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Old 11-30-2010, 07:13 AM   #1
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


Ok, so from what I am seeing Dewalt seems to be the contractors/professionals brand of choice!? I would LOVE to buy all Dewalt but there is no way I could afford them, nor "REALLY" justifiy them if I could. I am a computer geek by trade, but know my way around a workbench well enough, at least I think so. Anyway, I am working on renovating a 60's home, not doing MAJOR work, MOSTLY cosmetic but not strictly. (moving some water lines/ drain lines/ black iron gas lines,) drywall, refinishing floors etc. I would like to buy some decent tools, don't have to be Dewalt but not exactly looking at Harbor Freight either. (unless of course someone has experience that says this would be good enough). As I said I will not be using them to make a living, but don't want them break in the middle of a job either. Skil? Black and Decker? Milwilkie (sp?) etc?

Thank YOU

I am actually getting a Dewalt screwgun in trade for a .22 pellet gun off of Craiglist. Thought that was a pretty good trade?

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Old 11-30-2010, 07:18 AM   #2
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


MY preference is towards corded tools, if that makes a difference?

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Old 11-30-2010, 07:32 AM   #3
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


Tools I use almost daily I prefer to be DeWalt. My cordless circular saw, my compound miter saw, my cordless drill....
I also have other tools that I use much less that are lesser quality, but "good enough" for occasional jobs. Like my drill press, band saw, Rigid planer, etc....

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Old 11-30-2010, 07:44 AM   #4
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


I bought a Rigid miter saw and a Makita impact driver during my deck building adventure this summer. I'll give 2 thumbs up to both those brands. I looked at the DeWalt impact driver also, but it was more expensive and weighed almost twice as much.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:00 AM   #5
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


So I am assuming Rigid would be a middle of the road? Which I guess is what I am REALLY looking for is "Middle of the Road" tools! What do you guys think of Hiatchi (sp?)
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:11 AM   #6
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


Some years back, I did my homework, and began a concerted effort to switch all of my cordless tools to Dewalt, and have been very satisfied with that decision. But, as for corded tools, while I have some Dewalt, I have others as well, because, without the battery factor, I buy them on an individual basis, based on fit, finish, comfort, price, etc. And, although I always buy tools that I expect to last for as long as I will have use for them, as DM mentioned, often times, my anticipated frequency of use plays a role in this decision.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:16 AM   #7
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


I don't own any Hitachi tools, but know a couple of guys who have their miter saws, and more who have their saws and drills, and while I don't know their long-term performance, the ones that I have seen seemed to perform very well.
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Old 11-30-2010, 08:53 AM   #8
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


There is only one common brand that I tend to stay away from: Ryobi. But that is my own preference. Many here seem to use and like the tools from this brand. My experience with Hitachi is limited, but I don't veiw it as at the same level as some of the others.

As far as dewalt, makita, bosch, rigid, porter cable, milwaukee, delta, etc.... I have examples from all and am happy with all. I have noticed in some brands, however, that have differing quality versions of a given tool.

My suggestion is to pick from one of these, see how it "feels" to you in the store. Does it feel solid? Tough enough? Do you like the controls? Is it too heavy? Make your choice from that and I suspect you will be happy with any of these brands.

Consider, too, the warranty. I think rigid still has lifetime warranty available. Batteries do wear out, even on the best brands.
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Old 11-30-2010, 04:34 PM   #9
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


DIY tools don't necessarily have to hold up to the daily beating that contractor tools do but if they are precision tools like a miter or table saw you want to look for precision first. You can skimp on the abuse factor somewhat. One thing to look for in a table saw for example is an accurate rip fence that stays parallel to the blade once the blade has been properly set up and adjusted.

I made do with a cheapo wet tile saw for cutting tiles but it was hassle aligning the fence with the blade especially considering the blade was not lined up straight to the arbor and there was no adjusting the blade. The fence did hold once i locked it in though. My Craftman 19V impact driver serves me well for what i use it for. I'm disappointed with the matching 19V cordless drill- the chuck doesn't hold as well as my Craftman 18V cordless. I took a corded B&D 1/2" drill back and did much better with a comparable Porter Cable for 20 dollars more. I wouldn't trade my Dewalt reciprocal saw for anything. The best feature of that is the 4-way blade mount. Still haven't committed to a table saw.

Some of the Rigid tools look good and solid for the price. Their miter saw is pretty close in price to the higher end saws out there. Sometimes you can get a good feel for a tool by holding it in your hands but better still if you can try it out.

Last edited by Jim F; 11-30-2010 at 04:37 PM.
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Old 12-01-2010, 12:10 PM   #10
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


As a contractor, I use all Makita for drills, Milwaukee sawzall, a 12" DeWalt chop saw and an assortment of other brands for pneumatic nailers.
For a homeowner, Ryobi isn't a bad choice and you can buy a kit with several tools for a cheaper price than seperately. Skill (aren't they B&D or Bostitch now?) make a decent circular saw. Tools of the Trade has some good articles, even tho they're judging the tools by contractor standards, they rate them well. Go by power and ergonomics before you go by price. Corded tools would be better for a homeowner who does have far to move them.
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Old 12-03-2010, 01:32 PM   #11
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


I have (or did have) at least one tool of every brand mentioned, plus a couple of store brand tools (Home Depot). I'm not a contractor, but have been building my own log home for the last couple of years so my tools have gotten a lot of use. So far only two have failed - Home Depot cordless drill and Ryobi circular saw. I replaced them both with Milwaukee tools.
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Old 12-03-2010, 01:51 PM   #12
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


I have been noticing recently that some of the "consumer end" DeWalt tools are not quite up to where DeWalt's higher-end professional tools are. Don't get me wrong, still nice tools, but Black & Decker (which owns DeWalt) has figured out that they can sell a lot of more-expensive yellow tools to DIYers by making some lower-range DeWalt stuff than making some higher priced orange-label B&D products.

I lot of my once-in-a-while-use tools are Black and Decker (Jig Saw, Spiral Saw) - no complaints. I have a B&D 18v cordless drill that I had to buy in a pinch that has worked much better/longer than I expected it to as well. Lately, I have been impressed with Hitachi's tools and recently purchased a cordless impact driver of theirs that has been great. I think after Xmas I might buy a Hitachi miter saw.
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Old 12-03-2010, 02:50 PM   #13
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


I've moved to pretty much all DeWALT 18 volt cordless tools. My Makita cordless drill finally gave up the ghost a couple years ago, and I found a smokin' "package deal" on a whole kit of the DeWALTs. Too good to pass up.

Last year, for Christmas, I got each of our sons a Ryobi 18v cordless tool kit. Drill, circular saw & sawzall. I think they were about $99 per kit. Decent tools, but not heavy duty.
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Old 12-08-2010, 03:12 AM   #14
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


Honestly like many have said thus far you could do worse than going with Rigid tools. For me I prefer my Dewalt tools. They just seem to give me what I neeed ewhen I need it.

Buy what you can when you can and as you need it. I remember when I first started I gor very creative and "borrowed" quite a bit. (I think I still have a drill or two from past neighbors)
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:35 AM   #15
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NOT TRYING to start a brand war! But Need Suggestions Please


Quote:
Originally Posted by akilez View Post
Honestly like many have said thus far you could do worse than going with Rigid tools. For me I prefer my Dewalt tools. They just seem to give me what I neeed ewhen I need it.

Buy what you can when you can and as you need it. I remember when I first started I gor very creative and "borrowed" quite a bit. (I think I still have a drill or two from past neighbors)

LOL that is kind of where I am now, except borrowing from Dad! MOST of the time he knows he will have to come track it down! OR he just goes out and buys a new one for himself!

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