Hey Chris; I soldered up a couple of packs for a friend that was
vacationing in Socal area - going back to central oregon. He brought with
him 2 packs- 1 milwaukee and a dewalt xrp 18v pack. The dewalt showed a
bunch of bad cells- dunno what happened to it- the charger may have
mischarged the pack and the millwaukee had several bad cells- since I had
purchased several of the harbor tools packs (1.7 amp/hr cells) I made up the
2 batts in the lower (than the 2.6 cells in both packs). When he got back
from vacation , he told me that both batts worked and charged as normal
packs . That worked out to 10 (US ) dollars a rebuild. The upside is that I
got enough cells to make up a new (2.6 amp/hr) pack(stick pack) for the 9.6
makita drill that refuses to die.
Surprisingly the one drill (ITEM 44849-1VGA) on the page that you
referenced is actually a pretty decent drill for home use. The chuck
works well and the battery holds a good charge. The weak point is the
bushings/bearings in the main drive. They will eventually wear out if
used a lot, but again they are great for home use. I have three (yes,
three) of this exact model that I use regularly for everything from
hanging pictures to building 800+ feet of fence. Although I have wore
out a drill or two, the batteries have always remained good and thus
make great extras.
I wouldn't expect a cordless drill to last longer than 10 years. A
Harbor Freight brand, maybe a couple years if that. Costwise, you
can't beat a corded drill--the cheapest brand will outlast any
-- the cheapest (corded) brand will outlast any cordless.
That's because you waste so much time getting out the extension cord,
unrolling it, walking to the outlet, plugging it in, walking to work
site, walking back, unplugging it, rolling it back up, storing it etc.
etc. that you only get 1/4 of the work done. Any corded drill will
last 4 times as long by default. ;-)
You can easily get the batteries rebuilt.
"Batteries Plus" is a nationwide chain that handles walk-in trade. There are
They wanted $18 to replace the batteries in my dust-buster. I bought a Dirt
Devil at Walmart for $16.00. Sometimes it's not a bargain.
A couple years ago, I bought a two Drill Master 12 volt drills. Figured with
12 volts, if the batteries went dead, I could run them off a 12 volt auto
lighter socket, or battery jumper pack. And for $15 per drill and $10 for
battery pack, it wasn't a lot of money. Mine are still going, enough to be
useful. I used one of them yesterday, with a screw driver tip. Installing
some locks for a customer.
For occasional use, they are very well suited. Drill Master has several
shapes of battery pack, some don't fit each other. Good idea to get a couple
extra battery packs at the same time.
Christopher A. Young
"Manster" < email@example.com> wrote in message
Thanks to everyone who responded here. I'll post back w/ the outcome.
Because the drill is still in excellent condition w/ no chuck problems;
I'm leaning towards the rebuilt batteries, as mine can be rebuilt for
Consumer Reports tested a Harbor Freight cordless drill several years
ago, and it ranked at or near the bottom and was much weaker than many
drills that operated at lower voltages. The fastest and most powerful
drills came from manufacturers favored by contractors, including
Porter Cable, DeWalt, Bosch, and Hitachi, and their 14.4V and even
some of their 12.0V drills outperformed other brands of 18V drills.
1-2 months ago, Home Depot was closing out some Ryobis and was selling
18V models (both the P211 and the inferior P811) for $50 with 1-2
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