Cordless Tools - Which Brand? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 07:45 AM Thread Starter
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Cordless Tools - Which Brand?

Batteries and chargers can get expensive, so it makes sense to stick with one brand.
Which brand of cordless tools would you pick if you can only pick one brand?
Festool is not even in the running so dont bother with that one.

Tony B



Retired woodworker, amongst other things, Sold full time cruising boat and now full time cruising in RV. Currently in Somerville, Tx
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post #2 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 07:52 AM
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Mine are DeWalt but I only have drills, nothing else cordless.

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post #3 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 08:03 AM
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I use Hitachi. Check reviews on Amazon.
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post #4 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 09:13 AM
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I stick with Ridgid. I have numerous tools and they hold up well. The batteries are good and I have had several replaced under their Lifetime Warranty (LSA) when they stopped holding charge; no questions asked by Ridgid. They even repaired an old drill twice now, we're talking 12+ years old and still going.

They have been great about certain replacement parts as well for table saw and sander.
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post #5 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:06 AM
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I have Dewalt drills, Oscillating multi tool, sander and their DW 735 planer
I have heard good things from several people who have Ridgid tools and their lifetime warranty on the batteries.
Not sure if they had to use it yet but that sure is a good deal.
If I had the money I think I would have gone with Milwaukee.
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post #6 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:07 AM
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I have a Dewalt 18v drill with 2 batteries that I bought in 1999. I had to replace one of the batteries about a year ago but the other one is still taking a full charge. I think this is pretty good reliability. Not a big fan of other cordless tools so can't comment further.

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post #7 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:13 AM
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For home use Ryobi 18V is good value for $ and quite durable. If I was a builder, probably Rigid.
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post #8 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:23 AM
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Over on the garagejournal.com this comes up regularly, this seems to be the general consensus amongst the folks there:

Milwaukee
Dewalt/Ridgid

Milwaukee gets props for power, size, and battery life

Dewalt gets props for power, battery life
Ridgid gets big props for the warranty

I settled on Dewalt years ago, I have a bunch of old 18V tools that I use the 20V adapter on. My favorite for everyday use is the Dewalt 12V driver, drill, and impact. They are light and very powerful, it is pretty rare that I break out the 18v hammer drill with the 20v adapter, it seems huge.

My youngest Son went budget on me and bought a Ryobi set. He was happy with it at first, then went to work for a Division of Stanley/Black and Decker. Once he got his hands on the Dewalt tools he was very unhappy with the Ryobi in many ways, including the dead batteries, and sorry he spent his money on them.

This is one of those discussions that can be very polarizing, folks like what they like, if I had to start new, I would take a serious look at Milwaukee before I went yellow or orange.
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post #9 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:23 AM
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IMO you can't go wrong with either Milwaukee or DW. I pretty much have both in my shop. Bought Mil 18v kit and so far very impressed with battery life!

I would mention every tool in my AC techs truck is red and every tool in my electrician's truck is yellow. I don't see any orange or any neon green :-)

But I think Rigid is a good brand too.

I love my little Bosch 12V impact. Nice a light/great for screwing cabinets together!

I tried a Ryobi impact driver that was on sale. Compared to the Mil its a dog. Plus known problem with their batteries hopefully they've fixed it.

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post #10 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 10:30 AM
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I think Dewalt has a good run for multi tool battery changing these dayys. Pretty much all I see advertised. Maybe Milwaukee.

The problem with a purchase today is what will come out tomorrow....

I actually only use cordless drills so for me it would be Makita on this one item...
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post #11 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 02:08 PM
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One word.. MAKITA..

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post #12 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 05:08 PM
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Started off many years ago with Makita. This was back when I still worked in the construction trades and Makita was about the only cordless game around. Fast forward twenty years and I needed a cordless drill. Bought a Ridgid which is now 10 or more years old but still works well. The batteries for the Ridgid don’t seem to last very long but I exchange them at our local Pacific Power store for a reasonable price. Dewalt has become my primary cordless solution with a drill, impact driver, circular saw and a RO palm sander.
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post #13 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 05:38 PM
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Ii have pretty much always gone with Craftsman. The couple of times I strayed I was sorry. I particularly like the NEXTEC series. Seems to get very good battery life and the little 12 volt drill has excellent torque.


Unfortunately I no longer have a Sears store in town.


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post #14 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 05:45 PM
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I have the Makita 18v drill, hammer drill, impact driver and right angle impact driver. I’ve probably had them for ten years without a hint of a problem.

One thing I learned is that having a drill and a driver makes both last longer. I only use the drill for drilling holes and only drive screws with the driver.
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post #15 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 09:18 PM
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I love my DeWalt 20v tools. I've got everything from the drills, trim router, ROS, Recip Saw, multi-tool, and jigsaw, to a fan for the car when I leave the dogs in it and a caulk gun for when I had to go through tons of construction adhesive. I have a couple DeWalt brand batteries I share among them that I've had for about 6 years now with no sign of degradation.
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post #16 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 11:50 PM
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I had a Ryobi until I tried to drive a lag bolt. A puff of smoke and both the drill and battery were gone.

At that time I needed a right angle drill. I bought the DeWalt solution and a ½ inch drill. I don't remember the battery voltage but it was the big ugly post sticking up into the handle type. A neighbor was always borrowing it for work, so I gave him both. I bought a 12 volt drill and ¼ driver from DeWalt. I liked them so much that when the 18 volt version came out I bought a drill and ¼ impact driver.

A note here about the impact driver. It seems like driving and removing screws with the impact driver the impact never kicks in. However I had a badly stripped Philips head screw. I used the impact driver to remove the screw. The impact came in at just the right time and I was to cleanly back out the screw.

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post #17 of 45 Old 03-23-2020, 11:59 PM
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I've got two old Craftsman drills from a long time ago, 9.6V and 12V and they use NiCad batteries so they're kind of heavy but they are still in use five days a week in the shop. Each drill has two batteries so there's always one in the charger and I've changed the cells in the batteries 6 times now I think. I know how to solder so I buy the cells in bulk straight from China on eBay and change them myself every five years. You can get bulk cells for about $2 each and just take the battery apart (4 screws) and solder together a new set reusing the plastic and terminal connections. As long as I can get a new battery pack for $10 and the drill works I'm not buying anything new. If anyone wants help repacking their batteries just LMK.
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post #18 of 45 Old 03-24-2020, 12:28 AM
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Here's my history of cordless

First drill was7.2 V Black and Deck from Kmart.

Then 9.6 V Makita drills.

Then 18 V Dewalts NI-Cads in most models, saws, hammer drill, impacts. Still in use but I have 2 milk crates full of dead batteries.

Finally, 18 KI Milwaukee Lithium Ion in every size, and model up to 1/2" Impact which weights a ton, but will remove just about any bolt/nut I've tried it on. Milwaukee makes models for both automotive and construction use. LOVE EM! Smoother start and stop than Dewalt. Great power. Biggest battery now is 12.0 AH, a monster. https://www.northerntool.com/shop/to...xoCZZIQAvD_BwE

https://www.acehardware.com/departme...E&gclsrc=aw.ds

Along the way a set of Rigid, drills, impacts and circ saw, seldom used, but they are heavy duty and good tools. Battery warranty was a big plus. Still have all the original batteries about 5 years old.


So, a toss up between Rigid or Milwaukee.

The answer to your question will only be as detailed and specific as the question is detailed and specific. Good questions also include a sketch or a photo that illustrates your issue. (:< D)
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post #19 of 45 Old 03-24-2020, 04:45 AM
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I don't think you will go wrong with any of the following Bosch,Makita,Hitachi or Milwaukee.My eternal hope is that one day a standard battery will appear so that any battery of the right voltage will fit any tool body.It would need a standard to be mandated but there used to be lots of different phone charger types and now there aren't.It has saved a lot of sound items from a journey to the dump and our planet needs more of this approach,it wouldn't hurt our wallets either.
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post #20 of 45 Old 03-24-2020, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamesGlenn View Post
I stick with Ridgid. I have numerous tools and they hold up well. The batteries are good and I have had several replaced under their Lifetime Warranty (LSA) when they stopped holding charge; no questions asked by Ridgid. They even repaired an old drill twice now, we're talking 12+ years old and still going.

They have been great about certain replacement parts as well for table saw and sander.
Same here. I hate to have to buy batteries that are half the price of the original tool's price. Ridgid's are free.
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