Should I go cordless? - Router Forums
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post #1 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 12:30 PM Thread Starter
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Default Should I go cordless?

Iím new here, please be gentle with me.

I have a 500W corded impact drill for a long time. I use it for pretty much everything from drilling concrete to metal to wood.

Lately I have acquired a bunch of power tools since I got a tad more serious on woodworking . A router, jigsaw and a finishing sander, all corded. I figured, I donít plan on using those stuffs too often, corded means I donít have to worry about battery becoming unusable after extended storage. I guess I am a tad old fashioned and I like things to last forever.

But I wondered if I made the wrong choice there.

Not too long ago I bought a Black & Decker 12V drill that is on sale, since the NiMH stuffs are going out of style. I didnít need another drill but thought I could use a powered screw driver.

Lately the said impact drill needs a trigger switch replacement that I canít find. So I started looking for a replacement. I was mainly looking at rotary hammers, both corded or cordless, since they would drill pretty much everything. The impact drill I have been using struggles at reinforced concrete like ceiling and pillars.

I also started using the 12V as a drill, I have to say I am pleasantly surprised, I would say it works for 95% of my need, and I do like the freedom it afforded. That other 5% would be drilling concrete and driving large hole saw. Rare occasion, but they do happen.

This leaves me a conundrum. I am about to buy the most expensive tool for that 5% of my drilling need. I also canít say I use a drill every month. Most of the time only when I have a project going on. So that 5% is the rare of the rare occasion.

The model that I am most interested in is an 18V Bosch rotary hammer. The tool and battery cost themselves are within budget. I looked at what other Bosch 18V tools I can potentially purchase in the future, those however are rather pricey. But at the same time I also wished I hadnít bought all those corded tools so I can justify the cordless system cost.

But when I look at the 12V system, the prices seems more reasonable, but it offers little more than I already have and that 5% would remain unfulfilled.

Since l am already quite invested in corded tool, should I get another corded rotary hammer and use the 12V drill for most other stuffs? But if I were to go cordless, I guess I gotta start somewhere?
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post #2 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 12:56 PM
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I have an impact and drill that came as a kit. It offered a free circ saw with the kit or I wouldn’t have it. I recommend having at least a 1 cordless drill. It will go places that a corded is a pain to use like up on a roof and doesn’t have a cord in the way for bench work. I don’t contract out anymore so I don’t really need the rest to be cordless. If you do need those tools to earn a living that’s different. They’ll pay for themselves. Eventually the batteries will become an issue. Battery powered usually means less power and maybe a duty cycle limitation.
I have a fairly cheap hammer drill/drill (it’s switchable) but as a drill it is too fast and low torque.
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post #3 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 02:02 PM
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I have a Dewalt 20v impact driver and drill set that came with 3 batteries as a promo when Lowes opened a store in my area a number of years ago. I also have a Dewalt 12v impact driver and drill that only cost me the price of a battery (my friend was throwing them out because he has a number of drills and didn't want to spend money on another battery). I also have a few cheaper cordless drills. All of these units are used regularly because of the convenience. Then I have a Ridgid corded drill that I use for pocket screws. But, in addition, I have a Dewalt corded hammer drill that I use when I need to drill concrete etc.

OK, I have a lot of drills - I may not have answered any of your questions, and it really depends on which way you want to go, but, I like the convenience of cordless power tools and the benefit of corded when I need them.
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post #4 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 03:15 PM
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Hey NB or N/A, whichever you prefer (as opposed to a name we can call you by); welcome!
The cordless technology is as bad as computer technology in that it obsoletes itself on a very short time line. The corded stuff, by comparison, is timeless.
They'll have to drag my extension cords from my rigor mortised hands. No bias here...
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post #5 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by DaninVan View Post
The cordless technology is as bad as computer technology in that it obsoletes itself on a very short time line. The corded stuff, by comparison, is timeless.
They'll have to drag my extension cords from my rigor mortised hands. No bias here...
As Chuck said: If you do need those tools to earn a living thatís different.

I work in my shop, so electricity is available. Don't need no batteries needing charging just when I need them. Or becoming obsolete, and have to spend $ to replace all.

You want cordless. Here you go.
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post #6 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 04:29 PM
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I was a corded drill bigot, having had a powerful Metabo impact drill for forty-odd years. The early battery drills were handy, but lacked grunt and rpm. Then I bought a DeWalt 18V nicad drill, and used it for 99% of my needs (has a 3 speed gearbox and the highest rpm - better for drilling small holes faster in concrete). But the Nicad batteries lasted the promised 300 cycles, no more, and were expensive to replace. Also the replacements (both new originals and re-packed) somehow seemed to last less long than the first set that came with the drill.
So I hardly ever need the Metabo now, but have become a DeWalt bigot (drills only) and bought a brushless 18V lithium ion XRP model three years ago (don’t know about the USA, but the same drill costs almost three times now than what I paid for it - essentially unaffordable), and plan to keep using it until I can’t hold a drill anymore. I even got somebody to bring me out the tower adapter from the USA to use the Li-ion batteries in my old De Walt. I must say, though, that Metabo has brought out some really beefy Li-ion drills, comparable in every way to the DeWalt, and better priced.
But a real surprise for me has been the usefulness and durability of a really cheap but powerful (1000 Watt) corded Chinese-made hammer drill that I bought in Cyprus 10 years ago. It has more than enough torque to spin a 4” carbide-tipped holesaw through a masonry wall, drives an sds 3/4” bit through concrete like it was wood, and takes sds chisels and gouges for masonry and concrete. Cheap and nasty sds chuck , but has paid for itself several times over. A useful cordless sds chuck hammer drill is very expensive around here.
My guess is that you would find a good 20V cordless quite comparable to your 500W corded drill -if that was sufficient for all your needs, you will be fine. If at times you needed more grunt than the 500W, you may want to stay corded - May be cheaper than cordless. If you want to drill concrete, go sds chuck, whether corded or cordless. There is an adapter for holesaws and the like.
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post #7 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 04:32 PM
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@CVC, do you have / recommend one of these cordless impact drivers? I recently read an article claiming they are so much better at driving screws without camming out or stripping the screw head, that getting one is a no brained. Any thoughts?
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post #8 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 04:47 PM
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I was just thinking along these lines today. I have had a 1/2" cordless drill forever, and I have a smaller 3/8" drill and impact driver set that I use for 99% of everything. I was able to get another pair of bare tools for cheap, (I hate changing bits when working on a project).

I was looking on the wall where to store these, and I decided to let the 1/2" cordless drill go. I don't use it hardly at all, and it would mean getting rid of a charger and 2 batteries.

I have a big 1/2" corded drill for the big jobs anyway, and a 3/8" corded drill which is dedicated to drilling pocket holes because it does a far better job than a cordless drill does, and it doesn't weigh as much as a cordless. I like the smaller lightweight tools, which is why I love air drills at work. All that power, and it doesn't weigh a thing.

I never really got "cordless fever", I work with guys bragging on their 18v, 24v, etc drills that weigh twice as much as a corded version, yet they never use them more than 12 feet from an outlet... If I was on a job without power I could see it, but at home I can't.

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post #9 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 06:12 PM
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I'm building my collection using Milwaukee 18v. Got the impact driver and drill on sale with 3 batteries and a charger. Added the hedge trimmer, shop radio, and multi tool .... so far. Lots of power and the batteries last a lot longer than before.
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post #10 of 50 (permalink) Old 05-24-2019, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kp91 View Post
I was just thinking along these lines today. I have had a 1/2" cordless drill forever, and I have a smaller 3/8" drill and impact driver set that I use for 99% of everything. I was able to get another pair of bare tools for cheap, (I hate changing bits when working on a project).

I was looking on the wall where to store these, and I decided to let the 1/2" cordless drill go. I don't use it hardly at all, and it would mean getting rid of a charger and 2 batteries.

I have a big 1/2" corded drill for the big jobs anyway, and a 3/8" corded drill which is dedicated to drilling pocket holes because it does a far better job than a cordless drill does, and it doesn't weigh as much as a cordless. I like the smaller lightweight tools, which is why I love air drills at work. All that power, and it doesn't weigh a thing.

I never really got "cordless fever", I work with guys bragging on their 18v, 24v, etc drills that weigh twice as much as a corded version, yet they never use them more than 12 feet from an outlet... If I was on a job without power I could see it, but at home I can't.
You remind me of myself. I was doing a project in my gym and had 2 Dewalt drills and 2 Dewalt impacts all going at the same time, as I hate changing bits. I still had to change bits,as I needed a 5th drill lol .


I had Makita 14V nicad cordless drills and hated them . Gave them all away at one point .
Went all Dewalt 20V , the newest pair is brushless . I love these drills !
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