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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Where have you been all my life?

I have been lusting for a cordless drill for some time now. I have been using an old, corded drill that still requires a chuck wrench to tighten the bit for my entire adult life:

Yesterday I got a generous Lowes gift card from my mother-in-law and while discussing it with my brother-in-law, he said his new favorite tool in his arsenal is an impact driver. He regaled me with stories of driving screws into wood above his head with almost no effort at all.

So today I went to Lowes, combined the Christmas gift card with another one from my boss plus some of my own money out-of-pocket (and still much less than it would've cost me for just a nice cordless drill) and bought both a cordless impact driver and a drill, both using the same 20V lithium ion batteries:
I could've gotten them as a boxed set which would've come with two batteries and a charger, but for the exact same price I was able to buy them separately and come out with three batteries and two chargers. I considered that a bonus.

I just went and used the impact driver on some wood screws I had put into place last week on a shelf that was coming away from the wall. When I originally put them in I couldn't get them screwed all the way flush by hand, even after pre-drilling holes for them into the studs. The impact driver got them flush immediately (and again, this was an "above my head" scenario).

It was love at first use.

And now I can buy other 20V tools without the batteries for reasonable prices. Like a cordless reciprocating saw (the corded version of which, until today, was my favorite tool - I love wielding the thing). And grinders and lights and jig saws. Too bad the brand I settled on (which is low-end, admittedly) doesn't have a 20V cordless circular saw, or I'd be all set. And of course each manufacturer's batteries are made to only work with their brand, so it's a lock-in kind of thing. But anyway, I am pretty happy with the purchase.

Drive on!


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't worry about porter cable being low-end - I've run a few of their nail guns over the years and have yet to have a problem with them. They're way higher-end than most of the stuff you'll find in an Ace Hardware or Sears.

Congrats on the new tool addition...I'm a big fan of impact drivers as well. They're not a catch-all for driving stuff; that's why the other cordless screwdriver you picked up exists. You're pretty much set on the driver front now.

Jim Lehmer said...

Good to know you've had good luck with the brand. Thanks!