Specs at 5:25.
Results at 13:20.
oztooltalk has undertaken a comparison of impact drivers from six of Australia’s leading brands: Makita, Milwaukee, Dewalt, Hitachi, Metabo and Bosch.
All are 3-speed units, and all except the Metabo are brushless. Metabo have not released a brushless impact driver to date.
The testing regime included common tasks, such as screwing pine studs together with
75mm bugel batten screws, or self-tapping metal screws. The focus however, was in
determining their performance in the toughest applications, such as driving M10 and M12
coach screws into treated pine.
Modern impact drivers are focusing more and more on increasing speed, without losing
precision. It is for this reason that Hitachi, Milwaukee and Makita now include seperate
modes for self-tapping screws. Whilst Makita’s ‘T-Mode’ gives some extra control when
fastening sheet metal to timber battens, it does not provide the genuine innovation that the
others do. Hitachi’s ‘S-mode’ and Milwaukee’s self-tapping mode give such great control
when self-tapping into metal that it would be hard to recommend any other brand to installers of steel sheds, colorbond fencing or HVAC.
Whilst both of these brands have speeds above 3000 RPM, it is the Dewalt and Makita tools that top the speed rankings with 3,250 and 3,600 RPM respectively. Backed by substantial torque ratings, these tools can drive large fasteners, such as bugel batten screws and coach screws, faster than any other on the market. Their lead over Hitachi and Milwaukee isn’t substantial, but they are none-the- less top of the heap for pure speed performance. Carpenters and heavy-duty construction users would do well to pay attention to them.
The Bosch and Metabo tools did not keep up with their younger competitors in this tough
challenge, but they have earned their place in the comparison. For sheer toughness and
durability, the german-made Bosch and Metabo tools are loved around the world. Metabo
users are treated to exceptional battery technology (Li-HD batteries!) backed by a confident 3 year warranty. The Bosch impact driver has an innovative hybrid bit holder, that accepts 1/2″ sockets as well as the regular 1/4″ shank impact bits. For this reason it is sure to be popular with mechanics and many other users.
Makita, Dewalt, Hitachi and Milwaukee were the clear top four during the testing. Their
performances were close, and they were all lovely tools to use. Still, there can be only one
winner, and this honour goes to Hitachi.
The Hitachi WH18DDL really is the complete package. It combines raw power and speed
with superb features. It’s S-mode is incredible, it has the fastest charging times and has a
huge advantage over the competition with its IP56 rating. No other impact driver in the
comparison is made to withstand dust and water. It is oztooltalk’s 2016 impact driver
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Models are as follows:
Bosch GDX 18 V-EC / IDH182 (wrench hybrid)
Hitachi WH18DDL (IP56)
Makita DTD148 / XDT09
Metabo SSD 18 LTX 200 (brushed)
Milwaukee M18FID / 2753