My Crapsman cordless drill (9.6V) bit the dust. The battery would no longer
take a charge.
I was at the BORG and was eyeballing the Dewalt 14V (DC728KA). Do you own
one? Can you recommend another comparable one.
I don't want to spend more than $200 Americano.
How much life do you usually get from a cordless drill battery? I assume it
depends on the number of depletions/recharges.
I have a right angle Makita that I got in 1983 and the battery still works
for a little while. I have had a Panasonic, 2 different DeWalt's and Now
use a Makita.
The Panasonic was the Cadillac but liked the DeWalt and like the Makita.
You might watch for the "buy a drill and get an impact driver for free
deal", or visa versa. I bought my 12v Makita Impact 2 years ago for about
$200 and sent for the free drill. If you have one of the impact drivers you
really don't need over 9.6 or 12 volt. The impact drivers are usually 5 to
6 times stronger than their "sister same voltage" drills.
The new Lithium Ion batteries look promising but are more pricey.
Batteries don't just have a certain number of cycles, time kills them
too. I've never had a battery last for more than about 6 years or so
before the run time got too low to be useful. So resist the urge to
buy the biggest, baddest, drill with the best specs and all that.
Unlike your corded drill, your cordless tools are somewhat
"disposable". The price of two batteries will almost buy you a whole
new kit; so when the batteries die, most people start over. Go down to
the local Borg and hold several in you hands. Pick the one that feels
best if it comes from Panasonic, Bosch, Dewalt, Hitachi, Makita,
Milwaukee, or Ridgid, (did I leave anybody out?) but NOT Craftsman or
The only caveat to that is Ridgid. I dont' own any Ridgid power tools,
but I'd give very serious consideration to Ridgid cordless because they
warranty the BATTERIES TOO for life. Be sure to save all the receips,
UPC codes etc. required to use the warranty, because the batteries WILL
I'm on cordless drill number five, and I own three that still work at
least a while. My favorite is a 12 volt Milwaukee T-handle with the
battery that hangs out front, under the trigger. It's the best
balanced and most comfortable drill I've ever used.
"All that is required for evil to prevail is for good men to do
nothing." - Edmund Burke
Everything on the Rigid is guaranteed for life. The batteries, the
brushes, the chuck, everything. I don't think there's another company
out there that stands behind their products like that, especially at
Batteries guaranteed for life? Looks like I'm going to the Big Orange
Retail Giant soon. I've been eyeballing Makita, but if Ridgid will
replace the batteries when they die, I'm buying.
Best get two, a 9.6V for light jobs and a 24V for big ones... So little
money, so many hobbies...
Wise is the man who attempts to answer his question before asking it.
To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
You can get an 9.6 impact driver that will likely out perform the 24 volt
drill and also consider that while the Ridgid had an excellent warranty, the
tool may not feel quite right to you. I looked at the Ridgid a couple of
years ago and they were very heavy by comparison. They may be lighter these
There's a lot to that-
I like DeWalt, because I've got big hands, and they've got big grips.
I've seen other guys cringe when picking my drill up (It is a fairly
heavy beast)- and I feel like I might break theirs.
I second the previous posters idea of Ridgid. I recently picked up a 5
tool 18V combo kit for $269 (Ill explain later). I *had* a 14.4V
Milwaukee hammer drill that I loved......used it for absolutely
everything I could. But the batteries were terrible. Even new, they
would work a while then just no longer have any good runtime. I went
so far as purchasing the triple-bay charger (apparently the single-bay
charger wasnt "smart" and the batteries would end up undercharged or
fried from the charger). The triple-bay helped the issue a little, but
I still get somewhat short runtimes.
The Ridgid set is perfect, because of the lifetime service agreement.
It might not be the easiest way to get stuff fixed/replaced (either
send it to a service center, or drive it to one nearest you), but there
is a standard 3 year warranty on everything before the lifetime even
kicks in......in those 3 years, bring back to HD, walk out with a
replacement. Ive used every piece of it except the recip saw. The
drill is suprisingly heavy duty.......I was figuring I would be let
down coming from the "Big Red", but Im pretty impressed with the Ridgid
so far. A couple things bother me (harder to use the directional
switch than the Milwaukee, and the cluthc is a little noisy when in
high speed), but definitely worth the $$$.
If you can find them, there are 2 combo kits on "clearance". One
(model R9212) is 209.00, the other (model R9222) is 269.00. The more
xpensive one comes with the recip saw, the cheaper one does not. They
are covered under the lifetime warranty ocne you register them. The
drill alone costs more than that. Ridgid also now has the 24V LithIon
tools, if you wanted to go that route.
You might want to reconsider the $200 limit. I just purchased one of the new
V18 LI-ion batteries and chargers from Milwaukee. I know that it is a fair
bit lighter than than my old 18v NiCd and it runs near full power until
dead. (The chart shows a near right angle for power vs. runtime which is
pretty accurate) I am very impressed with it. Also it has a 5 year/ 2000
charge warranty. The hammer drill kit is around $300 and the 4pc. combo kit
with circ saw, sawzall, drill, flashlight, and 2 batteries is around $500.
If you really want something powerful look at the V28 from Milwaukee. I
wanted that but that would mean a sizable investment in new tools. The V18
works with all of their 18v cordless.
My 12v DeWalts have been going for more than 5 years of highly irregular
work habits. I'm a serious hobby guy, in spurts, and may do one major
kitchen or bathroom a year, plus a couple of pieces of furniture, plus the
usual smaller stuff. The batteries don't get a heavy usage, except for a
couple of weeks, when they get hammered pretty good.
I'd buy DeWalt again in a heartbeat.
Since you had a 9.6V, you don't need the big honking 24V models that are too
heavy for many chores.
My vote is Panasonic 15.6V. I set out to buy a Bosch, but I picked up the
Panasonic and it just felt right. Plenty of power, good weight and balance,
one hand chuck. It is also 15 ounces lighter than the 18V Bosch I
considered and has longer lasting batteries, 3.5 AH.
My DeWalt 18v came with two batteries. I've been using it heavily
(5-45 hours a week, averaging at least 10-15 per week) for over eight
years. I had to buy a new battery last year, but the old ones will
still each hold a charge for an hour or so- just long enough to
completely recharge the new one. The new one (18v XRP) will run for
about 10 hours on a charge driving screws- a little less for things
like drilling tile or concrete, but that may be due to the fact that
it is not a hammer drill. It also drains faster doing things like
mixing 5-gal buckets of paint or drywall with a mixing wand- but I
don't do that too often (that's a job for an old corded drill.)
AFAIK, the 14v is comparable. $200 will get you a nice drill, to be
sure. The 12v and 9.6v are also fairly popular for chamfering and
deburring holes in metal shops.
There might be better ones, but you won't go wrong with the one you're
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