Brushless Drywall Screw Gun
Makita Brushless Drywall Screw Gun
Brushless Drywall Screw Gun
Makita Brushless Drywall Screw Gun
Cordless Drywall Cutout Tool
Makita Cordless Drywall Cutout Tool

Makita unveiled their new cordless drywall gun in November at the STAFDA show and it’s already available for purchase. Putting brushless motors in drywall guns has become a trend; Bosch and DeWalt are doing it too. And with good reason, brushless motors are more efficient so batteries can do more work between charges. When equipped with a 4.0 Ah battery, the XSF03M is said by its maker to be able to drive 1,800 1 1/4-inch screws per charge through 1/2-inch drywall into 20-gauge metal studs—enough screws to fasten about 40 4x8 sheets. That’s an impressive number, which if correct means the tool is a viable option for the hanger who’s ready to cut the cord, especially if he gets the cordless cutout tool (XOC01Z) that was announced at the same time as the gun.

The most unusual feature of the drywall gun is the Push Drive setting, which allows the operator to activate the motor by pressing the tip against a fastener. It’s akin to locking the switch and running the motor continuously, but consumes less power because the motor only runs when the tool is driving screws. When operated in “normal” mode, the tool works like a regular screw gun; you can squeeze the trigger for each fastener or leave the motor locked on and running.

I tried this tool out at STAFDA, screwing drywall to light-gauge metal studs. It worked as advertised, though the Push Drive setting took a bit of getting used to. Out of force of habit I kept deactivating the setting by squeezing the trigger, when I should have let the motor activate itself in response to pressure from the screw. A tradesman who hangs board regularly will have no trouble with the setting because he’s used to turning the gun on and not touching the trigger until it’s time to stop fastening. At 3.8 pounds the Makita gun is heavier than the average corded model (which might be 3.0 to 3.5 pounds) but it feels lighter—probably because it’s not trailing a cord.

Features include a belt hook, LED light, and a two-finger trigger. There is a battery gauge built into the base and the motor has electronic controls that match torque and rpm to the demands of the application. The gun is available bare or in a two-battery kit with a charger capable of charging a 4.0 Ah battery in 40 minutes or less.

XSF03M Drywall Gun Specs
Motor: brushless; 18 volts
Speed: 0-4,000 rpm
Weight: 3.8 pounds (w battery)
Length: 9 7/8 inches
Country of Origin: Assembled in the USA
Kit includes: tool, charger, two 4.0 Ah batteries, and storage bag
Price: $329 (kit); $149 (bare)
Available: now

XOC01 Cutout Tool Specs
Motor: brushed; 18 volts
Speed: 30,000 rpm
Weight: 3.7 pounds (w battery)
Length: 12 3/8 inches
Collet: accepts 1/8 and 1/4 inch bits
Country of Origin: Assembled in China
Kit includes: tool, charger, two 4.0 Ah batteries, and storage bag
Price:  $329 (kit); $129-149 (bare)
Available: now

For more information on recently released brushless drywall screw guns see:
New Cordless Drywall Guns from Bosch, DeWalt, and Makita
Bosch SGH182 Drywall Gun
DeWalt DCF620 Drywall Gun