A tabletop companion for woodworkers and the like, the General International 75-010 M1 12-Inch Benchtop Drill Press is a must-try if you’re establishing a workshop for the first time, thanks to its simple yet effective features. It has more than enough specifications to help you finish any task ahead.
We’ll review this benchtop drill press by looking at its pros and cons to help you decide whether it’s for you or not.
As a benchtop drill press, the General International 75-010 has a compact design that’s sure to fit any beginner woodworker’s or workshop owner’s space. It has plenty of great specs and other convenient features for those who don’t have experience with using a drill press.
This tool has a variable speed of 500 to 3,000 RPM, which can be controlled using the simple hand lever on the side. With a 120V motor that runs at 1/3 HP, it sports fewer vibrations due to the high-quality bearings inside the tool. It is only 75 pounds, lighter than most drill presses so it will be more easily portable, assuming you’ll need to work on different tables.
It has a 12-inch swing distance, a drilling capacity of 5/8 inches (with a chuck size of 5/8 inches as well), and a spindle travel of 3.125 (3-1/8) inches. The dimensions of the table are 9.5 x 9.5 inches while the motor is 3.1 amps.
The drill press is backed by a two-year limited warranty from General International. Due to the heavy-duty induction motor, this tool will be long-lasting even through tough jobs. Adding to its durability is the cast-iron head, table, and base design, built to withstand years of use.
As for the convenient features, it has a dual depth stop so the downward and upward stroke travel is easy to adjust. The spindle speed of the drill press is easy to handle as well, using the electronic variable control speed. A display also reads out the digital spindle speed so less guesswork is needed.
What I like about this drill press is the built-in laser pointer for accuracy when you’re using the benchtop tool. The X-shaped crosshairs will easily show you where to drill. Due to the high-quality bearings, the drill press will vibrate less than other tools, ensuring that you’ll be protected from too much user fatigue.
There are also a bunch of T-slots that allow you to use clamps or vise to improve the stability of your material, which is helpful if you want to add more accuracy to your project.
Should You Buy the General International 75-010?
The General International 75-010 will appeal to you if you are starting up your workshop or just want to do some casual to medium-duty woodworking projects at home. While it doesn’t have as much power or as many specs as bigger drill presses, it has sufficient drilling capacity and space allowances for most materials you’ll be working on.
If you are still unsure about the decision, go through the below list of the pros and cons of the tool.
Pros of the General International 75-010
Let’s start with the pros.
It has a portable design without sacrificing power.
At only 75 pounds, as compared to those that weigh 100 to 200 pounds or more, this tool is more portable than your standard drill press. While we know that weight is not an issue with a drill press since it is meant to be stationary, some users prefer to take them to different locations depending on their needs.
Not only does portability allow you to be more flexible in the workshop or area – but it also saves a decent amount of time when you are working on a lot of materials. Rather than moving the materials one by one, positioning the drill press nearby will consume less time and effort in the long run.
There is a laser pointer guide.
A laser pointer guide is a big help for any drill press because it will increase productivity and accuracy at the same time. All you need to do is to use the x-shaped pointer and it will guide you with the right measurement – no guesswork required!
It has a digital display for spindle speed.
While other drill presses only depend on manual settings, this one displays a digital readout, which makes it stand out from the crowd. Digital displays not only ensure better accuracy but it also saves time for the user. These digital controls and readouts are also far more convenient to see and tweak as compared to manual controls.
It has anti-vibration technology.
What I like most about this drill press is the design of the motor, which has anti-vibration technology. It is meant for user comfort thanks to its high-quality bearings inside of the motor. If you’re the type who is new to (or not very comfortable with) drill presses then having low vibration would be helpful to avoid user fatigue.
Cons of the General International 75-010
On the other hand, while it has good points, the product does have some minor drawbacks.
Some parts are slightly stiff.
Although the controls such as the levers and the like are movable and adjustable, it might take some time before they get less stiff. Despite being an inconvenience, it has a good side – the settings won’t be easily changed if bumped while you’re working.
The horsepower isn’t enough for bigger projects.
At only 1/3 HP, it isn’t exactly the kind of power to use for bigger projects, so it is only best for light to medium-duty woodworking and drilling at home or in a workshop.
What Are the Alternatives to the General International 75-010?
Other 12-inch drill presses you might like, if you’re not so sure that the General International 75-010 is right for you, include the WEN 4214 Variable Speed Drill Press (read my review). This tool has a similar spindle-travel of 3-1/8 inches but has a more powerful 2/3 HP induction motor. The speed is also slightly higher at 580 to 3,200 RPM. Aside from the height adjustment, it even has a bevel option up to 45 degrees. Similarly, it has a laser guide and a 5/8-inch chuck size.
Other drill presses from WEN are worth considering as well. You can see my comparison of this brand’s models here.
The Jet 716000 JWDP-12 Drill Press is another similarly-sized tool, which has slightly more power of 1/2 HP. It also has a 3-1/8-inch spindle-travel and an x-shaped laser for guiding your drilling jobs. The drill chuck size is also 5/8 inches just like my previous picks. What’s effective on this drill press is the large paddle switch that makes it easy to control even when you’re multitasking.
If you want a slightly smaller benchtop tool, the Skil 3320-01 3.2 Amp 10-Inch Drill Press is for you. This one has a bigger 1/2-inch chuck size and variable speeds from 570 to 3,050 RPM. Similar to my picks above, it has a laser system but this one has a two-beam configuration for added accuracy. It can be tilted from left to right up to 45 degrees and has a bump-off switch for safety.
Finally, make sure to also read my list of the best drill presses out there.
To sum it up, the General International 75-010 is a solid, well-built tool if you’re looking for a beginner’s drill press.
Although it lacks some horsepower compared to its bigger counterparts, if you’ll be working with mostly small to medium-sized materials and jobs, I think this will suffice. After all, with its 75-pound weight and compact design, it is better for portability rather than for super heavy-duty work.