Ok, I'm drooling over the new 18 Lithium Ion pack from Makita.
- Drill (1/2" hammer)
- Circ Saw
- Impact Driver
- Flashlight (who cares)
- Mail in for a free recip. saw
- Nice bag to keep them in.
I had a nice long talk with the Makita rep at a recent sales event at a
buddy's store, and they look outstanding for $800 Canadian. Everything from
the battery cel design, the air cooling during the charge, the 4 brush
My old Porter Cable 14.4 drill batteries are dying at just the right time to
justify this set!
I see from the catalog Amazon sent that most of the other makers are putting
together Christmas packages, too. Though I'm a Makita fan, the DeWalt boys
have a nice deal going as well. Bought my eldest a 14.4 set when he
graduated from college, and it's one of the things from his shop that he
took to Germany rather than put in storage. Too handy to have around.
Makita's new Lithium Ion package goes beyond "nice Christmas packages".
This is brand new stuff. Like the other guys, they have really
thought out these tools very well. Unlike the other guys, these are
18V tools with the weight of 12V tools, twice the battery life, no
battery memory issues and a very smart charging system. Now that's
cool. I'm in Canada too. The sets won't be available for another
couple of weeks where I am. I was told to expect $800 at the Borg.
They're all over the internet for $629 US. I bought the set on eBay a
few days ago for around $520 US including shipping. I'm very excited
to get the new set. I'll have to wait a couple of weeks though. One
of the drawbacks of eBay.
There are a couple of problems with Lithium Ion batteries:
1. The life of the battery decreases over time regardless of usage (as
much as 50% reduction of battery life per year)
2. Lithium Ion batteries do not handle high current as well as NiMH or
NiCd. NiCd handles high current loads the best between the 3 battery
3. Lithium Ion batteries do not charge quickly.
4. Lithium Ion batteries are not very durable.
5. Lithium Ion batteries have MAJOR problems with overcharging (i.e.
you will severely damage your batteries if you overcharge them).
6. Lithium Ion batteries typically only survive 300-500 recharge
There are advantages to Lithium Ion batteries:
1. No memory effect (although it IS possible to recondition a NiCd and
NiMH to remove memory effect, but it requires dismantling the
2. Highest ratio of energy density vs weight (i.e. they are light)
In the situation of power tools, I would say Lithium Ion batteries are
a BAD choice. But don't take my word for it. There are some good
articles on www.wikipedia.com (just do a search on each type of
battery) and www.batteryuniversity.com. I would wait until LiIon or
Lithium Polymer battery technology/chemistry further matures.
The so called "Memory effect" is just a myth perpetuated purely by
hearsay and more recently over the past couple of decades by usenet
It simply DOES NOT EXIST!!!!!!!
Any source that tries to justify "memory effect" is based on cell
chemistry and application engineering around 30-40 years out of date.
Got any definitive sources? From what I've read, what most people call
"memory effect" is actually voltage depression due to overcharging. As
mentioned by the previous poster, this can be repaired, but requires
dismantling the pack and discharging the cells individually so that none
of the batteries get run "backwards".
3 - They have the lowest self-discharge rates of readily available
rechargable batteries. That means they retain the charge on the shelf
and the tool is ready to use after sitting around for weeks.
If you want something rechargeable that is used infrequently, Li-Ion
are great. If you want something that you use every day for hours
a day, NiCd are best. NiMH good for something in between.
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