Is there any disadvantage to a hammer drill?

Page 2 - Seeking answers? Join the AnandTech community: where nearly half-a-million members share solutions and discuss the latest tech.

Nitemare

Lifer
Feb 8, 2001
35,466
1
76
Originally posted by: DonVito
Originally posted by: Ozoned

A good cordless tool will fit like a glove. I have literally, scores of them. I rarely choose to use my 1/2" drill over a 3/8 drill for anything except heavy duty drilling. I find it quite cumbersome for the type of chores that you describe. Weight is a huge factor if you are going to drill more than just a few holes. Weight is also a huge factor if you are going to do detailed work...
What do you like in a lighter-duty 3/8 cordless drill? Ideally it'd still be 18V, just so it could share batteries with a circular saw and jigsaw. Unfortunately all the prepackaged kits use 1/2-in drills . . .
I know at HD we had a DeWalt 18 volt cordless 3/8 w/ 2 batteries and a charger for $169.99. For that price you can just ad a sawzall or circular saw.
 

SSP

Lifer
Oct 11, 1999
17,736
0
0
Originally posted by: Ozoned
Originally posted by: DonVito


I MAY have a need to drill perhaps one hole through masonry in the foreseeable future, but the drill will mostly be used for woodworking and other fairly light duties. I will also be using it fairly often as a driver.
A good cordless tool will fit like a glove. I have literally, scores of them. I rarely choose to use my 1/2" drill over a 3/8 drill for anything except heavy duty drilling. I find it quite cumbersome for the type of chores that you describe. Weight is a huge factor if you are going to drill more than just a few holes. Weight is also a huge factor if you are going to do detailed work...
Agreed. After renovating the bathroom, I find a ligher drill is easier to with since you dont need all that power most of the time. Though I hate it when you need to do something and know a particular tool will get it done much faster then what you have availble.
 

Ozoned

Diamond Member
Mar 22, 2004
5,578
0
0
Originally posted by: DonVito
Originally posted by: Ozoned

A good cordless tool will fit like a glove. I have literally, scores of them. I rarely choose to use my 1/2" drill over a 3/8 drill for anything except heavy duty drilling. I find it quite cumbersome for the type of chores that you describe. Weight is a huge factor if you are going to drill more than just a few holes. Weight is also a huge factor if you are going to do detailed work...
What do you like in a lighter-duty 3/8 cordless drill? Ideally it'd still be 18V, just so it could share batteries with a circular saw and jigsaw. Unfortunately all the prepackaged kits use 1/2-in drills . . .
Long slender handle that fits my hand, 2 speed or variable speed, multiple torque settings, keyless chuck and automatic overload sensing. The prepackaged kits are nice and a good 3/8 drill would be an excellent addition. Probably won't get much weight reduction with the 18v. 3 to 3 1/4 pounds is about perfect for me.
 

IronWing

No Lifer
Jul 20, 2001
65,902
21,352
136
If you buy a good quality non-hammer drill you can still use it to drill masonry. Since it sounds like you won't be drilling many holes in concrete it might be better to skip the hammer function. Either way don't go cheap. Get the best drill you can afford. Also look at the kits carefully to decide if you really need all the tools in a kit. If so then the kits are a way to save money. If not then compare the kit price to the combined prices of just the tools you really need.
 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,020
14
81
  1. Rotten luck that Milwaukee doesn't offer a cordless sabre saw. They used to in the 14V version, but that seems to be gone.
  2. They do offer the very best of Sawzalls, including their new "Hatchet". When you commit to a brand, and the battery system they use, you commit to all the tools offered in their line, unless you want to buy several different brand's batteries and chargers.
  3. Buying a 3/8" drill with 18V battery isn't going to save much weight, because most of the extra weight is from the battery pack. The 18V pack is HEAVY!
  4. The hammer drill VS regular drill weight is negligible, because the only thing added is a cluster of bearings in a very small clutch housing.
  5. Milwaukee offers a 5 year warranty, which is more than any other. They specialize in industrial grade tools that Hitachi, Bosch, and DeWalt are always trying to catch up to!

Tool Test : Cordless Drill/Drivers
  • Choosing a winner from this bunch is tough. My final four include the Bosch 33618, DeWalt DW987K-2, Milwaukee 0622-24, and Porter-Cable 9984. The Milwaukee's great power, all-metal chuck, outstanding handle, and slick battery exchange give it the edge in my book.
 
Feb 10, 2000
30,029
66
91
I think I'm going to buy a Bosch 32614.

Since it's just a 14.4V drill, I probably won't share its batteries with other tools, but I can share its charger with other Bosch tools, and the consensus seems to be that they make the best jigsaws available (I don't think I'd necessarily bother with a cordless circular saw anyway). I think the 18V would be overkill and unnecessarily heavy, so I'm inclined to get this model.
 

psiu

Golden Member
Oct 1, 2003
1,629
1
0
Check out Costco, if you're a member anyway...also Home Depot has a deal with buying a Dewalt set and then getting a free tool.
 

dleiss

Member
Apr 5, 2002
151
0
0
I suggest that you buy a lightweight cordless drill/driver and use a corded drill if you have to go through brick or concrete.

When working around the house I use both. Corded for drilling pilot hole and then cordless for putting in screw.

Recently bought the 19.2v Craftsman and it is truely powerfull but heavy. It will actually screw in bolts without any problem.

Bought an off-brand sawsall and the battery is crap. Lasts enough to cut three 2" branches; thats less than 5 minutes. OK for PVC pipe though.

I do suggest that you buy on sale and look at Sears.
 

paulney

Diamond Member
Sep 24, 2003
6,912
1
0
There was a nice demo of cordless drills and other tools in a music video Benny Benassi "Satisfaction" :)
 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,020
14
81
I don't think I'd necessarily bother with a cordless circular saw anyway...

Man, that's what I thought too. When I first got my Milwaukee kit, I was VERY disappointed to see the damn circular saw was left handed! WTF? So, I bitched about it to Milwaukee, and they accepted my offer to trade it for their 7-1/4" Tilt-Lok? Circular Saw, plus the difference in retail price.

It wasn't long before I realized I'd made a mistake. There have been MANY times that saw would have come in very handy. I've got an awesome corded saw now, but sure wish I had that cordless one back. If anybody else buys that kit, and wants to unload the circular saw (for a bit less than full retail), let me know!
 

aeroguy

Senior member
Mar 21, 2002
804
0
0
Originally posted by: DonVito
I am looking to buy a set of cordless tools (probably DeWalt or Milwaukee), and I am debating between a hammer drill and a conventional drill/driver.

I MAY have a need to drill perhaps one hole through masonry in the foreseeable future, but the drill will mostly be used for woodworking and other fairly light duties. I will also be using it fairly often as a driver.

Is there any disadvantage to a hammer drill when you're using it for regular duties as a drill/driver?
If you have to drill one or two holes through masonry it's pointless to get a hammer drill. Get a $2 masonry bit and it will go right through. (my 14V Craftsman had no trouble).
 

DaTT

Garage Moderator
Moderator
Feb 13, 2003
13,295
118
106
RIDGID makes the best cordless tools. They are heavy duty and meant to be abused. They do have a hefty price tag though.
 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,020
14
81
It's worth it to have the hammer drill, and the extra cost ain't much. It will pay for itself in preserved drill points before very long. Otherwise, the edge of a carbide masonry bit will be worn dull in no time. The pulsing of the hammer drill shoots the bit through concrete like butter, which saves the drill bit's edge, wear & tear on the drill motor & bearings, and much less fatigue to the operator.

RIDGID came VERY late to the cordless game, and doesn't make their own tools at all... Ryobi does, and only a 3-Year Limited Service Warranty.
 

DaTT

Garage Moderator
Moderator
Feb 13, 2003
13,295
118
106
RYOBI is garbage. I have owned countless RYOBI cordless tools and the batteries and chargers are the sh!ts. I only bought them because they were cheap. Plus, the RIDGID is very comfortable to hold, and well balanced. RIDGID may have come into the cordless game a little late, but they are the leaders when it comes to industrial strength tools.
 

TStep

Platinum Member
Feb 16, 2003
2,460
10
81
I have an older (~ 5 years) Dewalt 18v hammer drill / circular saw / sawzall kit. I also have a 12v drill kit, so the weight is a non issue. Light work gets the 12v. Most of the weight seems to be in the battery, so I'm not sure how much weight savings you'll realize in non-hammer vs. hammer configuration. Out of convenience, I built most of my house using these tools, and they got used hard. Heaviest hammer drill work always went to my corded SDS drive as there is no comparison. The cordless hammer drill is fine for small diameter work (tapcons, wedge nails, etc), but it doesn't do a great job on large diameter holes in concrete. They still work fine, so I wouldn't be afraid of the dewalt kit if your a non-professional builder. Can't speak for the other brands.
 

TwoBills

Senior member
Apr 11, 2004
734
0
76
Forget the hammer drill. You'll find that it's out of balance (nose heavy). If you need to drill thru cinder, or the occasional concrete, get an 1/8" masonary bit for a pilot bit and step it up to full size.
Get a 1/2" motor w/an 18vdc battery. Dewalt or Mikata. Grab an elcheapo 3/8" motor to use as a screwgun.
 

kd2777

Golden Member
Mar 4, 2002
1,336
0
0
Originally posted by: blazert40
Well most hammer drills you can turn off the hammer function, so there is no down side except they usually cost more.
yes perfect.

They maybe a little heavier....can't say for sure, because I only have the hammer drill...nothing to compair it to, but it stands to reason.

kd
 

flot

Diamond Member
Feb 24, 2000
3,197
0
0
I have the Dewalt 18v regular drill - almost bought the hammer but decided against it because of weight and wear. Even so, I find the 18v dewalt to be a little big for a lot of tasks. It is definitely not easy to maneuver.

Also, I bought the 18v mini circ saw refurbished for like $50...never used it.

When I had to drill through concrete, I went out and bought a $79 makita corded hammer. It works fine. Plus I can use the cordless to screw in the tapcons or whatever right behind it. Having 2 drills (one corded and one cordless) is actually VERY convenient for many projects. As others pointed out, the hammer function can be turned on/off.

Overall I am not so impressed with the Dewalt. It has been mostly fine and has plenty of power, but not sure it was worth twice as much as the others. After about 18 months it started smoking (badly) every time I used it - oddly that went on for a month or so and then stopped so not sure what's up with that. It seems well built but not very ergonomic. I NEVER liked the feel of the trigger itself - most of the other brands in the store felt better to me.


 

Carl Uman

Diamond Member
Jan 29, 2000
6,008
2
81
I have the Makita Cordless Impact Driver 6980FDWDE (got if from Amazon) At the time they had a rebate where you got the standard drill free (MIR). That made for a great deal. Check around as they may still have the same deal.
 

Ornery

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
20,020
14
81
Originally posted by: DaTT
RYOBI is garbage. I have owned countless RYOBI cordless tools and the batteries and chargers are the sh!ts. I only bought them because they were cheap. Plus, the RIDGID is very comfortable to hold, and well balanced. RIDGID may have come into the cordless game a little late, but they are the leaders when it comes to industrial strength tools.
TTI designs and manufactures the Ryobi(R) and RIDGID(R) brands of power tools, which are sold at The Home Depot.
 

Nitemare

Lifer
Feb 8, 2001
35,466
1
76
Originally posted by: Phoenix86
Originally posted by: paulney
There was a nice demo of cordless drills and other tools in a music video Benny Benassi "Satisfaction" :)
Great demo. :thumbsup:
The jackhammer demo gave me a special feeling...
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY