On January 19, 2021, I posted an article on how to fix an out of true chuck. Unfortunately, I was wrong and I wish to correct that. I stumbled across this mistake today when I was building myself a drying rack. My bit became extremely wobbly and at first I thought I didn’t put it in right so I took it out and put it back in and the same wobble was still there. After careful examination, I noticed one jaw wasn’t gripping the bit. So, I pulled the chuck apart, checked the springs and looked for any debris that might be sticking the jaw. After I was satisfied all was good, I put the chuck back together again and gave it a test whirl and WAMMY the same jaw was getting stuck. Once more I pulled it apart and looked for the culprit and there, it was staring right back at me or should I say screaming “you moron you put me upside down.
If you look at the inset of whatever that cylindrical object is called, you will notice that it’s not designed to hold the bit in as I stupidly thought, but it was designed to ride on the shaft centered so it doesn’t slip or move to one side as it did to me. This bit moves the jaws in and out of the chuck. So the correct way to install this bit is below.
Also to avoid damaging this bit you never push the drill bit all the way so it bottoms out onto the cylindrical bit, to avoid damaging it over time which looking at this photo there may be a small indentation.
So, now that it’s fixed, is there a wobble? Not a huge one like there was, and not any less than there always were. I was at the flea market last Sunday and there’s only one seller in the entire market that sells only vintage hand tools. I checked three 2A hand drills and a smaller one I wanted and every one of them had the same amount of wobble as mine. Take a modern day drill in comparison and you will immediately notice the difference. The modern drill spins, true. I wasn’t around when these hand drills were built new to know whether they were built with the wobble. I remember reading somewhere that the chap who designed the 2A said that out of all the hand drills they’ve designed and built, the 2A is the best. With that in mind I can’t lay any blame on the manufacturers, nor can I say over time this buggered up. What I know is that all the hand drills I’ve tested at the markets perform the same as mine, and that is extremely annoying when I’m trying to be precise when working on something delicate. If I get a chance to try out a modern day chuck that fits this drill, I would like to see if this would zero out the wobble and make it perform like a modern day quality drill.
I’m so used to working with it, it would feel alien to use a modern cordless. If the opportunity arises that I find a non-used version of the 2A or a toolmaker decides they will make one and it doesn’t cost $1000 as what’s becoming the trend nowadays because of the “unplugged” hype, coupled with the cost of production, labour etc etc, I will buy one. Lee Valley has introduced a hand drill that’s perfect for those who work on boxes, but nothing larger.
Out of the three hand braces I have 8, 10 and 12″ the 12 is cactus, it will not spin true whilst thankfully the other two do. If you look closely in videos of people using a brace, you will see many as they’re boring that the bit isn’t turning true. This will cause the hole you’re boring to be slightly larger than the bit. This is the dilemma you face with vintage tools, they’re old and a lot of them are out of their use by date. We can only do the best we can through the limits we’ve imposed upon ourselves through our love for hand tool woodworking.
I want to apologise for making that earlier error which mislead you.