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April 2, 2014

Do you know what this is?

OSKALOOSA —

This past week's artifact from the Nelson Pioneer Farm is a Post Drill Press.

Several people ventured guesses as to the identity of the artifact.

Richard Van Weelden wrote a letter in which he writes: “ The picture in Herald of March 26 is a Hand operated drill press.”

Dorothy Vos wrote via email: “The artifact is a hand operated drill press.  It is attached to a wooden studding in the Nelson Barn.  When the first Craft Festivals were held in the early 70’s it is one of the antique pieces of hand tools that were used for demonstrations.  The Nelson barn is full of old hand operated tools.

Pat Ancell also wrote in an email. He said, “This is a hand operated drill press. Side crank turns the drill. Top ring has a ratchet that drives down the press. We had one like this where Larry attached a motor and belt to the flywheel to drive the drill.

Dan Kalbach wrote via email: “I'm betting you get a lot of correct answers on this one.  Pictured is a "post drill", which basically was an early hand-cranked version of the modern drill press.  Very handy indeed, a ratchet/screw mechanism applied pressure to the drill bit as the crank was turned.  Because of the low speed, and great force applied to the work piece, a post drill was capable of drilling hardened steel.

Jay Bruxvoort also wrote in an email: “ This is an early version of what we call a drillpress. While you turn the handle on the right to turn the bit; the wheel on the top is rotated by the cam arm to move the bit down.  My grandfather had one of these in his barn and we had a lot of fun playing with it.”

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