Contractors - Power tools?

Old 08-06-06, 04:01 PM
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Contractors - Power tools?

Curiosity is killing me... I've got to ask,

I know there's a fair number of contractors here - whats your preference brand wise on power tools?

In the past, we were pretty loyal to dewalt, but since the B&D takeover, the quality of dewalt has seemingly been on continual decline... Moved to Bosch and milwaukee for a while, but again quality didn't meet my expectation (and continual complaints about ergonomics of the milwaukee products). We also found the local authorized repair shop for bosch/milwaukee/makita refused to warranty anything, they always found an excuse, and the repair bill always was more than the price of a replacement.

So, for the last 6-8 months, I've been almost exclusively buying Hilti whenever possible (Hitachi's been getting a bit of buisness, as hilti doesn't have everything). Tools have been awesome (You guys should really check out the SR16 1/2" keyless chuck drills - talk about unbreakable), and from past experience the warranty/service is unbeatable.

So what are you contractors using these days?
Old 08-06-06, 04:08 PM
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Well I am currently relegated to what the boss buys and that is currently DeWalt.

I am definately not overly thrilled with their tools. The longevity seems to be lacking.

Since he has a about 15 of those 4 or 5 tool packs and a zillion batteries (which it seems like at least 2 or 3 work), I suspect I will be using DeWalt for the forseeable future.
Old 08-06-06, 06:09 PM
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I use a myriad of tool brands. Dewalt 14.4 drill, Hilti 1/2" electric drill, Bostitch framer, Senco finisher, Porter Cable brad, Bostitch narrow crown stapler, Bosch 12" compound miter, Ryobi 10" table saw, Milwaukee hammer drill, Sears low rpm high torque 1/2" drill. And that is on my construction trailer. In the shop, about the same thing, from Rockwell to Sears, to an off brand drill press.
Sometimes (most times) I look for deals or recons. The recons I buy have full warranties.
Luckily I have had zero problems out of any of these tools in 10 years. Proper maintenance, cleaning, lubrication, etc. will extend the life of any tool. But to fall into one brand exclusively, not a chance.
You were talking about the Hilti line. That is the worst ergonomic drill I have ever held in my hand. It tilts forward and tires me out to use it for a long time.
Old 08-06-06, 07:15 PM
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It would be nice if people took care of things properly - but in this labour market...

However, when you're keeping 16 crews in tools - staying specific to a brand tends to lend some leverage when purchasing. Makes it easier to stock wearing parts.

Actually I quite like the hilti SR16 drill; it's definitely heavier than the Dewalt 1/2" drills. However the SFH-151A cordless, is about the nicest drill I've used in a long time. More power than the 18v bosch/dewalts, and much lighter.
Old 08-25-06, 09:10 AM
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My dad runs a steel erecting company if that counts and they use a few different tools but primarily they use hilti. A major part of that is the other brands listed here rarely have the power of the hiltis regardless of ergonomics etc and when you're drilling through solid steel you need a little zip in a drill. They do however also have some milwaukee tools. Milwaukee's also have some decently powered tools that are generally cheaper then hiltis. (and we live in WI) at home he uses dewault because the dewault rep is trying to kiss his butt to get his business so he brings all the freebies home.

Last edited by DIYaddict; 08-25-06 at 09:14 AM. Reason: Edited bad language
Old 08-25-06, 09:42 PM
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I'm kind of like Chandler, I don't stick to one said brand. Not because I'm looking for a deal though, it's because I want what works best for me. That doesn't necessarily make them the best tools, just what is best for me and my needs. Example; I like the DeWalt 18 volt cordless. Anytime I pick up or try any one different, it doesn't feel right in my hand as far as balance. it just feels right for me and works for me best. I know there are better ones out on the market now, but they aren't what's best for me. Make any sense?

Anyway, a few examples off the top of my head;
Skil worm drives & 5 1/2 mini
Milwaukee sawzall & corded drills
DeWalt miter box, table saw, & cordless
Bosch miter box, jigsaw, routers, & hammer drill
Lately, all Porter Cable nail guns
Senco hoses are my favorites
Stablia levels
Actually, I prefer my cheapo Skil jigsaw to the Bosch because it has a scroll blade release.
Old 08-27-06, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by MoreBeer
I know there's a fair number of contractors here - whats your preference brand wise on power tools?
Depends on the tool
I may love my P-C circ, I wouldn't buy a P-C cordless drill/driver
For cordless it's Makita and Bosch
I like the P-C and Makita sanders

I currently have a DeWalt miter, and though it's not a Bosch (which is superior), it's better than some others I('ve) use(d)/own(ed)

I've not used any Hiltis

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