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Tools - battery or corded?

ProjectPete
Valued Contributor

Tools - battery or corded?

Hi guys, I've got a decent range of tools including both battery and corded models. I'm just chasing people's feedback on which tools they have in which combos.

 

Do you find your battery powered ones don't last long enough or don't have enough power, etc?

 

Certainly like the convenience of the new(ish) '1 battery fits all systems' and when I buy new tools I've looked at both battery and corded options.

Ben
Established Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

My latest corded purchase is a Ryobi hedge trimmer. As I use it predominantly for trimming bamboo I convinced myself I'd need the power of a corded trimmer to cut through chunky bamboo stalks. I find the constant unwinding/rewinding/snagging of the power cord a real nuisance, and wished I had gone with the battery option. From what I now understand the batter powered product is equally or more powerful, anyway.
darylhewston
Super Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

@ProjectPete

 

I find it really depends on the job you are doing.  If I have to do multiple chases in walls then definately power.  If fitting off shelving or something in tighter situations, then cordless.  Also depends on how much torque you need.  Sometimes we have to do jobs when there is no power available and we have no choice except lug around a generator.  I have a couple sets of 'all in one' battery tool packs with extra batteries and just rotate through them.

 

I have nearly a complete set of Ryobi 1+ which contains:  drill, driver, hammer drill, multitool, grinder, recip saw, circ saw, jigsaw, impact wrench, impact driver, led light, radio, 6 port charger and 7 4Ah batteries. 

 

My Hilti set contains drill, hammer drill, impact driver, grinder and 3 3.3Ah batteries (the apprentices don't touch these).

 

I find the Hilti batteries last longer than the Ryobi even though the Ryobi has more amp hours, but much depends on how much pressure you put on the tool when using it.

 

It's always personal preference but if I had to drag around a 30m extension cord when mowing my yard, then I would without doubt buy cordless (or stick to my trusty Victor).

Andy_Mann
Trusted Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

@darylhewston

 

I note that your cordless Hilti system is off limits to your apprentices, & if I'm on track, it's because the lads may not respect those quality (expensive) tools.

 

Unfortunately, many now are brought up with the false economy that when they buy cheap & it breaks, simply go out & get another one. I don't subscribe to that throwaway theory at all, tools are to assist us, but it doesn't give us the right to abuse/trash them. That goes for corded & cardless.

 

On topic, corded tools are best if you have a ready supply, or a generator.

 

Given the choice on a heavy duty job with power available, no matter what they tell you, cordless loses out.

 

Then there's the quandary of spec/brochure wars when talking quality v temporary tools.

 

A cheap tool may be rated at 2400W, but be less powerful than an 1800W quality tool, but why is it so?

 

It draws 2400w of power from the mains, but it's not efficient.

 

A well made electrical motor has a small distance (air gap) between the rotor (rotating part) & the stator (outer stationary part) which improves the essential magnetic coupling between the two. The windings will be wound more tidily & tighter, which allows both the rotor & stator to be more compact, & lighter. The motors have long lasting bearings (needle or roller), instead of bushings (an oil impregnated metal sleeve) which deteriorate with use.

 

Corded tools are best if you have a ready supply, or a generator.

 

Guys, unwind a cord like your wives have had to until recently when vacuuming, & stop your whinging. ; )

 

For the ultimate in cordless tools, I urge everyone to catch up with Andrew Jones' blog.

ProjectPete
Valued Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

I've settled on the fact corded are more powerful and in some ways more convenient. Given I only work at home so don't need to worry about a lack of power, I think I'll stick with mostly corded tools for the power and avoid having to charge/change batteries. But tools like a drill (always used even for little jobs) and maybe a grinder which I wouldn't use often or for long periods of time I will go with battery. Know what I mean?

Basically, I won't rush out to get battery tools just for the sake of it and the marketing

@Andy_Mann - which vaccuum do you mean? My corded Dyson, my cordless Dyson or my robot vaccuum?
Andy_Mann
Trusted Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

@ProjectPete

 

"@Andy_Mann - which vaccuum do you mean? My corded Dyson, my cordless Dyson or my robot vaccuum? "

 

Have I got this right, you vacuum the house, AND your robot? ; )

darylhewston
Super Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

@Andy_Mann

 

"I note that your cordless Hilti system is off limits to your apprentices, & if I'm on track, it's because the lads may not respect those quality (expensive) tools."

 

Sorry John but not the case.  I find that 90% of the apprentices I get don't actually know how to use the tool properly.  Training is part of the key and I am constantly training my lads and lasses on correct tool use. 

Bgrunt
New Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

It is up to the individual and certainly the job your doing .
I have a good mixture of both corded and cordless for different uses .
Today,s 18v cordless combo,s are terrific and i get a good run out of them on any job . Having two batteries at hand makes for longevity .
We recently spent 12 months on the road travelling Oz and i took the cordless , recharging on a 300 watt inverter and if needed a 2kva Honda . Never had any issues recharging and they were certainly handy plus no cords to be cut snagged or tangled .
I use the cordless more now than the corded
Just my opinion
Community Manager Jason
Community Manager

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

Thanks for joining in the discussion @Bgrunt and making your first post. Let me extend a very warm welcome to the Workshop community. Looking forward to reading about your plans and projects soon.

 

Jason

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Damo
New Contributor

Re: Tools - battery or corded?

I agree it's up to the individual and the job to be completed. I have used both corded and cordless tools, both generic cheapies (not mentioning brands but I'm referring to the various cheap brands from a number of hardware stores and auto shops), and quality home handyman and trade quality tools. I've noticed that the corded cheapies are good for light duty work, but struggle and start to fail when pushed a little harder. The quality corded tools can be pushed pretty hard and just keep on going. I've given up on the generic cheapie cordless tools, they are only good for very light duty work, the battery life is generally abysmal and they take effectively forever to charge. I am impressed in the quality branded lithium cordless tools, which can be pushed hard, have good battery life and charge quickly.

In summary, I've essentially given up on any corded or cordless generic cheapie tool (not mentioning brands, they all seem to perform similarly), unless I need one for a very specific one off job. For a long term tool purchase, it's either a quality branded home handyman tool (mostly the Ryobi One+ for cordless tools or Ryobi or Bosch corded tools) or a trade quality tool (Milwaukee is my go to brand for cordless tools). I've got a few tools in each of the ranges, and all are very good, although one of the older batteries in the one+ range has effectively died (it's one of the early li-ion 1.4AHr batteries which is about 5 years old), the Milwaukee tools are the best tools I've ever owned, they are lightweight but solid, batteries last well and they are more powerful than you'd ever expect for a 12v tool (the drill goes almost as hard as the hammer drill I've got in the 18v One+ range). I have a drill, driver, impact driver and multitool in the 12v Milwaukee range.

Basically, my opinion is spend more on a quality tool, they make the job you're doing easier, they last much longer, and save money in the long run as you're not replacing tools every 18 months to 2 years.

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