Tool Tests and Reviews

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    Tools Up Close: Milwaukee M12 Cordless Jigsaw

    When it comes to jigsaws, I'm an avowed barrel-grip guy, so even though many of my other tools are cordless, I've been stuck using a corded jigsaw. But with Milwaukee's recent introduction of the model 2445 saw (which takes M12 batteries), I've been able to add a cordless model to my tool kit.

     
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    Tools Up Close: Makita Compact Drill/Driver

    The Makita drill/driver is short & a mere 7-9/16 inches from chuck to tail. With the battery attached, it weighs 3.3 pounds, which is lighter than the vast majority of 18-volt drill/drivers. Its small size and weight make for easy handling overhead and in tight spaces like cabinets and narrow joist...

     
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    Tool Test: Subcompact Drill/Drivers and Impact Drivers

    Subcompact tools are the fastest growing segment of the cordless market. The number of available models has grown from a mere handful four years ago to more than 100 today. The tools in this category are defined by their small size, light weight, and 10.8-volt lithium-ion battery packs (which for...

     
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    Tool Test: Concrete Pinners

    Tools for nailing through steel or into fully cured concrete used to be limited to PATs (powder-actuated tools), but gas-powered pinners are gaining popularity. And there are powerful pneumatics – some old and some new – that have been flying under the radar for some time even though they excel at...

     
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    2010 Editor's Choice Awards

    This year's search for outstanding new tools, equipment, and innovative features was as challenging as ever, given the continued rate of product introductions from all corners of the manufacturing world serving professional construction markets.

     
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    2010 Editor's Choice: Senco Cordless Nailer

    Senco has simplified cordless-nailer operations with its new Fusion trim nailers featuring the company's Reflex-Shot technology, which provides instant trigger response.

     
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    2010 Editor's Choice: Milwaukee Cordless Mini Band Saw

    Milwaukee continues its leadership role in trade-focused tool design with this exciting compact 18-volt cordless portable band saw, the M18 2629-22.

     
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    2010 Editor's Choice: Ford Transit Connect Work Van

    Ford introduced a welcome sense of practicality to the industry when it brought the Transit Connect work van to the U.S. from Europe, where it has been popular since 2002.

     
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    2010 Editor's Choice: Hitachi WH14DBL Compact Cordless Impact Driver

    We love the way this category has continued to evolve, especially in terms of performance features previously seen only in industrial assembly tools.

     
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    Bessey TSC4.516 Staircase Clamp

    Bessey is known for its strong industrial and shop clamps.

     
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    2009 Editors' Choice: Milwaukee Subcompact Specialty Tools

    Subcompact cordless tools are a fast-growing trend and no brand has taken them further than Milwaukee's M12 line.

     
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    Tool Test: Compact & Subcompact Drill/Drivers

    Cordless drill/drivers have come a long way since the first one I purchased more than 20 years ago. It's interesting, though, that some have come full circle and ended up about the same size as those small, early tools, but with much better performance.

     
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    Tool Test: Portable Jobsite Table Saws

    Jobsite table saws have changed a lot since I started working for my dad in 1972. Back then, we did almost all the millwork on-site using a huge, 12-inch contractor's saw that might have stayed set up for months. I started my own company in 1981, and as the business grew, table saws shrunk. I took...

     
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    Tool Test: Cordless Recip Saws

    More than 10 years ago, I bought one of the first cordless recip saws, hoping it would perform like my corded model. I had shelved most of my corded drills in favor of their cordless cousins, and I had high hopes for recips–too high, as it turned out, for the first generation.

     
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    First Test: Milwaukee Cordless Vacuums

    At first glance, the two Milwaukee cordless hand-held vacuum models look like tool boxes: they're about 18 inches long, 11 inches tall, 8 inches wide, and have folding handles on top. They are basically identical units but in 18- and 28-volt versions.

     
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    Cordless Impact Drivers

    We set out to test the latest 18-volt lithium-ion impact drivers, but we made a few exceptions to round out the field. All but the Bosch are LI-powered, but a few different voltages and tool configurations are in the mix.

     
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    2009 Editors' Choice: Makita Compact Hammer Drill/Driver

    Cordless drill/drivers seem to be shrinking; everywhere you look, brands are coming out with smaller and lighter versions

     
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    2009 Editors' Choice: 10C Technologies Universal Battery Charger

    We're thrilled to award 10C Technologies' Crew Charge universal battery charger system, which can recharge different brands, voltages, and types of batteries simultaneously, including NiMH, nicad, and lithium-ion.

     
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    First Test: Cordless Brad Nailer, New LI Battery

    If you do much work that requires nailing, you know the importance of pneumatic technology. I cannot imagine going back to the days of nailing up crown or other running trim with a hammer. Changing with the times and tools can increase your productivity and the quality of your work, so it is wise...

     
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    Cordless Rotary Hammers

    As a self-employed contractor in New England for nearly 30 years, I've relied on rotary hammers for as long as I've been in business. As a concrete foundation contractor, I've used them to drill holes for placing rebar into existing foundations to tie into a new pour, and occasionally on new...

     
 
 
 
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