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Craftsman or Rigid?

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  • Craftsman or Rigid?

    Howdy. I'm no power tool expert and I have a question. I want to buy an 18v cordless drill. Is it worth spending the extra money to move up to Rigid? Since I'm not a contractor or woodworker it will probably not be pushed even close to its limit. I have some other Craftsman tools and they have always served me well. One last question, 18v or 19.2v? Thanks for the advice.

  • #2
    Are you sure you really need an 18V drill? Need to know what you plan on using it for. I have 3 cordless drills. 7.2 Makita which does the majority of screw driving because it is light and easy to handle. 14.4 dewalt used when the 7.2 will not cut the mustard or when I need to drive several screws quickly ( flooring, drywall etc) then the monster 18V Ridgid hammer which is a bit on the heavy side to use for #6 and #8 screws, but is perfect for lag bolts, 1"+ auger bits, concrete boring etc.
    As I recall when I got the 7.2 Mikita it replaced my 12v craftsman ( skill replica)
    My point is you can not compair the voltage/proformance of home owner brands (craftsman, firestorm, ryobi) to the pro brands (ridgid, Makita, dewalt) you may find a 12 V Ridgid will serve you needs beter than a 19.2 V craftsman


    • #3
      I second what wbrooks said. During the pre-Christmas 20% off sale, I bought a Makita 14.4v, really wanted an 18 or even the new monster 24 (on Makita website - haven't seen in any store). Boy, am I glad all I got was the 14.4 (6337DWDE). It has way more than enough power for my homeowner and casual use.

      It is well balanced, and has excellent ergonomic design, but putting aside my macho pride, etc. it gets a bit heavy after a while when I have to drill lots of holes or drive lots of screws. And I'm no weakling. Makes the wrist get kind of tired out/slightly sore. An 18V or 24V would only be worse.

      I'm assuming the same thing would apply to a Ridgid drill too, professional power=heavy drill. If only for the high-power batteries the pros need.

      My recommendation is to go to the stores and try them ALL (all voltages, all pro makes) out. Make the numnuts sales guy put batteries on the drills and don't be intimidated into rushing. Take your time and see how each unit feels and handles for you. How long can you work with it before you get uncomfortable, etc.


      • #4
        Getting the feel of them all is good advice. I bought a Porter-Cable 14.4 a couple of years ago-liked it so much I bought another just like it. They have all the power I need- anything more and it would get hard to lift pretty quickly.


        • #5
          I also have the Makita 14.4v my wife surprised me with about 8 years ago. Even though I use it just about every time I'm in the shop or doing DIY stuff, it still hasn't shown the slightest problem. Craftsman tools just aren't all that reliable and you can judge for yourself the number of problems there have been with Ridgid cordless by doing a search here on the forum.


          • #6
            Thanks for the advice. Gotta love these boards. So it looks like I should be considering the 14.4v. Now which company? I hear mention of Makita a lot. What about Hitachi? DeWalt? Ryobi? And what is the difference between the Ridgid regular and the X2?


            • #7
              I own 2 Dewalt's a 12 & 18 volt, not a complaint about either one. You might think about the future a bit, see any other cordless tools in it? If so have you been favoring anything in particular? If yes consider getting the same brand & voltage so the batteries are interchangeable. Everyone out there has a brand they tend to favor. I would recommend you pick up and handle all the ones you are considering, I did that and found out I didn't like certain things about this or that one. Me I favor the Dewalt's, & Pc's. I have used my brothers X2 it worked well, just haven't had the opportunity to form an opinion on it yet.


              • #8
                Just about everyone will tell you on this board will poop on craftman....well remember just about all these guys are woodworkers...They look for perfection in everything they do and are exacting...clean their tools after every use..(I like you woodworkers but you guys want a sledge to kill an ant) I on the other hand do alot of finish carpentry, tear out and frame work...I beat the heck out of tool...Craftsman for the money in my opinion is a good product....In the last two years Sears had to really make better products to compete in the market place..A little story with my brothers 12 volt craftsman drill...I drilled tap-cons into 1 1/2" concrete without burning it out...I'm not afraid to buy a craftsman power tool....Your talking to a guy who has full sets of Milwaukee, Dewalt (with lots of bad batteries, but good drills) and Ridgid....Before you consider a cordless drill...I suggest a corded Milwaukee 3/8 magnum drill...which will give you a lifetime of happiness...and will have power whenever you need it....Ooops forgot 18vlt or 19.2...You might want has plenty of power for 90% of homeowner tasks...otherwise everything else is too heavy for your needs

                [ 03-02-2004, 01:39 PM: Message edited by: paul v. ]


                • #9
                  Nothing against craftsman but I did have trouble with the keyless chuck on the one I had. Couldn't keep it tight for some reason? Then it failed on me completely. They replaced it for free but started same problems the drill still is ok.
                  I would guess it would do fine for general use.
                  I have one of Makitas first 9v(long batt) 20 plus years old couple of replaced batteries over the years but will drive 3" screws still all day long. I did buy a newer Makita 18v for tougher applications but the old 9v gets used the most. Just like it. Something else to look at besides power is the size. Some of those big drills won't go in tight spaces. So bigger is'nt allways better. Rick.


                  • #10
                    I have never really had any love for cordless but I must admit I have a 9 volt cordless ????. I picked it up when HF had them on sale for 9.95. It had a keyless chuck, so I figured when it died I would put the chuck on one of my favorite corded drills. Although I considered it a throw away, it has done an good job for me still. On top of that, I have two Ryobi 3.6 volt screwdrivers that I use almost everyday. I will not say they are the best or worst but will say the price was right and I haven't any trouble with them. They don't have replacement batteries so must be considered disposible. Buy what feels right to you hand and pocket book, remember that when the batteries die you will feel like you are paying for a new tool while you still have the same old one. Sorry so long!! Rad idealist--Rick


                    • #11
                      JJC has the right idea-----the last thing you want is a bunch of different brand battery chargers cluttering up your workbench.

                      Paul----making generalizations is always a bad idea. I bought a load of Craftsman tools and with the exception of two, all crapped out on me, with just a hobbiest and DIYers use.

                      The thing about buying a decent tool is it's always there for you and you rarely have to buy it twice, as I've had to do with that Craftsman junk.


                      • #12
                        On the issue of power, the only brand I know of that puts out 19.2 is porter-cable. In a review I read, where they drilled x number of screws with each drill and cut x number of 2x4s with each circ saw, the 19.2 did no better than any other. Whithout making any statements about porter-cable's quality, it may be just a gimmick. 24 v does offer considerably more performance (torque, run-time, etc.) in any line that offers them.
                        As far as considering a corded drill INSTEAD of a cordless one, I would not buy the corded one in lieu of the cordless. They are made for different things, namely the corded for drilling holes, and the cordless for driving fastners. The cordless ones have clutches to aid.
                        Of course, a corded drill can drive screws, and most cordless will have no problem drilling holes, but they are suited better to different tasks.
                        Oh, and I agree with daveferg on the crapsman stuff. For the most part, the power tools suck. The so-called professional line is about as expensive as a truly industrial brand (dewalt, milwaukee, etc.), without aproaching the quality.

                        [ 03-03-2004, 11:50 AM: Message edited by: tyxlc ]


                        • #13
                          I have a Craftsman Professional 15.6v drill,which I have had for about 4 years. I paid 139 for it on sale (from 199) and it has 400 (advertised) inch lbs of torque.
                          This has been a fine drill,very good power,with good feel and is well made.
                          Before buying the 15.6 I returned a Craftsman (non professional) 18v drill that was a plastic piece of junk.
                          The point I am making is,that you can got an excellent drill in the Craftsman professional line,but don't but any craftsman drill unless it is on sale.
                          I have a Ridgid 18v hammerdrill that is much more powerful,but it makes my nearly 5lb Craftsman feel like a feather. Do you need a drill that big and powerful? So far I love the Ridgid vented batteries. They stay cool even under heavy use,which should give them a longer life.
                          One of my biggest complaints against Craftsman is their batteries. I have had a hard time finding 15.6 Craftsman batteries that fit my drill. My friend has a craftsman Professional 15.6v that is a year older,and its battery is different. (their 14.4v batteries are easy to find)
                          One thing I like about Dewalt and other pro tool manfacturers is that they try to keep thir batteries compatable year after year.
                          Good Luck!


                          • #14
                            Look at the torque of the drills. Just because two drills are of the same voltage doesn't mean they will perform the same.

                            I have never been interested in the craftsman cordless stuff because in the past it has been bulky and underpowered as compared to drills of the same voltage. On minimal inspection it appears they are starting to do a little better IMO.

                            I'm a fan of having two cordless drills. 12V and 18V will do anything you want depending on when you need power or light repeatative drilling or screws (like multiple hinges or drywall)

                            The Hitachi is a good price, but I would check the torque as compared to others before committing.

                            BTW, I have 12 and 18V ridgids and the ability to use the same chargers either way is helpful.

                            [ 03-17-2004, 11:17 PM: Message edited by: rofl ]


                            • #15
                              Update: I bought the Ridgid 83001, 14.4 cordless this past weekend. Have only been able to drive some 3" screws into pressure treated decking. No troubles whatsoever. Looks like it's going be to be a great tool. BTW, I was looking at the 12 volt but my wife talked me into the 14.4!! Surprise, surprise, surprise!