Everyone who likes to work with their hands probably has a favorite tool in their collection. For me it is a 1941 Dunlap Drill Press that I inherited from my grandpa.
This old drill press was bought new back in in 1941 by my Grandpa Gayle at Sears and resided on his garage workbench for as long as I remember. According some info we found on the internet, "the Dunlap line replaced the original Sears Companion line in 1941 and the drill press was manufactured for Sears by Atlas. When WWII started, production was stopped to concentrate on the war effort. When production ressumed after the war ended, King-Seeley started manufacturing for Sears and the machines took on a new look and grey color scheme."
Over the years I always loved the drill press. I would visit Grandpa's garage when I needed the drill press for various projects, and he and I would drill away. Grandpa always had a can of oil at the ready to cool down the bit when I got a little overanxious to push through. We did a lot of bonding over the years with the drill press and when he passed, it was the one thing I wanted so that I could keep close to him. To me, it is more than a drill press. It is a conversation piece, a time capsule, and a link directly back to someone who meant the world to me.
In case you are wondering, the drill still works, clearly a nod to the legacy of quality American tools, and right now I am saving up the money to have it restored. I think I found a guy in South Carolina, but I have to figure out how to get it there. When it is done, I hope to share with you the "after" photos and proudly show what it looked like when my Grandpa walked in to Sears 71 years ago.
Tech Editor - Four Wheeler Magazine