Looking for light cordless drill

Messages
274
Location
PA
Hey folks:

I'm looking for a new light cordless drill - nothing hardcore - just looking to use with a Kreg jig. I have a small Black and Decker 12v that I use a lot because it is small, and works well for punching holes in drywall, and driving some screws (90% of what I do). But is a bit underpowered for wood - and seems to be slowing.

So looking for a tweener - between my light option and my corded stuff. I have a 18v Ryobi impact driver that works well (I hardly ever use it really - but it was cheap). Should I pick up a drill with the same battery? Or bite the bullet and go with a Dewalt? Harbor Freight?

Need advice from the tool gurus.
 
Messages
40,377
Location
Great Lakes
If you can swing it, this 12V Bosch is excellent:
 
Messages
349
Location
Virginia, USA
This Porter Cable unit offers great power for the price:

Porter Cable Cordless Drill

I have owned the previous version with the lower grade Ni-Cad batteries for 8 years and am amazed at the performance every time I use it. I don't think there is a better "bang-for-the-bucks" value out there.
 

JC1

Messages
5,781
Location
Oshawa, Ontario Canada
Are you using the drill to drill pocket holes?

If you don't have any other brands I'd suggest getting a Ryobi to use the same batteries, unless you want to spend some coin. Lots of options out there.

My DeWalt hammer drill died a few years back and I used one was too much money locally for me. Found guys selling new Milwaukee M18 hammer drills for $80 Canadian. I went and bought a battery adapter for using my DeWalt 20v on Milwaukee m18 tools.

 

wdn

Messages
1,615
Location
NH
I bought a used older model DeWalt 12V contractor type drill from a local ReStore (Habitat for Humanity store) for $20. It is called a DW971 Made in USA and it came in a steel carrying case with steel clasps. The thing is built like a tank. It is 3/8” 2 speed with about a 20 steps clutch It was the drill, case, rapid charger and 2 batteries. One was the original which works but had gotten weaker and one new battery. I use it with a pocket hole jig too. It goes through wood like butter. I would shop around thrift stores or maybe pawn shops or estate sales for used. You can get generic replacement batteries a pair of them for $28 on Amazon that are 3.6 amp-hour batteries. Two replacement batteries for $28. Point is you don’t have to buy new, and replacement batteries for this 12V series are cheap and breathes new life into some of the older tools. It was originally NiCd but now use NiMH batteries that are an exact fit and work with the DeWalt charger.
 
Messages
619
Location
Vancouver, Canada
It'd make sense to consolidate if you have several cordless tools, what I mean it - go for the system.
I chose M12 Milwaukee where I have their stubby impact wrench and hummer drill which all take same batteries and 2Ah battery is very compact and light while offers decent power too.

If not, Home Depot and Lowes should have a few decent choices in $50 range.
 
Messages
2,024
Location
Somewhere in time
I've been very happy with the Dewalt system.
If you're just a shade tree guy like me, I think there's a distinct advantage to commiting to a brand and sticking with it.

Any one of the well known names mentioned here will suit you quite fine. If I were in your shoes if wait for Labor Day weekend, find the best sale, and go for that brand.

Good luck!!!
 
Messages
1,631
Location
USA
Makita cxt series tools are very light, a Ryobi will give you more compatibility with what you have, and a Ridgid will come with lifetime oneverything including batteries. I have a small Ridgid drill 12 volt and I use it the most because it isn’t big. Got it signed up for the lifetime warranty. So you are in the fun stage getting to look at tools and actually have a reason.
 
Messages
1,478
Location
Germantown, MD
I've got the Makita 12v CXT drill, impact driver, and oscillating saw. The drill and impact driver are outstanding, very compact and lightweight and I have yet to find a homeowner type job they weren't up to. The battery style allows for a slim, comfortable handle and they stand up easily. The drill/driver set with a couple batteries typically goes on sale for $100.

Concur with Imp4 - try a few out at the big box store and pick whatever brand and battery system you like best for the first tool or two you need. Add on as needed.

The 12v tools are so nice to use if they're up to the job. The extra power on the 18v ones, that you won't even need much or most of the time, comes at the expense of size, weight, and cost. I keep a 1/2" HF corded drill around in case I have to do something the 12v Makitas can't handle.

jeff
 
Messages
2,142
Location
Chicago, IL
Is your 12v Black and Decker a lithium battery model? If it isn't I would bet that any of the lithium 12v models listed above would be significantly more powerful and perfect for your needs.

Even if it is, a new lithium model would likely offer a bunch more power.

I have the Bosch 12v drill/driver combo and have barely touched my 18v Ridgid since.
 
Messages
4,674
Location
Southeast
I’ll second the baby rigid drill. It’s my go-to every time unless I need real power. Lightweight and small makes it easier to use in confined spaces, under the vehicle, or in the attic. You must follow the warranty registration steps perfectly or they will balk, but they do indeed replace worn batteries. I’m up to 4 new batteries, a new flashlight, and half of the original drill, on that one.

ryobi makes more neat stuff, though most will suggest rigid is a touch more durable. Both are, iirc, owned and might be made by the same parent company. For a DIY homeowner, both are great. I do like standardization on one, but for specific reasons have rigid for mostly woodworking, and ryobi for yard.

m
 

Chester11

Thread starter
Messages
274
Location
PA
thanks guys. good stuff. it just amazes me how powerful some of the new small tools are.

I have 4 different battery systems (2 Black and Decker - 12 and 20 lithium, 2 Ryobi - 18 and 40v). Mostly outdoor trimmers / blowers and outside lawn tools. I tried to stick with a system - but always picked up what I needed at the time. (Don't be me)

I like the Bosch and Milwaukee stuff - but always seemed like overkill for what I do until - until I bought the Kreg jig and started messing around with wood. cheapest choice would be the 20v Black and Decker.

last question - how long does a lithium battery last anyway? I heard that they "time" out after so many years, not necessarily charges. some of these batteries are pushing 6-8 years old. even some of the 40v stuff seems to die off more quickly.
 
Messages
1,302
Location
Maryland
I have owned Ryobi, Makita, Milwaukee and DeWalt. DeWalt is by far the best. I recommend the 20 volt system. Then start to get other battery DeWalt tools. The system works great. Have had battery problems with Milwaukee, and reliability problems with Ryobi. Go DeWalt and you will never look back. Also, many of their products are made in the USA.
 
Messages
12,628
Location
North Carolina
Since you already have an 18v ryobi charger and impact, why not just go that route? That way you only have 1 battery system to deal with.

If there is a direct tools outlet near you, they have this blem drill and battery for $49. The battery alone is near worth that.

Locations
IMG_20200903_201304348.jpg
 
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