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Old 06-11-2008, 06:19 PM   #1
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Good Cordless Drill?


I have a 14-volt Skil cordless drill that is my first cordless tool, and I have had it for about three years. It doesn't have enough torque to drive some screws, and the battery always seems to be run down when I need it. I'm just a weekend DIYer, but I think I need something with more power and a better battery. I will mostly use it to drill holes and drive screws.

Any recommendations?

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Old 06-11-2008, 06:49 PM   #2
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Good Cordless Drill?


I bought a 19.2 volt Craftsman drill last year and love it. Also, Ryobi makes a good drill. I assume you dont want to spend an arm and a leg being a DIYer. If, however, you want one of the best go buy a Dewalt. In my opinion probably the best you can buy. Just make sure you get at least an 18 volt and you will be good.

Something else to think about, the new thing is Lithium Ion batteries. You will pay a premium, but supposed to get max battery life.

Hard to say anything else without a price range...

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Old 06-11-2008, 07:48 PM   #3
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Good Cordless Drill?


If price isn't a big issue I've heard great things about the panasonic and the makita...I don't own either yet, I just have a POS firestorm that I hate.
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:21 PM   #4
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Good Cordless Drill?


Your search is OVER:

http://www.amazon.com/Makita-LCT200W...=21M62ZRNA8CWX
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Old 06-11-2008, 09:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baksdak View Post
If, however, you want one of the best go buy a Dewalt. In my opinion probably the best you can buy. Just make sure you get at least an 18 volt and you will be good.
..
Got to disagree with that. Panasonic, hands down, IMO. My 15.6v Panasonics with 3.5ah batteries, will still outlast and out work the Dewalts, even with their three year old batteries. The "SUV" voltage races are mostly a marketing gimmick. I have seen 18v drills that had 1ah batteries, and couldn't drive 15 screws. Buying on pure voltage without considering the ah capacity is like buying a "6 horsepower" air compressor that runs on 110 volt/15 amp circuit....ain't gonna happen.

Last edited by troubleseeker; 06-11-2008 at 09:18 PM.
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Old 06-11-2008, 09:25 PM   #6
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Good Cordless Drill?


Ryobi, Craftsman, and Black and Decker aren't great products, but they'll work for most DIYers. They're just not professional quality.

Panasonic is a great drill.

Makita is a great drill.

DeWalts are great drills, but are getting a little expensive for their level of quality.

I have Ridgid drills and impact drivers and they're real workhorses with the lithium ion 18v batteries. I no longer use my DeWalt 18v since getting them.

If I had lots of money, my drill of choice would be the Festool. Unbeatable, but priced accordingly.
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Old 06-12-2008, 10:27 AM   #7
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OK, no argument about how good the Panasonic is. However, this is a DIY site and I believe the Pany is generally too much for the average home owner.
I use the same Panasonic drill on occasion for installing cabinets and it's actually a pain. It's just too heavy and if you're not careful, it has so much torque, it will snap a screw head off. It's my electrician's drill and for his line of work, the Panasonic IS the way to go.
I say the Makita is the best for this instance because of how light it is, how powerful it is and how quickly the batteries charge. I had this discussion with another DIYer on this site and he went with the Panasonic. He later agreed it was too much for general weekend work (and mentioned something about a dislocated shoulder after prolonged working with it ).

Here's my little chart I did about drills. Some may apply, some may not:

Milwaukee 18v Drill Litho: 4 lbs, 18v, 1.5Ah, 400 in-lbs, 30 min charge
Milwaukee 24v: 6.7 lbs, 28v, 3.0Ah, 600 in-lbs, 60 min charge
Panasonic 18v Hammer: 5.8 lbs, 18v, 3.5Ah, 425 in-lbs, 65 min charge
Panasonic 15.6v Drill: 4.8 lbs, 15.6v, 3.5Ah, 390 in-lbs, 55 min charge
Makita Drill: 3.5 lbs, 18v, 1.5Ah, 450 in-lbs, 15 min charge
Makita Impact Driver: 2.8 lbs, 18v, 1.5Ah, 1280 in-lbs, 15 min charge
Dewalt 18v Drill Litho: 6.3 lbs, 18v, 2.4Ah, 500 in-lbs, 60 min charge

The Makita kit I linked above is only about $35 more than just the drill. When you consider everything, the Makita kit, at that price, is your best overall option.
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Old 06-12-2008, 01:55 PM   #8
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Good Cordless Drill?


Life's too short to have to put up with crappy tools, even if it's just on the weekends.

Other than that, my major peeve with many cordless drills is weight. It's very tiring to use a 5 pound drill over your head on a ladder for any length of time, so I'd make weight a primary consideration. I've got a 12V Makita that I've used for almost 10 years now. Got new NiMH batteries for it last year, and it's still my most used tool. I find it plenty powerful for 95% of what I do, and if I need more, I've got a milwaukee corded hammer drill that can go through absolutely anything.
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Old 06-12-2008, 06:19 PM   #9
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Good Cordless Drill?


Thanks for the responses to my question about cordless drills. Any of these recommended drills would beat my wimpy Skil drill hands down. It won't drive a screw half the time, much less snap its head off!

By the way, how many years are the batteries supposed to last before they need to be replaced?
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:53 PM   #10
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[quote=angus242;129879]OK, no argument about how good the Panasonic is. However, this is a DIY site and I believe the Pany is generally too much for the average home owner.
I had this discussion with another DIYer on this site and he went with the Panasonic. He later agreed it was too much for general weekend work (and mentioned something about a dislocated shoulder after prolonged working with it )./quote]


I'm not in disagreement with that (probably more $ than average DIY wants to spend), but my reply was directly about pwpoolboom recommending the Dewalt, with his qualifier that if price was no object the Dewalt was the best thing out there.

As for snapping screw heads off........think CLUTCH.

Last edited by troubleseeker; 06-12-2008 at 07:58 PM.
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Old 06-12-2008, 07:58 PM   #11
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Good Cordless Drill?


Panasonic 15.6v Hands down! I have 2. Had Dewalt and Bosh before. The Panasonic is far superior.
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Old 06-12-2008, 09:36 PM   #12
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Good Cordless Drill?


I looks like I should figure on spending up to $200 for a good drill. I bought the cheapo Skil drill last time, and unfortunately I got what I paid for.
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Old 06-13-2008, 08:30 AM   #13
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Good Cordless Drill?


I'm retired but an avid DIY'er. When the stock markets up, I buy Makita, Hitachi tools etc, but when the markets down, I go cheap. A while ago during a downturn, I bought an 18v drill driver from Harbor Freight for $15 plus another $10 for an extra battery. I wasn't expecting much but when I charged it up I took a box of three inch deck screws and started driving them into the 1.5" side of a 2x6. After driving half a box without it missing a beat I got bored and stopped. I have used Dewalts belonging to friends and while I haven't used them side by side, I can tell you the Harbor Freight tool is an animal and can hold it's own. Maybe it wont last as long as the Dewalt but you can buy eight of them for the price of the Dewalt.
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Old 06-13-2008, 09:18 AM   #14
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Good Cordless Drill?


I've heard people say the same thing about the grizzly drivers. Certainly not the quality or longevity of a top-end tool, but at a quarter the price or less, perhaps worth it.

Of course if there's any problem at all, you will likely need to toss it, because I'd guess repair is not an option without a trip to china.

I think I paid $140 for my makita driver about 8 years ago. The cheap ones would have to last a year or two on average to keep up with that (and mine's still going). So I guess it might not be worth it if you're a moderately demanding user.

Worth considering at any rate.
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Old 06-13-2008, 12:11 PM   #15
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Good Cordless Drill?


I bought a dewalt 18v 20 years ago(or best part of) and it drove a whole sheet4X4 of underlayment in hard old floors of 3" square screws then without a recharge. STILL on original batteries but I would admit they dont last as long anymore. For occasioanal use and two ,one in charger and one in drill,I can still get by rather good!!

Wish I had NEW batteries of the new type but they are generally priced as high as a new drill.

So as far as battery life,they have been good. Leave(take them in at night) them inside the house in winter tho so they dont freeze!!

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