What Are the Uses of a Drilling Machine?

A drilling machine, a piece of equipment that some may recognize more as a “drilling press,” is one of the most invaluable tools that anyone can have. They come in a wide variety of shapes and styles, from small battery-powered models to giant standalone machines that utilize hydraulics. In a very basic sense, a drilling machine simply puts a specifically sized hole into something.

Today, however, let’s go beyond the basics to see what this handy tool can do! Did you know that a drilling machine has six basic uses?


Drilling: Probably the most common use of a drilling machine is for basic drilling. By carving out a hole in something, various different components can then be installed. For the homeowner, drilling out holes for screws in a deck can help to prevent the wood boards from splitting during the installation process. For the contractor, drilling out holes can allow for bolting, riveting, and other fastening tasks to become much simpler.

Reaming: Reaming is sort of like drilling, but there must be a hole in place already. That’s because this task widens an existing hole. You would use the drilling machine to make a smaller hole larger. This is often useful in the metalworking process because small holes can become incrementally wider without risking damage to the building materials.

Boring: The kids might say that you’re “boring,” but they’re not talking about using a drilling machine on you! Different from drilling, boring is more like a “punch” that you put through something. It is a much quicker process than drilling, but the end result is essentially the same: you get a hole in something that you can then use for another purpose.

Counterboring: Counterboring is a lot like reaming, where you’re widening an existing hole, but in this process the hole isn’t widened the entire length. A shallow widening is done instead, often so that the head of a screw or a bolt can become flush with the base materials. The widening of the hole creates a flat surface.

Countersinking: Whereas counterboring creates a flat surface, using a drilling machine to countersink will create a slanted, or conical addition, to an already existing hole. The reason to countersink is the same – to create a flush surface for the fasteners that are being used.

Tapping: Tapping is used when internal threads need to be installed in a hole that has already been drilled or bored out. This is helpful when a fastener needs to be tightly secured and most people see tapped products when they purchase furniture that they assemble on their own at home.


As you can see, a drilling machine is a very useful tool that has a myriad of different uses during the building or repair process. Whether you use a full-sized industrial machine or you have a simple set of power tools that you use on a regular basis, you have in your hands something that will allow you to make anything!

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