WEN 8-In 5-Speed Drill Press

Last updated date: September 4, 2019

DWYM Score

9.1

WEN 8-In 5-Speed Drill Press

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We looked at the top Drill Presses and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Drill Press you should buy.

Update as September 4, 2019:
Checkout The Best Drill Press for a detailed review of all the top drill presses.

Overall Take

For the best overall value on a fantastic drill press, you’ll want to check out the Wen 4208 8-inch, 5-speed Drill Press. This tool is loaded with outstanding features including a ½ inch keyed chuck and on-board key storage, five speeds, ultimate accuracy in drilling and a 1/3 horsepower motor for extreme power. In addition to all that, it is lightweight and compact so it’ll fit in most work spaces and can be easily transported to and from job sites. You can find a great product without spending a fortune when you choose this Wen Drill Press.


In our analysis of 57 expert reviews, the WEN 8-In 5-Speed Drill Press placed 3rd when we looked at the top 8 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

Remember when power tools were actually powerful? WEN’s 8-inch swing, 5-speed drill press is small but powerful enough to drill through metal, wood, plastics, and other materials. Max drill capacity is 1/2” in 1” thick cast iron. When you need accurate, repeatable holes, this tool will do the job more conveniently and precisely than a hand held drill. The perfect size for the shop and portable enough to take to the job. Constructed with a rigid frame consisting of cast iron: head, table, and base ensuring accurate holes. Its powerful induction motor features ball bearings for an extended life and it all comes together with smooth and balanced performance even at high speeds. The ½” chuck with JT33 spindle taper gives you versatility with a variety of bits. Worktable bevels 45° left and right for those tricky operations for the perfect right angles consistently. The base contains predrilled holes for mounting onto a bench or work stand. The slotted table allows for mounting clamps and vises for effective workholding. Since 1951, WEN has proudly produced innovative powered tools focused on value delivering meaningful features that will help you complete and enjoy the work as much as the project. Remember when you could drill holes in any material with ease? Remember WEN.

Expert Reviews

Expert Summarized Score

9.3
8 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

8.6
1,105 user reviews

What experts liked

Another great feature of the Wen 4208 drill press is its 5 speeds, which fall in between the 620 to 3100 RPM range (620, 1100, 1720, 2340, and 3100). These multiple speeds give you the chance to match drill bit sizes to the material you are drilling so that you can achieve maximum accuracy.
- Drill Press View
April 29, 2016 | Full review
The base, table, and drill head are all made of cast iron, giving rigidity where it's needed most
- BestReviews
The speed is where we see the versatility of this unit. It has a 5 variable speed of 740, 1,100, 1,530, 2,100, 3,140 RPM that easily allows you to adapt to the materials you are drilling.
- Wood Working Toolkit
Durability: For a small benchtop drill press, the WEN is surprisingly tough. Made from solid high-quality metal, it will last you much longer than a drill press made with cheap plastic.
- Tool + Bark
January 19, 2019 | Full review
The 1/3 horsepower motor offers sufficient power when taking on even the hardest materials. The WEN 4208 has five adjustable speed settings to choose from – 740 RPM, 1,100 RPM, 1,530 RPM, 2,100 RPM, and 3,140 RPM. Y
- Tool Powers
The press sacrifices the more flexible variable control dial for a five speed switch that extends all the way to 3140 RPM.
- The Spruce
February 26, 2019 | Full review
Powerful 5-speed, able to handle all of your different materials and situations, it can also handle various different sizes/thicknesses.
- Drill Press Pro
The drill press does not produce any noise and works as quietly as possible leading to a better working environment in your workshop.
- My Drill Press
September 28, 2015 | Full review

What experts didn't like

Manual alignment is required
- Drill Press View
April 29, 2016 | Full review
As an entry-level tool, it is not packed with features
- BestReviews
Weak motor of 1/3 HP can stall when drilling high-density metal of more than 1/2 inch. Not recommended for hardened steel.
- Wood Working Toolkit
Top heavy: This particular WEN model is slightly top heavy. To prevent it from moving around while you work, you’ll need to bolt this drill press to your workbench before you start.
- Tool + Bark
January 19, 2019 | Full review
Although the manufacturer boasts a 2-inch depth in drilling, some customers found that this drill doesn’t come with enough torque to even get past the first inch or so of soft materials like oak or maple.
- Tool Powers
For some larger objects the WEN 4208 may not be able to accommodate, but this is rarely the case for your average DIY or professional.
- Drill Press Pro
Doesn’t provide simplicity; drill press can occasionally wobble throughout usage
- My Drill Press
September 28, 2015 | Full review

An Overview On Drill Presses

Drilling into metal, wood and other materials can be tough, especially if you have nothing to anchor it in place. A drill press helps you drill holes into almost any type of material both quickly and efficiently. There are two major types of drill presses: floor and benchtop. Although floor models can tackle bigger projects, benchtop drill presses take up less space and can handle most drilling tasks with ease.

First and foremost, you’ll want to make sure your drill press can handle the challenges you’ll put in front of it. That generally means versatility. Drill presses with speed control built in make it easy to switch from one speed to another to customize your drilling power. You should also look at how many options you’ll have for speeds. Some drill presses only have a couple of speed settings, while others give you the option of as many as 16 speeds.

Weight is another factor. Drill presses usually aren’t portable items, so heavier can actually be better. It will provide a sturdiness you’ll need when working with heavy-duty metals. But some bench drill presses are much larger than others, so make sure you have room for the model you choose.

Your first concern when you buy your drill press will be setting it up. Weight factors into this. You may invest in a heavier drill press due to the stability it provides when tackling tougher jobs, but keep in mind that you may need help when it’s time to set it up. A 300 pound-plus drill press will be tough to tackle alone.

There are many little things that add up to accuracy when drilling. One is the type of drill bits and chucks you use, but another is simply the ability to see what you’re doing. Many drill presses have lights to illuminate your work area. So be sure to look for that, especially if your shop isn’t well lit. Some drill bits have a built-in scale to help you choose the depth and keep things consistent throughout a project.

Lastly, there’s the issue of price. You can pay more than $1,000 for a drill press, but you can also find them in the low hundreds. Determine your budget and exactly how much you’re willing to spend. You may find some of the more advanced features aren’t worth the extra money.

The Drill Press Buying Guide

  • One of the first factors to consider when looking for a drill press is versatility. Since you’ll probably be working with different materials, you’ll need a drill press versatile enough to shift from drilling a hole in a thin sheet of metal to handling an extra-thick piece of wood. The DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press has a quick-release feed handle to change the speed, even though you’ll only get two speed settings: 450 or 300 rotations per minute. The WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill ranges from 580-3,200 RPMs, building in a speed regulator that you simply turn when you want to adjust the speed. The WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill’s variable speed mechanism is mechanical, giving you consistent power and torque no matter what speed you choose. The LED screen on the WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill makes it even easier to control the speed since you can see how fast your drill is working at all times.
  • One of the key elements in your drill press is the belt drive system. You’ll want to find a drill that has auto-tension for its drive system, which means speed changes flow seamlessly and your tension and motor alignment are consistent from start to finish.
  • Your drill press will be fitted with a chuck that will need to be changed from one project to the next. The DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press makes it easy to switch between a 3/4-inch and 1/2-inch keyed chuck – no tools needed. Some don’t like the looser fit they get with a quick-change system, though.
  • The motor on your drill press also plays into how powerful it is. You’ll want to find a drill that has a 3/4 horsepower motor that can handle a wide variety of materials. With the DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press, you get a 10-AMP motor that can power right through even heavy steels.
  • The WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill’s 2/3 horsepower, 5-AMP motor struggles with metal sheets, which means it may take longer than you expect. It’s best for those who plan to primarily work with wood.
  • Although size can indicate the power of the drill, you’ll want to consider the convenience and placing within your workspace. The DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press measures at 22.4 x 6.5 x 19.3 inches and the WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill, at 13.5 x 36.6 x 16.8 inches.
  • Build contributes heavily to how long any tool lasts. But with a drill press, it also offers a sturdiness that helps with your projects. The DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press has a strong magnet. The design can lead to some wobbling in the cutters and the drill chuck with certain jobs, though.
  • Another factor impacting the DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press is the fact that it has a 4 3/8-inch drill travel that helps it reach even farther than competitors.
  • If you’re looking for a low price on a drill press, the  DEWALT 2-Speed Magnetic Drill Press is mid-range.
  • You may also want to find a drill with guides on the head. These guides make it easy to see what you’re doing, improving your accuracy while you’re drilling.
  • Another feature that can help you monitor your work is a light. The WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill comes with work lights to help with visibility.
  • Beware of powerful drills as they can tend to overheat causing a lapse in work time while you wait for it to cool down.
  • Assembly can be a bit complicated with some models, so keep that in mind before your drill press arrives. The WEN 12-Inch Variable Speed Drill is easier to put together than most. With the heavier drill presses, keep in mind that you may need a second person to maneuver it while putting it together.