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Old 08-09-2017, 05:39 PM   #1
garysanfran
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Default Best place to buy power tools...

I need a table saw, cordless drill, compound mitre saw, etc...

Are Lowes and Home Depot my choices? How about Middleton,'s, Meredith?
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Old 08-09-2017, 05:58 PM   #2
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The best place to buy tools is on line. The Home Depot site will have many more choices than the local Home Depot store. I just bought a variety of cordless tools thru Home Depot and other sellers on line. You get the best price, the most information, and the greatest variety from the comfort of your home. Five days later it is Christmas in July when the UPS guy shows up. I found Dewalt had the best value in cordless tools. However they did not have cordless belt sander so we went with a Rigid. Problem with using different makes is the batteries do not fit between manufacturers.
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:10 PM   #3
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Amazon Prime. Hands down.
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Old 08-09-2017, 06:16 PM   #4
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Most places will "price match"... Check out Home Depot and Lowes and then go to the local guy with what you found and see if they will meet (or beat) the price.

I have found that they will "beat" the price with upgrading, meaning they may give you a bigger battery for your cordless drill etc.
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:21 PM   #5
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If you are a "tool guy" the plasticy junk on the shelves of Home Depot, Lowes, etc. will be pretty disappointing.

Online is probably your best option. If you want to see things in person first, a visit to Rockler, or a similar store, would probably be worthwhile (but more expensive).
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Old 08-09-2017, 07:41 PM   #6
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If you know what you want just do a search on line for the best price. I find Makita battery tools to my liking. Dewalt is also good. All my saws are Milwaukee with cords. I prefer using plug in saws. You want to try to stick to the same manufacturer with the battery tools so that the batteries are all interchangeable.
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Old 08-09-2017, 08:41 PM   #7
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Been using power tool every day for the last 30+ years.

Most have come from Heaths hardware or what is now Middelton BS.

Mostly Mikita the only DeWalts I have were given to me.

The last several years I've picked up a lot on craigslist Which I'll resell for cash in retirement.

Also have become fond of festools.
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Old 08-09-2017, 09:16 PM   #8
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"All things being equal, buy from a friend. All things not being equal, still buy from a friend." If price matters that much, give the local guy a chance to match.

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Old 08-09-2017, 11:29 PM   #9
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How much use will the power tools get?

I thought I had a pretty good set for use around the house.

When I built my log home each power tool was replaced with better, semi-pro grade tools. This was not by choice. The homeowner's grade tools physically failed when given daily work.

A memorable phone conversation with my wife from the spring of 1987:

"Honey, I need you to go to Coastal Tools in West Hartford to get me a new drill."
"I don't want to spend another $25 on more tools!!!"
"Don't worry, you won't. It's $129."

The tools replaced during that project include:

table saw
3/8" drill
1/2" drill
chainsaw
circular saw
electric screwdriver (replaced by a drywall screw gun).
router
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Old 08-10-2017, 07:02 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by 8gv View Post
How much use will the power tools get?

I thought I had a pretty good set for use around the house.

When I built my log home each power tool was replaced with better, semi-pro grade tools. This was not by choice. The homeowner's grade tools physically failed when given daily work.

A memorable phone conversation with my wife from the spring of 1987:

"Honey, I need you to go to Coastal Tools in West Hartford to get me a new drill."
"I don't want to spend another $25 on more tools!!!"
"Don't worry, you won't. It's $129."

The tools replaced during that project include:

table saw
3/8" drill
1/2" drill
chainsaw
circular saw
electric screwdriver (replaced by a drywall screw gun).
router
When buying power tools it doesn't pay to cheap out. But you can get good quality tools from Home Depot. They also have cheap crap too. You have to know what you're buying. I have a Milwaukee skill saw and sawsall that I have had for 30 years. I have built 4 new houses and remodeled several others. But I went through several cheap ones before I relized that the cheap stuff is junk.
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Old 08-10-2017, 08:27 AM   #11
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When buying power tools it doesn't pay to cheap out. But you can get good quality tools from Home Depot. They also have cheap crap too. You have to know what you're buying. I have a Milwaukee skill saw and sawsall that I have had for 30 years. I have built 4 new houses and remodeled several others. But I went through several cheap ones before I relized that the cheap stuff is junk.
This. I have about six right angle grinders from harbor freight and for $10 each it's worth it to have a cut wheel, wire brush, grinder and flap wheel all mounted at once but they crap out constantly; a $40 version from Home Depot is really not much better.

All my recent purchases have been 18v Makita and have been super happy. Plenty of power and the batteries last well.

Even known brands have started making cheap junk. I've been through about 4 moderately priced skill saws while still having the one my dad bought from sears about 50 years ago.

Best I can say is try to buy local, pick it up and see how it's made and get good old used if you can find it.
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Old 08-10-2017, 08:43 AM   #12
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I like Makita also. My battery powered drills are all Makta and they never fail me.

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Old 08-10-2017, 08:59 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by jbolty View Post

Even known brands have started making cheap junk. I've been through about 4 moderately priced skill saws while still having the one my dad bought from sears about 50 years ago.

Best I can say is try to buy local, pick it up and see how it's made and get good old used if you can find it.
Absolutely right. To combat price pressure from online and discounters, many big brands now supply lower quality versions to the big box stores and online suppliers. Best bet for quality is a local hardware store. (Same with gas grills and lawnmowers)
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Old 08-10-2017, 09:35 AM   #14
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I like Makita also. My battery powered drills are all Makta and they never fail me.

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Agreed, the 18V Makita stuff has been very dependable and rugged. I have dropped all of mine more than a few times, and they keep chugging.



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Old 08-10-2017, 09:40 AM   #15
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Semi related. I had a couple of the Makita battery packs go bad after years. Turns out you can open them and replace the individual cells for just a couple bucks each. PITA job but saves a pile of money.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sDFfBLcdSjs
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Old 08-10-2017, 09:52 AM   #16
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Probably, the cordless drill is the power tool that gets the most use. For about $18.73, the Walmart in Gilford has a Hyper Tough 18v cordless drill that is surprisingly good. It also has relatively low priced plug-in 110v drills and saws, drill bits, abrasives, and fasteners like screws and nails.

While the Gilford Walmart store doesn't usually carry table saws or mitre saws, you may want to go to www.walmart.com and do a search for mitre saw, or table saw .... just to check it out?
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Old 08-10-2017, 10:07 AM   #17
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Probably, the cordless drill is the power tool that gets the most use. For about $18.73, the Walmart in Gilford has a Hyper Tough 18v cordless drill that is surprisingly good. It also has relatively low priced plug-in 110v drills and saws, drill bits, abrasives, and fasteners like screws and nails.

While the Gilford Walmart store doesn't usually carry table saws or mitre saws, you may want to go to www.walmart.com and do a search for mitre saw, or table saw .... just to check it out?
Your favorite place! Have you pre ordered your casket from them yet?
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Old 08-10-2017, 10:32 AM   #18
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Default Lithium Ion

One piece of advice I would give anyone buying battery power tools is to buy only tools that utilize lithium ion batteries / power packs. NICD batteries while much cheaper are a thing of the past!

Lithium Ion batteries offer the following advantages over NICD...

More power with much less weight... More ergonomic tools offered because of this...

Consistent power from beginning to end of battery cycle even when battery is near fully drained...

Much less affected by cold temperatures...

No memory affect from charging. You can charge the battery anytime you want.

Increased run time...

Self discharge rate when not in use is extremely minimal. I believe it is less than 2% per month...

The advantages of lithium ion over NICD are well worth the extra cost. Dont waste your money on NICD tools.

FWIW;

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Old 08-10-2017, 10:42 AM   #19
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If you are just a weekend warrior and not a contractor, just go to Home Depot or Lowes.....You don't need to spend ridiculous amounts of money on name brands to have them last a long time. I have a LOT of power tools, and have had better luck with Ryobi stuff for drills and saws than my Dewalt stuff. For larger pieces like chop or table saws I would look to go name brand like Dewalt or Makita, but for drills, sawzalls, etc Ryobi works for me.
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Old 08-10-2017, 11:15 AM   #20
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If you are just a weekend warrior and not a contractor, just go to Home Depot or Lowes.....You don't need to spend ridiculous amounts of money on name brands to have them last a long time. I have a LOT of power tools, and have had better luck with Ryobi stuff for drills and saws than my Dewalt stuff. For larger pieces like chop or table saws I would look to go name brand like Dewalt or Makita, but for drills, sawzalls, etc Ryobi works for me.
My contractor friends are 50/50--some buy the cheapest hand tools (drills, etc.) they can so when they're dropped they're just replaced. The others buy the best, planning to get as much time out of them as possible.

I bought a Hitachi set about ten years ago--I'm not a contractor, but it's done siding, sheds, decks, etc. without a hiccup.

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Old 08-10-2017, 11:29 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
My contractor friends are 50/50--some buy the cheapest hand tools (drills, etc.) they can so when they're dropped they're just replaced. The others buy the best, planning to get as much time out of them as possible.

I bought a Hitachi set about ten years ago--I'm not a contractor, but it's done siding, sheds, decks, etc. without a hiccup.

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I guess it depends on who is using them. If you have a lot of different workers using them and they get beat to crap, get left behind on a job, or fall off the truck, then sometimes it's best to buy cheap. I run an Auto repair shop and I have lost more tools than get broken because all my employees take tools from my box all the time. So when I replace the lost tools I go to Harbor Freight and buy cheap ones. The lifetime warrantee is no good if you don't have the tool. Losing Snap On tools makes me cry!
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Old 08-10-2017, 11:54 AM   #22
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Default I'm a weekend warrior...

I always try to buy the best quality I can afford for everything. In SF, I have all the high quality tools I need for any job. Problem is, I have to own two of everything so I can duplicate everything, cross-country, at the Lake. Wondering if a 3-D copier could duplicate everything from tools to shoes?
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Old 08-10-2017, 11:58 AM   #23
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Default Ridgid

I must recommend the 18volt Ridgid set from Home Depot. The Lifetime Service Agreement and full set of tools has been amazing, and the power they have is fantastic. I have built a 250sqft cabin using only these tools and a chop saw, the impact driver is powerful and the rest of the tools perform very well.

I recommend this set of tools because I have owned my set for 2 years and in that time have had a battery die and the charger quit. Home Depot replaced the charger in person immediately with no questions asked. The battery was replaced with a simple phone call to Ridgid Online who shipped out a new battery that arrived 5 days later. They honor their warranty!

Just make sure if you are buying them to buy the batteries as a part of a set, otherwise they only have a 3 year warranty.
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:06 PM   #24
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... am doing a search at walmart.com for a Hyper Tough brand casket .... low priced ... and hopefully built to last and last and last .... an eternal value ....plus what a happening name...... Hyper Tough!:
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Old 08-10-2017, 12:28 PM   #25
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... am doing a search at walmart.com for a Hyper Tough brand casket .... low priced ... and hopefully built to last and last and last .... an eternal value ....plus what a happening name...... Hyper Tough!:
Make sure you get the lifetime warrantee.
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Old 08-10-2017, 01:11 PM   #26
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Make sure you get the lifetime warrantee.
Thats beautifull!!
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Old 08-10-2017, 01:30 PM   #27
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If you just need a set for your summer place and will only use it for handyman stuff and not for everyday all day job work, its hard to beat this deal.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Ryobi-18-...1894/300343012

I've had 3 sets of Ryobi for different locations over 12 years and while they are not my first choice I'm never had any problems. The value for a occasional homeowner handyman is pretty high.
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Old 08-10-2017, 03:28 PM   #28
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I have two 18V Roybi cordless drills and a reciprocating saw with lithium batteries from HD. They are used for home and camp maintenance and are fine for that.

Also a Hitachi compound miter saw and finish nailer from Lowe's that I used at camp to finish a room with tongue and grove paneling. These are not the every day use grade but fine for homeowner projects.
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Old 08-11-2017, 10:01 AM   #29
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I have a bunch of the Ryobi cordless stuff. Drill, impact drill/driver, reciprocating saw, circular saw, jig saw, etc. Some I have had for 10+ years, others 5 or so years. As much as I would like to replace them with a more "quality" tool like DeWalt, I just can't seem to kill them. I have had to replace some batteries, but that's OK, I would have to do that with any brand.
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Old 08-14-2017, 12:11 PM   #30
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This. I have about six right angle grinders from harbor freight and for $10 each it's worth it to have a cut wheel, wire brush, grinder and flap wheel all mounted at once but they crap out constantly; a $40 version from Home Depot is really not much better.

All my recent purchases have been 18v Makita and have been super happy. Plenty of power and the batteries last well.

Even known brands have started making cheap junk. I've been through about 4 moderately priced skill saws while still having the one my dad bought from sears about 50 years ago.

Best I can say is try to buy local, pick it up and see how it's made and get good old used if you can find it.
You can't get any cheaper than Harbor Freight they probably even beat out (cheap-wise) Home Cheapo...
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:35 PM   #31
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Default Harbor Freight

There is a store in Littleton NH. Love browsing the store when I am in the area.

I inherited my dad's Craftmen electric tools from the 70's, 80's. Still working like new. I had some later Makita's, I had to throw them away.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:04 PM   #32
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There is a store in Littleton NH. Love browsing the store when I am in the area.

I inherited my dad's Craftmen electric tools from the 70's, 80's. Still working like new. I had some later Makita's, I had to throw them away.
I have a 60 year old Craftsman table saw that I still use. The only problem is that it's not very portable. It's solid steel and weighs a tone. Most of the Craftsman power tools made today are junk.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:23 PM   #33
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I have a 60 year old Craftsman table saw that I still use. The only problem is that it's not very portable. It's solid steel and weighs a tone. Most of the Craftsman power tools made today are junk.
Not just power tools, the entire Craftsman line has gone downhill over the last 10+ years. Craftsman was never the best tool made, but it was generally considered a safe buy for the average homeowner or shade tree mechanic. Now, it is mostly cost-engineered garbage.
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Old 09-03-2017, 11:58 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by garysanfran View Post
I need a table saw, cordless drill, compound mitre saw, etc...

Are Lowes and Home Depot my choices? How about Middleton,'s, Meredith?


Rands in Plymouth will surprise you as will Middletons in Meredith. Both awesome outfits.

Online and big box have there place, and I shop there too, but Keeping it local, when possible, and feeling good about supporting your local biz, with large purchases like these said tools, keeps us all going around for another season and hopefully many generations.
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Old 10-31-2017, 06:43 AM   #35
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Cool Ryobi Revisited...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Slickcraft View Post
I have two 18V Roybi cordless drills and a reciprocating saw with lithium batteries from HD. They are used for home and camp maintenance and are fine for that.

Also a Hitachi compound miter saw and finish nailer from Lowe's that I used at camp to finish a room with tongue and grove paneling. These are not the every day use grade but fine for homeowner projects.
I've got four Ryobi cordless drills I can't break. Non-Lithium batteries, but batteries are available online—"rebuilt" for about $25.

Each has two bubble levels to assist in drilling straight and level holes.

>
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Old 10-31-2017, 08:14 AM   #36
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I've got four Ryobi cordless drills I can't break. Non-Lithium batteries, but batteries are available online—"rebuilt" for about $25.

Each has two bubble levels to assist in drilling straight and level holes.

>

I agree APS! You know I have one of those that I keep in my bob house. I use it to power a scissor jack to raise and lower the house as needed. It was inexpensive and super powerful! That thing has been through hell and back. It's been frozen all winter, soaked in water, dropped on the ice numerous times but much like the EverReady bunny it just keeps going and going!

Dan
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Old 10-31-2017, 10:52 AM   #37
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I agree APS! You know I have one of those that I keep in my bob house. I use it to power a scissor jack to raise and lower the house as needed. It was inexpensive and super powerful! That thing has been through hell and back. It's been frozen all winter, soaked in water, dropped on the ice numerous times but much like the EverReady bunny it just keeps going and going!

Dan
Hmmm... interesting use of a scissor jack! Is there any special connection needed or does the jack just mate up with the drill chuck?
I have been using a farm jack to raise my shack, which works great but I
Like the “power jack” idea!

That said, I have a DeWalt that eats batteries or the batteries are just junk.
A week after fully charging, the batteries are fully dead...just sitting on the bench.
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Old 10-31-2017, 01:31 PM   #38
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Hmmm... interesting use of a scissor jack! Is there any special connection needed or does the jack just mate up with the drill chuck?
I have been using a farm jack to raise my shack, which works great but I
Like the “power jack” idea!

That said, I have a DeWalt that eats batteries or the batteries are just junk.
A week after fully charging, the batteries are fully dead...just sitting on the bench.
Just simply cut the offset portion off the jack handle so you end up with a hexagon piece of hollow metal with the factory hook that engages into the jack. Chuck the right size socket with an adapter for your chuck that fits the hex shape into your drill and go to town!

Just make sure you use a an actual automotive scissor "jack" and not a "leveling" jack that's made for RV's as those are not strong enough...

Dan
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Old 10-31-2017, 01:57 PM   #39
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Just simply cut the offset portion off the jack handle so you end up with a hexagon piece of hollow metal with the factory hook that engages into the jack. Chuck the right size socket with an adapter for your chuck that fits the hex shape into your drill and go to town!

Just make sure you use a an actual automotive scissor "jack" and not a "leveling" jack that's made for RV's as those are not strong enough...

Dan
Thank you! Sounds great...Harbor Freight here I come!
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Old 10-31-2017, 02:07 PM   #40
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I've got four Ryobi cordless drills I can't break. Non-Lithium batteries, but batteries are available online—"rebuilt" for about $25.

Each has two bubble levels to assist in drilling straight and level holes.

>
I have 3 combo packs myself. I bought them because they were so cheap and I dont use them nearly like a contractor. To my surprize they have held up very well. But I did switch to Lithium batteries and love them. You do need a different charger though.
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Old 10-31-2017, 03:55 PM   #41
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One more use for my Roybi cordless drill with lithium batteries:

Now west of Asheville NC in our travel trailer which has scissors type stabilizing jacks on each corner. About 2 seconds each to set or retract with a 3/4" bit in the chuck. This is also my backup to the power tongue jack.
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Old 11-04-2017, 04:50 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by ishoot308 View Post
Just simply cut the offset portion off the jack handle so you end up with a hexagon piece of hollow metal with the factory hook that engages into the jack. Chuck the right size socket with an adapter for your chuck that fits the hex shape into your drill and go to town!

Just make sure you use a an actual automotive scissor "jack" and not a "leveling" jack that's made for RV's as those are not strong enough...

Dan
Couldn't find anyone home at a repair shop, but stumbled on the desirable scissors jack, as described above.

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