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Power tool question

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by wraub, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. wraub


    Apr 9, 2004
    ennui, az
    deviated prevert
    Sooo... I am looking for a power drill. I have a decent corded model, but require a second drill for various reasons.

    Budget is a consideration, probably looking to spend 50 bucks or less. Not really interested in CL or pawnshops, considering the way some people use their tools.

    Seems like the usual expected suspects, B&D, Skil, maybe Ryobi or lesser Hitachi models. Corded or Cordless are equal possibilities.

    Any advice re: ones to look for, and ones to avoid?

    Thanks all...
  2. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    Put DeWalt and Makita on your list.
    I asked the same questions before my last two power tool purchases and the general recommendation was DeWalt. No complaints - good stuff.

    My last (er -- 'most recent' ...) power drill was a 3/8" DeWalt 18V cordless. Might be outside your target price with the battery and charger and such.

    My last plug-in drill was a Makita. 10 years now, still working fine, although it doesn't get much use these days. I wanted to jump on the 'buy American' bandwagon but at that time, all the USA-made stuff was horrible.
  3. Jammin Johneboy

    Jammin Johneboy

    Dec 23, 2011
    I spent 31 years as a university art school tech , seven as woodshop tech and twenty four years as the sculpture shop tech. In my opinion good brands are , Dewalt , Milwaukee , Bosch , Makita and Porter Cable.

    Most likely won't find them for $50 , save a little more money it'll be worth it. Good tools pay for themselves over time. Junky tools are just frustrating and annoying and in some cases can even ruin a good job.
  4. I have a Ryobi, and while it's a nice happy homeowner model I wish I had a Dewalt more often than not. save some coin and get yourself a Dewalt.
  5. Selta


    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
    I've been super happy with my DeWalt cordless stuff. I have several different ones and they've never let me down. My father and I used them extensively to build two steel barns, and they performed well. Still work great to this day too, though lately they've sat idle more than being used.
    I don't think you'll find even just a drill in that range. I'd echo the advise to save a bit more.
  6. G00D+~VIBES


    Nov 21, 2008
    Kansas City
    Yeah, tools can be an investment. If you're buying it to do work, buy the good stuff. If you're just fixing stuff around the house craftsman works just fine.

    Just remember with tools (for work) it often comes down to the ol 'buy cheap buy twice' thing
  7. the Ryobi stuff is within that price range. it'll get the job done. it's just not on par with the other brands mentioned. although mine has been working fine for 8 years now.

    I did find a ryobi jigsaw in the mud of a junkyard in a bulldozers track print. still works fine.
  8. Selta


    Feb 6, 2002
    Pacific Northwet
    Total fanboi of: Fractal Audio, AudiKinesis Cabs, Dingwall basses
    Poor wording on my part. I was essentially trying to say that I don't think OP would find a cordless DeWalt drill for $50. Sorry for the confusion.
  9. Out of what you listed, Ryobi is your best bet. I like the Hitachi tools, but there stuff in that price range isn't very good. Money being no object, I like Makita for how they feel in the hand and how light they are. I like Bosch as well, a little heavier though. Bostitch is nice too, although I do t like their nailers at all. DeWalt sucks, IMO. Heavy, batteries don't last very long, unbalanced, and build quality has been going downhill in the last 10 years.

    Find one where you like their entire range of battery tools and start buying those. The last thing you want to end up with is 10 tools with different batteries. Makita was smart and made all their different batteries interchangeable, so if their battery technology changes, the new batteries will still work in old tools and vice versa.

    Another thing that you might want to look into is, what are you using it for? If you are mainly looking for something to drive screws and fasteners, you are way better off buying a cordless impact than a drill. Impacts are designed for driving fasteners, drills are designed for drilling holes in things. Both will do the other job, but buy the one that is designed for the job and you will have a much easier time.

  10. Uncle K

    Uncle K The bass player doesn't get a sandwich Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    I bought myself some Ryobi power tools after some scumbag stole my Dewalts. They hold up pretty well for the weekend project and occasional repair. If I was still earning my living with tools I would have bought more DeWalts.
  11. Gaolee

    Gaolee Outta my way! I'm caffeinated! Supporting Member

    I have gotten good results from Milwaukee cordless tools, but those blow your budget pretty badly. If you really want to blow through cash, you can use Hilti tools. They are pretty nice, but I could only justify one Hilti tool, and that was only because nobody else made anything like it.
  12. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    One reason my corded Makita doesn't get much use is that my go-to tools are pneumatic. I use the cordless for quick things where I don't care to run up the compressor.

    If shop air is available, it's hard to beat an air drill. Or power screwdriver (impact or geared turbine) if that's the goal. Air tools are light, cheap, and run cooler rather than hotter in use. If air is not an option -- nevermind...
  13. GlennW


    Sep 6, 2006
    NEVER buy a power tool that has Craftsman written on it, imo.

    You won't get much in a new drill for $50.
  14. Uncle K

    Uncle K The bass player doesn't get a sandwich Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2011
    Erie, PA
    I see a lot of guys using 24v Dewalt tools these days. Are these the ones you're referring to?

    I had 18v back in the day and thought they were great.
  15. Why do you need a second drill if I may ask? Cordless convenience? Smaller bit sizes (maybe a Dremel or the other Dremel wanna bees would do), etc? Used to have a lot of "hole-boring" tools around the house and eventually down-sized to a corded electric drill, a Dremel and its accessories, and an overhead drill press. Right now, it's the overhead drill press that gets to be used a lot. Slowly moved away from cordless models as they're heavy and the batteries peter out eventually.
  16. wraub


    Apr 9, 2004
    ennui, az
    deviated prevert
    Thanks to all who've responded. I have seen drills in my price range from the brands I listed, but I am of course unsure as to quality. My current corded drill is a B&D Industrial model, and it works great, but it seems the recent B&D stuff gets pretty bad marks.

    I'd mainly use the corded for fasteners and such, the new one would be mainly for making holes for the fasteners. Possibly some other stuff, but it'd mainly be household stuff.

    I recently built 16 feet of shelving, 2 feet deep, 3 shelves high in my garage. I have now received some requests to do more for others. I borrowed a second drill for the one in my garage, really made things easier . One drill for holes, one for fasteners, 2 drills means no bit changing every 2-3 feet. Big time saver, esp. on someone else's dime.

    Any further suggestions?
  17. mkandolf


    Nov 21, 2007
    Saint Clair, MI
    Something else you may want to consider is getting yourself a Speed-Lok set. One drill with quick change bits. That sounds more like what you need.
  18. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    If you have a Harbor Freight Tools nearby, check them out. The lower end stuff they sell may be just the fit for the light homeowner duties you need a drill for. Before I could afford the DeWalt tools I have now, I used B&D and Ryobi tools around the house. They worked fine for that.


  19. No, the new 18v ones. The ones with the new battery style.

    OP, sounds like you want a cordless impact. They are way nicer for driving screws than a drill and you have the drill portion covered.

  20. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    OP, spend at least another $50 so you can get a decent tool. It will be one of the best decisions of your life. Unless you are just getting a drill so you can put the odd screw into drywall or tighten a door hinge or something, then a cheap one is fine. Ryobi is gah-bage. I like Milwaukee (sp?), Makita and DeWalt personally.