PPPro cordless drill / driver woe

Cue chorus of "told you so". My PPPro 12V drill/driver is annoying me. I have been using it to drill through joists with a 16mm flat wood bit - I thought wood drilling was the least tiresome form of drilling, but apparently not in this case. After a full charge, it's running out of puff after intermittent use over a couple of hours.
To be fair, this is the first PPPro tool that I have been dissatisfied with, and there have been quite a few over the last couple of years. I generally find the performance quite acceptable.
Are my expectations of a 12V cordless too much or is the product not performing as well as I might expect? Put another way, should I return it and get a beefier cordless drill / driver, or just get a cheapie variable-speed mains drill?
Antony
PS I know that Makita / Dewalt and the like are the nuts, but they are out of my price range and not necessary at my current level...
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Another option might be to take the battery pack apart and fit higher quality cells. Obviously any warranty you've left goes out the window but the cells are one of the weaker points of most Chinese made battery powered tools.
(cue everybody now stating their own 'weakest point' of course :-)
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antgel wrote:

How many holes does it do?
Spade bits are not the easiest things to turn and so sap quite a bit of power. Making sure it is sharp helps (quick lick on a bench grinder from time to time will do it).

Hard one to call - depends on the quality of the tool really... chances are you are running into the limitations of a low end battery pack with poorly matched cells. The result is that they discharge at different rates and the ability to supply the peek current will fall off quite soon. Drilling smaller holes with an ordinary drill bit does not require as much torque as the spade bit, and hence it may carry on doing these for some time even with the pack at less than full capacity. On the spade bit however it may not have the torque to turn the bit.

Cheap mains drills with good variable speed are actually not that easy to find. An old B&D design with the metal gearbox would do nicely on the slower (fixed) speed (about 900 rpm) they have plenty of grunt)
As Mike suggested, send one of the battery packs to www.recell.co.uk, you will likely find that moves the tool into a whole new league.

The former may be true, but "your current level" is probably a little beyond the budget tools anticipated target market.
(hence why most chippies will buy a decent bosch/makita etc for this type of work).
--
Cheers,

John.

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No idea, but you would be far better using an auger bit for joist drilling any more than one or two holes. Easier, quicker and more manageable waste.

Personally I think 16mm with a spade bit is quite good going for 12V though it seems to be the battery capacity which doesn't impress you. The battery capacity may improve after a few cycles. If you havn't got a mains drill you should get one anyway.
Jim A
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Jim Alexander wrote:

A few people mentioned that. What are the advantages of spade bits?

I did. It's definitely the way forward.
Antony
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They're a tiny fraction of the cost.
Christian.
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They're cheap to make and easy to re-sharpen. Also work at the high speed of a mains drill. An auger really needs a slow speed.
--
*How about "never"? Is "never" good for you?

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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Mains drill may be an option. However. Sharp bits are essential for good battery life. But flat bits don't really cut, they scrape. This uses lots more power than the equivalent sharp auger bit. A 16mm auger will run for many more holes than the flat bit. I would say that you should get a cheapie mains drill. At best, the better cordless one will last 2-3 times longer than the existing one. You will still come up against jobs that it won't really do easily, without lots of spare batteries. IMO, a cordless drill is half the tool, the other half is a mains drill, for extended jobs, and ones that need higher powers than teh battery can do.
Cheap cordless + cheap mains can do more than one expensive cordless.
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A couple of hours sounds quite good using flat spade bits. Remember, you have a small 12V drill, it can't work all day without charging! One reason that many drills are supplied with two batteries is that you use one whilst charging the other and swap when the first one runs down.
Christian.
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antgel wrote:

I'm not surprised, given the work.

I think your expectations are too high. If you have a spare battery, that would help. A mains drill would be far better for this, assuming there's room for it.

Maybe. I've found that some "cheap" stuff is quite alright.
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Thanks all. Cheap mains drill it is. If people in here are willing to say that this is too much work for the tool, given that it's a PPPro, then I surely can't blame it. :)
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Something like a 16mm flat bit requires a large amount of energy. Any cordless drill will struggle after a while. Better ones might last slightly longer.
Just think how hard it is to hold the drill while doing this. How much it 'kicks' while drilling. That shows you how much power it's using.
--
*Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things.

Dave Plowman snipped-for-privacy@davenoise.co.uk London SW
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