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Old 01-17-2015, 08:12 AM   #41
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That is the largest shaft diameter of the drill bit that can be "chucked" (held) in the drill. So if you were to use drill bits that a larger than 3/8" diameter, you would need a 1/2" chuck size. Most homeowners that are doing routine jobs rarely need to drill holes larger than 3/8" diameter.
And just to pile on: A drill with a 3/8" chuck is not limited to making holes up to 3/8". You'll see many large twist drill bits and spade bits, etc have a "necked down" end which allows them to fit into a 3/8" drill chuck even though the rest of the shaft of the bit is larger than that.
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Old 01-17-2015, 09:43 AM   #42
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Size does matter

The trend seems to be more punch in a smaller tool. But for something like drilling concrete, I like using a bulkier drill. For work like fastening a cabinet the job is a lot easier holding a small drill sideways than using a larger drill. That's where a nice 12v comes in handy.
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Old 01-17-2015, 10:19 AM   #43
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This is a great package but unfortunately went up in price and is a few dollars over what you are looking for. it was $99 during the Holidays. I have found the impact driver to be inseparable from the drill when doing HI projects. I have had good luck with Ryobi tools for home use. Here is the link for the package.
Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ Lithium-Ion Drill/Driver and Impact Driver Kit (2-Tool)-P882 - The Home Depot
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Old 01-17-2015, 09:09 PM   #44
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This is a great package but unfortunately went up in price and is a few dollars over what you are looking for. it was $99 during the Holidays. I have found the impact driver to be inseparable from the drill when doing HI projects. I have had good luck with Ryobi tools for home use. Here is the link for the package.
Ryobi 18-Volt ONE+ Lithium-Ion Drill/Driver and Impact Driver Kit (2-Tool)-P882 - The Home Depot
I have this set, too, and really like the impact driver. I even use it for light mechanical work.
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Old 01-18-2015, 09:04 AM   #45
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I'm not much of a fan of cordless/battery powered tools although I do have a couple that I use for lighter and quick work. The only thing I'd add is as with any tools, buy quality tools if you can afford them.

Personally, I like Milwaukee and Dewalt power tools but there are other good ones out there.
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Old 01-18-2015, 10:35 AM   #46
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I don't think the average homeowner should put too many $'s into any individual tool like a drill. The quality of the battery technology has been changing pretty rapidly.

My current 20v B&D is light and powerful, changes quickly and holds the charge for a long time when in storage (which is most of the time). Much better then the older lower voltage drills I've had.
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Old 01-18-2015, 10:56 AM   #47
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Neither am I, but sometimes the electrical outlet is too far away from the work! Hundreds of feet, in some cases.

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I'm not much of a fan of cordless/battery powered tools
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Old 01-18-2015, 11:11 AM   #48
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I still have my old corded drill and use it when I've wanted a lot of power. I'm a big fan of cordless.

My most recent cordless drill had no problem drilling into a hardwood tree trunk to make 1 inch diameter holes. Why would I want to run a 50 ft extension cord to the work?
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Old 01-18-2015, 12:12 PM   #49
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Personally, I like Milwaukee and Dewalt power tools but there are other good ones out there.
+1. I have several Milwaukee and Dewalt power tools that have been excellent.
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Old 01-18-2015, 01:33 PM   #50
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Does anyone know if you can replace the older nicad batteries with newer lithium ion batteries? I have an older 12V Makita 1/2" drill that works good but is probably close to 20 years old and the batteries don't hold a charge and need to be replaced. It's been on the shelf collecting dust for the last few years, I just use the corded drill when I need one. It's been a long time since I looked at the cost of replacement batteries but from what I recall it might be cheaper just to buy a new drill.
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Old 01-18-2015, 01:42 PM   #51
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Boy do guys like their drills!
You're just not a "complete guy" if you don't have a drill. And it has to be the biggest, badest, drill you can afford.
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Old 01-18-2015, 01:47 PM   #52
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Does anyone know if you can replace the older nicad batteries with newer lithium ion batteries? I have an older 12V Makita 1/2" drill that works good but is probably close to 20 years old and the batteries don't hold a charge and need to be replaced. It's been on the shelf collecting dust for the last few years, I just use the corded drill when I need one. It's been a long time since I looked at the cost of replacement batteries but from what I recall it might be cheaper just to buy a new drill.
The old NiCad Ryobi drills accept the new Lithium Ion batteries, so if the new Makita battery pack will snap on, it should work, too.
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Old 01-18-2015, 01:57 PM   #53
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Boy do guys like their drills!
Twisted logic, but hard to auger with.
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Old 01-18-2015, 03:26 PM   #54
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Neither am I, but sometimes the electrical outlet is too far away from the work! Hundreds of feet, in some cases.

A.
99% of the work I do is in my workshop or around the house so I have 110 and 220 outlets easily accessible. But, on occasions I need power out on the property somewhere that can be 100's of yards from a commercial power outlet. I have a power inverter on one of my trucks but it doesn't provide enough amps for any serious work. I guess I could buy a heavier inverter. Anyway, If I have any serious or heavy work to do that's too far away from a commercial power source, I'll just haul a portable power generator out with me, and run anything I want

I realize that's not for everyone, and it's often just quicker and easier to use a cordless drill or saw, but it can be a good option is you have a lot of work to do that's too far away.
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Old 01-18-2015, 04:10 PM   #55
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Does anyone know if you can replace the older nicad batteries with newer lithium ion batteries? I have an older 12V Makita 1/2" drill that works good but is probably close to 20 years old and the batteries don't hold a charge and need to be replaced. It's been on the shelf collecting dust for the last few years, I just use the corded drill when I need one. It's been a long time since I looked at the cost of replacement batteries but from what I recall it might be cheaper just to buy a new drill.
One advantage of a popular brand like Makita is the availability of knock-off brand batteries. I can find 9.6v nicads for my Makita tools in the $20 delivered range. Changing to a different type of battery, if available, will require a new charger in addition.
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Old 01-18-2015, 06:54 PM   #56
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.....The quality of the battery technology has been changing pretty rapidly. ...
No doubt 'bout that. Progress over last few years has been pretty amazing. NiCads were a breakthrough but now becoming almost obsolete as NiMHs, LiIons and now LiPolymers are providing better service at reasonable costs.
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:09 AM   #57
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One advantage of a popular brand like Makita is the availability of knock-off brand batteries. I can find 9.6v nicads for my Makita tools in the $20 delivered range. Changing to a different type of battery, if available, will require a new charger in addition.
I bought new lithium batteries and charger for my old craftsman drill/light/saw set a couple of years ago. Shortly after buying the new batteries, the drill motor began to spark and smoke. I guess the batteries and the motor actually wore out at about the same time. The saw and light still work fine, as they get used a lot less.
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:32 AM   #58
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We bought the 20V XR brushless Dewalt Combo Pack that consisted of a cordless impact driver, drill, and Home Depot & Dewalt had a special going on at the time that included the circular saw for free too. As a girl with small hands, I love how lightweight the tools are. It really reduces the fatigue. We didn't think we would use the circular saw much, and we have ended up using it all the time instead of the hassle of getting out the corded saw and electrical cord.

The tools are a couple years old now, and have gotten used quite a bit with constant home remodeling. We installed a new plywood subfloor and then HardieBacker on top in a 300 SF area, built a new IPE front deck/porch, and many other larger projects with the tools since we bought them 2 or 3 years ago. The impact driver works great with HardieBacker! We have never had to stop and wait for a battery to recharge (though we do have 2 batteries for 3 tools, and are not always using 2 tools at once).
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:43 AM   #59
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We bought the 20V XR brushless Dewalt Combo Pack that consisted of a cordless impact driver, drill, and Home Depot & Dewalt had a special going on at the time that included the circular saw for free too. As a girl with small hands, I love how lightweight the tools are. It really reduces the fatigue.

Sorry for the overkill answer. To recap, I love the Dewalt 20V XR drill that we have because the drill and the battery are small and very lightweight. Supposedly since the drill motor is brushless, it should not get as hot and will last longer without needing a rebuild. If you don't use it all that much though, you might not want to spend the extra money for brushless, but if I remember correctly, the brushless drill was lighter weight too.
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Old 01-19-2015, 06:29 PM   #60
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Does anyone know if you can replace the older nicad batteries with newer lithium ion batteries? I have an older 12V Makita 1/2" drill that works good but is probably close to 20 years old and the batteries don't hold a charge and need to be replaced. It's been on the shelf collecting dust for the last few years, I just use the corded drill when I need one. It's been a long time since I looked at the cost of replacement batteries but from what I recall it might be cheaper just to buy a new drill.
The bundles that include an impact driver are pretty cheap [someone posted a ryobi set here someplace. The impact drivers can be way handy. Ryobis do work with either nicad or lithium.
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