Woodworking Talk banner
  • Hello Everyone! Let us know what you would spend a $50 Amazon gift card on, HERE For a chance to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!
61 - 80 of 82 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
I have a Ryobi cordless drill that is an excellent workhorse. I also have a cordless weedwacker and hedge trimmer. No complaints after several years of use. Was surprised to learn my Rigid table say was made by them too. I was recently given an old Ryobi plunge router, haven’t used it yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
439 Posts
well I've got a milwaukee here that my 1/2 ryobi impact will run circles around all day long! milwaukee won't even come close to removing the lugs off my 2500HD but the ryobi will and without issue.
Which Milwaukie? Old model or or new, brushless or brushed, mid torque, std torque or high torque. There are about 10 different 1/2 impact models.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Can anyone give me some insight into this? What gives? Is Ryobi bad?

I pick my current tools based on years of previous experiences that I have had.

Before cordless, almost everything I owned was from Craftsman. Back then, they weren’t the most advanced tools, but you could pretty much count on them doing what was needed.
When I first started out with cordless tools, I was a fan of Porter Cable. Their tools that I bought in the 80’s and 90’s were of excellent quality, and reasonably priced. But then in the early 2000’s, I started having issues where parts would fail, and I found out that Porter Cable does a poor job of making/stocking repair parts, except for the most recent models. I had nearly-new tools with broken triggers or gears that I couldn’t get replacement parts for.

I then went on to DeWalt. They make some of the best cordless drills on the market, but I had issues with some other tools that they made. I wanted to keep within one brand, because the batteries are so expensive, so I looked for another brand that made quality tools throughout their line.

I tried a few of the Ryobi cordless tools. Overall, they weren’t built as tough as some of the other tools that I had, but they performed reasonably well for light to medium-duty work. My biggest problem with Ryobi is with their batteries. They are prone to overheating, and they don’t hold a charge nearly as well as other brands.

Now, I have Milwaukee cordless tools. They are too expensive in my mind, but I am sticking with them because they hold up everything that I have done to them. I don’t like to keep buying tools, and hope that the quality of Milwaukee stayed where it is. They always work when I need them.
The lack of availability of parts for tools is horrible. I swapped for a Hitachi chop saw that needed a blade guard. It’s discontinued and unavailable so I donated the saw to a local ministry thrift shop. I looked into availability for a motor fir a 4 year old Rigid table saw in case I burned this one up. Forget about it. Sadly the greedy tool makers just want us to keep buying new.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
271 Posts
MY opinion is for the home owner/weekend warrior the Ridged brand sold by Home Depot is the way to go. The warrenty is what tipped it for me. Lifetime on the tool AND battery. No questions asked. MY opinion again but they seems to be powerful enough to 95% of any homeowner job and I've abused my 1/4" impact that would have killed lesser tools. I was driving 2 1/2" construction screws as fast as I could and burned through two batteries without stop. The impact wasn't even fazed by the work.

Ken
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
MY opinion is for the home owner/weekend warrior the Ridged brand sold by Home Depot is the way to go. The warrenty is what tipped it for me. Lifetime on the tool AND battery. No questions asked. MY opinion again but they seems to be powerful enough to 95% of any homeowner job and I've abused my 1/4" impact that would have killed lesser tools. I was driving 2 1/2" construction screws as fast as I could and burned through two batteries without stop. The impact wasn't even fazed by the work.

Ken
That warranty was the clincher to buy the table saw but I doubt they’ll honor it if I burn up the discontinued motor. I’ve seen others post about not getting what they expected from the Rigid warranty. Hoping I never need to find out about it, the saw works great. Only complaint is the riving knife is too close in width to thin kerf blades and is impossible to adjust perfectly on center which causes some issues when trying to get sufficient flatness for invisible glue ups. A full kerf blade is out of my current budget.
 

·
Jack of too many trades..
Joined
·
599 Posts
I started out with a B&D cordless drill and minisaw back in 1999 and then was upgraded to a 9.6v Dewalt driver, which was later stolen from my garage. At that point, all I could afford was Ryobi, and so I went all-in on the blue One+ 18v set. I only got rid of that set last year when i cleared out and donated all of my unwanted shop tools. I actually went with Ryobi yard tools (because they use the same 18v batteries as the household tools) but I upgraded to the 40v set and now I have a mower/blower/trimmer that all use the same 40v batteries. Those 40v tools are awesome, but I wouldn;t buy Ryobi tools for my shop again.

As many have said, they are usually fine for homeowners/DIY people, but I've experienced several of their design and performance deficiencies.
Here is my experience/complaints
  • The under-powered hammer drill, weak plastic body, lack of drilling power, lack of mass... all made drilling into concrete a major challenge
  • The jigsaw with a round-shaft arbor that "drifted" out of alignment so that the blade ended up at a slightly pointing at a different angle - different from the direction of the tool. That arbor couldn't be adjusted back to a true position. I tried several times.
  • A multi-tool that lacks interchangeable tools ends for the multitool. Rigid multitool parts do fit but the Ryobi tool was underpowered if using rigid multitool ends and using one of these is what caused its motor to overheat and burn up. BTW... the Rigid version has a safety feature that shuts down the motor before it overheats.
  • A brad nailer/pin driver only worked when held against a completely flat surface (i.e. not suitable for nailing crown or installing in narrow places)
  • A weak-sauce mini circular saw - way too weak to make more than a couple cuts in nothing harder than a FSP 2x4. I rarely ever used this thing.
  • A dust-buster vacuum with "evercharge" that aparrently kills batteries (seriously, two of the batteries I left in the tool can no longer take a charge). The vacuum is great, but I don't risk leaving batteries in it.
  • Flashlights whose bulbs were discontinued and are NLA (you have to order knock-off from Amazon.com)
  • General "cheapness" in design. Only really obvious when you start using other branded tools (rigid, makita, milwaukee, dewalt) of your put your tool through some hard projects.
I got a lot of use out of my Ryobi woodworking tools, but I was very happy to be rid of them. Because they come from the same major manufacturer, and because my deceased father in law left me a couple Rigid 18v tools, I've more recently gone with Rigid for my replacements. They are not that different and in some cases (e.g. multi-tool attachments), they share the same form factor. The Rigid tools are simply better designed, but even these are not quite the rugged professional quality that some prefer.

I will say that I've learned not to bother with those multiple tool sets unless I need those tools specifically. I've only replaced my old Ryobi tools as-needed and I will probably never replace some of the tools that I used to own (e.g. jigsaw, cordless circular saw).

All the good points have been made. -Ryobi is affordable, accessible, and usually adequate for most users, but they are not really tools for job-site professionals.
IMHO the only really good reason to stick with them is after you have invested in their batteries (I still have 8 of them) and that just about economy of batteries and charging.

I still keep a few 18v Ryobi tools around the 18v blower/trimmer/chainsaw/vacuum as backup tools. I still have Ryobi corded belt sander, but only because I don't have a need for something better yet.

Ultimately, it's about what you want to do and what you can afford. It's Ryobi for a lot of people
 

·
Thumb Nailer
Joined
·
2,869 Posts
Funny thing is, out of all the tool brands I own. Including Makita, Rigid, Snap On, Matco etc... Ryobi is one brand of tools I have NEVER had a problem with the tool itself. I have had issues with one storage bag but not going to blame the tool for a busted zipper...

Honestly in my experience, and YMMV of course, I would much rather have Ryobi than Makita as I have had FAR more reliability issues with Makita tools. Sanders literally falling apart during use, drills siezing up etc...

And mind you, Ryobi is an old brand relatively speaking. I remember them being sold at Sears along side Craftsman back in I guess it was the late 80s / early 90s maybe? Back then a lot of their stuff was USA or Japan made and was actually quite good. They have been through several changes of ownership as have several of the other tool brands.

If you look at who owns what brands, and who is actually designing and making the stuff we use, you might just end up with a different perspective on tool branding.

I will put it into a gifting point of view. I can go down to a local maker and buy my wife a beautiful hand sewn leather handbag, for $100.00 and it would be every bit as beautiful and useful as say the same size / general design Coach handbag that sells for, well heck I dunno, I have heard stupid numbers like $500.00

Now why would I spend the extra $400.00 on a brand name?

Because my wife likes the prestige the more expensiv eitem gets her. It's clout. Bragging rights. Show off.

We as woodworkers, and not to generalize too much, but certainly not all, but the majority here on the forums are men, and we do something similiar with our shop gear. Or cars, or guns, or fishing poles, or... Any number of a myriad of items, to show off clout, status.

Is that wrong? Not necessarily, but realize that flaunting will give you kickback, and you may not get the desired response.

Now does one particular tool work better, smoother, faster, more accurately than another?

Without a doubt the answer is yes. Is brand name a reliable indicator of the above qualities? In my experience, the answer is really a mixed bag of yes and no. It REALLY depends on the tool in question.

Ryobi markets tools aimed at the mid point of the market, and they hit the nail on the head IMHO. No they are not a premium / professional brand like DeWalt, Rigid, or Festool, but neither are they bargain basement like Skil, Black and Decker, Chicago Electric and their competition.

For MOST home / hobby and a good many professional woodworkers / carpenters / DIYers, Ryobi is exactly the tool they need to get the job done at a price point they can live with. For many they are not. Be it a functiona issue I.E. I want / need a tool with more power than the Ryobi offers, or just look and feel. I.E. I don't like the way the grip of this drill feels in my hand. All of those are legitimate and valid reasons to pass up on a tool for a competing item. That is why the market can support so many makers.

Honestly there is nowadays very little on the tool market that is junk. It exists don't get me wrong, Lord knows I have been through more than my share of Skil stuff that I will likely never buy from them again, as well as B&D. Just been reliability challenged. For a good number of folks though, they will see years and years of great service from those brands. So do I hate them? Nope. Not worth my time or emotional energy. They just have earned their jettison out of my shop. Of course excluding my 90s vintage USA made Skil circular saw, that thing seems bomb proof...

A common theme I am seeing in this, and other threads is poor experience with CORDLESS tools. FWIW, I have very little in the way of cordless, and I know what i Have is junk, but it is junk that was purchased for a very limited purpose. I have used or owned cordless / battery tools from Skil, B&D, Makita, Rigid, and Drill Master, and IMHO, they were all junk. Cheaply made, fragile plastic bodies, and batteries that let you down suddenly in the middle of a job. Just go with corded tools, it's a technology that works and is VERY well proven.
 

·
Jack of too many trades..
Joined
·
599 Posts
I hear you on the manufacturers. It was no coincidence that Rigid Multitool attachments fit the Ryobi multitool (and vice-versa). I do think it all comes down to the idea of whether the tool is adequate for the job. After that, it's an "in-for-a-penny, in-for-a-pound" sort of situation with the batteries.

WRT prestige... look no further than Festool, or even "Big Green Egg" grills. I may not be poor, but I'm also not that rich. If you're buying those things, there's a good chance it is a conspicuous display of wealth.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,140 Posts
For my cordless tools, I just went dewalt because they have an impressive lineup in terms of breadth of options, and I have a lot of friends with the same system, so finding used tools / borrowing tools is pretty easy. Getting the dewalt was not significantly more expensive than the ryobi, so it was fine with me. The top model dewalt drill did seem more powerful than the ryobi, so I could get rid of all my corded drills (except the sds hammer drill)
 

·
Registered
Termite
Joined
·
7,987 Posts
When im in pawn shops I see Ryobi tools everywhere. Considering Im not going to buy new batteries for my Dewalt 12v xrp, maybe I should try a Ryobi from the pawn shop..

I was wanting a Makita setup, but I haven't had to put 2"-3" screws in on installation in years. Maybe I need to come out of my installation bubble and try something a lil more DIY...
 

·
Jack of too many trades..
Joined
·
599 Posts
The Ryobi batteries are exactly the same trap as the Dewalt. Unless it's around Christmas time, you can expect to drop about $100 per large cell 18v battery. Buddy of mine worked for Bostitch and he tells that all the cordless tools are next to free because the companies make their money off the batteries.

There's always something to be said for standarization. What I'd really like to see are quality, reliable, well-engineered universal batteries, not unlike the AAA/AA/C/D/etc., but for power tools. I know that there are adapters made "overseas" but I'm not sure I trust off-brand stuff like that. I think any discussion about cordless tool quality and value proposition is always going to be hung up on the cost and shape of the batteries.

I'm saying that as tool user and not just a someone who works in the field of standardization.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
124 Posts
My tools are all over the board. Ryobi tools are the only ones I don't have. The only reason is, I needed better when I was making a living off my tools. That said, I do have many Harbor Freight clamps and the first impact drill I bought was an HF one, which I gave away, after I had several others with a better reputation for dependability.

The comedy is, I bought the drill thinking I would kill it, but it wouldn't die, so I gave it to a kid starting out. When I bought that drill, it was what I could afford then. It worked. That ONE went on working, and it met most my needs. As many can attest, other ones are not so dependable.

Later, when I loaned a tool, I was not above buying a HF or Ryobi for the sole purpose of loaning it.

An employee bought a Ryobi. I had him take it back and I paid for his upgrade to a Ridged set. The battery performance differences were obvious.

Some times manufactures gouge, using their past reputation. MOST the time, you do pay more for quality. That is, Ryobi engineers are not magicians able to do what the more expensive competition cannot. However, if you aren't relying on a tool for your livelihood, the starter versions (a Chevette vs a Honda Accord) may be just fine.

In the end, for the money, the Ryobi isn't bad, but the Panasonic / Makita / Porter Cable / Bosch / Dewalt / Ridged / . . . . are better. But do you need better?


I realize everyone has preference when it comes to brand.

I’m not so much dedicated to one brand. I have tools from several different brands.

One thing I’ve noticed though is a lot of people do not seem to like Ryobi. I have several tools made by them. They seem to work just fine.

Can anyone give me some insight into this? What gives? Is Ryobi bad?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
20 Posts
I started using Ryobi cordless tools when they came out with the 1+ battery system. Prior to that I had a set of Dewalt drill driver and a set of Craftsman cordless tools. After a year or two the batteries would start to die. New batteries cost almost as much as the tool kit itself. It also seemed like every new tool model used a different battery.

Ryobi solved this. Now I stick with Ryobi for cordless. I bought a few new batteries at Christmas when HD had them on sale.

Of course if I had sponsors my walls would be lined with Festool, Woodpecker and Milwaukee tools!!!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I realize everyone has preference when it comes to brand.

I’m not so much dedicated to one brand. I have tools from several different brands.

One thing I’ve noticed though is a lot of people do not seem to like Ryobi. I have several tools made by them. They seem to work just fine.

Can anyone give me some insight into this? What gives? Is Ryobi bad?
Their customer service is abysmal. I had blower go out after 14 months. Keep in mind that I have a lawn service too, so I'm not using the blower a ton. They spoke with me on the phone, told me to take it HD for repair. HD was unable to get the part due to "supply chain issues". Ryobi would do nothing more and actually the rep that I had spoken with would not take my calls and had full voice mailbox, when I tried to call again. She assured me she would be in touch with a solution but never was. They are AWFUL. I have other drills, saws, etc, but will NEVER buy from them again!!! Run far away.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28,481 Posts
I realize everyone has preference when it comes to brand.

I’m not so much dedicated to one brand. I have tools from several different brands.

One thing I’ve noticed though is a lot of people do not seem to like Ryobi. I have several tools made by them. They seem to work just fine.

Can anyone give me some insight into this? What gives? Is Ryobi bad?
I'm probably in that club however I don't know why. The only Ryobi tool I've ever used was a portable tablesaw I purchased. I didn't expect much from it, it was cheap little saw however I'm very impressed with the saw. The only thing I don't like about it is you raise and lower the blade by turning the knob opposite of any other saw I've ever used. I guess the answer to your question is the same as those that hate harbor freight tools. They buy one or two and have trouble with one so they think everything hf sells is bad. The truth is you can get a few bad tools from any manufacturer so you can't judge a companies tools by the experiences of a couple tools.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
914 Posts
I have a Ryobi corded string trimmer that has served me well. It is for home use but when used, it is not babied. Just this past week, I had to buy the only part I have ever had to replace; the plastic bumper button on the bottom of the spool. In the process of trying to find the part number, I discovered that I have had it for 30 years and it is still going strong.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
750 Posts
The main thing is that we do have a choice of systems, and most of the tools seem to do well almost all the time. There is neere a guarantee that you will not get a lemon. OR it might seem like a lemon, until you remove the air filter from your Poulon chainsaw and seat it correctly - after removing the sawdust from the curburettor throat.!
 
61 - 80 of 82 Posts
Top