An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

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An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by Hovannes » Sun Oct 04, 2020 4:37 pm

My next big job around Mi Casa is reinforcing the rest of my soffit with Spax screws.
This requires an electric drill, a good one---dare I say a beast of one?

I've always had "homeowner" drills until 40 years ago when I got into the property management biz big time. Expense wasn't so much of an issue but "iffy" equipment was. Finding excellent drills was no problem, I just copied what local contractors used. I ended up with two Milwaukee corded drills and a battery powered Makita. All three drills gave me many decades of excellent trouble free service and I'd still have them today except Makita stopped making batteries for my cordless(after 40 years, yeah, it needed new batteries) and the switches and power cords on a Milwaukee drills wore out. What would have been an easy fix wasn't---the new replacement parts are made in China and are quite frankly, junk.
So I've been getting along with a Harbor Freight Hitachi until, in a rare fit of temper(for me) brought on by the drill's funky quirks, I tossed it with extreme prejudice into the garbage can.
This left me with two little orange Black and Deckers----a cordless with an internal battery (almost deceased) and an anemic corded Walmart special with a Mickey Mouse keyless chuck.
Neither up for the task at hand.
So I'm looking for a new drill. I'm seriously thinking DeWalt as other DeWalt power tools(router, mitre saw) have treated me well, but there are several models of drills to chose from and reviews are kind of all over the place.
I do know I want professional grade with hammer feature and for this job, a corded model.
Can anyone here suggest a DeWalt---or any other make, and model?
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by Del » Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:11 pm

According to the certification on my Man Card, this question is out of my league.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by sweetandsour » Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:26 pm

I have no recommendation, sorry to say. But coincidentally I also am in the market for a drill, but it must be cordless. BTW, my Craftsman electric drill (not cordless) is still going strong, knocking on wood, for 40+ years. I used it this weekend in fact.

But I need a cordless to replace the old one my grandson now has. I'm looking at those in the $100-$125 range at Lowes. There's a Dewalt Xtreme 12-v, 3/8 in for $99 that looks interesting.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by coco » Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:30 pm

They are all kinda crappy and made in China now. Hilti is pretty nice, but rather expensive. I have a Cryobi, which is cheap enough to replace when it dies. We live in a disposable society.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by AnungUnRama » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:03 pm

I like Rigid tools and have a lot of them. Bosch are also quite nice and I like their light position much better.

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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by SlowToke » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:07 pm

Coco speaks sooth. Can't buy really good powertools these days. I have a cordless 12v and corded DeWalt. The cordless has never had batteries that last worth a darn and the thing is a paperweight at this point because I ended up spending more on batteries in a three year period than I paid for the drill. The corded drill is a good drill although, if I had to do it over again, I'd buy one with a keyed chuck because the keyless chuck doesn't hold well under moderate to heavy use and breaks loose. Otherwise, it's been pretty reliable.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by hugodrax » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:15 pm

sweetandsour wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 5:26 pm
I have no recommendation, sorry to say. But coincidentally I also am in the market for a drill, but it must be cordless. BTW, my Craftsman electric drill (not cordless) is still going strong, knocking on wood, for 40+ years. I used it this weekend in fact.

But I need a cordless to replace the old one my grandson now has. I'm looking at those in the $100-$125 range at Lowes. There's a Dewalt Xtreme 12-v, 3/8 in for $99 that looks interesting.
I use a drill from the mid 60's. Powerhouse.

Cordless drills are just...sigh.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by Cleon » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:17 pm

For driving screws, get an impact driver and a good set of compatible bits. This will be a revelation to you. The first time I used one was for remodeling my basement a few years back. They offer you way more control over manipulating the screw than a drill. For drilling holes, get a drill. You can find combo sets at just about any hardware store. They usually come with an impact driver, a drill, two batteries, a charger, and a carry bag. Nothing wrong with Dewalt.

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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by coco » Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:54 pm

I've had a Dewalt router and drill die on me, each with far less than 40 hours of use.

Accurate statistics regarding power tool failures is almost impossible to find, so perhaps my case is an anomaly.

Dewalt does seem to change their battery design every couple of years, which I hold against them. I would advise getting a brand that doesn't change.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by coco » Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:04 pm

Milwaulkee isn't made in the U.S.A. Ryobi is not made in Japan. Both are owned by a company in Hong Kong. This company also owns Ridgid, Empire, Hoover, Dirt Devil, Orick, Stilletto, Homelite, and Hart. All the names are just different labels applied to Chinese tools at differing levels of okayishness. None of them may rightly be called great.

This guy has interesting tool reviews in which he breaks down and analyzes tools. He sometimes uses language inappropriate for sailors.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by JimVH » Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:20 pm

I’ve put my DeWalt drills (corded and battery) through a lot of abuse and they still perform well.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by sweetandsour » Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:35 pm

AnungUnRama wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 6:03 pm
I like Rigid tools and have a lot of them. Bosch are also quite nice and I like their light position much better.

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I'm thinking Rigid also. There's a kit at Home Depot for $300.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by DAN » Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:36 pm

Used to be I could take batteries down to Batteries Plus and they'd rebuild them for a small fee. Probably been seven or eight years since I last did that. Might beat tossing a tool.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by FredS » Mon Oct 05, 2020 8:34 am

I'd recommend a 1/2" corded Milwaukee hammer drill. One version can be had for $100. It's about as good as you'll find without doubling or tripling that price.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by Hovannes » Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:16 pm

FredS wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 8:34 am
I'd recommend a 1/2" corded Milwaukee hammer drill. One version can be had for $100. It's about as good as you'll find without doubling or tripling that price.
My experiences with new PRC Milwaukee tools has been less than stellar :(
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by Thunktank » Mon Oct 05, 2020 5:17 pm

I have the big corded DeWalt hammer drill. I’m not a professional construction worker anymore. What I can tell you is that when I have done big projects, it works splendidly and my handyman wanted it when his didn’t get a job done. Yeah, I’m that guy. Lots of nice tools that doesn’t use them himself much anymore. I am learning to pay others to get it done, it just makes sense for me. But the people who get it done for me do like to borrow my tools. :lol:

And yes, most power tools are made in China, but not all those tools are created equal. If you have some seriously heavy duty stuff to do, make sure there’s lots of good metal on the inside moving bits. Cheap drills won’t have that. And also avoid batteries for something like that. My little 12 volt will get replaced every few years, but that’s worth it because I use it a lot. But for things like hammer drills, corded is the best bang for buck if you don’t have a big air compressor.

Impact drivers are awesome for some things too. But again, watch the batteries if you aren’t using it enough. But an impact driver is awesome for driving lug nuts into rocky areas to use in place of tent stakes. (Hey, you brought up the outdoors in the other thread). :lol:
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by AnungUnRama » Tue Oct 06, 2020 7:11 am

I have also a big Rigid corded hammer drill and that thing is a beast. I bought it when I put decking down on a poured concrete porch years ago. If I need something that will flat get with it, I use that one. It is big, heavy and loud but man does it get down to business.

It also has a keyed chuck. I was quite particular about that part. My cordless rigid has a keyless chuck and that thing is always coming loose. I like the cordless impact driver though. As others have said it is quite handy driving screws. Just... make sure you have a good pilot hole.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by hugodrax » Tue Oct 06, 2020 8:19 am

coco wrote:
Sun Oct 04, 2020 7:04 pm
Milwaulkee isn't made in the U.S.A. Ryobi is not made in Japan. Both are owned by a company in Hong Kong. This company also owns Ridgid, Empire, Hoover, Dirt Devil, Orick, Stilletto, Homelite, and Hart. All the names are just different labels applied to Chinese tools at differing levels of okayishness. None of them may rightly be called great.

This guy has interesting tool reviews in which he breaks down and analyzes tools. He sometimes uses language inappropriate for sailors.
Sooth.

Our forefathers would not have put up with the quality to price ratio we seem so willing to tolerate. I have a heap of broken-down modern wonder drills and an antediluvian Black and Decker going gangbusters that will be passed onto my children. A third-generation power tool.

Don't get me started on the quality of modern bits, either.

And remember, I'm not some wonderboy handyman who spends his spare moments tackling do-it-yourself jobs. This stuff barely gets used before it breaks down.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by coco » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:02 am

Thunktank wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 5:17 pm
And yes, most power tools are made in China, but not all those tools are created equal....

For example, Techtronics' best tools are called "Milwaukee," their middle line is "Ryobi," and their budget line is "Rigid." The three lines are in no way identical, though there are times in which parts from one may fit into another.

I needed a few parts for a Ryobi blower which were unavailable. I got some Homelite parts (another Techtronics brand) that were the exact same parts. This makes sense, mind you. It is often more cost efficient to use the same parts across your different labels if you can.
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Re: An electric drill conundrum, or one drill to bore them all

Post by AnungUnRama » Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:16 am

coco wrote:
Tue Oct 06, 2020 9:02 am
Thunktank wrote:
Mon Oct 05, 2020 5:17 pm
And yes, most power tools are made in China, but not all those tools are created equal....

For example, Techtronics' best tools are called "Milwaukee," their middle line is "Ryobi," and their budget line is "Rigid." The three lines are in no way identical, though there are times in which parts from one may fit into another.

I needed a few parts for a Ryobi blower which were unavailable. I got some Homelite parts (another Techtronics brand) that were the exact same parts. This makes sense, mind you. It is often more cost efficient to use the same parts across your different labels if you can.
Really? I would have thought that Ryobi would have been bottom barrel. They are certainly a heck of a lot cheaper than Rigid, that's for dang sure.

Once upon a time I used a Rigid switch to replace the switch on a Chicago Electric compound mitre saw. As far as I know, it would still work but the blade guard quit functioning on that saw and it just didn't have the grunt I needed so I got a new, more powerful one.
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