Hitachi Compact Drill
Hitachi, or soon to be called Metabo HPT, is out to prove that bigger is not always better. The new Hitachi DS18DBFL2 18-Volt Brushless 1/2″ Drill Driver comes in a kit with two compact 3.0Ah 18-volt batteries that really helped to keep this drill on the top of the pack in our comparison. Our YouTube video shows the new Hitachi or Metabo HPT next to the Dewalt DCD797 and Milwaukee 2701-20 to give you an idea of the power and size of the Hitachi drill. This is not a drill shootout or comparison of all the drills on the market, just a better way to give our audience a comparison to gauge the power and speed more reliably.
The Hitachi DS18DBFL2 18-Volt Brushless 1/2″ Drill Driver is a two-speed drill with 0-1800 rpm in speed 2 and 0-400 rpm in speed 1. The drill has a metal chuck that was the winner of our chuck wobble test. The drill has a lot of rubber overmold and also a very comfortable grip that narrowed near the bottom. The Hitachi was the only drill to never cut out for any reason in all of our testings and also had the best battery life because of the 3.0 Ah battery. We fell that the downside of the Hitachi battery operated tools are the fuel gauge that is on the tool only and it only has two lights letting you know when you are below 50% and then no lights to tell you that the user is below 15% of battery life. We like our fuel gauges on the battery so we can see the power remaining before attaching it to the tool.
Best Drill in the Test
All of the different brands have unique ways of listing the power of their drills. Sometimes to see how each performs is to compare them to other drills that we use on a daily basis. while this is not meant to be a shootout, it gives us and the viewer a better idea of the performance of the tool. What you cannot see is the ergonomics or comfort. We have started to do a “blind” test where we have tools handed to us with our eyes closed to judge the comfort of the tool without knowing the brand. This is subjective since many people like different things in their grip. In the case of this Hitachi drill, both Jeff and I picked it as the most comfortable.
When using the drill with larger bits, a side handle would have been welcome. They do not provide one because these smaller drills are normally not used for these larger applications. As the power creeps up in the more compact and affordable drills, you have to be careful not to twist your wrist as it can happen easily. For a professional or a DIY user, this drill will not disappoint. The size and power allow it to complete almost anything that you will willing to throw at it.
The combination of Hitachi and Metabo has made for a very strong company that is dedicated to becoming a major player in the battery operated tool market. The Hitachi lifetime warranty on the tool, 2 years on the battery and one year on the charger is solid and hard to beat. If you do happen to have a warranty claim, your next tool will most likely be branded Metabo HPT.