Posted 20 hours ago

Dewalt D25133K-GB SDS Plus 3 Mode Hammer Drill, 26mm Ø, 240V, 33.5cm x 21cm x 7.5cm

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The Bosch Professional GBH 2-26 is probably the best SDS drill on the market – it combines superior build quality with a powerful and safe hammer action. With the DeWalt D25033K SDS+ users will have the ability to drill into some of the toughest surfaces in the world. Concrete, steel, ceramic and hard woods are no match for this hand held unit. It offers 710 watts of input power, while delivering 590 watts of output power. The electronic variable speed allows users to find the perfect rate for their projects, with the capability of coring into most common materials at varying depths. Don’t push too hard on the drill during operation. A firm, even pressure is all that’s needed to drill through hard materials. Let the drill bit do the work and there’s less chance of binding in the hole as well. On the other hand, regular hammer drills allow you to do everything you would with a combi, but with a bit more oomph. These drills have two handles – one to turn them on and off and the other to keep them steady while in use. This makes them better suited for tougher jobs where you need power and stability. What should you look for in a hammer drill?

Making good use of Ryobi’s excellent ONE+ system, if you’ve got any of their 18V tools, the batteries will fit this. It means you can buy their “naked” tools and save yourself a fair bit of money. Separated into two parts to help dampen down vibrations, there’s a large and comfortable rear handle and chunky front handle that can be rotated through 360° for use at any angle. Built on Makita’s tried and tested LXT platform, this brushless drill makes the most of each battery and will cut through hard materials like a hot knife through butter. I’ve used Makita power tools for a long time, and they’ve never let me down so far. The HR2630 SDS+ rotary hammer drill is one of the best SDS drills available right now. It’s seriously sturdy and has the most comfortable grip I’ve tested out so far. Variable speed settings – Hammer drills will generally have two or three speed settings, which makes them great for multitasking. If you’re planning heavy duty work, you’ll want the option of a higher speed setting, but for lighter work, such as driving screws, a lower speed setting will suffice.

Cordless drills

German tool brand Einhell are making waves with their latest range of Power X-Change 18 Volt battery-powered tools. Their take on the cordless SDS drill is the impressive Herocco Brushless SDS Plus. It’s a powerful and compact hammer drill that comes in an excellent hard case. Specs-wise, the 800 Watt motor provides up to 1,500 rpm and 2.6 Joules of force per hammer blow. You can drill up to 26 mm holes in concrete or masonry, up to 13 mm in steel, or up to 30 mm in wood. Sheffield-based tool heroes Evolution Power Tools make some brilliant bits of kit, and the SDS4-800 hammer drill is one of them. If you need a full kit with bits and a box, you can’t go far wrong with this option for the price.

Corded or cordless? – Connected directly to the mains, corded drills tend to be more powerful than their cordless cousins and are therefore better suited to heavy duty work. You will, however, need access to a power source to use them, while a cordless model can be charged up and used wherever you need it. It’s a heavy power tool at 2.7 kg, but it doesn’t feel unbalanced when you use the multi-position front handle. The rear rubberised section of the handle makes it comfortable to use and helps to dampen down the vibrations, even when in hammer-only mode. The power of an SDS drill is arguably its most important feature. This is translated into impact energy and measured in Joules, with typical values ranging from 1-3 Joules. Impact energy also governs the SDS drill’s impact rate, which is measured in beats or impacts per minute. Look for at least 0-4,000 bpm . A hammer drill refers to any tool that features a hammer mode – this can include both regular drills and combi drill options. A combi drill – which combines a hammer drill with regular drill and drill-driver modes – drills into wood, metal and masonry. If you’re looking to carry out everyday DIY tasks such as drilling holes in walls and driving screws, a combi drill is your best bet. There’s a nicely ergonomic rear handle on the drill and plenty of soft thermoplastic for decent grip. The same goes for the large front handle- an essential accessory when you’re drilling through hard materials. The big brushless motor on board puts out 5,500 bpm and 2.2 joules of energy per impact.

The verdict: Hammer drills

If you want to get a solid-built and reliable SDS drill from one of the most respected names in the game, the Bosch PBH 2100 RE is a handy tool to own. Making up part of Bosch’s “green” line of DIY-level tools, the specs won’t beat the formidable Bosch hammer GBH 2-26, but it’s also a lot less expensive. The 550 Watt motor produces a reasonable 2,300 rpm and 4,600 bpm and 1.7 Joules of impact force. This isn’t even close to the best SDS drill on my list, but it’s still enough for most DIY jobs. You can drill holes up to 20 mm in concrete, 13 mm in steel and up to 30 mm in wood. As you might expect from one of the best names in the industry, Makita are famous for their build quality. The rubber overmoulding spreads across a lot of the drill. It makes it easy to hold on to and damps down a lot of the vibration. The pistol grip moulds to the hand well and the trigger is huge.

What you need depends on the job at hand. If you’re planning on drilling narrow diameter (2-8 mm) holes in concrete, you don’t need a huge drill. Get hold of the lightweight Makita DHR242Z or the DeWalt DCH273N. They’re ideal when you need to work up a ladder or when portability is more useful than breaking power. Other SDS drill features to look for include the maximum drilling depth into concrete – ideally over 20mm – and noise and vibration levels (stated in the drill’s technical specification). The 800 Watt motor produces up to 1,200 rpm and a maximum 4,600 bpm at the business end. Each impact creates a reasonable 2.4 Joules. You can drill up to 26 mm holes in concrete or masonry, up to 68 mm with a core cutter, 80 mm with a diamond bit, or up to 32 mm in wood. The best cordless SDS drills come with a brushless motor. This reduces wear and tear on the mechanical components and increases the drill’s longevity, and also regulates the supply of battery power to the motor. The first thing you’ll notice about this drill is how light and compact it is. Even compared to the lightweight Makita DHR242Z this is about as featherlike as an SDS drill can get. It’s nowhere near the most powerful, but if your main requirement is portability then you can’t go wrong.

Which drill should I buy: Regular, combi or hammer?

Weighing in at 3.3 kg, it’s a bit heavier than some of the competition, but not enough to make my arms fall off even after a long drilling job. It’s a bit odd that the mode selector switch is on the bottom of the tool, but everything else makes perfect sense. One of my favourite power tool brands is US-based DeWalt. They’re easily one of the most used names by professionals and DIYers across the world. Their D25133K SDS-Plus hammer drill is a well-designed and tough tool. In summary, cordless drills free you up to move and save your arms a bit of ache. Corded drills need to be close to a power source but get the job done. The best SDS drill for you is the one that fits your needs most of the time. Hammer Drilling The 18V battery powers a brushed motor that puts out up to 1,300 rpm, and a not-too-shabby up to 5,000 bpm in hammer mode. It’s a bit underpowered at just 1.3 Joules per impact strike, but it’s not supposed to be a heavy-duty hammer. You can drill up to 16 mm in concrete, 16 mm in wood and 16 mm in metal. With a DeWalt SDS+ Hammer Drill you will have everything you need to professionally drill anchors and fix holes with ease. These drills are designed for precision, while ensuring that there are no hiccups when working on any project.

My favourite feature on this SDS drill is what the extra setting on the selector switch is for. You’ve got the expected drill, hammer drill and hammer only options, but there’s also a little dot in between. By selecting the dot, you can rotate any chisel bit through 40 different angle settings. This means wide chisel bits can be set to any angle you need. It’s ideal for tight spots or getting flush with the floor so the drill handle isn’t in the way. It’s a simple feature but it shows that Makita know their stuff. The 830 Watt motor puts out up to 900 rpm and 4,000 bpm in hammer mode with each impact rated at 2.7 Joules of force. You can drill up to 26 mm holes in concrete or masonry, up to 68 mm with a core cutter or up to 30 mm in wood. Starting with the ergonomics, DeWalt have sculpted the hand grip superbly. I t fits comfortably in the hand and the top lip portion helps you grip with your thumb and forefinger much more easily. The rubberised grip helps to keep down vibration as well.

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Like any drilling task, start with a smaller bit size and work up to the target hole size in stages. Don’t try to drill a 26 mm hole directly into hard concrete, start with a smaller pilot size and work your way up. It will put less strain on the machine and should produce more accurate and neater results. US tool heavyweights DeWalt have made some of my favourite bits of kit over the years. The DCH273N must be up there with the best. If you’re looking for one of the best cordless SDS drills for professional use, this is probably it.

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