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14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

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  • 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

    I was looking at some Makita NiMH (2.6 ah) batteries on Amazon, noted their 14.4V are actually cheaper than the 12V... (and in fact, the 18V are cheaper than the 14.4V). I'm at a lost... why? Just related to demand & supply?

    And I'm quite surprise that prices for Markita 12V and 14.4 NiMH tools are not falling yet....

  • #2
    Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

    I suppose the answer would be, as they say, "The Economy of Scale". The more you produce to meet demand, the cheaper they should be.

    Manufacturing can quickly reach a point where they're 'geared up' to produce a product that meets today's demand and also immediate future expectations. On the flip side, as a product's demand goes down, the cost of manufacturing smaller quantities goes up. There are exceptions of course, but "economy of scale" usually applies.

    A 12-volt NiCad battery is probably a good example. When you read the forum, you'll see a lot of the MORE POWER-type opinions, wants, and needs. With the exception of some niche tools, the lower demand for a 12-volt tool, and it's battery, will drive the cost of manufacturing up. Likewise stocking, distribution, and even shelf space get's scrutinized in the wake of higher demand stuff. It can reach a point where not only is the 12-volt battery more expensive, but also much harder to find.

    Eventually the accounting types start looking at ROI (Return On Investment) and the actuarials will do an analysis to see if there enough product potential in the number of old tools out there to continue to bother with.

    So you and I can have a perfectly good whatever, and there will be a time where the manufacturer will simply no longer support it with parts inventory

    The landfills and junkyards are filled with stuff which was once 'hot' and now isn't worth anybody's effort to make parts for. Hopefully our 12 volt tools won't get caught up in that.



    • #3
      Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

      Well put, CWS.


      • #4
        Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

        I see.... don't you hate to see those quality tools (Made in USA) replaced by those Made in xxxxxxx ? Pity to see jobs lost to overseas, too.

        I'm thinking of getting an impact driver.. no need for hi-power 18v etc.. and wanted to take advantage on my existing battery/charger line up... so in my case it is either Bosch 10.8v or Makita 12v (assembled in the USA). Leaning towards Makita then started to find that their 14.4 drill/driver kit is cheaper than the 12V and for a similar price I can have their new 18v (1.5ah) Li Ion, but I have a second thought when I saw the "made in China" stamp.

        By the look of it... I don't have much choice but Ridgid .. at least, no worry on battery supplies ---- or got raped by the replacement battery costs -- or got abandon due to obselete model.....



        • #5
          Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

          Wagon Man,

          I have the Ridgid 14.4 Impact Driver and find it almost too powerful. It is certainly a great tool. Regarding "cordless", the only way to go is Ridgid, IMO. Just too many changes, upgrades, failures, or whatever with all the brands, so it's great to have Ridgid's LLSA to cover everything. My corded tools are also still quite useful, even after more than 30 years.

          I understand your plight regarding "made in China", but we do live in a "global" society. I do find the mindset that "made in China" is horrible, especially when we blame the Chinese!. Early on, I thought it might well be a "war thing" but then again we've fought the Germans twice and we all seem to think their products are better than ours. Beyond that things seem to go well beyond political... but that's a big, heated argument and everybody has their own, well-planted, point of view.

          Last edited by CWSmith; 04-25-2008, 12:03 AM.


          • #6
            Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

            CW, thanks for the recommendation.. I went to HD last night and they have a 2 pc kit which gave me EXACTLY what I want: 18V drill and impact.. although I wasn't looking for 18V, but they are at an attractive price point ($147) and will give me an option to go Li Ion down the road.

            You are absolutely right, the LLSA offered by Ridgid is unresistable to DIY'er like myself.. of course, professionals will have a diffwerent criteria.

            I know I'll be happy with this $147 expenditure


            • #7
              Re: 14.4V battery cheaper than 12V?

              Well, one nice thing about Ridgids LLSA and professionals, if you work the tool hard and it breaks, you're not out a ton of money. You can buy a brand new Dewalt for 300 bucks, drop it once and they may or MAY NOT help you. Ridgid is much more forgiving when it comes to less than normal wear and tear. That being said, i was under the influence that Ridgid is manufactured in and out of the USA. Correct me if im wrong.

              P.s. Global economy means cheaper prices, but less work on the homefront (at least for Americans). Its a grand notion, but then again, so is communism. Other nations economies and benefited far more than ours, as well as their workforce and quality. It's a shame to see American made prices higher on their own soil than sold abroad. I personally ENJOY paying the extra money for a product produced here, as my "product" is produced here and i appreciate people hiring me rather than an illegal immagrant to save a couple bucks on worse quality. my .02
              Carpenters Local #3223
              Interior Systems Specialist
              "It's JUST drywal...."