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  • 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries & torque

    Just purchased new 18v B840011 drill after ridiculous amount of research, etc. HD had just put them out at $99. ! HD's site had shown a different model (84015). I called to ask RIDGID tech support about the difference and was given a torque difference from 510 in lbs (84015) to 460 (B840011). Also, the batteries are different (MaxHC to HC). When I pressed for more detail a comment was made that torque has nothing to do with the batteries. I was believing that batteries would have a notable effect. Am I wrong??

    The 14.4v R830153 specs more torque than the 18v B840011 but it has the HC-2.5 AHr batteries vs the standard HC. I assumed that the ability of the motor to draw more current was a factor in the torque spec. Wouldn't my new B840011 have more torque with the HC-2.5 batteries than the standard HC's?

    As Ridgid closes out some of these models, I'm guessing that they are mixing and matching various inventory components to clear them out for newer models. Perhaps my new 18v drill is essentially the same as the earlier 84015? Does anyone have some info on this?

    Still, a heck-of-a deal for this tool !!

    Regards,
    doubtingtom
    St George, UT
    Last edited by doubtingtom; 09-23-2007, 10:44 AM. Reason: smiley

  • #2
    Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries & torque

    It is correct that the battery has nothing to do with the drills torque rating. The difference is the Max HC batteries will have a longer runtime since they have a higher amp hour rating. The motor will only draw the same amount of current as it needs @ 18v from any of the batteries. The bigger Max batteries will be able to sustain the drain for longer periods.

    The torque ratings are pretty worthless ratings. Torque is directly related to the spindle speed. You can get insane amounts of torque from the lousiest drill if you gear it low enough. Notice the 84015 does a higher 510 in-lbs but it spins at a slower 400rpm. The 84011 is rated at 460 in-lbs but it runs at a faster 450rpm. Once you factor the speed differences they should be almost identical in torque delivered. Anyway, these torque ratings don't tell how well the drill will perform. The way torque is measured is the put the drill on the slowest speed and put resistance on the drill until it stalls. Electric motors deliver the most torque in a burst of a fraction of a second just as they stall, then promptly start burning out. The actual sustainable torque is probably about half of what they are rated at. That much sustained torque would in fact make the drill impossible to handle as it would easily break your wrist. Thats when you move to impact drivers. A compact drill like the 84011 while having almost the same maximum torque rating as some of the bigger drills will very likely struggle during hard use in comparison to some of the heavy duty 18v drills.

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    • #3
      Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries & torque

      [quote=Velosapien;95543]It is correct that the battery has nothing to do with the drills torque rating. The difference is the Max HC batteries will have a longer runtime since they have a higher amp hour rating. <edit> ....]

      Many thanks for the explanation. I had chosen the 14.4v Ridgid when I saw the new closeout price (@ -$30.) on the 18v. The 14.4v spec'd 475 in lbs and had the HC2.5aH batteries so I had a tough time making the choice. I guess the two drills/drivers are very comparable, but I'm still not totally convinced I made the best choice.

      Regards,
      Tom B

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

        [QUOTE=doubtingtom;95564]
        Originally posted by Velosapien View Post
        It is correct that the battery has nothing to do with the drills torque rating. The difference is the Max HC batteries will have a longer runtime since they have a higher amp hour rating. <edit> ....]

        Many thanks for the explanation. I had chosen the 14.4v Ridgid when I saw the new closeout price (@ -$30.) on the 18v. The 14.4v spec'd 475 in lbs and had the HC2.5aH batteries so I had a tough time making the choice. I guess the two drills/drivers are very comparable, but I'm still not totally convinced I made the best choice.

        Regards,
        Tom B
        I believe you will find that the 18V drill will drive better than the 14.4 in the real world of work. The other bonus is I believe the 18V Lithium Ion batteries will fit in your drill which will provide a power, capacity and durability upgrade if you choose.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

          [quote=roadrashray;95577]
          Originally posted by doubtingtom View Post
          I believe you will find that the 18V drill will drive better than the 14.4 in the real world of work. The other bonus is I believe the 18V Lithium Ion batteries will fit in your drill which will provide a power, capacity and durability upgrade if you choose.
          Very helpful comment ! .... don't know why the L-I battery option did not get my attention. Thanks for the input ... it makes a real difference.

          Tom B

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

            The biggest weakness of that drill, which has been around a while, is the batteries. It comes with the older 1.4Ah batteries...as opposed to the newer 1.9Ah MaxHC or newer still 2.5Ah Max 2.5.

            Of course, better still are the new 3Ah LiIon batteries that come with the $179 drill kit. Ridgid, or Home Depot, have been notoriously slow at offering the latest batteries and chargers as standalone items. I am only just seeing the Max 2.5 batteries in the store. The 24V LiIon are being offered as part of a kit with the charger to go with the MaxSelect tools...but haven't been sold alone either. Wonder how long it will take before we see the 18V LiIon batteries for sale? Even then they will probably be too expensive...if you go by the $70 bucks they charge for the NiCd battery.
            Last edited by Disaster; 09-26-2007, 09:30 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

              Originally posted by Velosapien View Post
              It is correct that the battery has nothing to do with the drills torque rating. The difference is the Max HC batteries will have a longer runtime since they have a higher amp hour rating. The motor will only draw the same amount of current as it needs @ 18v from any of the batteries. The bigger Max batteries will be able to sustain the drain for longer periods.
              I would have to strongly disagree. Batteries are rated at more than just they're mah, it's just that all power tool manufacturers tell you is the mah. Low quality cells don't put out as much power as a higher quality cell pack will.

              Under no load you can probably even hear the difference in rpm of a freshly charged high quality (HQ) pack vs a lower quality (LQ) pack. Even though packs are rated at 18v, when freshly charged the cells will be closer to 23 volts. HQ cells peak out at higher voltages which will give your drill more power with a fresh pack. HQ cells will also put out more power under load than a LQ cell will. This will give your drill more torque under load. They'll also keep higher voltages longer before dumping out, which will keep you with more power, longer.

              There's more to batteries than just mah!


              On a side note, people complain about battery pack prices. IMO they're overpriced for what you get, no doubt, but they're gotta make money to stay in business. You can get top quality 3600 mah (3.6A/H) cells for around $6 a pop. $6 X 15cells = $90, and that's just for the cells. I'm sure the big companies could get major volume discounts, so maybe they can get them for $4.50/cell. That's still almost $68 for just the cells, not the casing or time/labor/packaging/shipping/markup to make profit added into that. Would you guys pay $130 for a single battery pack for your 18v drill? Not many people will, that's why they put cheap cells in power tools.

              2400 mah cells were outdated a few years ago in the hobby industry, and for some reason they're considered high quality today in the power tool industry. When power tool manufacturers use higher quality cells, the prices go down quickly because they buy in such high volumes. They should quit being cheap!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                Let me go back to the original topic of the thread. A battery with a higher amp hour rating will NOT give a tool more power. You are talking about a completely different thing. What you are refering to is the power drop off curve from a full charge. Going with a better battery will not give the drill more power. A better battery will leave you a flatter curve with more usable power thats closer to its full charge voltage. Thats not the same thing as saying the battery will offer more power. But that's besides the point because you can't choose what cells go into the batteries any brand tool uses. Lithium Ion batteries will suffer almost no drop off from full charge to almost empty. However, lithium ion batteries of the same voltage will not actually increase the drills power by any means. It will give it more consistant power with less drop off as the battery drains.

                There's not much choice when buying NiCD or NiMH anyway. The technology has peaked as far as it can practically go a long time ago and there is little difference in quality between any brand. Lithium Ion varies wildly in the amount of different designs. 3.6ah cells are lithium ion cells and they are normally not sold alone because they need to be pre configured with a computer that monitors them according to the application. Dumb draining and charging a lithium cell like a NiCD battery will kill once if it drains too low and will explode if overcharged or drained too hard.

                The reason electronics and hobby batteries with much higher ah ratings is because they use chemistries with higher energy densities. Their downside is the are unstable (read explode and catch fire) with high current draw demands like power tools. The biggest challenge of power tool batteries has been making them stable at high current draw. The compromise is chemistries which have about half the energy density. That's why power tool batteries have seemingly smaller capacities than conventional ones.
                Last edited by Velosapien; 09-26-2007, 11:32 PM.

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                • #9
                  Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                  Thanks for all that information and the education it provided. I've been checking E-Bay recently for Ridgid 18 volt Lithium ion batteries and there are no bargains to be found. I think it just makes more sense to buy from H/D for $179 and get going. I like the traits of the lithium ion batteries although the lack of warning when they quit is a bit disappointing. I think I saw something about a indicator on the Ryobi lithium batteries which just came out. Wonder why Ridgid did not add this feature? Back to the batteries, I use NIMH AA's and D cells for flashlights and they do not hold a charge well when stored, I think the lithium ions' will do much better. Price wise $179 for the two batteries, charger and drill doesn't seem that bad.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                    Any Nicad and NiMH battery has a self discharge rate of about 20% in the first 24 hours and about 1 to 5% every following day, no exceptions. Mileage will vary with temperature. Storing them in cold will significantly increase how long they hold their charge. Lithium Ion has virtually no self discharge. They loose about 1 to 5% a month because of the computer that constantly monitors them.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                      Originally posted by GilBeQuick View Post
                      Even though packs are rated at 18v, when freshly charged the cells will be closer to 23 volts.
                      Sticking a multimeter to a battery under no load will not give you its charge. It will just read around the peak voltage,even if its almost dead. Once the battery is under load that drops off right away. 18v is really a marketing term. 18v tools actually run closer to 19-20v. The voltage rating is supposed to be sort of a ball park figure based on the flatest most usable part of the battery curve. Same thing with lithium. They actually charge up to 3.9 to 4.2v but their nominal voltage is actually around 3.3 to 3.6v. A batteries peak voltage drops off very fast after use.


                      You can get top quality 3600 mah (3.6A/H) cells for around $6 a pop. $6 X 15cells = $90, and that's just for the cells. I'm sure the big companies could get major volume discounts, so maybe they can get them for $4.50/cell. That's still almost $68 for just the cells, not the casing or time/labor/packaging/shipping/markup to make profit added into that. Would you guys pay $130 for a single battery pack for your 18v drill? Not many people will, that's why they put cheap cells in power tools.
                      You couldn't buy any of those cells even if you wanted to. Currently there are few people manufacturing lithium manganese cells for power tools and the few that are, have exclusive contracts. If you actually find out who's making batteries for power tools you'll probably be surprised that they actually use the absolute best in the market. Makita uses Sony which is the worlds battery supplier, Milwaukee uses Molicell, Panasonic uses their own and they are really good at making high tech batteries, Dewalt uses A123 systems which is regarded by many as the absolute cutting edge when it comes to lithium ion. There really is no such thing as low grade lithium ion batteries. Their inherent danger requires very tight manufacturing tolerances and its a huge liability for anyone to cut corners and build cheap cells, let alone use cheap cells in their products. Just look at what happened to Sony, one of the premiere battery makers when a few of their batteries blew and about 10 million batteries were recalled.
                      Last edited by Velosapien; 09-27-2007, 09:21 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                        Originally posted by Velosapien View Post
                        Any Nicad and NiMH battery has a self discharge rate of about 20% in the first 24 hours and about 1 to 5% every following day, no exceptions. Mileage will vary with temperature. Storing them in cold will significantly increase how long they hold their charge. Lithium Ion has virtually no self discharge. They loose about 1 to 5% a month because of the computer that constantly monitors them.
                        There is actually a revolutionary new technology in NiMh that allows batteries to keep up to 80% of their charge over a year later. GE/Sanyo Eneloops are one brand. Rayovac sells another called Rayovac hybrids. The energy density of these is a little lower than the better cells today but still good (2Ah vs. 2.8Ah) and in just a few weeks the low self discharge batteries will have more power than the higher powered normal cells.

                        In fact, they hold their charge so well, they sell them precharged and ready to go.

                        I'm not sure why we haven't seen the technology in tool batteries yet. So far, it's only been sold in AA and AAA batteries. Perhaps it is too expensive....even compared to Lithium. Perhaps it can't deliver as high a discharge rate (though they do seem to deliver very high discharge rates in testing.)

                        http://www.eneloop.com.au/

                        http://www.rayovac.com/recharge/hybrid_faq.shtml

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                          Originally posted by Velosapien View Post
                          Sticking a multimeter to a battery under no load will not give you its charge. It will just read around the peak voltage,even if its almost dead. Once the battery is under load that drops off right away. 18v is really a marketing term. 18v tools actually run closer to 19-20v. The voltage rating is supposed to be sort of a ball park figure based on the flatest most usable part of the battery curve. Same thing with lithium. They actually charge up to 3.9 to 4.2v but their nominal voltage is actually around 3.3 to 3.6v. A batteries peak voltage drops off very fast after use.
                          The voltage is actually lower than it should be because most companies now "cheat" on higher voltage packs.

                          The flat part of the curve, for NiMh and NiCd is about 1.2V per cell. This is why we see nice even amounts like 12 volts, 9.6 volts, 14.4 volts...etc...all multiples of 1.2V.

                          However most manufacturers only put 14 batteries in 18 volt packs. If you divide 18 by 1.2 it should be 15. They get away with this because NiCds and NiMh run closer to 1.4 volts at full charge so they deliver almost 20 volts when "full."

                          What is funny is the Sears C3 19.2 volt tools actually use the correct amount of batteries for a true 18 volts, flat curve.

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                          • #14
                            Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                            Interesting stuff about the new NiMH batteries. There's still a market for that sort of battery because NiMH still serve as replacements for alkaline batteries and all the equipment out there that needs 1.2v-1.5v cells. Lithium ion can't fill that role. Speaking of cheating in voltage ratings. The good old alkaline battery is a perfect example of this. Alkaline's are rated at 1.5v even though their curve drops sharply down to 1.2v in like the first 5%. They are relistically about 1.25v which is why it's ok to use NiMH or NiCD in devices that use alkaline batteries.

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                            • #15
                              Re: 18v Ridgid cordless drills, battteries &amp; torque

                              Originally posted by Velosapien View Post
                              Interesting stuff about the new NiMH batteries. There's still a market for that sort of battery because NiMH still serve as replacements for alkaline batteries and all the equipment out there that needs 1.2v-1.5v cells. Lithium ion can't fill that role.
                              I've started replacing all the alkalines in our house with Eneloops. This wasn't possible with previous generation NiMh's, in the lower drain devices, like flashlights and remotes, because the self drain was higher than the drain from the device. With the Eneloops I can pick up a flashlight after 6 months and know it will still have most of it's charge left.

                              Costco has a really good deal on the Eneloops right now. They sell a pack that includes 8 AA's, 4 AAA's and a really good charger with 4 descrete charge circuits for $28. Around my house, with AA's in everything from camera flashes to Wii remotes, it will pay for itself in a year.

                              There are lithium AA and AAA cells sold for replacements for Alkalines. Because of the higher voltage they are only for products with pairs of cells that you replace with the single LiIon and dummy cells...or hardwire for them. Then you have to decide if you want to also buy the protection circuit to keep the lithiums from overdraining which spells instant death to them. I considered that route, before the new, LSD (low self discharge) NiMh's were available, but decided it was way to complicated and expensive.

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