No metal in the Powermatic drill in woodshop

I went to use the Powermatic drill in the woodshop today, and there were a lot of metal shavings around it. Someone had been drilling aluminum. The Powermatic is for wood or plastic only.
Use the Grizzly drill press in the metal shop, and please clean up your mess.

Um … were the aluminum pieces small, dirty, and scattered around the area, as if, speaking purely hypothetically, someone had accidentally flung aluminum bits all over while trying to clear a clog in the way too #@&* narrow hose for the aluminum vacuum? (A clog that was not fully cleared, so I left a lot behind when I vacuumed the area, and I forgot to come back to sweep later. Sorry!)

If you are asking, “Why would someone from the machine shop be all the way over by the wood drill press?”, I would encourage you to ask instead, “Why was the trash can most accessible from the machine shop yesterday that far away from it, especially since someone had moved a can into the machine shop twice in the past week?” You’ll find that the latter answer will also infer the answer to the future question “Who chained and padlocked a trash can to a post in the machine shop and why?”

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That’s a lot of philosophical questions…
Interesting point on the trash cans. There are usually a couple up between the planer and double doors. Yesterday, nope. All the way over by metal shop. Where wasn’t as curious as the low number.

The trash cans do move around oddly and frequently clump up. People do use them as carts to roll small stacks of wood around, which I don’t begrudge them.

I try to keep the cans in the woodshop spread out: one between the table saw and sanding area, one near the planer and jointer, the rest spread among the tables. And I repeatedly put one in the machine shop proper, and it’s always gone by the next day. I’m not sure I’m joking about chaining one in there.

The good news of my response is that the undue stresses you feared were placed upon the Powermatic drill’s motor did not in fact occur. :slight_smile:


I’m not too concerned about the motor. That drill is tough. But starting in with metals can put lubricants and contaminants on the press, which you don’t want around wood. Better to keep things separate.

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We should make sure the expansions for metal and machine shop areas include space for a trash can, maybe in a place less inclined to get swiped and where it feels like the obvious home.

Thank you both for helping keep things clean in the shop!

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LOL. I didn’t do this; looks like someone else agreed with me.

I did actually replace this with my own chain though; it gives more slack and is easier to temporarily remove to empty the can. (I need that chain back eventually though.)

One thought: while we do need a dedicated trash can in there, maybe it doesn’t need to be as large? We don’t throw away big wood pieces, so it doesn’t fill up as fast.

Addendum: I cleaned out that hose with a pole I made for the purpose; I’ll leave it there, labeled, after I put some sort of sealant on it.