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  • OT Battery drill recommendations

    My old Dewalt is giving up the ghost. Battery life is down to not much and there's a ton of slop in the spindle (?). I think it's a little over 10 years old.

    I use it for everything... drill, screw driver, even use it to run the trailer jack up and down. And I'm not gentle on it either. For these reasons, I'm avoiding Horrible Freight.

    I like the Dewalt. I used to like Makita, until I bought a replacement Makita that was exactly like the one I had before, and it wasn't. I'm a little suspicious of Ryobi and Rigid. Milwaukee would probably be another good one.

    So what say you good people? Which battery drill have you purchased in the last couple of years that you've been well satisfied with?
    Definition: Racecar - a device that turns money into noise.

  • #2
    Make sure it uses a lithium battery and be aware that brushless motors often result in a more compact drill.
    Look out for a system of different machines using the same batteries, I have a combi drill and a jigsaw with the same battery fitment, and will probably get the matching SDS hammer drill in the future.

    Comment


    • #3
      I switched from Makita to Milwaukee nearly 20 years ago, and almost all my drills corded and cordless are Milwaukee except for a couple very old holdouts I rarely use. I was a contractor for 23 years and my drills got used on job sites every day. I still have an old Makita corded half inch I probably haven't used in 10 years, and an SDS+ rotary hammer drill that gets used once in a while, but all my heavy weights are Milwaukee. My long reach and heavy right angle is a D handle Milwaukee. I have a low RPM hole hawg that will mix a bucket of mud with no strain at all, and my big rotary hammer (1" spline drive) is also a Milwaukee. I've got two Milwakuee cordless 18V that I bought when they first came out that both still work just fine. I'm still using 3 of the 4 original batteries. They get used for everything. Drilling, power tapping, light hammer drilling, screw guns, whatever. I do have a 1/2" corded Rigid drill. Its all right. For a short time when they became a Home Depot store brand they seemed to be better quality than a lot of other tools. I've got a couple great tools from those early days. A contractor's table saw and a bandsaw among them. I just don't think they are as good as they used to be. I feel the same way about DeWalt. Then nobody is as good as they used to be. Even my relatively new Skill worm drive saw (that used to be the standard of the industry) isn't as powerful in my opinion as the older ones.

      If I was shopping for a cordless drill today though I would probably look at Milwaukee first. The only issue in my opinion is that I can't get a strong enough grip on the single surface relatively smooth metal keyless chucks. I sometimes have to put them in low gear and turn them on against a pair of channels locks to clamp down hard enough for a particular difficult task.
      *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

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      • #4
        My vote is for Milwaukee. I had a 14volt drill for many years that served me well. Just sold it about a week ago because I had bought a new 18volt hammer drill and driver a while back.
        Boy does that drill have power and the batteries last for a good amount of time even when using it hard.
        Larry - west coast of Canada

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        • #5
          Every time I pick up my Milwaukee Drill, I kick my self..
          After over 20 years of having every other brand (almost) of battery power, I bought a Milwaukee 2 years ago.
          I kick myself for waiting so long for an absolute dream of a hand tool.

          Rich

          Comment


          • #6
            adding my voice to the choir - I bought a used Milwaukee M18 hammer drill/ impact driver kit for $130 a year ago and love it to bits. I've used the impact driver a lot and the drill less so as I have a couple of B&D cordless drills that are a bit lighter (and the M18 is special), but I have been very impressed with it. Used it to drill a bunch of 1/2" holes in some tree stumps to add salt solution to kill the stumps and it didn't even flinch. It did snap a nice cobalt bit without even noticing. Make sure you get the torque handle though - if it jams it will really hurt your wrist.

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            • #7
              After my truck got broke into and my prized Dewalt 18V tools disappeared I settled on the Rigid brushless tool set. Drill, impact driver, circular saw 7-1/4" blade, and disk grinder the tools are well made, feel well balanced. They are guaranteed for life including th batterys. Time will tell.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by machinejack View Post
                After my truck got broke into and my prized Dewalt 18V tools disappeared I settled on the Rigid brushless tool set. Drill, impact driver, circular saw 7-1/4" blade, and disk grinder the tools are well made, feel well balanced. They are guaranteed for life including th batterys. Time will tell.
                If you register your drill, saw, etc. kit, you can't beat the RIGID guarantee which includes the charger as well.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I'm going to run counter to the direction of this thread.

                  About 20 or 25 years back I got tired of playing battery roulette with the rapidly changing battery styles. I went with Ryobi at the time not expecting MUCH different but attracted to the moderate price and promise of a longer lived standard for the batteries. I've had to buy new batteries from time to time but the original Ryobi tools are still going strong and see lots and lots of use. I'm now up to around a dozen drills, drivers, angle grinders, angle drill, recip saw and recently added a small circular saw. All of these but one have been totally flawless other than one drill where the shaft lock stopped working so the keyless chuck could not be properly used. A bit of internal work restored proper operation

                  I'd class my use of them as quite hard in terms of a home hobby owner of such tools. They've seen action in a lot of house renovation work and building up my new shops. Plus I regularly help out at the clubs I'm with where the tools also see some serious construction work at my hands and the hands of other volunteers.

                  But the real star of all this is that they have held true to the promise to keep the battery packs compatible with the old and new. My new lithium packs still fit the original drill I bought about 25 years back. A drill which is still running like a champ.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Recently bought a bunch of dewalt 20v-max tools
                    They seem more than adequate for my needs (hobbyist/home handyman)
                    I’ve had them only a year or two so can’t comment on longevity
                    The only reason I went with them (over Milwaukee, etc) is that some of their tools are “Made in the USA from globally sourced materials” ... I figure that’s a bit better than not made here at all.

                    A neighbor who is a contractor told me that he goes for whatever is cheap and has a large selection of tools. He said that no matter what he’s going to beat them to death, so why pay top $. His current favorite is Ryobi.

                    YMMV

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by machinejack View Post
                      After my truck got broke into and my prized Dewalt 18V tools disappeared I settled on the Rigid brushless tool set. Drill, impact driver, circular saw 7-1/4" blade, and disk grinder the tools are well made, feel well balanced. They are guaranteed for life including th batterys. Time will tell.
                      Don't forget to register your tools and count shipping into that warranty.
                      *** I always wanted a welding stinger that looked like the north end of a south bound chicken. Often my welds look like somebody pointed the wrong end of a chicken at the joint and squeezed until something came out. Might as well look the part.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Have not screwed around with a Milwaukee since we had one at work... It sheared the outout shaft just behind the chuck one day, while drilling a small hole, something like 1/4 or 5/16". Straight shear, not "broken", not "bent", just twisted right off. It was in-warranty, but we could not get warranty service.

                        We thought that was nice quality (not) and moved on to deWalt, all of which I have used have worked for years.

                        I have two DeWalt drills, both hammer drills, 14.4V NiCd. Both are working well, and I really do not use the newer one much. The old one, that I have had for a long time, is still good, and is the "go to" portable drill. It looks a bit worse for wear, but no reason to discard a working drill.

                        I've had the batteries rebuilt, but that is about all the maintenance they have had. Even the chuck on the original is still fine.

                        The Lithium batteries are fine, but I do not like the way they work and then quit dead. Some that have failed (at another place of work) failed because the internal maintainer circuit in the battery failed, either would not let much charge in, or would shut off way too early. Naturally that always happened right after warranty expired. Some failed before warrant expired, but for one or another reason warranty was not honored.

                        At least non of the lithium units actually burned up (yet).
                        1601

                        Keep eye on ball.
                        Hashim Khan

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Bob La Londe View Post
                          Don't forget to register your tools and count shipping into that warranty.
                          No shipping, bring them to TOOL Rental/Tool Repair at the Depot.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by BCRider View Post
                            I'm going to run counter to the direction of this thread.

                            About 20 or 25 years back I got tired of playing battery roulette with the rapidly changing battery styles. I went with Ryobi at the time not expecting MUCH different but attracted to the moderate price and promise of a longer lived standard for the batteries. I've had to buy new batteries from time to time but the original Ryobi tools are still going strong and see lots and lots of use. I'm now up to around a dozen drills, drivers, angle grinders, angle drill, recip saw and recently added a small circular saw. All of these but one have been totally flawless other than one drill where the shaft lock stopped working so the keyless chuck could not be properly used. A bit of internal work restored proper operation

                            I'd class my use of them as quite hard in terms of a home hobby owner of such tools. They've seen action in a lot of house renovation work and building up my new shops. Plus I regularly help out at the clubs I'm with where the tools also see some serious construction work at my hands and the hands of other volunteers.

                            But the real star of all this is that they have held true to the promise to keep the battery packs compatible with the old and new. My new lithium packs still fit the original drill I bought about 25 years back. A drill which is still running like a champ.
                            Hi,

                            Yep, that's why I bought my Ryobi tools 20 years ago - drill, small circlesaw, sawzall, flashlight, sander, and jigsaw. This past winter I finally had to replace a couple of my batteries. So I went with the lithium packs and charger. I can still charge my remaining old style battery packs on the new charger. Never an issue for heavy homeowner use.

                            As far as commercial use, I seen every top brand, fail with little use. It's gotten to a point where if you get a full year out of any of them you should consider yourself lucky.
                            If you think you understand what is going on, you haven't been paying attention.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              That's funny, fjy's #10 "Made in the USA from globally sourced materials" was on the case containing a Milwaukee hole cutter that I bought a fortnight ago.
                              Another plus with a battery drill is "all metal gearbox".
                              Bosch are good with spares for discontinued models.

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