The battery on my Makita cordless drill is dying. I've been using my
40 year old Craftsman corded, which is still working, but it's not
reversible. Both of them use a chuck key.
I'm trying to decide whether to get a new battery for the Makita ($40
from Makita) or buy a new corded drill to replace the old Craftsman. I
really don't need a cordless drill and I use it so seldom that I
always have to charge the battery. A corded drill is always ready to
I haven't bought a drill in 20 years. Any suggestions?
Drilling or screwing?
Cordless is the way to go for screwing. For drilling metal, corded.
Speeds on corded devices are much higher.
I'm happy with my 18v Ryobi with a 1/2" keyless chuck.
Lot of low speed torque.
Those Makitas were workhorses though.
If you have the money, LiIon holds a charge for a long time.
I like the convenience of cordless though and now own several
cordless devices I never thought I would, like a circular saw. Who knew?
primecell.com will REBUILD the battery pack way better than new...
older tools tended to be better made....
i would just get the battery rebuilt.
primecel installs all new cells with the tabs welded to the batteries
On 10/16/2010 12:56 PM, email@example.com wrote:
New Battery price is usually within 20 bucks of the price of a whole new
drill, around here. (consumer grade at big box, not a 'trade' brand like
Milwaukee, of course.)
Like inkjet printers and cartridges, in many ways. I see plenty of
battery tools and inkjets, sitting by dumpsters, in the afternoon 'free'
pile at garage sales, and in the dollar aisle at the thrift stores. Not
a very green business model at all.
Standard disclaimer- I love my 24v B&D drill that I bought off the
remainder table at Lowes for 25 bucks a few years back. Still on
original battery and holds a charge well, even though I can go months
without using it. Great for small jobs and screw shooter duty, but not
enough power for any sort of production work. I went out and bought a
corded Makita for that sort of stuff, since it was the only brand I
could find in my price range that looked like a drill, instead of a
kid's toy ray gun.
Ok. I don't buy "consumer grade" tools. Certainly Harbor Fright is cheaper
Do they pretend to be "green"? Why should everything be "green"?
The only corded drill I own is a Baosch hammer drill. I own something like
ten cordless drills and drivers. Some of the older ones are no longer used
but probably will be on the next outside project (rebuilding a fence).
I've purchased a few of those "replacement" batteries. They are a
fraction of the cost of brand name batteries, but also lower quality.
Some were DOA. If I can get 5-10 knock-offs for the price of one
original, they are probably cheaper on a cost/battery life basis, but
more of a hassle.
Have you had personal experience with that?
I just gave the battery for the Makita a full 24 hour charge to see if
that made any difference. The drill will run about half speed in
forward but not at all in reverse. Is this typical for a weak battery
or is it likely that the drill itself is dsmaged? I'd hate to buy a
new/rebuilt battery only to find that the drill is broke.
I've had three batteries rebuilt by them. In every case, they used cells
with a higher AH rating. IIRC, I want from 1000 mAH to 1300 mAH
In your case, some of the cells may be dead and not holding a charge at
all, thus the half speed. Don't know why no reverse though.
From their web site:
Standard capacity packs: They are usually sold in pairs, in kits with
do-everything attachments. They were made at minimum cost, with small size
cells, that provide little operating time. These batteries often spend more
time in the charger, than they do in the tools. The batteries are usually
only 1.0 AH cells, we rebuild them with the highest available capacity.
(depending of the model the upgrade can be 1.3 AH or higher. The result is
usually a 25 to 35% increase in run time.
Guess it depends what you want to do with it.
I have a cheap cordless B&D but it has two batteries and is always
usable. With the hand tightening chuck which can be popped off for
attachments that pop in easily, its great for drilling a pilot hole
then switching to put in screw. OTOH it is too weak for heavy jobs
and I have to go to corded drill.
I've got a 3/8 VSR drill from Harbor Freight. It was about $12 or so,
on sale. It's not great quality, but it's served me well. I've done
some drilling, and some spinning zip screws into metal.
For about $25 on sale you can get a 1/2 VSR drill.
If you don't really need the cordless, then it's a waste of money.
From the sounds of your description, a plug-in drill works well for
you. No nicads to throw away every couple years.
1st off, I am a fan of cordless stuff, however, if you seldom use it,
it's probably better to go with corded. As for rebuilding the battery,
I've just been through that. I found that you can get brand new, name
brand batteries with a 2010 date code for about the same as rebuilding,
on ebay. I bought a 2 pack of Dewalt 18 volts batteries for $97 with
shipping. For a rebuild, by the time you add the shipping, you are
definitely over that price. But, if you get the cells and do it
yourself, you could save. That said, if you really want a good battery
drill, I would recommend the Bosch 18 volt. Not cheap, but it's what I
like. It's super powerful and it has a 1 hand chuck for quickly
changing bits. YRMV.
I'd base my choice on what purpose I will use the drill motor for.
For large holes, 1/2" corded with key chuck. Small holes, like for
modeling or electronics work, 1/4" corded key chuck. General, 3/8"
vari-speed key chuck. You're on your own for choices in battery and
hand chucks. I finally bought one, but don't see much advantage
unless you need the portability (farm, large yard, etc) or are jes
plain lazy, as am I. The whole hand chuck thing is for quick changing
hex shaft bits for screws and for general handyman drilling, like
drilling through wood or sheetrock, etc.
Admittedly, for this around-the-house roll, battery drills are very
handy. I use mine all the time. OTOH, if you are going to be bearing
down on metals, especially steel, you will need the power, bit size
specific speeds, and jaw tightening strength of a key chuck corded
drill. I like my battery drill a lot, but I also have a collection of
chorded drills for more specialized applications. A battery drill
would be, and was, my last choice.
If you use a cordless drill so often that you can state what you did about
how seldom you use it, buy a corded. Most people like the portability of
cordless, yet have both.
There are lots of good ones. Just stick with a major brand and watch for
sales. Perhaps others here can make some comments on the reliability of top
sellers, as they change all the time in quality due to corporate merges and
reduction of the quality of their goods. Some of the old ones are
bulletproof. I had a Skil that hurt my shoulder a couple of times it had so
much torque. Probably $10 at a yard sale or pawn shop if you could find one
today in good shape.
Heart surgery pending?
Read up and prepare.
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