot faster and fancier too ! Thanks !

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      that's pretty cool you are able to make something nostalgic for her!

  • L__VE To Worship
    L__VE To Worship Year ago


  • Le Cobra
    Le Cobra Year ago

    Wow that's a great technique mate, thanks a lot !

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      no problem - glad you found it useful!

  • enrique enriquegonzalez

    uau.!.. good idea..congrats!..

  • Jeff Beck
    Jeff Beck Year ago

    I can't believe that he even attempted that with the fixed center not being on a bearing. But it worked pretty well, and the salt and pepper shakers turned out better than expected.. Also, he should have put the centering shaft in a drill press and made the point that way so it would be perfectly centered.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      I think the way he did it turned out nice as well

  • Manolo Ramirez
    Manolo Ramirez Year ago

    Wow I like this video good men 👍

  • Karan Trivedi
    Karan Trivedi Year ago

    wow nice idea

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      ahh, thought you were thinking a dowel because you commented on the drill press lathe - hand plane with a simple scarfing jig - basically a ramp that a plane can rest on while introducing a taper to the small piece over a longer distance (in your case, 2 feet)

    • Karan Trivedi
      Karan Trivedi Year ago

      Nick Ferry nono, I want to taper it, i.e. Make the strip thine ron one end than the other, so on one end it would be 1/16 inch, on the other end it maybe 1/32. See what I mean?

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      drill press wouldn't really work - my friend Moy made his own drill press - ru-clip.net/video/pDToDT7jK-w/video.html - but if I am getting what you are saying (conical shape?) - I would mount it in a drill and while it's spinning run it over a belt sander

    • Karan Trivedi
      Karan Trivedi Year ago

      Do you have any ideas on tapering a very thin strips of wood? They are about 2 feet long and 1/16" thick with about 1.5" width

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      thanks - not as nice as an actual lathe but it does the trick on various projects

  • Aaron Digrazia
    Aaron Digrazia Year ago

    Mate, what a video. First one I've seen from you and you just explain everything so easily and clearly and love the honest opinion the whole way through. Keep it up!

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      thanks much - glad you enjoyed it!

  • Gary Aubrey
    Gary Aubrey Year ago

    I've heard that this is bad on a drill press due to the lateral pressure. Have you turned many items using this method on that same press over the last few years? If so, have you noticed any adverse problems due to it? I'd like to tinker around with this method, but I don't want to damage my drill press.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      Maybe at some point - sanding attachments can be really rough on them - then again, this bench top press was around $120 new and I’ve gotten my money out of it but also don’t use it for sanding - I’ve been a spindle sander fanatic for quite some time #teamspindlesander for life

    • Gary Aubrey
      Gary Aubrey Year ago

      Not a bad idea, because I heard that both drum sanding and lathe attachments were hard on drill presses.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      No problem at all - I should actually do a follow up to this explaining the forces involved because it’s a good and common question

    • Gary Aubrey
      Gary Aubrey Year ago

      Thanks for the timely response on an old video.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago +1

      You heard wrong - when turning like this you are resisting rotational force more so then a perpendicular to axial load - no different to a large forstner but resisting rotation with big hogging cuts - if you jam a tool in laterally you need to change your turning habits - a drill press drum sander attachment would be more detrimental to a quill and bearings than this ever would be - long story short of it, you’ll be good

  • dave
    dave Year ago

    really liked that thanks

  • AlphaTroniks
    AlphaTroniks Year ago

    super simple and quick to build it!! I'm gonna build it someday!!

  • Maxim Katkov
    Maxim Katkov Year ago

    Old machinist said:" Turning on a milling machine (drill press) is better then milling on a lathe." you had proved it. Good job!

  • Joe Dov
    Joe Dov Year ago

    Very cool ! thanks for the tips my friend.

  • A2Z123 Jasm
    A2Z123 Jasm Year ago

    thank you you gaff us a good iedeya I well do like it in my workshop

  • George Zammit
    George Zammit Year ago

    Very cool Nick!

  • RHI Hodag
    RHI Hodag Year ago

    Great alternative for those of us who do not have a lathe! I'll keep this in mind if I ever need some small rounded handles or such. Seemed to work OK.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago +1

      Perfect for small handles and whatnot - glad I finally got my lathe though

  • Berny M
    Berny M Year ago

    Nice, thanks. :)

  • Melvin Rowe
    Melvin Rowe Year ago

    Will use this very nice thank you

  • Ron Poddig
    Ron Poddig Year ago

    I love your bloopers hahaha

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      Thanks - I'm always goofing around

  • Harvey Boulanger
    Harvey Boulanger Year ago

    Great job. That will get some interested in turning and turning,well turning is the best part of woodworking.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      thanks - I hope it does, it did for me

  • Mirko Meyerhoff
    Mirko Meyerhoff Year ago

    Well done!


    Very Entertaining and informative video , thank you. Sorry I don't have a Facebook acct. Merry Christmas

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      Thanks - no worries - Merry Christmas to you too!!

  • Alfred Hernandez
    Alfred Hernandez Year ago

    That was awesome. Thanks.

  • Hans de Groot
    Hans de Groot Year ago

    You made this video excactly three years ago and I watched it only now!
    I need to try this. What is the most ideal rpm? (I've never worked with a lathe)

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  Year ago

      Ideal, I have no clue - I could only guess it was around 1500 rpm - all I can say is slow enough for good torque but fasted enough for clean cuts

  • CerebralOrigami
    CerebralOrigami Year ago

    One of the best substitutes I've ever seen for a lathe was a box where a hand drill came in from the side to spin the work and a router ran along the top edges of the box.

  • Momoka7
    Momoka7 2 years ago

    You actually gave me a good Idea! LOL. I am trying to figure out an "easy" way to turn 99% true cylinders on a wood lathe without using a copy mechanism. One thing that can work as you did here ... some pretty rough sandpaper attached to a flat board!
    Just turn it down and then use the sandpaper-board to get it roughened out. I can also think of a jig to use, to make the sandpaper-board be parallel by default to the workpiece.
    Well that would solve pure strait cylinders, but i think it could also work to create a small cones too.

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      Awesome - glad I could get you thinking of a solution!

  • Bash Bash
    Bash Bash 2 years ago

    nice one

  • Frank Csernetics
    Frank Csernetics 2 years ago

    Great idea, I'm going to give it a try. Loved the ending most lol

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      Cool, I'll have to take a peek

    • Frank Csernetics
      Frank Csernetics 2 years ago

      that's great, I'm always messing with things too, my medium is more on the iron side. facebook.com/legacyironandwoodworks/

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      Thanks man - what can I say, I'm always dinkin' around

  • Ambient Art Photography

    Awesome idea!

  • Zippo Fanatic 77
    Zippo Fanatic 77 2 years ago

    What speed did u have the drill press at or gear ratio. Do
    U think it work to make an 8 inch wood disc 1 inch thick

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      I would just do something like that on the bandsaw and clean it up on a sander. I don't there'll be enough to work in this drill press to accomplish that but who knows

    MARDAK WORKSHOP 2 years ago


  • Joshua Wehrwein
    Joshua Wehrwein 2 years ago


  • Cape Breton Barbarian
    Cape Breton Barbarian 2 years ago

    this is fuckin awesome

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      +Cape Breton Barbarian sweet! If you do social media snap some pics and tag me in it - it'd be cool to see what you came up with!

    • Cape Breton Barbarian
      Cape Breton Barbarian 2 years ago

      Nick Ferry right on brother I watched your video and in about 15 minutes was turning duck calls! worked out perfectly

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago

      Thanks much!!

  • Jay Aeecee
    Jay Aeecee 2 years ago

    works great to make a new handle for my kitchen knife.

  • Andrew Muhling
    Andrew Muhling 2 years ago

    You totally win..
    ~ smiles ~

  • Lucas Calado
    Lucas Calado 2 years ago

    Hi, great video
    Is that small drill bit directly attached to your chuck or did you use something to hold it? I have a 1mm twist drill bit but it doesn't fit on mine.

    • Lucas Calado
      Lucas Calado 2 years ago

      Nick Ferry Thank you very much!

    • Nick Ferry
      Nick Ferry  2 years ago +1

      it was in the chuck - that chuck goes fairly small but if yours doesn't, look into a pin chuck like this - amzn.to/2nj1F50

  • Paul Angeli
    Paul Angeli 2 years ago

    Very creative!
    Functional too!
    Thanks for posting.

  • Chris Cunicelli
    Chris Cunicelli 2 years ago

    Nice buddy

  • Gus Abar
    Gus Abar 2 years ago

    Now that was something I really enjoyed

  • Harry Gronk
    Harry Gronk 2 years ago

    great job ..

  • Ralph Schipper
    Ralph Schipper 2 years ago

    I see you use some sort of cork to close it but how doe you get the cork out?

  • Roc Lo
    Roc Lo 2 years ago

    I reckon You could easily make a chisel handle with this drill-press lave idea