Best 18V Drill/Hammerdrill?

I'm looking to purchase a new 18V (cordless) drill/hammerdrill. I've pretty much narrowed it down to Bosch, Milwaukee, and DeWalt. I need it for framing/finishing work as well as drilling into concrete (I have several concrete walls). I'm also going to be using it to build a deck as well as general everyday needs.
I've been looking around at drills/hammerdrills and am looking to spend about $250. For that price, I can get a good Milwaukee, Bosch, or DeWalt 18V drill. Is there a consensus about which one of those brands makes the best all-around cordless drill? Milwaukee's have a great reputation (but feel a little cheap), the Bosch drills look incredible and also have a great reputation, and the DeWalts seem to have feel well made but seem to have a poor reputation. With no clear cut winner out of those three, I'm curious to hear what others think.
Thanks in advance--
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All of my cordless are Milwaukee. One simple reason - all of the batteries are interchangeable. As far as quality goes, the three you mentioned are all decent and will give you good service. Dave

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I don't know about the cordless ones, but I have a Bosch "bulldog" hammer drill (AC) that is incredible. It goes though concrete like butter!
The only downside is that the specialized bits are more expensive, but I have not worn any of the out yet.
As an example, I installed a pool cover last year where I needed to drill about 40 -3/4" holes, each 2 inches deep in 1 yr old (not green) exposed aggregate concrete. Each hole took less than a minute with little effort on my part - except holding the drill plumb.
So, FWIW, I think Bosch makes a great tool.
Lou
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TeamCasa wrote:

I researched my last drill purchase and I can't remember which magazine I read it in now but I ended up with the Milwaukee 18V hammer drill kit. What an incredible tool.
No regrets (and it replaced a 14.4V Dewalt).
--
Mortimer Schnerd, RN

snipped-for-privacy@XXXXcarolina.rr.com
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You didn't mention Porter-Cable, but I think they deserve a look. The 19.2V cordless hammerdrill is a pretty well-built tool and has plenty of power. I helped my friend install a gooseneck hitch in his truck, which involved lots of drilling of bolt holes through the frame. It held up quite well.
Charlie

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I have the DeWalt 18v hammer drill. It's three years old now, and is used almost everyday on the jobsite. Sometimes drilling 1/2" holes in concrete for anchors, sometimes driving screws through 2x material, sometimes drilling and countersinking for more delicate work. Heck, I've even mixed thin set in a 5 gal bucket with it for tile work and used it for ice sculptures. It's held up unbelievably well. A real workhorse I'd recommend without hesitation. --dave

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Check out this review from Tools of the Trade...
http://tinyurl.com/3jjya
They liked Dewalt best, then Bosch, and Milwaukee trailing with some others in between.
Tools of the Trade is a great little magazine and site for tool reviews.
HTH,
Paul
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The Dewalt batteries are glued shut so when the time comes to replace the cells, it will be difficult and expensive. There are shops that can cut them open and then glue them back.
The last time I checked, the Milwaukee and Porter Cable batteries were sealed with screws. (Things change so check before you buy). You can change the cells yourself (opening the case is half the battle).
I don't know about Bosch.

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Joe:
I've gone to Milwaukee cordless drills and other tools, good reputation and above all the best warranty (now 5 years). You pay a little more but in the long run it's worth it.

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On 14 Sep 2004 09:23:39 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Joe) wrote:

I'm happy with my DeWalt- after about four years, it's still doing a great job for me, and the batteries are still working fine.
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Just bought a combo package from Amazon (18v hammer drill + reciprocating saw) for $316.99. Great deal. There's a $25 off special until Nov. 4th I think. Looked around everywhere definitely best price.
$289 for drill and $199 for recip. saw at Home Depot.
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