Powermatic PM2800 Variable Speed Drill Press Review (18-Inch)

Powermatic PM2800The Powermatic PM2800 is a drill press designed to make finishing any woodworking project easier. The PM2800 has received positive reviews from customers worldwide, and retailers that specialize in selling hardware and other products designed for manufacturing and woodworking project completion. While there are a many drill presses that could be considered comparable to this specific model, several innovative features of the Powermatic PM2800 have influenced its popularity. Let’s have a quick look at some of the popular features.

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Powermatic PM2800 Key Features


In order to benefit from all of the features of the drill press, a potential buyer must first work to learn and understand them. The key features of the Powermatic PM2800 are:

  • Additional Voltage Accumulation
  • Work Area Illumination
  • Dual Laser System
  • Adjustable Table
  • Stable Work Surface

Each of the five features commonly referenced by owners of the drill press can affect a buyers ability to complete high quality wood projects.


Additional Voltage Accumulations


The Powermatic PM2800 has a 1 horsepower motor and can support voltages of 115V to 230V with the motors protected by totally enclosed fan cooled (TEFC) chambers that keep the motors safe from overheating during usage. The machine generally accumulates 115V of power when in operation; however, the machine could be converted to receive 230V for a stronger performance when necessary. The additional power is extremely useful when completing larger projects that require the use of large pieces of wood and faster speeds.


Work Area Illumination


One of the downsides to using a drill press in a work room is that the lack of lighting in most work areas is insufficient for completing fine woodwork. The strategically placed Light Emitting Diodes (LED) are powerful enough to illuminate an entire working area without causing a glare that makes it difficult to complete work without straining the eyes. Though the light is placed beneath the head of the drill press to protect your eyes from the strain, the placement does not affect the operator’s ability to use the light to better view the work surface.


Dual Laser System


In addition to the LED lights, the Powermatic PM2800 utilizes laser technology; one of the latest innovations in professional quality drill presses. The PM2800 has a secondary on and off switch that allows users to active the dual laser system at any point in their project. The dual lasers create an “X” mark on the piece of wood being worked, allowing users to accurately measure the area they are drilling without difficulty. Using the dual laser system helps to prevent common calculation errors that can lead to flawed measurements and improperly completed projects.


Powermatic PM2800 Adjustable Table


While many drill presses have set table widths, the dimensions of the Powermatic PM2800 are completely adjustable allowing users to control the size of their work area. The table of the PM2800 starts at a basic 14 by 16 inches, the typical work space area needed for average woodworking projects. However, if a user needs additional space the work area can be expanded by an additional 30 inches. Along with being expandable, the adjustable table can be tilted to angles of 90 degrees to the left or the right before being locked into place. The ability to tilt the table makes it easier to place and work pieces of wood with irregular shapes. Also, the PM2800 has a T-slot grove that allows users to gauge or check their measurements while they are completing their project.


Stable Work Surface


One of the most common complaints of drill press owners is the lack of stability in their work surfaces. Attempting to complete a project on a table that may move at any moment increases your chances of ruining expensive wood or damaging your drill press. The Powermatic PM2800 has a long table with a steel column that is 1/8 inch in diameter along with the rigidly and stability needed for completing projects. Each drill press is able to support hundreds of pounds worth of weight without fear of vibration.

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What’s Included


  • Assembly Rack With One Column
  • Drill Press Base
  • Table Bracket
  • Table
  • Three Down-Feed Handles
  • Drift Key
  • Chuck
  • Arbor
  • Shift Knob
  • Locking Handle
  • All Required Hardware
  • Owner’s Manual
  • Warranty Card


Is There a Warranty?


Yes, the PM2800 Powermatic comes with a five year manufacturer’s warranty on all parts and labor.


What Customers are Saying


Like most products that have received feedback from retailers and clients, there are certain features that are praised more than the useful features that are commonly promoted by retailers. The dual laser system is the one feature that owners of the Powermatic PM2800 discuss frequently. Being able to easily mark a piece of wood being worked without fearing a vital measuring error decreases the number of ruined projects and wasted wood. Additionally, the detailed assembly instructions and included hardware enable buyers to being using their drill press almost immediately. Though the PM2800 is not the cheapest drill press on the market, those who have purchased on believe it is more than worth the initial investment.


Any Complaints?


The only complaint that was made more than once by those who have purchased the drill press is that it occasionally malfunctions after the first few uses. Buyers who experienced this defect were extremely upset when the product they purchased and assembled stopped working almost immediately after the first use. However, some owners later admitted that the malfunctions were caused by improper initial assembly. Fortunately, the manufacturer was able to quickly replace any drill press that did not work as advertised during the five year coverage period. Also, users were able to get help online and on the telephone from customer support specialists in order to avoid assembly errors in the future.


The Good and the Bad


Before making any major hardware purchase, always spend time making a list of pros and cons that could affect your final choice. Being able to refer to a list of the good and bad points of a product while comparison shopping, will help you avoid forgetting or overlooking an important detail at a crucial moment. The good features of the Powermatic PM2800 are:

  • Extensive Warranty
  • All Hardware Included
  • Sturdy Design
  • Laser System
  • Table Lighting
  • Sturdy Expandable Table


The potentially bad features of the drill press are:

  • Time Consuming Assembly
  • Confusing Assembly Instructions
  • Malfunctioning Equipment When Assembled Improperly


Final Thoughts


The ability to complete quality woodwork at home is one way to save money on furniture and household repairs. However, without the proper drill press a relaxing holiday can quickly become an expensive and frustrating pastime. The Powermatic PM2800 is a quality drill press that provides consistent results with the backing of a long warranty.

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