Lithium Ion Drill Recommendation

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My 12V Dewalt drill is no longer functioning due to the the two Nicad batteries no longer lasting more than 2 minutes after fully charged. I bought some instructions off Ebay on some magical RVD process that would revive the batteries, tried them and did not make a difference. So now my options are to get two new batteries - which of course are very expensive and I suspect one year from now I would be in the same situation.
I read about Lithium Ion batteries lasting longer and does not have this memory effect. So now I am considering just getting a brand new lithium ion battery drill.
I do have a Makita corded hammer drill which I use, but when I am up in the attic doing framing repair, or cutting holes in the top plate to drop wiring down, or out in the yard repairing wood fences or on a ladder repairing soffit etc...there is nothing better than a cordless.
Would appreciate if someone can share their cordless drill experiene.
Is the decision to go with a lithium ion drill instead of getting two new batteries a correct one?
If getting a lithium ion drill what is a good one to get? I am thinking Milaukee because I like the sawzall I got from them.
What kind of torgue do I get from a 18v lithium ion drill? The old Dewalt 12V I remember having problems driving 3" wood screws into 2x4s.
Thanks in advance,
MC
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On Wed, 23 Sep 2009 21:24:43 -0400, "MiamiCuse"

Before you condemn the Dewalt try poking around on the net to see what you can do. I got 3 batteries for my pair of Makitas for about $30 each. They work like new now.
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I've seen people write about www.primecell.com and really pleased with their rebuilding. Shipping is expensive. Team with some friends, and send several cells in a package to save shipping monies.
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On Wed, 23 Sep 2009 21:24:43 -0400, "MiamiCuse"

I've bought a Bosch 38636-01 36 Volt a year ago and I love it. It is no heavier than their 18 Volt 37618-01. Mine has only slightly less torque than the 18 Volt and only a few less RPM but mine has a longer run time.
I'm thinking of buying a second one to keep the first one company.
YMMV
Gordon Shumway
Is it good if a vacuum really sucks?
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MiamiCuse wrote:

I went with the Ridgid 18v Li (at Home Depot). It comes with a lifetime service agreement, which covers the drill, batteries and charger. http://www.ridgid.com/Tools/R86006-Compact-Lithium-Ion-Drill/EN/index.htm
I've had it for about a year now and am happy with it.
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On Wed, 23 Sep 2009 21:41:25 -0500, Mike Paulsen

That 18 volt drill is more expensive, far less powerful and doesn't have nearly the speed as the Bosch 36 volt drill. I hope you get your money's worth in free batteries.
Gordon Shumway
Is it good if a vacuum really sucks?
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Gordon Shumway wrote:

pull out the big drill (old D-handled Makita), but in those instances my corded 1/2" Bosch didn't do any better than the Ridgid. (Certain LVL beam screws, for example)

lifetime coverage for the drill and charger as well.) Have you priced out the replacement batteries for the Bosch?
If you're trying to argue that yeah, the lifetime service agreement is nice but the drill sucks, then I think you're off base. This is actually a very nice drill, not some piece of HF crap you couldn't pay me to use. (I briefly had a HF hammer drill, and I swear to god I'd rather use a bit and brace than that piece of crap.)
I looked at quite a few drivers before I decided on the Ridgid. I really liked the advantages of the Li-on batteries, but the consensus was that they had a 2 to 3 year lifetime. And that's maximum shelf life too, not just their expected lifetime under normal operating conditions.
I was impressed with the Bosch, but they were about the same price as the Ridgid, and I had to plan on replacing the batteries (at $75 each) within three years. I believe Bosch was sensitive to the battery issue as they had an offer for a free third battery (via mail-in coupon), but it expired after 12 months. Given the shelf life issue I mentioned earlier, that wasn't enough to get me to bite.
I also considered the option of getting the Bosch and having the batteries rebuilt when the time came, but I didn't find anyone who could rebuild them. The oft mentioned primecell.com, for example, can't do it.
When the Ridgid batteries (or the drill or charger) go belly up, I'll take it to one of the 9 Ridgid service centers within 40 miles of my house. No shipping charges, no parts charges, and no labor charges. For life. I'm not seeing any downside to the purchase yet.
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On Thu, 24 Sep 2009 14:26:09 -0500, Mike Paulsen

Well, obviously you did your homework and you made your decision. Good luck.
Gordon Shumway
Is it good if a vacuum really sucks?
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On Thu, 24 Sep 2009 15:23:49 -0500, Gordon Shumway wrote:

I recently also did my homework and came upon several dissatisfied customers for whom Ridgid refused to register their product for the lifetime warrantee.

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Mike Dobony wrote: (snip)

Those were probably the old drills that had K & T wiring. No company will give you a warranty on those -- they're inherently dangerous. (And your homeowners insurance won't cover them either.)
:p
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The latest crop of Dewalt batteries I got, have crapped out in record time, so I plan to switch to Makita lithium when the tools wear out. I usually get about two years out of the tools, but this crop of batteries have only lasted about six months. I refuse to buy more Dewalt batteries, so I got some cheap Chinese spin-offs, which I swear are identical and half the price.

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It's not Lithium, but I've got a couple Drill Master from Harbor Freight, that keep on running.
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Christopher A. Young
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Stormin Mormon wrote:

Right. A drill WITH battery is like $20.
I bought two of their 19volt models when my fourth Makita battery pooped out. (One for the house, one for the workshop. I may get one for the car and one for the bedroom at that price.)
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HeyBub wrote:

A little Google search will show all sorts of power tools made for the bedroom. ROTFL
TDD
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MiamiCuse wrote:

I recently had 5 worn out batteries repaired by these folks: http://www.primecell.com /
They all work like new and I am a happy guy! http://groups.google.be/group/rec.crafts.metalworking/browse_thread/thread/374db48f3d2b0d47/795f1ba8757bd25f?hl=un&lnk=gst&q=primecell#795f1ba8757bd25f
--Winston
--

I\'m still waiting for another sublime, transcendent flash of adequacy.

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If you go for the better rated batteries, they work better than new.
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primecell.com rebuilds your pack with all new cells that greatly adds capacity.they work great.
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-snip-

Since I asked here about a new driver for deck screws a few months ago, I'll 'pass it on'. For deck screws everyone said an impact driver was what I wanted.
I looked at the Bosch PS40s and thought they must be mistaken- that little thing doesn't look like a match for deck screws. So I shopped some more- and *by mistake* ordered a Milwaukee 2401-22. (Amazon.com product link shortened) [note that there is no chuck on that drill-- if you do a lot of drilling, vs. driving, you might want the accessory chuck]
I almost returned it-- then decided to keep it. Glad I did. It has more driving power than my old 3/8 corded drill-- with half the weight and bulk.
I ended up getting a reconditioned Bosch impact driver from CPObosch.com.
Both are great little tools. Li-ion is so cool. 20 minutes to a full charge. I can't draw down a battery in less than a few hours- so there is always a fresh battery ready. Power-wise, these are both about 12v tools, yet they have the power of corded tools.
The impact driver has been used for dismantling a 20 yr old deck & building the frame of a new one. I thank all the folks who pointed me in that direction. It is a bit slower than the 1/2 corded drill I was using before-- but it is oh-so-much-easier, lighter, and gets into the corners with ease.

Yes!!
Unbelievable. The tiny little things look like toys--- but drive like monsters. I *can* drive deck screws with my 12v drill- but I like it more for the smaller ones, and I get the impact driver out for the big stuff.
The amazing part of the impact driver is that I have yet to snap a screw off, and have only slipped out of one or two of the phillips heads. [never made the switch to square] Even the old screws in the deck I'm taking apart- they sit for a minute while the driver pounds at them-- then back out like they were just driven yesterday. I was breaking 1 in 4-5, and stripping the heads on 1 in 3 with my 1/2 drill. I am able to get 99/100 with the impact driver.
Jim
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Jim Elbrecht wrote:

Your batteries will last much longer if you charge them slower. 20 minutes is fast, too fast. Does the battery feel very warm after charging?
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-snip-

I lied- 15minutes to 85%- 30 minutes to full on the Bosch. Can't find a time offhand on the Milwaukee- but I've never drained a battery before the next one was ready.

Never felt a hot battery, but I pay little attention to them until I'm ready to use them.
I doubt slower charging would make the batteries last longer or manufacturers would sell a slow charge charger & tout its benefits. And I probably wouldn't buy one. It is a tool- not a collectible that I want to hang on to forever. If I get 2 yrs [the warranty period] out of the tool I'm happy, it has made my life $100 easier-- and there will be a new & better technology out there.
Jim
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