There’s no better way to get into the woodworking or home renovation game than by purchasing a toolkit. For the budget-conscience of you out there, you can obtain multiple tools in one purchase without spending as much compared to buying them separately. However, it’s important that you know what you’re doing so you don’t end up spending money on tools you don’t need.
Today, we’re going to take a look at a tool kit from Milwaukee Electric Tools. This kit contains a hammer drill and an impact driver – tools used in carpentry and home repairs. We’re going to take a look at each of these tools and let you know whether the kit is worth it. We have high expectations for this tool based on the number of satisfied customers.
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What’s in the Kit?
The two tools that come in the 2997-22 combo kit are the 18V ½-inch 2804-20 Hammer Drill and the 18V ¼-inch 2853-20 Impact Driver. It also comes with two 18V REDLITHIUM (Milwaukee-made) battery packs and a multi-volt charger (18V and 12V). Accessories include a hard carrying case, a side handle for the hammer drill, a belt clip, and a bit holder. You’ll need to purchase your own bits separately.
Milwaukee 2804-20 Hammer Drill
Firstly, let’s take a look at the hammer drill that comes in this combo kit. If you’re unfamiliar with hammer drills and what they do, imagine using a regular drill while bashing the back-end with a hammer. The “hammer blows” allow the tool to penetrate deep into tough materials such as concrete and stone – two materials that most power drills could hardly make a dimple in.
Hammer drills may confuse first-time users since the motor produces miniature earthquakes when activated. This is NOT a sign that the tool is broken; you just need to grip the tool tightly using both hands to keep it steady(ish).
Let’s see what the 18V ½-inch 2804-20 has in store.
This hammer drill is equipped with a brushless motor which, according to Milwaukee, gives the tool 60% more power compared to competing models. We’re not entirely sure whether this is true for all hammer drills across the board, but after giving this tool a few test runs, we’ve found that the tool packs a ton of torque (1,200 inch-pounds to be exact).
There might be times when you’ll need to drill through concrete in tight-fitting spaces. The length of the tool determines how comfortable it’ll be in doing so. The 2804-20 measures 6.9 inches from front to back (not including drill bit) which is quite small compared to what’s available on the market.
One thing that most customers have complained about is this hammer drill’s overheating problem. Despite having a brushless motor and REDLINK PLUS (a proprietary system that protects from overload and overheating), most people found the tool could work only for 20 minutes before needing a 30-minute break.
Milwaukee 2853-20 Impact Driver
Impact drivers are not to be mistaken for power drills. An impact driver delivers a ton of torque for driving long screws through hard materials. This is done by the sideways “hammer blows” that rotate the bit more forcefully. It can be used as a drill in a pinch, but the chuck does not offer a ton of stability.
The 2997-22 combo kit from Milwaukee features the 18V ¼-inch 2853-20 Impact Driver. Let’s take a look at how well-built this tool is.
This impact driver also features a POWERSTATE brushless motor which, according to the manufacturer, drives screws up to 30% quicker by delivering up to 25% more torque (2,500 inch-pounds). For an 18V impact driver, this is quite extraordinary; you’ll be able to drive long screws through hardwood and plastic without any problems.
Impacts per Minute
The sideways hammer blows, or impacts is what gives this tool way more torque than traditional power drills. The more impacts delivered per minute, the better the tool will be at driving screws. The 2853-20 can generate up to 4,300 IPM. You can control the speed, torque, and number of impacts by switching between four available speed modes.
So considering what we know about the 2997-20 combo kit from Milwaukee, is it worth the investmentIn our opinion, unless you desperately need a hammer drill, then this kit isn’t for you. For most DIY-ers, a hammer drill is a specialty tool that won’t come in handy in many if not any of their projects. An impact driver, on the other hand, is an extremely versatile tool that has applications in carpentry, home renovation, and even mechanic work.
One thing we’d like to point out is that the 2804-20 Hammer Drill isn’t that great of a tool. The overheating issue really destroys any hopes of reliability. Take it from us: get the 2853-20 Impact Driver separately and don’t deal with the heartbreak of the inferior hammer drill.
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