I'm looking into Lowes' 20% off sale and want a new drill. The one I have
is a rather weak cordless with the small battery (12v?). I've also lost the
charger, but that's another story. Anyway I want to be able to drill in/out
3" screws into studs, and drill into concrete with a masonry bit. I found
that the 12v drill didn't have the torque to do it. I borrowed a cheap
corded drill the other day and it drove those screws like nothing.
What do you guys recommend? If the price is in the $200's US or lower I
don't care about the money. It looks like the most expensive one is a
Dewalt 18v. Is this going to match up favorably with a corded drill of the
same quality? Will the battery last a long time? I won't be using the
drill often but I wan't one that can do everything a decent corded drill can
do without the cord hassle.
Thanks for any suggestions,
If you are driving screws most of the time a cordless 19 -24 volt is a great
tool for you. Masonary drilling requires a hammer drill,they do make
cordless combo hammer/rotory drills that work great on bits up to about 1/4
to 3/8ths.Anything larger than that they just don't have the juice (I have a
19.2 Porter cable, Top of the line drill) If your doing a lot of masonary
drilling you can't beat a good old fashion corded hammer drill.
Cordless hammer drills are just not up to the task. They may drill several
small tapcon holes but anything more is a job for corded.
Makita makes a decent corded hammer/regualr two speed/variable for under
For driving screws, nothing beats an impact driver. We just completed
another test of the Makita 6935DWDE 14.4v Impact Driver and it drove 247 3"
long deck screws into "fresh" pressure treated 6 x6 compared to only 171
driven by the Makita 6336DWDE Driver / Drill, also a 14.4v unit.We also
compared it ot a DeWalt DW953 12v Driver / Drill that we had on hand as a
test sample, and it only drove 45 screws. The best news is that Makita has a
special right now that GIVES you a Driver/Drill of the same voltage when you
buy either the 6980DWDE 12v or 6935DWDE 14.4v Impact Driver. Of course, you
have to send back the rebate certificate by January 15, 2005, and follow all
the POP rules etc, But its still a great deal. The Impact driver must be
ordered by December 31, 2004. Without turning this into spam, the 12v is
going to be a bit over your budget $200, and the 14.4v about $15 more than
the 12v. Hope this helps.
Truth in Posting: We sell these.
Jim Ray, President
McFeely's Square Drive Screws
Really depends on what you want to do. I have an 18 volt Dewalt 1/2" hammer
drill from their first generation of 18v tools, and its working fine for
me, does just about everything I have ever tried to get it to do, never
managed to stall it--on low speed I suspect it's stronger than I am.
Haven't tried any big bits in masonry, but it handles up to 1/2" adequately
for my use, and the screwdriver clutch has an adequate range. If you're
going to be doing commercial construction and need a masonry drill or
you're a drywall installer and need a powered screwdriver or the like
you'll likely want something a bit more specialized, but as an all-round
drill/driver it's fine. The new ones have added a third, higher speed,
which answers my one real objection to them.
If you're going 3 inches into studs you really should drill a pilot
hole--the deWalt will drive reasonably sized deck screws 3 inches without
one _if_ the screw head holds up but even with square drive screws if I try
that the driver bit usually torques out of the head before the screw is
Batteries don't last forever on any cordless tool. You can get the deWalt
batteries rebuilt but with the 18v tools they have a discounted 2-pack that
is cheaper than rebuilt batteries, at least the ones I've been able to
find. How long they will last depends on how you use them and on your
luck--one of mine seems to have an internal short for example--it will
charge up and run as long as the others but if I let it sit overnight it
goes flat--the others will hold a charge for, well, I don't know how long
they'll hold a charge--I've always managed to run them down before they
self-discharged--if you don't use it often then recharging the packs once a
month would be a good idea I suspect.
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
==================I like my Milwaulkee cordless.... 14.4 v.. much better then my sons
DeWalt 18 V drill.... and it seems to be more powerful...but that is
Neither could compare with any of my corded drills for drilling
7/8 inch holes in concrete to install anchors for a pool cover...
even the little 3/8 inch corded drills ran circles around both
Cordless drills ...and pulling out my Dads 1950's era 1/2 inch
drill that I inhereted..made quick work of that job...no contest
between the 3/8 inch corded and that baby...
For general or limited use around the house or shop then
Cordless is just fine. I buy by how the drill feels like in my
For heavy duty work... the few minutes it takes to grab an extention
cord will save you time and effort in the long haul...
Lets see, 110 volt over 12 volt... Humm I wonder which is stronger... 110
volt over 24 volt... Still the 110 volt wins by a land slide. If you need
power get corded. IMHO larger voltage drills used near an electrical source
make no since. 110 volts stomps battery operated drills. I have had 8
battery operated drills but all so far all have been 12 volt and less.
Those drills and my corded do everything I want a hand drill to do. The
advantage to cordless are not having a cord to deal with and they get you
out of a bind when there is no electricity to plug in to. The big voltage
cordless drills are way too heavy for my liking.
Volts do not mean a lot -- it is the wattage consumption. Admittedly,
it is easier for the higher voltage drills to consume the wattage.
However many of the cordless have torque that compares favorably with
I just do not see all this fuss about the heavy cordless drills. I am
no longer a young man (69), I have worked at a desk job all my life, and
I find no problem hoisting an 18 Volt cordless.
I sort of agree with you for most chores. When you are using it to sink a
lot of small screws, the weight and balance becomes more of a factor. I
chose to get a Panasonic 15.6 volt because I liked the size and the way it
felt to me. Poking a few holes in concrete, I'd go for bigger.
Excuse the top posting...and tyhe inclusion of the Original post along
with the one reply...
Richard you do have me by a few years (I am only 62)..and like the
reply I included below I have no problem "bench pressing" a 18 V drill
BUT find them to be a royal pain...(arm, back, even my rear) when I
have to keep it over my head drilling a 100 holes or screwing in a 100
screws in a ceiling etc...
I do not know, I was replying to anoither post that indicated that the 18
volt models were not that big of a deal for him. Fo me it would be as I
tend use drills for extended periods of time rather than for a few holes or
Perhaps I should have qualified my comment with a 110 volt and 18 volt that
are built for the same job.
While an 18 volt drill may stomp a $15 corded when it comes to spinning
large bits or sinking long screws, try comparing a corded drill that
compares in price to the 18 volt cordless. Like this drill,
I'd use a hammer drill for going into concrete. As others say, it's
going to draw lots of power, so a battery operated model may not be
the best choice. However, if your use is infrequent, maybe this is
I just bought (last weekend) a cordless Milwaukee 14.4. My choice was
influenced by the 14.4 volt review in the Tools & Shops issue of FWW.
I think this tool strikes a good balance of performance & price.
Plus, when I got it it came in a kit with a 1 hour charger and a spare
battery. And right now, Milwaukee has a rebate going on that allows
you to choose a tool belt, a folding knife or another battery. I
chose the battery, so now I'll have 3. With a 1 hour charger, for my
use, I'll never run out of juice.
Constuction quality of the tool plays a role too - no plastic for me.
Milwaukee and the other top brands use metal gears and other quality
features. Check the reviews. My previous drill died last week. Not
of any heavy use, but because a plastic boss broke off inside and beat
the hell out of the armature resulting in a short in the windings. It
went up in smoke. Too bad, so sad. :( What's the point? Too much
plastic in the construction of the tool in the wrong place is a bad
You might ask, why not 18v? Well, I'm a hobbiest woodworker and just
don't want to hoist the weight of anything that large. And more cells
in a cordless pack and it's going to take a crane to lift it. Plus,
some tools just shouldn't be cordless. At least not yet. Hammer
Drills and Routers come to mind.
Well The outside shell on my Milwaukee (14.4) is plastic...and yes it
will break when dropped off a roof.....I KNOW....
The good news is that a replacement shell retails for about 8 bucks..
Took about 5 minutes to swap it with the broken shell... DAMN the
drill looked like new ... lol
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