Author Topic: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)  (Read 2701 times)

davidw

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Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« on: December 11, 2021, 09:31:03 AM »
We bought a house and will be doing some minor work here and there. We're not real knowledgeable, so are going to leave the 'heavy lifting' to experts, but were thinking of getting some basic tools.

  • Power drill/screwdriver. Want something that lasts, but don't need anything super professional.
  • Tool set. I'd like a nice set of basic tools that will last. Or is it better to buy one thing at a time?

All else being equal, I'd rather 'buy local' at ACE, which I can ride my bike to, than one of the big box stores.

With battery powered stuff, I'm inclined to buy new. I'm not seeing a lot of things that look good on Craigslist.

Thank you!

Uturn

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2021, 11:29:06 AM »
Most will probably disagree with my views on corded vs battery tools.  I have switched back to corded.  If I were using them more often, I would go battery.  It seemed like about half the time I picked up the tool, the battery was dead.  Now I have to wait for charging before I can do the job. Also, I have 3 drills that work fine, but the batteries are shot and won't hold a charge.  My 25 year old corded drill is still going strong.  Yeah, it is convenient to not have to drag around an extension cord, but corded tools are always ready to work and won't wind up in a landfill in a few years.

This is a good starter set, and currently on sale for $70 off.  I would add some pliers to it.  https://www.lowes.com/pd/Kobalt-267-Piece-Home-Owner-s-Tool-Set-in-Bag/5001961221

For anything beyond a basic tool set, just buy when needed.  Craftsman used to make superb tools, then Sears sold them and they got crappy. I switched to Kobalt.  I don't know the current quality of Craftsman. 

I also have a dedicated tool box for electrical work, stuff like black tape, multi meter, wire nuts, butt connectors, and velcro strips.  I also have another tool box for plumbing, pipe cutter, soldering tools, primer and glue, Emory cloth. 

fell-like-rain

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2021, 11:41:36 AM »
For me personally, the brands I tend to trust for power tools are DeWalt, Milwaukee, and Makita. These are generally higher priced than more entry-level brands, which I think of as Ryobi, Craftsman, or Black+Decker. There are definitely others I don't know much about.

Realistically, if you're just using a drill to occasionally put screws into a wall stud or cabinet, almost anything is going to work fine for you and should last a while- you could get a workable drill for $50 or so. If you're going to be doing more intensive things (installing a deadbolt, replacing some decking, etc.), it might be worth to spring for something more in the $100 range. Also, brushless drills tend to need less maintenance in the long run than brushed motors, but are more expensive. Again, if you're only using the drill for five minutes every few months, not a huge difference.

As for tools, you should be fine getting any generic homeowner's tool set, I would think. If you end up needing more specifics, you can add on later. The basics you'd probably want:
-Phillips and flathead screwdriver
-Hammer
-Adjustable wrench
-Pliers
-Level
-Measuring tape

Something like this would work fine for your needs: https://www.acehardware.com/departments/tools/hand-tools/hand-multitools/2007713

Another useful thing would be a non-contact voltage tester. It basically tells you if there's current flowing through a wire without having to touch bare metal, which is very helpful for diagnosing electrical problems or doing basic jobs like replacing switches.

Glenstache

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2021, 12:37:53 PM »
Drills are handy, but I use my impact driver at least twice as much. For driving screws there is no substitute. If you end up drilling larger diameter holes with a Forstner bit or similar an impact driver is much safer and more effective. I have a pair of Milwaukee drill/driver combo that has been going strong for over a decade including building a small house. If you go cordless, think about what other cordless tools you might want and what those offerings are. The batteries are basically an ecosystem that you are buying into. Iíve been really happy with the Milwaukee stuff and it is nice being able to take a battery out of my drill to run my hedge trimmer.

davidw

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2021, 03:08:02 PM »
Hah, wow, ok so I started looking around at drills and there are like a zillion options and I'm sure most of them 'are "too much" for what we need.

https://www.acehardware.com/departments/tools/power-tools/combo-power-tool-sets/2493419 seems ok... of course you find some guy reviewing it and he's got complaints because he's a Tool Guy who works with these things all day.

In terms of the basic Ace tools - are they ok, or some cheap junk that will be frustrating/degrade over time? I used to work at a bike shop years ago, so I know the value of good tools. Of course, working at a bike shop, you're doing it all day long rather than the odd one-off repair...

Thanks for the suggestions.

fell-like-rain

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2021, 09:37:05 PM »
Hah, wow, ok so I started looking around at drills and there are like a zillion options and I'm sure most of them 'are "too much" for what we need.

https://www.acehardware.com/departments/tools/power-tools/combo-power-tool-sets/2493419 seems ok... of course you find some guy reviewing it and he's got complaints because he's a Tool Guy who works with these things all day.

In terms of the basic Ace tools - are they ok, or some cheap junk that will be frustrating/degrade over time? I used to work at a bike shop years ago, so I know the value of good tools. Of course, working at a bike shop, you're doing it all day long rather than the odd one-off repair...

Thanks for the suggestions.

The Ace tools are probably going to be fine for general use. Most of them are simple tools that I don't think of as having a real range of quality- pliers are pliers, claw hammers are claw hammers. Maybe a more expensive one has a slightly more comfortable grip or something.

The adjustable wrench will probably suck, but IMO those suck as a class- they're for occasional odd jobs, and anyone who is wrenching on things a lot will have a socket wrench or set of combination wrenches (as I'm sure you learned at the bike shop).

Re: drills, I have that DeWalt Atomic, and I like it as a middle ground between contractor-grade drills and smaller 12v ones. It's light and handy, but has a bit more power, and uses the same 20v batteries as their general range of tools. So it's interchangeable with the hedge trimmer, the circular saw, etc.

You probably don't need an impact driver unless you're putting in lots of screws (building a deck, framing a shed, etc.) Glenstache mentioned building a small house- that is a great use case for having an impact driver. Putting up a coatrack or installing a doorbell... not as much. And you can always buy a drill now, and get the matching driver later if you need it.

Glenstache

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #6 on: December 11, 2021, 10:35:44 PM »
Iíll also add that you should pick up a set of hearing protection and eye protection. Banging a hammer and running a lot of tools get loud and things will fly back at your face. These are money well spent and  worth getting in the habit of using regularly.

darknight

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2021, 09:02:39 AM »
+1 on eye protection.
I'm a fan of Ryobi power tools for the homeowner. Sure they aren't as good as Milwaukee or Dewalt, but they will put up with a LOT. Home depot house brand, tons of tools available that you can interchange batteries etc.
Good promotions too around the holidays. I used to buy craftsman tools because of the warranty, now finding suppliers can be difficult unless you have a Sears store nearby. Again, I have switched mostly to Home Depot brand of "Husky", lifetime warranty, great fit/finish and you can get some really good sets that are pre-packaged.

Papa bear

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2021, 01:44:24 PM »
Iím also going to recommend the ryobi line for a homeowner.  While the dewalt, Milwaukee, Bosch, makita, are the vp tractor grade, ryobi products have crept up. 

They are also very inexpensive for combo packs, they have more than 130 tools in the same battery line, and if one breaks, you can typically just Home Depot exchange.  If their lower end line doesnít end up cutting it, they have a higher end brushless line of tools that I do know a bunch of contractors use.

Iím not daily contractor use, but extreme DIY, landlord, 1-2 major remodel or additions per year type use.  The homeowner grade ryobi drill and impact driver arenít the best, theyíve had some overheating problems with heavy use, but they havenít ďfailedĒ yet.  The other tools have been more than adequate. 

In your position, you may also want to consider Milwaukeeís 12v line.  I end up using my 12v more than my 18v for most things anyway.  Their 12v line has a ton of tool options and are high quality.  Youíll spend more money, and you probably donít need something at this level, but they are super nice. 


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Askel

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2021, 01:52:29 PM »
I'm going to be the outlier here, but at least one other guy has recommend corded so maybe not that far out. 

For power tools, "Hyper Tough" branded corded tools from walmart. I've got a whole slew of it and the only thing I've managed to kill was the trigger switch on a drill. Probably could have fixed it, but after a few years of faithful service, I laid it rest and replaced it for $15.

I'm similarly cheap on all hand tools.  I'm also sufficiently careful when leaning into a consumer grade socket wrench.       

If my livelihood depended on my tools, I could see spending the bucks.  But I don't, so I won't.   

lthenderson

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2021, 08:18:09 AM »
We bought a house and will be doing some minor work here and there. We're not real knowledgeable, so are going to leave the 'heavy lifting' to experts, but were thinking of getting some basic tools.

  • Power drill/screwdriver. Want something that lasts, but don't need anything super professional.
  • Tool set. I'd like a nice set of basic tools that will last. Or is it better to buy one thing at a time?

All else being equal, I'd rather 'buy local' at ACE, which I can ride my bike to, than one of the big box stores.

With battery powered stuff, I'm inclined to buy new. I'm not seeing a lot of things that look good on Craigslist.

Thank you!

I think before deciding on brand, one first needs to decide how far they might go in the future. For example, I started out with a drill and driver set from DeWalt. I love them and still use them frequently though I'm on my third set of batteries. But as battery power has advanced, I'm now starting to get into battery operated lawncare tools like a weed eater, chainsaw, hedge trimmer, etc. While DeWalt makes items in all those categories, I feel sort of locked in at this point as all my other tools and batteries are DeWalt. To change at this point would be expensive or inconvenient to have to have two separate charging stations and two sets of batteries. One also has to look at batteries within a brand. I started out using De Walt's 20V batteries but some of the heavier items like the chainsaw will only work on the 60V batteries. Fortunately, those batteries will still power my 20V tools but my 20V batteries will not power the 60V tools. So now I am buying more 60V batteries just to have around so I always have charged batteries for any tool that I need.

One can go really deep down this rabbit hole but I don't think it really necessary. I think with just a little bit of planning on what tools you might want now and in the future, you can then verify the brand you start with makes all those tools and what battery system you want and you will be good for a long time. I know that as good as battery powered tools are getting these days, I've probably bought my last 2 stroke engine powered tool with the last one I bought.

sonofsven

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2021, 09:29:44 AM »
The hand tools sold at Ace are perfectly suitable for homeowner repairs.
If you buy a kit it will be less expensive overall but you may get tools you won't need in the kit. Probably still worth it if you're starting from scratch.
I would definitely recommend going cordless on the drill/driver.
I'm a big Makita fanboy but less expensive options like Ryobi will be fine for your purposes.
Check the big box like HD around xmas and Father's day, they always have good deals on cordless and other tools "for dad'.

Glenstache

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2021, 10:57:39 AM »
I've also picked up a number of tools inexpensively at estate sales. If a person had a shop, then you can pick up a good diversity of tools. This can be a good way to get corded drills, saws, etc as well as hammers, wrenches and other odds and ends.

Fishindude

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #13 on: December 15, 2021, 09:36:18 AM »
Life long builder contractor, grew up in hands on trades, etc. so I'm a bit biased.
IMO you should always purchase high end, quality tools.   Never buy the cheap, off brand knock off or low grade stuff.
Good tools work a whole lot better than the cheap stuff, they will last your lifetime and can be passed on to someone else, and they even hold decent value for resale.

katsiki

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #14 on: December 15, 2021, 09:53:33 AM »
Another vote for Ryobi battery-powered!

If you watch around the holidays, Home depot and lowes often have the "combo kits" on sale.

vand

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2021, 08:45:22 AM »
I personally stick to the buget brands.

The limiting factor is going to be your own ability rather than the performance of the tool.

If you work in the trades and use your tools day in day out then it is worth getting Makita or whatever, but for me as a DIYer who does a few projects a year, Makknockoff is 1/3 the price and will do 99.5% as good a job.


Roland of Gilead

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2021, 09:09:52 AM »
I know you said local but I would probably go with one of the Milwaukee kits to get a few basic but very useful tools.

Something like https://www.homedepot.com/p/Milwaukee-M18-18-Volt-Lithium-Ion-Cordless-Combo-Tool-Kit-5-Tool-with-1-3-0Ah-and-1-1-5Ah-Battery-1-Charger-1-Tool-Bag-2695-25CX/301113053 for $299 which comes with 3 pretty useful tools, a impact driver and a flashlight plus two batteries.

Things we use ALL the time are 1) Cordless drill, 2) Circular saw, 3) Jig saw/reciprocating saw

Less often but extremely useful is the oscillating cutoff tool, which has these little blades that vibrate and cut...lets you get into tiny tight spaces to trim off stuff.

jeromedawg

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2021, 03:36:42 PM »
Milwaukee, dewalt and makita are top of the line but can be expensive. There are good deals to be had on them if you are willing to "hack" via home depot etc. Set alerts on deals at slickdeals and you'll catch on ;)

Outside of that, this looks like a really good deal for a not-as-popular brand - https://www.lowes.com/pd/Metabo-HPT-was-Hitachi-Power-Tools-7-Piece-Tool-Combo-Kit-KC18DBFL2QF/5005458733

I personally have some older hitachi stuff, including a lithium ion screwdriver drill and it was solid for years. I wouldnt hesitate to buy this hitachi metabo kit as it pretty much has all the 'basics' and looks to be solid in terms of durability. $279 is a pretty killer deal considering this was just on sale for $399  during black friday. I would get it if i didnt just go nuts doing a ton of milwaukee and dewalt hacks.


For hand tools off the top of my head: ratcheting screwdriver or two with different bits, phillips and flathead sets, a couple different channel lock pliers, a couple vise grip pliers, a small assortment of small to large clamps including c-clamps and spring clamps, a ratchet and metric and sae sockets, a small set of adjustable wrenches, crowbar, small to medium claw hammer, double face mallet, voltage tester pen/socket tester/wire stripper cutter (if doing any electrical work), pliers (including needle nose), cutters, caulk gun, assuming you get a power drill definitely pickup a decent selection of drill bits


Ace seems to be having more deals too btw:
https://slickdeals.net/share/android_app/t/15504259

https://slickdeals.net/share/android_app/fp/686788

Sign up for their app and you also get some coupons including a $5 off $5 but i think there are exclusions using it on sale items...


Another thing id say to grab is an electric caulk gun if you plan on recaulking larger areas, windows, etc with things like silicone or polyurethane. That stuff comes out slower than many interior caulks and your hand will br cramping up after half a dozen squeezes unless you like/want a grip workout lol
« Last Edit: December 18, 2021, 04:48:18 PM by jeromedawg »

GuitarStv

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #18 on: January 13, 2022, 07:38:50 AM »
I've got a corded heavy duty Bosch rotary hammer and a cordless Bosch hand drill/screwdriver.  Both have worked flawlessly for me over the past decade since buying them.

SweatingInFL

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #19 on: January 24, 2022, 01:41:06 PM »
I'm going to be the outlier here, but at least one other guy has recommend corded so maybe not that far out. 

For power tools, "Hyper Tough" branded corded tools from walmart. I've got a whole slew of it and the only thing I've managed to kill was the trigger switch on a drill. Probably could have fixed it, but after a few years of faithful service, I laid it rest and replaced it for $15.

I'm similarly cheap on all hand tools.  I'm also sufficiently careful when leaning into a consumer grade socket wrench.       

If my livelihood depended on my tools, I could see spending the bucks.  But I don't, so I won't.

Yes! Start with corded! They are dirt cheap. If you find yourself reaching for it more than a few times per month, spring for a cordless set.

If you have concrete walls, make your first drill a corded hammer drill. I just pulled mine out yesterday to install blinds into a concrete window frame. It was $30 at harbor freight 5 years ago. I pull it out once every few months, and it has never failed me.

Since I have the heavier-duty hammer drill, I stuck with light-duty 12V cordless drill and driver. It's adequate for 95% of what I do, and the hammer drill (with selectable hammer action) can do the rest.

sisto

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #20 on: January 24, 2022, 02:28:39 PM »
Another vote for Ryobi here. The One Plus 18V system is quite inexpensive especially when you can hit up good sales at Home Depot.

gooki

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #21 on: January 25, 2022, 11:00:02 PM »
Festool all the way.

And the once you had a heart attack after seeing their prices, it'll make the Makita power tools seem much more reasonable.

WSUCoug1994

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #22 on: February 08, 2022, 02:12:19 PM »
I would buy a craftsman full set of wrenches and sockets - guaranteed for life.  All of my power tools are dewalt - 18V variety but they are starting to age out.  With the cost of decent OEM batteries (not had good luck with the knock-offs) I have very slowly been upgrading to 20V as I need new ones with the 18v to 20v converter for the win.

I had to buy a hammer drill for a large fence in concrete application and that is now my primary drill for everything.  I love this drill.  I have gone 100% with my 1/4 impact for all screwing and light socket work.  Everyone needs a reciprocating saw - I use that thing all of the time.  I just got my first oscillating saw - no idea how I lived without this for so long.   I also love my 12" compound mitre saw and my plug in angle grinder.  These are the tools I use the most.  You would have to take any of these out of my cold dead hands.  Seems like I can live without all of the other tools I have lol - well except my jig saw and my portable lights lol.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2022, 02:17:00 PM by WSUCoug1994 »

Healthie

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #23 on: February 15, 2022, 07:25:57 PM »
If you're a very occasional drill/skil saw user, I'd go corded. get something old and heavy that works. I have an ancient skil saw that I love, and when I find them at garage sales I pick'm up cheap to flip.

lutorm

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #24 on: February 17, 2022, 01:16:07 AM »
If I need a new tool, my strategy is to start by buying pretty much the crappiest tool that will do the job. Even a crap tool makes things possible that weren't possible before. Yes, they work poorly compared to quality tools but 90% of my tools are "the thing you need once per decade that is impossible to do without it" and for that you don't need more. Then for the 10% of tools you find that you are using all the time, then feel free to upgrade to one of better quality.

Quality tools are a joy to use, but buying quality tools for everything is super expensive and a waste of money if you don't end up using them. I'm not convinced my children would appreciate inheriting my high-quality bearing pullers or bead breakers for that to matter... ;-)

Oh, and don't underestimate the power of making your own tools! That doesn't really apply for stuff like a cordless drill, but a couple years ago I needed a valve spring compressor. After pondering this for a while I realized some pipe sections, a welder, and a dremel was all I needed to fabricate something that could be put in the drill press and used for that purpose.

Another great resource is O'Reilly Auto's loan program. Maybe the other auto shops have the same, I don't know, but O'Reilly will lend you all kinds of automotive tools for a deposit. Can be a life saver.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2022, 01:21:42 AM by lutorm »

Askel

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2022, 06:10:05 AM »
I would buy a craftsman full set of wrenches and sockets - guaranteed for life. 

This might have been worth something when I got my first craftsman socket set as a teenager back when there was a sears store in every town and dinosaurs roamed the earth, but I think it's about worthless now.

Even back then, craftsman tools were rapidly losing their reputation for quality. 

Should I bust a craftsman tool in the middle of a job, I'm probably just going to go the store and buy a replacement rather than figure out what hoops I have to jump through to get the thing replaced. Chances are, whatever junk I buy will also have "guaranteed for life" written on it somewhere anyway. 

lthenderson

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2022, 07:53:06 AM »
Should I bust a craftsman tool in the middle of a job, I'm probably just going to go the store and buy a replacement rather than figure out what hoops I have to jump through to get the thing replaced. Chances are, whatever junk I buy will also have "guaranteed for life" written on it somewhere anyway.

Back when Sears stores were more common, you could simply walk into a store with your broken tool, exchange it and walk out. I've done it several times over the years. BUT, I've heard it is a lot more difficult these days. Big box stores will do a swap as long as the part number is the same and from what I've read, most of the time the part number is different even if both items are say a 1/4 drive 1/2 six sided socket.

WSUCoug1994

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2022, 02:31:46 PM »
I am not sure where everyone lives but Ace Hardware, Lowes and Napa are all Craftsman vendors.  I honestly haven't broken many tools but when I have the exchange its a 5 minute investment of my time.

sadiesortsitout

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #28 on: March 23, 2022, 10:11:37 AM »
Most will probably disagree with my views on corded vs battery tools.  I have switched back to corded.  If I were using them more often, I would go battery.  It seemed like about half the time I picked up the tool, the battery was dead.  Now I have to wait for charging before I can do the job. A

I appreciate you saying this. I have been considering going cordless, but I had the same concerns. The whole battery storage, battery swapping, battery charging thing seemed like more hassle than just working with my big extension cord reel, especially since I have a very small house.

It also seems like corded tools are practically free at my local Re-Store and yard sales.

Hotstreak

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #29 on: March 31, 2022, 10:43:31 PM »
I used a $20 cordless Hypertough drill from Walmart for years.  Great for small projects around the house, building furniture, installing fixtures, etc.  I still have it and there's really nothing wrong with it, but it lacks the power I wanted when I was building a shed, so I got a higher end tool.


I don't like the idea of a corded tool for a basic household drill.  Whenever I've used them in the past, the cord is always too short, or gets wrapped up or is in the way of my work.  Considering how cheap the entry level cordless are, it was a no brainer.  I haven't even run out of battery or had issues charging.

lthenderson

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #30 on: April 01, 2022, 08:09:39 AM »
I appreciate you saying this. I have been considering going cordless, but I had the same concerns. The whole battery storage, battery swapping, battery charging thing seemed like more hassle than just working with my big extension cord reel, especially since I have a very small house.

To each their own I guess but I have never regretted going cordless. I have a simple rack made of plywood that holds my cordless tools, batteries and chargers so everything is in one spot. Whenever I am done with a tool, I plop the battery in the charger so all my batteries are always charged all the time. The rack is on my way to my vehicle so the next morning I remove the battery so it doesn't remain overcharged and then everything is ready for the next time I need to work on something. When that happens, I pick up the appropriate cordless tool, slap in a battery, grab a spare and I'm good to go for hours. No more futzing with cords that get caught on things or having to unplug other things so I have room in an outlet to plug my extension cord into. The tools themselves are much easier to store as they don't have cords to get tangled up with other corded tools and also take up much less space.

innkeeper77

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #31 on: April 01, 2022, 08:20:51 AM »
If you go cordless, spend more for a good system. Ryobi or better IMO- cheap harbor freight tools, black and decker etc, would make me worry about battery AND system longevity.

Ryobi might be the best option simply because of everything else that can use the 18v batteries! Fans, emergency lights, camping gear, etc.

On the other hand, going nicer might be worth it. I bought a Milwuakee M12 impact/driver/right angle driver kit with three batteries 8 years ago and it's been wonderful. Smaller, lighter, and still plenty of power. Plus those original batteries are still going strong! I do things with tools for hobbies and around the house all of the time, and use ryobi for everything else- but those three milwuakee tools have certainly earned their keep. I would buy more 12 volt milwuakee tools if they had something I needed, the tiny 12v batteries do truly make those tools more useful, but for most purposes the cheaper ryobi system has been great. (Even if sometimes the huge batteries get in the way like on my electric ratchet- but buying that ratchet for $50 means I get use out of it vs the much more expensive nicer milwuakee that I could never justify)

katsiki

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #32 on: April 01, 2022, 08:48:58 AM »
I appreciate you saying this. I have been considering going cordless, but I had the same concerns. The whole battery storage, battery swapping, battery charging thing seemed like more hassle than just working with my big extension cord reel, especially since I have a very small house.

To each their own I guess but I have never regretted going cordless. I have a simple rack made of plywood that holds my cordless tools, batteries and chargers so everything is in one spot. Whenever I am done with a tool, I plop the battery in the charger so all my batteries are always charged all the time. The rack is on my way to my vehicle so the next morning I remove the battery so it doesn't remain overcharged and then everything is ready for the next time I need to work on something. When that happens, I pick up the appropriate cordless tool, slap in a battery, grab a spare and I'm good to go for hours. No more futzing with cords that get caught on things or having to unplug other things so I have room in an outlet to plug my extension cord into. The tools themselves are much easier to store as they don't have cords to get tangled up with other corded tools and also take up much less space.


I didn't overcharging was a problem with battery powered tools.  Thanks for mentioning that. 

big_owl

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #33 on: April 01, 2022, 11:17:41 AM »
The new DeWalt 20V lion battery tools are nice quality and very powerful and the batts last a long time.  You can get different AH batts depending on your budget and requirements.  So far I'm up to a drill, oscillating tool, work light and 3-axis laser level.  I'm impressed with the quality for all of them.

The batteries are really the most expensive part of the whole experience. 

BudgetSlasher

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #34 on: April 01, 2022, 01:36:06 PM »
I don't recall if this has been mentioned regarding battery tools.

Among the people that I know there is a conventional wisdom that you should pick one brand and battery voltage and build your tool collection around that. They usually decide X tool is the most important to them and Y brand makes the best, so they build a collection around that brand.

In some-to-many situations this makes sense. They understand that the battery/charger is often the most expensive portion of the tool so why not share the battery between as many tools as possible. All you have to do is look at the Ryobi 18v lineup to see this line of reasoning.

I followed this guidance for a while, but I have moved away from it and I now have cordless tools with various brands and voltages. I moved away from that logic for three reasons.

1) I found myself doing projects requiring more tools than I had batteries or I went through batteries faster than I could recharge them. So I would already have to buying more batteries and chargers.

2) A 12v tool is smaller and lighter than a 20v tool, so it is easier to fit in to tight spaces and use overhead or in tight spaces. Conversely a 20v tool will last longer or handle bigger tasks w/o getting bogged down. (There are some tools I actually own a 12v, 20v, corded, and pneumatic of)

3) Tools are not cheap, a few tools from a less expensive brand might make up for the different battery system. Tools that are for infrequently used/for a 1-off project or are aren't the type of tool that needs to be very robust.

Also sometime a specific tool regardless of brand has something specific about it, like size/weight/feature/grip shape, that makes it simply that much more appealing for you.


lthenderson

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #35 on: April 02, 2022, 09:25:56 AM »
I didn't overcharging was a problem with battery powered tools.  Thanks for mentioning that.

Technically it isn't a problem anymore because all modern lithium batteries have circuit boards in them that prevent overcharging. But there may be some evidence that if one leaves a lithium battery fully charged for long periods of time it can shorten the life. So I compromise by not worry about overcharging overnight but try to remove the battery the following day. They stay in a drawer until I need them at that point.

One of the nice things about buying into a battery system, in my case I own Dewalt, is that eventually I have enough batteries that even if it is six months between uses, I can still always have batteries to use on a project until my charger can top off the first used up one.

BlueMR2

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Re: Tool recommendations (drill, toolset)
« Reply #36 on: April 02, 2022, 01:02:48 PM »
  • Power drill/screwdriver. Want something that lasts, but don't need anything super professional.
  • Tool set. I'd like a nice set of basic tools that will last. Or is it better to buy one thing at a time?

All else being equal, I'd rather 'buy local' at ACE, which I can ride my bike to, than one of the big box stores.

It's not a bad idea to start off with a basic kit of tools.  You may get some you never use, but it will save a lot of trips for common items as you start off.  Fill in advanced tools as needed though, you can go broke stocking up on those...

On tools, I also like to buy local.  My first purchase will be something local that looks like it's "reasonable" quality, but I don't go crazy buying the best.  If/when I break that first one, then I special order a high quality replacement as obviously it's something that gets enough use to rate having better.  Cordless power tools are handy at times, but as others have mentioned it seems like the batteries are always dead.  I have corded and cordless of all of them.  Corded get probably 95% of the work and cordless picks up the remaining 5% of the workload where it's just a pain to get a cord to the location.