Mains powered impact driver?

Do they exist or are they all battery powered?
I'm looking to buy my first impact driver because I've got lots of large screws to put in. I'm not a fan of normal battery powered drills as I find the battery life too low for a good working session and they are often underpowered. Mains powered stuff tends to be cheaper too.
Do mains powered impact drivers exist? Can anyone recommend one for under 100? -- David in Normandy. snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.fr To e-mail you must include the password FROG on the subject line, or it will be automatically deleted.
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David in Normandy says...

Can anyone clear up my confusion please?
A silly question but - what is the difference between a standard hammer drill and an impact driver drill? How can I tell the difference (if there is any)?
I've already got both a standard hammer drill and an SDS drill - that isn't an impact driver drill is it? It is one of those drills that take the chisel bits and is brilliant for drilling holes in tough rock.
Too many types of drill to get my head around :-( -- David in Normandy. snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.fr To e-mail you must include the password FROG on the subject line, or it will be automatically deleted.
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I'm glad someone else has asked that. Can I add the question "why are specialist drywall drivers needed" as I'd have thought that plasterboard was one of the easiest materials to drill / drive through? Is it a speed thing?
Matt
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says...

Only a guess but I'd expect that low torque would be needed putting screws into plasterboard otherwise they'd go too deep. I wonder if you can get screw bits that have a flattened "stop" either side of the business end - that would stop the bit going too deep and make it disengage when the screw had gone to the correct depth. If such doesn't exist it would be a useful invention perhaps? -- David in Normandy. snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.fr To e-mail you must include the password FROG on the subject line, or it will be automatically deleted.
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David in Normandy wrote:

Too late:
http://www.screwfix.com/prods/46278/Screwdriver-Bits/Bit-Holders/Laser-Standard-Drywall-Bits-Phillips-2-5Pk
These work very well - pop the driver off the screw once it is set just deep enough.
--
Cheers,

John.

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On 2008-03-17 16:07:46 +0000, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com said:

It's a speed thing.
These drivers accept belts of screws. They originate from the U.S. where common construction methods involve attaching 18mm ply to CLS framing and drywall to it as well.
With correct adjustment, the driver positions the screws at precisely the correct depth for the application. For drywalling, this involves getting the screw so that the flat top is just below the surface but without destroying the paper surface.
I bought a Senco one of these a few years ago in the U.S. for the equivalent of about 100. Buckets of screws are readily available.
When cladding my workshop with ply, I completed the job in a couple of hours vs. probably a day so well worth the investment. Other projects since have meant that it's paid for several times over.
The win is because it's as fast as a nail gun, vs. drilling holes, manually applying screws and driving them in. I would guess 2 seconds per fixing vs. 10.
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Andy Hall says...

Does that mean I don't need to pre-drill any holes to put the screws in?
Can I use "ordinary" screws one at a time or do they have to be fed on a belt?
-- David in Normandy. snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.fr To e-mail you must include the password FROG on the subject line, or it will be automatically deleted.
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On 2008-03-17 18:47:38 +0000, David in Normandy

Straight in and they have to be on a belt.
Well they don't *have* to be, but then there is no speed advantage
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Andy Hall says...

So presumably the screws are bought already on belts. Two questions:
1. Are the screws specially made for impact drivers? I ask because I know that if I tried to screw in some "normal" screws into harder woods without pre-drilling holes they would tend to shear off.
2. Are screws on belts more expensive than "normal" screws? If so can the belts be reloaded using normal screws? I'm a tight-wad and this sounds like a fun background activity while watching a boring TV program. :-)
--
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On 2008-03-17 19:23:35 +0000, David in Normandy

For drywall drivers, yes. For impact drivers they are separate.

Special bits.
Impact drivers typically have a 6.35mm socket fitting so are often used with lag bolts with a hex head
I wouldn't use them with hardwoods anyway, although people do.

I buy them in the U.S. The are a bit more expensive than the loose screws and are specially shaped for plasterboard to avoid cutting the paper. The main point is the time saving. I suppose you could reload the belts but it would be fiddly because the screws are clipped in place by the belt design. It would probably take longer to load them than to use. I know that French TV can be challenging, but there is a limit.
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Yes, you can use ordinary drywall screws and no, they don't have to be on a belt:
http://www.kress-elektrik.de/en/products/browse_products.php?categorieF 6

The speed advantage over using a conventional drill driver comes through popping the screw into the nosepiece and the machine driving it to a pre-set, repeatable depth.
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Automatic feeding, thus saving the time to remove them from the box and loading them with the tool, possibly dropping them on the floor.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

They are fast and light and do one job very well. Never run out of puff and you tend to be near a mains socket when using them. So nothing you can't do with another type of drill, but just optimised for the task.
--
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John.

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David in Normandy says...

Can anyone clear up my confusion please?
A silly question but - what is the difference between a standard hammer drill and an impact driver drill? How can I tell the difference (if there is any)?
I've already got both a standard hammer drill and an SDS drill - that isn't an impact driver drill is it? It is one of those drills that take the chisel bits and is brilliant for drilling holes in tough rock.
A hammer drill would tend to be too quick for use as a screw driver.
mark
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mark says...

To e-mail you must include the password FROG on the subject line, or it will be automatically deleted.
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To be fair, these things work as a system. Many builders use a lot of screws in a certain size, and mainly into softwood, that they know will work well with an impact driver.
An impact driver will drive a screw straight into hardwood, but it may split the wood or snap the screw (you still need to pre-drill, then it's fine). An impact driver may break smaller (4mm or less) screws or stainless steel screws (both are fine, but with care). Used (very) recklessly, it may be able to pull the screw head right through softer materials or strip the thread it has just cut. If you work with whatever odd screws you have lying around, you may not get good results.
However, when used into softwood with a self-drilling screw like this: http://www.screwfix.com/prods/13787/Screws/Interior-Wood-Screws/TurboGold-Screws/6-x-80mm-TurboGold-Countersunk it will produce phenomenally easy, fast and repeatable results, producing a very secure fixing.
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snipped-for-privacy@gglz.com wrote: <SNIP>

http://www.screwfix.com/prods/13787/Screws/Interior-Wood-Screws/TurboGold-Screws/6-x-80mm-TurboGold-Countersunk
100% agreed, wonderful things. Turbo Gold Coach Screws are equally good.
--
Dave - The Medway Handyman
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On 2008-03-17 14:26:32 +0000, David in Normandy

An impact driver is predominantly intended for driving fairly chunky screws or lag bolts. A common application is in constructing outdoor wooden structures when the main advantage is speed.
It's not an alternative to SDS drills or other types.
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A hammer drill basically kicks in and out. An impact driver kicks in a rotary direction. Rather like thumping a spanner to free a stuck bolt. This 'kicking' is a more efficient way of using the power needed to drive in a screw than plain continuous torque.
Impact drivers don't have a conventional chuck - they take either hex bits direct if small, or square drive if larger.
Bosch haven't helped by calling their ordinary hammer drills impact ones.
--
*Taxation WITH representation ain't much fun, either.

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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David in Normandy wrote:

I'll do me best Guv.

They are two different animals.
A hammer drill vibrates the bit back & forth by a very small amount whilst turning, to help when drilling masonry. The next step up from that is an SDS drill which hammers the bit back & forth by a much larger amount whilst turning.
The back & forth hammer action is no help when driving screws.
An Impact Driver is the next step up from a drill driver. When putting in large screws with a drill driver, it will slow down as the screw goes in because more resistance occurs. An impact driver starts by turning the screw like a drill driver then senses the increased resistance & automatically starts to hammer the bit around in a circular motion - not a back & forth motion.
A 12v impact driver will put a 90mm x 6mm coach screw straight in, no pilot, with contempuous ease. A 4mm x 60mm deck screws goes in so fast you can't pick up another screw before the first one is driven in.
A drywall screwdriver is a belt fed drill driver, AFAIK belt fed impact drivers don't exist yet. A drywall screwdriver also stops driving the screw at a preset depth.
You can achieve this preset depth with a drywall bit holder. http://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_id "691&name=drywall&user_search=1&sfile=1&jump=0
HTH
--
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