New tools from Home Depot

I have acquired some really good professional tools from Home Depot at extremely good prices. They seem to have “specials” on a regular basis. As I mentioned, I got my Milwaukee 14.4v Battery operated drill (including flashlight, extra battery, and case) for only $99. Then I got my Ridgid 18v heavy duty 1/2″ Hammer Drill (which included 18v reciprocating saw, and extra battery) for only $139. This one is regularly about $290.

I always find these “specials” in the main aisle. You do have to keep your eye open though. They are generally quickly grabbed up, and when gone they are gone. With the Ridgid drill¬†they were out at the 1st store, I quickly went to another store to get one (that store was down to the last 2). I wish, now, that I had bought one more to give my son as a birthday present.

And now: I have been wanting a 4-1/2″ Angle grinder for about 2 years. I would regularly visit Home Depot looking for a “special” on this item. Well, the other day I was in the store and, LO & BEHOLD, they had a special on the Makita 4-1/2″ Angle Grinder where you got two of them for the price of one. So, I ended up with 2 for a grant total of $71.00, which makes them $36 each. That means I have one to give away as a birthday present to one of my sons! These are professional quality grinders (heavier duty, higher amp, higher rpm, etc). They also included a grinding wheel. You can also get cutting wheels (for concrete or metal), and a more expensive diamond blade for serious cutting. Grinding/stripping brushes & sanding disks are also available.

Anyway, it is a tool I have occasional need of but could make do without until a “steal of a deal” came up. You have to differentiate between needs vs wants and have the necessary patience for the needs. As I get older, I find myself more frequently asking myself “do I really need this?” This doesn’t just apply to material things.

My DeWalt 18v drill

Got back my “overhauled” DeWalt 18v Battery operated Hammer drill. The overhaul was guaranteed not to exceed $99. That is the amount I paid plus sales tax (the legalized extortionists need their cut). Anyway, the “supposed total” would have been $250 if not for the $99 guarantee. It’s funny how the various parts when all added up usually end up costing far more than if you just bought a new item (tool, lawnmower, appliance, etc).

Anyway, I am extremely pleased and happy with the “overhaul”. It supposedly included all labor, new motor, new clutch, new switch, new chuck, etc. It actually seems to be more powerful and work better than when it was new!!! They even cleaned the drill. I was impressed.

Battery operated drills

Just thought I would put in my two cents worth on battery operated drills:

1. My old faithful is a DeWalt 18v 1/2″ Hammer drill. I purchased this about 10 years ago (maybe more). Aside from routine periodic replacement of batteries, it has served me very well. I use it mostly in my business and it has simplified my work. No dragging cords around or looking for an outlet, etc. It can do an incredible amount of drilling, including hammering (with power to spare) on one battery. I usually buy new batteries (it seems about every 3 years) at Lowes. They periodically have a sale where you get 2 for $99. I think Home Depot has the same sales. After all these years I finally had to take it in to a DeWalt service center for a complete overhaul/rebuild. This is done for $99 max. Considering a new equal drill runs $275+, it is worth it.

2. While at Home Depot one day (about 2 years ago) they were having a special on 14.4v Milwaukee drills. This included 2 batteries, an 14.4v flashlight, the drill, and the case all for $99 (about 1/2 price). I couldn’t resist. This is a professional drill, and although it doesn’t have the hammer option or the power that my 18v DeWalt does, it does a great job on routine drilling/driving. It is lighweight and easy to use. I use it alot on home projects (deck building, drywall hanging, etc).

3. Another time at Home Depot (about a year ago) they were having a special on Ridgid 18v 1/2″ Hammer drill which also included a 18v reciprocating saw!!! It was only $139 (about 1/2 price). Although it came in a canvas bag rather than a hard case, I couldn’t resist the price. This drill came in real handy when my DeWalt broke down last week (which is why it is in the service center right now). I am now in a quandary as to which drill is the best: the DeWalt or the Ridgid. I am leaning toward the Ridgid. I was really happy to get the 18v reciprocating saw. I have an electric Milwaukee, but there are alot of times when I could (now & in the past) use a battery op saw. Now I have it!!! I used it the other day to trim/level off the tops of the fence posts so I could cap them.

I might mention that I use these tools alot (including professionally) and am very pleased with all of them. They have served me very well.

I might also mention that I rarely ever have need to use an electric drill anymore. Like maybe 2 years ago.