Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) – Drill Press




  • Know the location of start and stop switches or buttons and keep the drill press table free of tools and other materials.
  • Use only properly sharpened drill bits, sockets and chucks in good condition. Remove dull drill bits, battered tangs, or sockets from service.
  • Do not remove by hand metal or wood chips from the table or stock.  Use brushes or other tools to properly remove chips.
  • Do not attempt to oil the machine or make adjustments to the work while the drill press is in motion.
  • Do not insert a drill chuck key into the chuck until the power is shut off and the machine has come to a complete stop.
  • All belts and pulleys must be guarded; if frayed belts or pulleys are observed, the drill press must be taken out of service and the belts or pulleys must be replaced.
  • All stock must be properly secured with a vise or clamps prior to a machining process.
  • If the stock slips in the vise or clamp, the operator must not attempt to hold the work with his/her hand or try to tighten the vise/clamp while the machine is in motion. Shutdown the power to the machine prior to re-tightening the loose stock.
  • Use the correct speed and drill for the type of stock being machined.
  • Use the appropriate bit for the stock being machined. Bits with feed screw or extremely long bits should not be used.
  • The drill bit should be mounted the full depth and in the center of the chuck.
  • Position the table and adjust the feed stroke eliminating the possibility of the bit striking the table.
  • Feed the bit smoothly into the work. If the hole being drilled is deep, withdraw the bit frequently to remove shaving on the bit.
  • Never attempt to remove a broken drill with a center punch or hammer.
  • When an operator has finished working on the drill press, and before leaving the drill press for any reason, the power must be shut off and the machine must come to a complete stop.
  • When an operator observes an unsafe condition on the drill press, or stock that is being worked on, they must report it immediately to the Supervisor and the press will be taken out of service until the problem has been corrected.