My grandpa does recreational woodworking, and he recently built a nice
tack chest for me. So in return, I intend to buy him a better
cordless drill. (He's using a piece-o-junk discount store cordless
after his previous two cordlesses kicked the bucket). My budget is
- Should I get him a hammer drill? I know he won't touch masonry, but
I know he cuts oak with a 1.5" forstner bit, and according to him it's
a physical workout. Would the hammer handle and extra torque help
- I want one that's simple to use but built solidly. If you have any
recommendations, say a particular Makita, DeWalt, Milwaulkee, etc, I'd
like to hear it.
I just bought a 12V Panasonic (EY6405FQKW) that I'm extremely happy
with. It's fairly small and lightweight, but it definitely has the
guts for any woodworking I've thrown at it so far. That's replacing a
3-yr old Craftsman 16.8V, and my qualitative, subjective feelings so
far are that it's just as powerful as the Craftsman (even when it was
new), yet it weighs much less and is easier to maneuver. It's
definitely more powerful and nicer than my BIL's 18V Skil cheapo. The
runtime probably isn't as long as the nicer 18V drills, but for
woodworking in a shop where the charger is always handy, that
shouldn't be a problem, and the charger advertises 45min (possibly
less IME). The one-handed (single-sleeve) chuck is an improvement
also. I'm very impressed. I got it from Amazon for $90, but I think
the price just went up to $100. I'd recommend it very highly. If you
want to spend a little more, Panasonic has some models with 15.6V, and
some with NiMH batteries in both voltages. According to my shopping
around and informal research, this $100 Panasonic is about as nice as
they get until you jump to the $200 Li-Ion models (i.e. Makita).
(No affiliations with any of the above)
The three brands you have listed are all pretty good, IMO. I'd go
with an 18v if he plans on using that big of a forstner bit in oak
with it. Other good brands are Panasonic and Bosch. Does he know you
plan on getting him a new drill? I know that some woodworkers are
somewhat particular about their tools. (heh!)
> My grandpa does recreational woodworking, and he recently built a nice
> tack chest for me. So in return, I intend to buy him a better
> cordless drill. (He's using a piece-o-junk discount store cordless
> after his previous two cordlesses kicked the bucket). My budget is
> about $150.
> My questions:
> - Should I get him a hammer drill? I know he won't touch masonry, but
> I know he cuts oak with a 1.5" forstner bit, and according to him it's
> a physical workout. Would the hammer handle and extra torque help
I beat the crap out of an 18VDC DeWalt for over 8 years before it was
stolen. It didn't owe me anything.
The 18VDC unit exceeds your $150 budget, perhaps you might want to look
at the 14VDC unit.
As far as trying to use a 1.5" forstner bit in a hand held drill, I
wouldn't recommend it. It is a safety issue.
I have had, a Panasonic, 2 DeWalts, and 2 Makita's. I would buy any of them
again but would prefer the Panasonic. Typically, anything you get over 12
volt starts to become a bit heavy and cumbersome unless you go with the more
expensive and lighter weight Lithium Ion battery models. Expect to pay a
lot more for those models. The first Panasonic had much more refined
attributes than any drill that I have used.
Do not buy a hammer drill for wood working. If he uses Forstner bits often,
consider a bench top drill press.
Something else to consider would be an Impact Driver. These have tremendous
torque and typically the 12 volt models will out perform any voltage Drill
Driver and they are relative small. Great for driving screws and small lag
bolts. A few have a clutch setting to help prevent over driving the screw.
That answers my only remaining question. While I realize they aren't
truly useful as hammer drills, I thought maybe the handle and
construction would make it better for some conventional drilling.
Thanks. Now that I think about it, he's probably done all the
Forstner stuff with his drill press, although he said the press wasn't
very deep and limited its usefulness.
I know that up until now he's been using cordless drills, but not any
kind of driver. The goal is the replace the elcheapo drill he's using
now (bought at the local discount store when his two previous ones
died in the same week).
Thanks for the help everyone.
Best deal I have had was a reconditioned Hitatchi 18V on Amazon, It
came with a fast charger, 2 batteries and a flashlight in a case for
100. Ive had it for a year and it is comparable in all ways to the
Dewalt that I have.
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