September 8, 2010

Craftsman NEXTEC 12-volt Right Angle Impact Driver

craftsman_right_angle_impact.jpgWe've used two 12-volt right-angle impact drivers (the Hitachi and the Ridgid JobMax) and we're big fans of the category. They're great for a lot of things and the Hitachi in particular can get into spots that are unimaginably tight.

So we see it as generally good news that Craftsman is in the process of releasing a 12-volt right angle impact driver. Overall, we've been impressed with their 12-volt line (finding their oscillating tool particularly attractive), and at first glance, this new one looks like a nice tool at a slightly-higher-than-you-would-expect price.

By the numbers the Craftsman (700 in/lbs torque) tops out both the Hitachi (235) and the Ridgid (650), so it's certainly powerful enough (we compared the Ridgid directly to the Hitachi here).

Other than that, there's not a whole lot to say. The handle is similar to the AutoHammer and we can vouch for the comfort there. The weight is 2.2 lbs, the same as the Hitachi.

The Craftsman will go for just under $100, including a case, a charger, and one battery. It's the one battery thing that sticks us on the price. It just seems expensive seeing as Bosch and Milwaukee both have 2 battery drivers in the $100-$120 range (granted, they're not right angle drivers, but still....).

At Sears

The press release is after the jump...

CRAFTSMAN® NEXTEC™ 12-VOLT RIGHT ANGLE IMPACT DRIVER FITS INTO TIGHT SPACES STANDARD DRIVERS CAN'T

Finishes the Job with More Clearance and Less Knuckle Grinding

Hoffman Estates, Ill. - Say "goodbye" to long stubby screwdriver and unnecessary elbow grease. The new Craftsman NEXTEC 12-volt Right Angle Impact Driver provides versatility and flexibility that allows the user to work in tight workspaces when angling a drill or screwdriver is difficult. The 90-degree head and compact design of the driver gives improved clearance in close quarters and tight corners, allowing access to work inches closer to the fastener for improved control and accuracy.

The Craftsman NEXTEC Right Angle Impact Driver drives screws at 0-2,200 RPM and produces 700 in. lbs. of torque. It features an ergonomic lightweight design, weighing in at 2.2 pounds with battery, and has a ¼-inch quick connect for fast bit changes, all of which makes handling the tool simple and intuitive. Since the impact driver self brakes, stripping screws is less of an issue. The power, access, convenience and comfort of this product make it a great choice for all DIY tasks when space is at a premium.

The driver is powered by a 12-volt lithium-ion battery that recharges in 30 minutes. SmartChip® Technology monitors and protects the battery from overcharge, over discharge or overheating. It's the same battery pack that drives the whole family of Craftsman NEXTEC compact tools. It also features a forward and reverse control switch, trigger activated LED work light to help illuminate the work area, battery power indicator that displays charge level remaining. The kit comes with the driver, one battery, charger, four driving accessories and soft carrying case.

Users will love the Right Angle Impact Driver for light DIY household tasks where a high torque or ratcheting action is beneficial, including assembly of common consumer products such as grills, patio furniture, bicycles, swing sets and more, as well as installation of blinds, drapery and lawn mower blades. It also works great for moderate to heavy duty DIY use where high speed and torque is needed, including installing garage door openers, staircases, dishwashers and light fixtures, as well as repairing small engines on lawn mowers, tractors, boats, snowmobiles and ATVs. In the garage, the driver provides the high-forward and reverse torque needed for automotive installation including breaks, headlights, stereo speakers, alternators, water pumps, shocks and more.

Specifications:

* Voltage: 12-volt lithium-ion battery
* Torque: 700 in. lbs.
* RPM: 0-2,200
* Switch: Two finger trigger
* Handle: Soft grip
* Light: Trigger activated LED
* Clamp: ¼-inch quick connect clamp
* Battery Charge Time: Rechargeable, 30 minutes
* Tool Weight: 2.2 pounds with battery

The Craftsman NEXTEC Right Angle Impact Driver (#17562) is scheduled to hit shelves in September 2010 and will retail for $99.99 on Craftsman.com and at Sears stores nationwide.

Read More in: Cordless | Lithium-Ion

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Posted by Doug Mahoney at September 8, 2010 5:10 AM

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