Whitworth Pillar Drilling Machine

Joseph Whitworth and Company

Pillar drill, made by Joseph Whitworth & Co., Manchester, c. 1860.

J. Whitworth & Co. developed their first power-driven drilling machine in 1847. This machine is numbered 197. The power source is linked via bevel gears to the drill bit. The drill has a spear-shaped bit. It has four speeds at which the bit can rotate. The table has a lateral movement that is adjusted by a screw running underneath it. This enables the operator the position the workpiece directly under the drill bit more easily. The 1854 Encyclopedia of Useful Arts described Whitworth drills as “… one of the most complete tools of the kind ever constructed”. This machine was presented to the Museum by the University of Manchester’s Engineering Dept in 1974.


Hand and Machine Tools
Object Number:
Gift of The University of Manchester, Engineering Department

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