Popular Woodworking 2009-12 № 180, страница 23

Popular Woodworking 2009-12 № 180, страница 23

Compact Drill-Drivers

Bosch PS30-2A

The Bosch 12-volt drill-driver is certainly a handful of tool. It's near the top in handle girth (61/8") and tied for the top in the drill-head-length measurement at 77/8".

With a price tag at $131 and change, the PS30-2A is the fourth-most expensive drill-driver in our test.

The PS30-2A drilled a test-leading 8 holes in the 1" spade-bit drill-a-thon. It also has the lowest upper-end speed setting in the group.

In the lag-screw test, the Bosch drill-driver performed admirably by installing nearly 32 lags. While that number was not the most lags driven, it was enough to position the tool in fourth place.

We all know that heat is a destructive force on batteries as well as tool life, but even with more than eight holes drilled, and the battery depleted, the PS30-2A registered a motor temperature of 108° (just below the mean temperature). And at 136°, the battery temperature was also positioned in the middle of the pack.

This tool gave our top pick a run for the money given its ability to drill holes and drive lags, but in the end, the PS30-2A was nudged out due to tool design. During use, the back of the drill rides heavily on the area between your thumb and forefinger, causing soreness.

The Bosch PS30-2A, two batteries and a charger are packaged in a canvas case. Additional batteries are $33.

Craftsman 11812

The Craftsman NEXTEC drill-driver has the third-smallest girth size and is one of the longest drill drivers in the test with a drill-head-length measurement of 77/8".

The good news is that this drill-driver is the least expensive tool in our test (at $80, it sells for $69 less than the most expensive drill reviewed). Unfortunately, the NEXTEC drill is also the least productive of the drill-drivers tested. While six holes were driven through the 13/4"-thick poplar before the 1.3 amp hour battery gave out (that was the third-highest test number for holes driven), only six lag screws were seated before the juice ran out on a fully charged battery. And those six screws required three attempts to drive them home due to multiple motor stoppages.

Also, the NEXTEC battery and the tool itself did not heat to the levels comparable with the other drills in the test (probably because of the lack of actual work). The tool's temperature tied for the lowest in the test with a drill that drove eight times as many lag screws. And the battery temperature topped out at 123°, again the lowest in the test.

The NEXTEC drill driver is great for occasional use in the shop, or for do-it-yourself work around the house, but we don't recommend this tool as your "go to" drill in this category.

Replacement batteries are $25 and the kit is packaged in a canvas carrying case.

Hitachi DS10DFL

Hitachi's 3/8" drill-driver is the only tool in the test that stayed with a traditional drill-driver design. The base of the tool is wide and holds the drill upright without issues. This allows for an easy pickup when reaching for the tool.

With the smallest girth in the review (5") and a middle-of-the-road measurement for the drill-head length (71/2"), this drill fits comfortably in any small-to-medium hand.

The DS10DFL is priced around $108, the second-most inexpensive tool in the test. So you may guess the tool would place near the bottom when drilling holes or driving screws. But that's not the case. In fact, with 481/2 lag screws driven, it's only one screw away from the best results in the test; that could be a result of the slowest low-end speed setting (300 rpm).

The number of holes drilled is slightly different. Here the Hitachi drill-driver completed five holes before the 1.5 amp hour battery pooped out.

Motor temperatures for the Hitachi drill ran on the high side of those tested at 114°. But the battery temperature rated second from the coolest at 127°.

One area of disappointment is the battery charger. There is little information on the unit; it simply indicates a charging battery and when the battery is fully charged. Overall, we are impressed with the Hitachi DS10DFL and think this is a good-quality drill for the money.


boschtools.com or 877-267-2499 ■ Street price: $131.47


craftsman.com or 800-349-4358 ■ Street price: $79.99


hitachipowertools.com or 800-706-7337 ■ Street price: $107.73

38 ■ Popular Woodworking December 2009

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