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Small Cabin Forum / General Forum / Got bit by the tool bug...
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BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 21 Feb 2022 19:04
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Well being cooped up this winter, with far too much time on my hands and some unexpected discretionary income from snow plowing for the neighborhood made me take a hard look at my tool fleet.

I had a decent spread of Ridgid tools that have served me well, but we're showing some serious wear after nearly 10 years of use. I noticed DeWalt sold a Romex cable stapler that I thought would be quite nice for the cabin build. Apparently it is the crack that broke the dam, and I ultimately decided to swap brands entirely.

Well it just kept snowing, and then snowing some more, ultimately rendering even truck snow plows a bit futile. So my 863 bobcat has been the savior of the neighborhood.

All that to say, I have completed my list of "needs" and pretty much all of my "wants" at this point. (See photo)

I'm still waiting for a kit and a couple randoms to come in the mail which include another drill and impact driver, circular saw, square sander, multi tool, sawzall, and fan along with 3 more batteries.

Any other DeWalt fans out there? Not really a brand loyalist myself, just wanted to stick to a single battery platform.

Regardless I'm looking forward to a fun and busy summer of building the cabin with a lot of new toys!
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gcrank1
Member
# Posted: 21 Feb 2022 20:31 - Edited by: gcrank1
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I want you as my neighbor!
I picked up some cheapies at the local ReStore (Habitat for Humanity), 18v? and they've been a game changer. The drill/driver is invaluable! I will NEVER be without one now.
The little circ-saw is 'eh' but with a sharp blade and fresh charged bat it has been handy for light stuff. My guess is the new circ-saws are much better.
The recip-saw has been pretty good for very odd and awkward work. Smaller and much lighter than my Sawzall; Id keep one of these too.
All to say that Im sold on the cordless now too. These cheapies should be upgraded, Ill start looking at the DeWalts.
Wife loves her B&D 20v weed wacker.

paulz
Member
# Posted: 21 Feb 2022 20:58 - Edited by: paulz
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Lol! Good for you.

I have yet to pull the trigger on lithium had tools. Got a chainsaw, blower and string trimmer but still using cords for everything else. I keep thinking I'm done sawing wood and drilling holes... yeah right.

Steve_S
Member
# Posted: 21 Feb 2022 22:56
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Cabineering = never ending tasks, projects etc falling into the job jar. Many fun, some NOT and those in between... Ahhh tiz the life eh ? LOL

The DeWalt tools I have I bought at the beginning of my adventure and built my place with all of the (20V Cordless set) and they've been great. Bought 2014, dunno if quality got better/worse or same since then on those.

Bruces
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 01:57
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I am heavily invested in Dewalt as well ,I had fantastic service from the old 18 volt stuff ,then when my batteries started shitting the bed I bought into the 20v platform ,and Dewalt made it easy by selling a 20v to 18v adapter ,so my new batteries worked on the old stuff and I didn’t have to shell out all the cash at once for specialty tools .I also have 60v stuff ,and once again Dewalt has made the 20v and 60v batteries interchangeable to some degree .The jacket is also awesome if you work in the cold .I did buy into the Dewalt toughsystem toolboxes ,but have abandoned them for Milwaukee Packout’s .

jsahara24
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 07:28
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Very nice selection! I'm definitely jealous, I am fully into Milwaukee which has been good to me so far, but not to my wallet! Still have quite a few tools to acquire to get to your level! I haven't heard many negative things on Dewalt so I suspect you will be very happy....

WILL1E
Moderator
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 08:35
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I'm a Rigid fan myself for my personal shop at home. For the model shop i run at work we buy a mix of Dewalt and Rigid. I'm curious to know what signs of wear your Rigid stuff was starting to show? I have yet to see any decline in performance in my stuff but it would be nice to know what to expect or look out for.

I can't recall what brand Rigid actually is...it's a relabled big brand that was done just for Home Depot....I think it was Milwaukee. I went to HD a couple months back to get a belt clip for my Rigid drill and the Milwaukee guys were there and they pulled the part i needed off of a demo and gave it to me for free and that's when they said they were the same brand.

Nobadays
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 09:20
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Makita.... because that was what the majority of my battery powered tools already were. Certainly not a collection like that... gotta turn my wants to needs! Two years ago I added the circular saw... WOW! The convenience! Added an angle head grinder and a chainsaw last year. Really like/use both of them.

My wife has trouble starting her chainsaw... too slow/soft of pulls so frequently floods the Stihl so she primarily uses the Makita electric saw to limb with. She loves the saw and the fact it always starts! We get a full 30 minutes of constant use from a pair of 18v 5ah batteries. We have 4 pair which gets us through a morning of wood cutting. When blocking up at the cabin the double charger will charge two up in right at 30 minutes so it works well.

ICC
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 10:43 - Edited by: ICC
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I have been a Makita cordless tool fan since I bought their first 7.2 volt drill about 1979, 1980. What a wonder tool! Top quality, same as their corded tools. I still have a 3-1/4" corded hand held power planer that continues to work.

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 11:43 - Edited by: BRADISH
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I'm glad to know I am among my people here

Quoting: gcrank1
I want you as my neighbor!

I never get any complaints when I start up my Bobcat anymore.. Funny how that works!

Quoting: paulz
I have yet to pull the trigger on lithium had tools.

That surprises me actually. The hand tools were the first buy I ever made and I could never go without them at this point. The amount of work I accomplished with my Ridgid set was impressive for them being a 'budget' line.

Quoting: Steve_S
Bought 2014, dunno if quality got better/worse or same since then on those.

I don't think they've changed the 20v line a terrible amount, although now they offer nearly everything in a 'brushless' model. They also have an interesting line of 20v called "Power Detect" (Lowes) or "Flexvolt Advantage" (HomeDepot) that will increase the tool output if you slap one of the 60v batteries in it, despite the tool being 20v. I have one or two tools in this flavor, because I wanted as much output as I could get while having the flexibility to run either battery type.

The big difference is probably the amount of tools they offer in the line, which I think is up to 250+ now. That was the real draw for me.

Quoting: jsahara24
Still have quite a few tools to acquire to get to your level!

Sounds like you might need to build an addition

Quoting: Bruces
I am heavily invested in Dewalt as well ,I had fantastic service from the old 18 volt stuff ,then when my batteries started shitting the bed I bought into the 20v platform ,and Dewalt made it easy by selling a 20v to 18v adapter ,so my new batteries worked on the old stuff and I didn’t have to shell out all the cash at once for specialty tools .I also have 60v stuff ,and once again Dewalt has made the 20v and 60v batteries interchangeable to some degree .The jacket is also awesome if you work in the cold .I did buy into the Dewalt toughsystem toolboxes ,but have abandoned them for Milwaukee Packout’s .

Yeah they definitely offer a lot of flexibility if you're willing to pay for it. Having options was certainly a draw for me though. I have heard many guys running DeWalt tools with the Milwaukee boxes though. Sounds like they're a step behind the competition there. For better or worse, I don't haul my tools around too often besides to the cabin so I will make do with my patchwork of bags and cases for now.

Quoting: WILL1E
I'm a Rigid fan myself for my personal shop at home. For the model shop i run at work we buy a mix of Dewalt and Rigid. I'm curious to know what signs of wear your Rigid stuff was starting to show? I have yet to see any decline in performance in my stuff but it would be nice to know what to expect or look out for.

I can't recall what brand Rigid actually is...it's a relabled big brand that was done just for Home Depot....I think it was Milwaukee. I went to HD a couple months back to get a belt clip for my Rigid drill and the Milwaukee guys were there and they pulled the part i needed off of a demo and gave it to me for free and that's when they said they were the same brand.

I believe they are both children companies of TTD (Might have messed that up). But you are correct that they are related. I think Milwaukee is the Pro-sumer brand, and Ridgid is the Consumer line. I think Ryobi might also be in that mix as the budget line. The concern I had about continuing with Ridgid is a general lack of forward progress in development and much more limited product offerings. There is some speculation online that the brand may be going the way of the buffalo, as there is some unfavorable licensing issues with TTD/HomeDepot. Thus TTD is more inclined to push innovation for Milwaukee. Also wanting to stick to one battery platform as much as possible I ended up making my friend a pretty good deal for my lot of Ridgid tools at $300. (photo)

In terms of wear my Ridgid tools held up extremely well for what I asked of them. They built two large sheds, 2 small sheds, half a dozen decks, 1000+ft of fence, started the cabin build and too many home projects to count over 8-10 years. One drill finally lost its 'umph' and will hardly turn a screw. My circular saw hates to cut wet wood and would no longer make it through a single wet PT 2x6. A 2ah battery died on me (which HD did replace), and then the blade release on my Sawzall got so locked up I finally quit trying and just decided to live with the one blade i had in it (although it will release on the 20th or so try every so often.)

It just got to the point that I was looking at $500+ in replacements to keep what I had, that I decided to try something new. Personally I'm pretty excited about having a battery pole saw and leaf blower. There are some small features on the 'standard' hand tools that will also be nice perks (ie: Multi speed selection on the impact driver, 20 min delay option for LED light on some tools, etc).

Quoting: Nobadays
Two years ago I added the circular saw... WOW! The convenience! Added an angle head grinder and a chainsaw last year. Really like/use both of them.

These were both on my must have list. The Ridgid 18v circular saw didn't have the power I was wanting so I made sure to get the 60V DeWalt circular saw this time. Really looking forward to that.

I had some hesitation on the cordless grinder as I have worked in a weld shop in a previous life and know the hard duty they have. However, talking to some welders on Reddit, they swear by the DCG418 (60v) grinder, and say it's all they use now! Compared to my corded DeWalt grinder (which is admittedly undersized for what I tend to use it for) it is absolutely massive! Photo below for comparison.

Quoting: ICC
I have been a Makita cordless tool fan since I bought their first 7.2 volt drill about 1979, 1980. What a wonder tool! Top quality, same as their corded tools.

My brother is 100% in the Makita line and swears by it. He ends up doing a lot of woodworking as a hobby / side hustle. I think its probably a close race between Milwaukee, Makita and DeWalt these days. Probably comes down to the finer points on a few tools and color preference..
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paulz
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 12:15 - Edited by: paulz
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Quoting: BRADISH
That surprises me actually. The hand tools were the first buy I ever made and I could never go without them at this point. The amount of work I accomplished with my Ridgid set was impressive for them being a 'budget' line.


I was never a construction guy by trade or hobby, until I started the cabin a decade ago. Lithium stuff wasn't around yet I don't believe, I did have a 9v Makita drill, and later a friend gave me his Milwaukee 18v AGM brushed drill when he upgraded, which I still use, but a heavy thing compared to the new stuff I've picked up. All saws still 110v.

Part of the reason I've held off, aside from being 'done', if there is such a thing, is like you guys picking a brand and sticking with it, knowing that the batteries don't interchange. They have mechanics tools now, ratchets and impact drivers, more in my line, another reason to get started.

I got my Lithium chansaw, battery and charger package from a guy that got it for Christmas and didn't want to switch from 2 strokes, for half price. The performance was amazing, leading me to buy the blower and weed eater retail. I'll likely do the same as soon as a good deal on the hand stuff comes along. And I'm following this thread for advice on brands.

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 12:36
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Quoting: paulz
Part of the reason I've held off, aside from being 'done', if there is such a thing, is like you guys picking a brand and sticking with it, knowing that the batteries don't interchange. They have mechanics tools now, ratchets and impact drivers, more in my line, another reason to get started.

Ahh I see. That makes sense then.

In terms of things currently on the market, I think most mechanics are using Milwaukee because they have an accomplished line of impact rachets out that are pretty sweet. Supposedly DeWalt is coming out with a line to match it soon.

Both Milwaukee and DeWalt currently have a very potent line of impact wrenches right now. I picked up the DCF899, which I have yet to use but have since read that it is actually overkill for most automotive uses. I may get a smaller 3/8 mid range impact wrench to supplement this.

WILL1E
Moderator
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 13:41
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Keep in mind there a few sources out there that offer battery adapters for power tools that allow you to use say a dewalt battery on a ridgid tool. From what i've seen they are around 20 bucks. Just another option for those that have a mix and want to share same voltage batteries amongst their herd!

paulz
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 14:21
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Quoting: BRADISH
Both Milwaukee and DeWalt currently have a very potent line of impact wrenches right now.


Thanks, good info. I had to pull the flywheel nut of a Honda V-twin the other day on my UTV up at the cabin. 30mm socket. No way to easily hold the flywheel from turning. I watched a guy on Youtube bust one loose with ease with a battery impact gun. Meanwhile I had to fire up a generator, fire up a compressor, fill a portable air tank, grab the pneumatic gun and head over to the UTV...

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 14:24
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Quoting: paulz
Thanks, good info. I had to pull the flywheel nut of a Honda V-twin the other day on my UTV up at the cabin. 30mm socket. No way to easily hold the flywheel from turning. I watched a guy on Youtube bust one loose with ease with a battery impact gun. Meanwhile I had to fire up a generator, fire up a compressor, fill a portable air tank, grab the pneumatic gun and head over to the UTV...

The day I bought this cordless impact was the same day I sold my 3 pneumatic impact wrenches. They're fine, but this is just so easy now..

Irrigation Guy
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 14:47
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I am committed to the makita line at this point but those look good. I saw you got the 1/2” impact gun, I bought one last year and it is a game changer for working on any equipment.

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 15:00
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Quoting: Irrigation Guy
I am committed to the makita line at this point but those look good. I saw you got the 1/2” impact gun, I bought one last year and it is a game changer for working on any equipment.

Yeah, I think its probably splitting hairs between most of the pro-sumer brands at this point. While I am no loyalist, whatever platform I go with I will stick to until those tools wear out.

And yes! Seeing some people say its overkill for automotive uses made me waiver a bit, but I am sure I will appreciate it for my Bobcat eventually.

Irrigation Guy
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 15:14
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Quoting: BRADISH
And yes! Seeing some people say its overkill for automotive uses made me waiver a bit, but I am sure I will appreciate it for my Bobcat eventually


With my 4 trucks and three trailers each with 4 wheels it seems like we are repairing flats all the time. And 3/4 of those have 8 lug nuts each it makes east work of it

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 15:16
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Quoting: Irrigation Guy
With my 4 trucks and three trailers each with 4 wheels it seems like we are repairing flats all the time. And 3/4 of those have 8 lug nuts each it makes east work of it

Only word of caution I have heard on these Hi-pow guns is to watch out on the re-torque. Apparently they can easily blow past the manufacturer specs.

gcrank1
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 15:24
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I hand start nuts, spin in but never power up tight; thats is done by hand. Just set the clutch loose.

Shadyacres
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 16:10
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Used to be dewalt for me but switched to kobalt for the 5 year warranty and price. 3 years on the battery.

Bruces
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 16:18
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On both my Dewalt and Milwaukee large impacts ,we turn the power setting to one or two to install wheel nuts ,but we also use torque sticks if we have them with us .

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 22 Feb 2022 16:22
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Quoting: Shadyacres
Used to be dewalt for me but switched to kobalt for the 5 year warranty and price. 3 years on the battery.

I originally went with Ridgid for the price/warranty, but in time found there sure were a lot of cumbersome rules around that dang warranty. I had a single battery go bad, and they wanted me to send in the entire SET in order to process it. Shipping alone would have paid for the new battery. Just silly.

Finally I wore the local Home Depot down through shaming to just replace it for me, but learned the lesson that it was not an easy process.

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 23 Feb 2022 23:56
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Remaining tools finally showed up to round out the set.
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paulz
Member
# Posted: 24 Feb 2022 08:57 - Edited by: paulz
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Any info about battery life between brands? Are they all about the same? Do they last thousands of cycles like Li touts? Are they replaceable cells for the DIYers or just buy new ones?

Is everything new now 20v?

Nobadays
Member
# Posted: 24 Feb 2022 09:25
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Forgot... my wife got me a Makita jigsaw for Christmas. I was a bit skeptical as I've had a Bosch jigsaw for years, you can shave wood with it, incredible jigsaw. I was worried when I unwrapped it knowing I hadn't bought the cordless because I figured I would have to get their best one to even come close to the Bosch, well she got me the best one.... it is sweet and so far seems very much on par with the Bosch. Happy! Hmmmm what tool next!

BTW... I have a mix of genuine Makita batteries and off brand cheap Chinese batteries off Amazon (there are good and bad reviews for every one of the off brand batteries, so far I've gotten good ones I guess). There is a difference but testing them side by side when blocking wood with the chainsaw, the cheap batteries would run out of juice only about 5-7 minutes sooner than the genuine Makita batteries. This was using a pair 5ah batteries each time.... right at 30-35 minutes of steady cutting, the Makita's at the upper end. Makita, somewhere in their literature said a set of batteries would last ~45 minutes.... yeah, no.

paulz
Member
# Posted: 24 Feb 2022 10:23
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Many of the impact drivers I'm seeing are 1/4" but have high torque capability, 100 lbs. or more. What is the 1/4", a square drive, like for 1/4" sockets? Can they drive sockets like 9/16" or 5/8", or lug nuts?

gcrank1
Member
# Posted: 24 Feb 2022 10:31 - Edited by: gcrank1
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I have No use for a 1/4 square impact driver!
From what I see with the specs on the All-In-One portable power units those that use lith-something other than LFP chemistry have Far shorter cycle life; expect that is the same for tool bats.
As Im looking at new cordless tools here (yeah, thanx to this thread) the replacement LFP bat-packs seem to be much higher priced than the others . But the more/longer cycle life should compensate. Yet that initial 'buy in' hurts.
Fwiw, ime, the come-with bats with cordless tools last long enough that by the time I need to replace they are obsolete/often unavailable. The couple of tools I bought an extra bat for right away are still usable only because I have one decent and one poor bat instead of just one poor.
I remember when the cordless screwdrivers came out, then the hand drills. Each new iteration was higher voltage, and stronger/longer. My 20ish v drills have been pretty great, the weed wacker too, expect a blower would be good. Pretty sure I want more for recip, circ and chain saws; probably any power saw.

BRADISH
Member
# Posted: 28 Feb 2022 15:33
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Quoting: paulz
Many of the impact drivers I'm seeing are 1/4" but have high torque capability, 100 lbs. or more. What is the 1/4", a square drive, like for 1/4" sockets? Can they drive sockets like 9/16" or 5/8", or lug nuts?

It refers to a 1/4" Hex bit size - AKA the size of a standard screwdriver bit. You can buy adapters to go from the 1/4" Hex bit size up to 3/8" or 1/2" if you wanted to use it as an impact wrench. I have them and they can be quite handy for the odd nut. Typically these are more often used for fastening screws - hence the 'Impact DRIVER' name.

Once you size up to a 3/8" or 1/2" impact WRENCH they come in the squared shaped socket type drive head.

Both have their place and purpose.

Quoting: gcrank1
Fwiw, ime, the come-with bats with cordless tools last long enough that by the time I need to replace they are obsolete/often unavailable. The couple of tools I bought an extra bat for right away are still usable only because I have one decent and one poor bat instead of just one poor.

Dewalt has used this battery platform/form for almost 10 years, and has over 250+ tools that utilize them. It's part of the reason I am went with them. I think they are 'pot commited' to the platform for at least another 10 useable years. At that point I will likely upgrade again.

Quoting: gcrank1
My 20ish v drills have been pretty great, the weed wacker too, expect a blower would be good. Pretty sure I want more for recip, circ and chain saws; probably any power saw.

If interested, you should check out their 'Flexvolt' line which is 60V. They also have a 'Flexvolt Advantage' (or 'Power Detect' depending on the store) which is a 20V tool that will increase output if used with a 60V battery. I have some of both of these types of tools. I shopped specifically with this in mind. The grinder, leafblower, circular saw, and chainsaw are all 60V because I wanted max output. The large drill and recip saw are 'Flexvolt advantage' because i wanted the flexibility to use 20v batteries, but also increase performance if needed with a 60V.

Happy hunting!

ICC
Member
# Posted: 28 Feb 2022 18:38
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Buy a recognized brand name in almost any price range and you will see they stick with the same battery format for very long periods of time, once they got to the 18 to 20 volt range.

Every old 18V Makita I have can use today's battery, even the old drills that came with a NiCad battery. Different charger. Some of today's Makita tools use 2 of the 18V batteries. Some of the 40volt series use two of those.

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