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Old 11-07-2014, 21:59   #31
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I think you made a good choice. The lithium batteries make a world of difference. My oldest lithium is about three years old and doing fine. I've been writing the date of purchase on them so I'll know how old they are.

My latest Ryobi buy was a stapler and a brad nailer. Both have gotten a good workout.

I just had a contractor install a lot of bronze screen on my porch. He started using a hand stapler until I loaned him my Ryobi 18 volt stapler and a corded electric stapler.
He ended up using the Ryobi only and drove over 500 staples with one battery.
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Old 11-07-2014, 22:47   #32
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

Unless you are using the tools all day every day, a generator doesn't make any sense. I would just get another solar panel or two.

I used sawzall, electric drills dremel, etc.. even angle grinder working fine on solar panels without power issues.

The cordless tools tend to be less powerful, and less efficient because of extra charge/discharges. I think it would be best to take the regular power tools you have, and replace the motors with high efficiency brushless motors designed to run on your battery bank. Or look for 12v tools would be easier. This would give the most power and efficiency, and also a power tool which is very quiet.

On this size boat though, I wouldn't recommend power tools at all. I have hand drills and hand saws and that's what I use and it's really fine.

I have two styles of hand drills, and both of them seem really old, maybe 40-50 years, and cost was $5 each. They are fine to use in the rain. The $20 electric drill I had died after only 2 years. I drilled all the holes for the chainplates with these because the electric drill wasn't able to spin slowly with enough torque for cutting stainless or bronze without burning it out.

You could put a grinding wheel and circular saw attachment on your bicycle.
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Old 12-07-2014, 05:27   #33
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

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I think you made a good choice. The lithium batteries make a world of difference. My oldest lithium is about three years old and doing fine. I've been writing the date of purchase on them so I'll know how old they are.

My latest Ryobi buy was a stapler and a brad nailer. Both have gotten a good workout.

I just had a contractor install a lot of bronze screen on my porch. He started using a hand stapler until I loaned him my Ryobi 18 volt stapler and a corded electric stapler.
He ended up using the Ryobi only and drove over 500 staples with one battery.
The lithium batteries are a huge difference. Funny, I have started date labeling mine as well. Just recently I have seen the batteries on sale a couple of times at Home Depot. Last Christmas and just a few weeks ago they had a display with 2 for 1 lithiums. If you miss the sales and need a spare I found them on eBay for $20 less than the regular H.D. price.

Had not noticed the stapler. May have to add that one. Have you tried it on different sizes, short/long staples? I have some short (1/4 or 3/8 if I recall) monel staples I use on boat projects that jam in my old staple gun.
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Old 12-07-2014, 06:51   #34
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I've tried 12 volt portables and was not completely satisfied. My son gave me a set of Bosch 18 volt tools and they are terrific. Drill, impact driver (much better for driving screws because you can control the stopping point more precisely), reciprocating saw, hand radial saw. I would like to add a 4 inch angle grinder. I haven't tried the battery sanders. For serious sanding I suspect corded is better.

The only tools I buy at HF are corded. the cheap angle grinder and orbital sanders are a terrific deal when on sale. Like $9.95-$19.95. At those prices buy 2 and when one quit toss it. HF sand paper sucks.
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Old 12-07-2014, 07:00   #35
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

The Ryobi stuff is cheap and has been great. I've built a dinghy with the circular saw, it keeps cutting, works well. There was a little too much material on the stop for the base of it, so the blade wasn't perfectly square. I ground a little bit off and otherwise it's been flawless. I also use it with a big masons straight edge clamped to plywood and can do really nice long rips on a pair of sawhorses. It's been very handy.

The 12v car charger seems to work great on the boat. I might wire it in to the panel. I hate the cigarette lighter connections.
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:11   #36
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I have practically built my boat with a 19.5 volt cordless set from Craftsman. Circular saw, reciprocating saw, 1/2" drill, angle drill, jigsaw and vacuum. For the rest, we have a 1000w Xantrex inverter that runs the sewing machine, angle grinders, palm sander, router and belt sander. We need shore power for the chop saw, drill press, RO sander, disc sander, shop vac and band saw (and you thought YOU carried a lot of tools onboard).

Someone mentioned that power tools may not hold up in a marine environment, but I have not found that to be the case. I have had the same belt sander onboard for 30 years. I wish it would die so I could get a newer one but it just won't quit.
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Old 12-07-2014, 08:24   #37
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I use both kinds: corded in port (the small ones work off our inverter too) and the cordless stuff offshore and while at anchor.

I love our newer Bosch stuff as it charges up in no time and seems to hold the charge much better than the earlier generations. Have done a fine lamination repair while at anchor, using a 3M pad on a cordless drill to prep the area. Fabulous combo. Recommended.

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Old 12-07-2014, 09:14   #38
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

Skipmac, I've used the stapler with up to 1/2" staples. I think it will take up to 9/16.
They now have a finish nailer that will take up to 2" nails and a narrow crown stapler. Their drivers seem to be some sort of battery / pneumatic combination that works very well. Ryobi is starting to sell 40 volt equipment. I'm hoping for a framing nailer and a 40 volt outboard motor.

Have you guys seen the boat races where the boats are driven by battery operated tools? I saw videos online somewhere. It was pretty impressive.
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Old 12-07-2014, 09:22   #39
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

What do you do with the stapler? Just wondering. Do you use it for holding glass in place?


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Old 12-07-2014, 12:15   #40
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I haven't used the stapler for much boat work. I did try stapling fiberglass cloth in place years ago but it didn't work well. I have used staples to hold thin strips of wood to forms when I was building a strip planked canoe. The staples were later removed.
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Old 12-07-2014, 12:27   #41
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

I invested in the 18V Makita set, and found a 12V cigarette lighter plug in charger for it and my old 9.6V Makita drill, which I have had and worked on boats with it forever. Even though I have a generator, I would rather run with the cordless tools than listen to the genset run. I haven't had the set very long, but so far I am very satisfied with them and my powered tools are sitting and getting rusty.
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Old 12-07-2014, 13:59   #42
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

The newer NiMH battery powered tools work great. The batteries will get you through a pretty strenuous work day and charge up very fast with either 12v DC or 110v AC as the charging source. The older NiCad powered tools are not as fast to charge or hold as long a charge but still work fine for a pretty hard workday, especially if you have a back up battery. The NiCad's take longer to charge and are way more fragile to charging abuse. So far haven't had a problem with premature battery failure with my Bosch 14.4 NiCad drills. Have had one NiMH battery failure with 12v Milwaukee screw driver but I've abused the hell out of that tool installing thousands of screws and other fasteners. Have found these tools work just as well as corded tools and will drive big drill bits and large fasteners without a problem. Not having to deal with cord issues is a god send.

One caution with any battery powered tool, the batteries self discharge if not used and charged regularly. Not such a big deal with NiMH batteries as they charge up quickly without any problem. Do to the 'memory effect', NiCad batteries can be ruined by charging when they are not fully discharged. You don't want to charge a partially discharged NiCad as it can memorize its partially discharged state and permanently only hold a charge to that level. A pain in the butt when you haven't used a tool for a while and want to do some heavy duty work with both batteries partially depleted. Not a problem with NiMH batteries as you can chuck them in the charger at any stage of discharge and have them ready to go when you need them.

Personally, have a 1800 watt inverter that I use for the corded tools. Its easily handled all my needs for things like sanders, saber saws, shop vac, etc that I haven't changed over to battery powered.

Personally like Milwaukee and Bosch tools. have borrowed a Rigid drill and it seemed well made. They are professional quality and hold up to abuse. Inherited one Ryobi drill and found it to be a definite step down in quality. Haven't used Porter Cable or Dewalt battery powered tools but have a few of the corded variety that I've been using for decades and have built 2 houses and a boat and are still going strong.
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Old 12-07-2014, 15:21   #43
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

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I have Makita 12 volt tools that came with both a 120 volt charger, and a 12 volt cigarette lighter plug in type. On one of my cruising boats I used a 50 year old 12 volt drill that had a long cord and alligator clips . It was great. One of the troubles with the modern cordless tools is that if you dont keep the batteries in good shape, they tend to die young. I plan to take an old battery , remove the guts, and put a long cord on it. I can then slide it into several different tools. Running straight off of the ships battery will be far less drain than running an inverter to run a 120 volt charger, to charge a 12 volt battery. I also got great service off of a 12 volt 1 gallon shop vac that I bought at an auto parts store. I had a 12 volt extension cord that I bought at Radio Shack, that allowed me to get anywhere on my 37 foot boat, including up to the spreaders. Just some things to think about. _____Grant.

We have both 110V and 12V Makita 12V drills. The Makita and the 110V are both about 30 years old. Both work well for what they were intended. We charge the 12V with a battery charger and run the 110v with a small inverter. I have 3 12V batteries and have replaced them 3 times since I bought the drill. BTW it's a 90 degree battery drill.




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Old 12-07-2014, 15:49   #44
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

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Depends, on the type work you'r doing ? cordless will go for days doing short burst of work but start drilling large holes ,making long cuts with a saw and they will die fast nothing like a dead tool to stop the work!!
With the older Nicad or NiMh batteries this was true, but I'm using Ryobi 18v with the Lipo batteries and I've assembled entire machines, using the 1/4" impact to drive thousands of fasteners in a 12 hr day, and only used 1 small battery!

I have the entire Ryobi set - 3/8 and 1/2" drills, 1/4" and 1/2" impacts, sawzalls, circular saws, jigsaws, flashlights, lanterns, vacuum, chopsaw, radio, radio with battery charger that can also run off the battery, die grinder, multi tool, 5" circular saw and router. I have 4 of the large Lipo batteries and 4 of the small ones and never have to stop and wait for a battery to charge, even if we're using 3 or 4 tools at a time.

I have some friends who swear by Milwaukee and Dewalt, but they're a lot more expensive and I'm very happy with the quality of the tools and battery life of my Ryobi stuff, especially for the price. I bought a lot of the batteries on Ebay for about 1/3 of retail.
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Old 12-07-2014, 18:54   #45
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Re: Cordless tools vs. Corded Tools + Generator

We use Makita drills at work and they are good though they have issues with there battery charging technology and do not like being taken all the way down. I used to use Rigid, but they were large, cumbersome and have horrible expensive batteries.

I have switched to Milwaukee and really like them. I have their drill, driver, and a jig saw. There M18 XC battery is the bee's knees, but you get what you pay for.

Nice thing about Makita, is that they can be rebuilt. I haven't tried it on the Milwaukee yet.

BUT, MY VERY FAVORITE TOOL IS THE FEIN MULTIMASTER! It is a corded tool.
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