Which has the better cordless 18v. drill: Bosch or Hitachi

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Presently have an Hitachi cordless 14.4v. impact driver. Use it for driving screws into wood. Very pleased with it so far. But this is my first ever impact driver, so I don't really know whether I should be impressed with Hitachi or the fact that I'm now using an impact driver for screws rather (ostensibly a better match) than my (corded) drill driver. That said, I am in the market to buy a cordless drill driver (since I discovered my impact driver is not quite as handy as a dedicated drill for when used for drilling). But I'm kind of torn between my long time admiration of Bosch tools and my current infatuation with Hitachi (or, at least, their cordless drivers). And since I'm not independently wealthy, I can't afford to just by one of each (although that would certainly make for a more fun afternoon). Therefore I'm seeking opinions/feedback/advice/experiences related to cordless drill drivers by Bosch and/or Hitachi (and/or any other decent quality brand worth mentioning). Thanks in advance.
Ken
PS: Bosch and Hitachi both make a 1/2 in. drive 18v. drill driver that puts out up to 550 in.lb. of torque, even though the Hitachi one uses a 3.0 Amp/hour battery whereas the Bosch uses an only 2.4 Amp/hour battery.
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Presently have an Hitachi cordless 14.4v. impact driver. Use it for driving screws into wood. Very pleased with it so far. But this is my first ever impact driver, so I don't really know whether I should be impressed with Hitachi or the fact that I'm now using an impact driver for screws rather (ostensibly a better match) than my (corded) drill driver. That said, I am in the market to buy a cordless drill driver (since I discovered my impact driver is not quite as handy as a dedicated drill for when used for drilling). But I'm kind of torn between my long time admiration of Bosch tools and my current infatuation with Hitachi (or, at least, their cordless drivers). And since I'm not independently wealthy, I can't afford to just by one of each (although that would certainly make for a more fun afternoon). Therefore I'm seeking opinions/feedback/advice/experiences related to cordless drill drivers by Bosch and/or Hitachi (and/or any other decent quality brand worth mentioning). Thanks in advance.
Ken
PS: Bosch and Hitachi both make a 1/2 in. drive 18v. drill driver that puts out up to 550 in.lb. of torque, even though the Hitachi one uses a 3.0 Amp/hour battery whereas the Bosch uses an only 2.4 Amp/hour battery.
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Logical thing is to buy more Hitachi 14.4v tools since that is what you have started. Otherwise you will have incompatible batteries. That assumes they have a line 14.4v batteries. If not, bite the bullet and switch to a more complete line. In general, you get what you pay for; don't fuss too much about precisely what you buy. If the price is what you want to pay and it feels okay, then it is fine.
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Go with Hitachi. You've already used their tools and like them so there's no reason to gamble with another brand. Bosch's website doesn't state the torque of the drill or the battery chemistry. The Hitachi is lighter and it's battery will last longer.
Mike
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IMO, Panasonic is better than either. Small, powerful.
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Everything I ever bought from Hitachi was first class. Not to disparage Bosch, but for my money, I'd buy Hitachi.-Jitney
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Just checked out the Panasonic web site. First thing that struck me were the prices! $510 for the top cordless drill model (15.6V Multi Drill & Driver with 1/2" Keyless Chuck). As you say, all nice and compact. But the high price made me think that Panasonic tools must be an elite brand. Then checked out prices for these very same Panasonic models at several online retail tool vendor sites, where I found the prices to be much more in line with the competition. For example only $299 (virtually half the price) for the above model at Tool Authority (http://www.toolauthority.com/manufacturers.php?MID !). One observation though, in general the Panasonic cordless driver lineup seems to offer somewhat less torque than competition such as Hitachi or Bosch drivers, even in models where the voltages are the same. But I guess the extra compact design of the Panasonic drivers I guess could very well account for this.
BTW, another question I have just came to mind: what is the significance of "Ah" (e.g. 2.0 Ah, 2.5 Ah, 3.0 Ah, 3.5 Ah, and so on) rating of a cordless tool's battery-capacity? Up til now I had just assumed this referred to amperage-per-hour output (which, like the amperage rating of a corded tool, if multiplied by the voltage [e.g 12. for 12v. cordless models, between 110 and 120 for all corded models] yields maximum energy output [or consumption, respectively] per hour). But I'd like to somehow find out for certain from someone if I am on the right track in this or not... Because if this is true how can the most powerful cordless tool possibly keep pace with an average corded one which has far higher, both, amp and voltage numbers? Thanks.
Ken

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Up til now I had just assumed

The AH rating is how much power is available. Some tools use that power more efficiently than others.
None can truly keep up with a corded tool long term. They may have equal power for a short time, but there are compromises to get decent run time from the batteries.
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wrote in message

Going to be interesting to see how the new Milwaukee V28 Ion line holds up.
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I love the Pit Stop and Helicopter commercials. Check their web page if you haven't seen them. http://www.v28power.com/flash.htm
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Hadn't seen the helipcopter commercial before. Thanks for the link. :-)
+--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+ If you're gonna be dumb, you better be tough +--------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
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wrote:

Consumer reports says that the drill they tested had quite a bit of power. So much so that it burned out its motor during their test.
Ouch.
Greg Guarino
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KMoiarty Wrote: > Just checked out the Panasonic web site. First thing that struck me > were

You are on the right track regarding Ah relating to the amperage-per-hour. It is a figure quoted on battery packs that determines the amount of current that is supplied for an hour i.e a measure of the battery's capacity.
Depending on how much current the motor draws, this will determine how long you can use the power tool for before the battery needs to be swapped or recharged.
Generally the larger the Ah rating, the bigger the physical size and probably weight of the battery and hence the overall weight of the power tool.
--
M.Joshi

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KMoiarty wrote:

Ken, You are right that amp-hours is a measure of battery capacity. But it's amps X hours instead of amps per hour. So, a 2 amp-hour battery will deliver 2 amps for 1 hour or 1 amp for 2 hours (at its rated voltage). Amp-hours gives you a measure of run-time, but I think it's irrelevant to most of us. That's because, unless your drill is in continuous use at high load, your second battery will charge long before your first runs down. I guess if you have to climb down off a ladder every time you need to change batteries, more amp-hours would get to be more important.
I'm on my 5th cordless drill and currently own three that work. Of all my tools, I consider a cordless drill to be the most indispensable. I use one for almost every single project around the house or in the shop.
However . . .before you drop three hundred bucks on a cordless drill, consider this: Batteries have a maximum life of about 5-7 years or so, even with light use. Unless you are using the thing every day, your batteries will die long before you wear out the tool. The price of two replacement batteries is usually about 2/3 the price of the whole kit with drill, batteries and charger. So, a cordless drill is a somewhat disposable item, unlike its corded cousin.
For $120 or so, you can buy a top quality 12 volt drill from your favorite manufacturer. Forget the specs, buy the one that feels best in your hand. Then spend another $100 or so for a good corded drill for those very rare occasions when your cordless just isn't up to the task. You'll pass the corded drill down to your grandchildren, and you have less than half the money tied up in disposables.
Some people just like to have the "best" of whatever they own. I'm one of those too. But I've come to the conclusion that chasing the "best" in cordless is just too expensive.
Your mileage may vary
DonkeyHody "Give a hungry man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him to fish . . . and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day."
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Ken,
Listen to DonkeyHody, best advice here.
I did what he talks about only I'll go one better, buy a top quality corded drill at a used tool store, I got a Milwaukee 1/2" corded hole shooter for 60 bucks at a used tool store and I found a Dewalt 3/8" 14.4 volt cordelss at the local home center one day for 100 bucks with two batteries/charger. Total investment 160 bucks,
A used Milwaukee (corded) drill is a good investment, these things are like tanks, they'll outlive our kids kids.
My two cents,
Paul

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Wow... agree with everyone here. I have spent $$$ on different cordless drills, and they are something I use every day.
Years ago, I bought a 14V Ryobi for $99, as I could not justify buying the 18V DeWalt I really wanted for $329. I bought the DeWalt when there was a sale on them for $299 or something like that. Along the way, I got a great deal on a 14V Sears Professional 14V and bought a Hitachi 12V for some reason or another.
All but the Sears Professional (the newest) are dead now. The batteries/drills lasted about 3-4 years a piece, with the last year or so of each needing the second battery to be on the ready at any time. Oddly, the one that was used the hardest was the Ryobi, and it still works for my roofing guys to use to drive about 25 1/2" screws before dying. Perfect for them, as it is covered with tar and scuffed beyond recognition. That drill has paid for itself about 100 times over.
The DeWalt 18V was the one I used the most, and you will come to appreciate the amp hour rating when you are hanging and finishing doors. Drilling out a door lockset, the the deadbolt, the peephole, the extra security devices, attaching the closer and then fitting the hinges is not for a weenie drill. The DeWalt worked great, and it last about 3 years with me using it just like a corded drill. But when the batteries died to about 20 minutes of use and I was contemplating a new battery, the transmission gears gave up, so now I am using the Sears. The Sears has the same amount of torque and it is a smaller drill. It seems to have about the same battery life, and it was on sale for $99 in the display/scratch/dent basket when I bought it. It seems to be a pretty good drill.
So I agree with all here. Find a drill that feels good in your hand, and seems to have some balance. If you are using it for home projects and need it to drive 40-50 screws and drill a few holes every once in a while, almost anything you buy will be fine. One of my subs even buys those $19 POS drills at Harbor Freight and loves them since they are so cheap. He has to charge them for six hours or something along those lines, but they seem pretty tough.
Robert
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I bought a Rdgid 12V at HD. Lifetime service warranty which incudes the battery. Plenty of power, nice chuck. Recommended.
Mitch
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MB wrote:

I forgot about Rigid. As long as their lifetime warranty applies to batteries, they get my vote on cordless, assuming you like the tool at all.
DonkeyHody "We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom that is in it - and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid again---and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold one anymore." - Mark Twain
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Made 100% in China, looks ok...runs fine for a homeowner.
for someone that makes his living with his tools, we would pass.
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But what isn't made in China these days? For example, Hitachi is a well known Japanese manufacturer whose respectable-quality products we naturally expect, logically enough, to be made in Japan. But not so with my new Hitachi (model WH 14DMR) impact driver. At the bottom of the specs label situated on the housing it reads (in finer print than everything above it), "Made in China".
Ken
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