Which is a good Rotary hammer drill to buy for my remodel job?

Discussion in 'Remodel Forum & Blog' started by mudcat, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. mudcat

    mudcat New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Texas
    I need to buy a good used rotary hammer drill for drilling and chiselling a little concrete in my slab for a bath remodel I am undertaking. I found many on **** like, Hilti, Bosch, Makita, Milwaukee..etc. I wanted to get something maybe in the 10 amp range. Is Hilti the best made? Also does Hilti use a certain bit that only they can use or can other models like Bosch or Hitachi bits work with them also. Which Drill is good and will last the longest?
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,230
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; Which Drill is good and will last the longest?

    What difference does it make if this is a tool for a single job. When you ask our opinion on quality, we have to base it on new tools. You are looking at used drills so its "history" will affect whether it is a good drill or not and how long it will last. Buying something lke that, on the site you checked, is a "crap shoot" because the owner will seldom give you a 'bad review" of his tool. They are ALWAYS "like new" or "good as new", even if they are actually worn out. Many of them, especially Hilti, will use proprietary chisels.
  3. chefwong

    chefwong New Member

    Messages:
    710
    Location:
    District of Columbia
    There are various connections. SDS, SDS Plus, SDS Max, etc. All are fairly standard amongst the drills you look at.

    However, you do ask, which one will last the longest BUT are looking for used .
    That's a hard question to ask, IMO if you don't know the history of a used unit.
    Hammer Drills are used HARD. That is the nature of the tool.
    If going new, Bosch for budget friendly. If budget was not a concern, I prefer Hilti.
    YMMV.

    How thick is the slab. Sometimes a simple wack of a BFH - big f'n hammer - will do the trick.
    I have both a smaller and larger Hilti. They both do similar and different things...
    I'll often use the smaller one for alot of things.....as it's light and balanced - especially for remodels vs. straight up demos.


  4. drick

    drick In the Trades

    Messages:
    392
    Buying a used hammer drill is a mistake IMO. Either buy new or if this is just for a single or a couple of jobs rent one. And Hilti is the best!

    -rick
  5. Charlotte_core_drill

    Charlotte_core_drill New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    new or used I have found that for small jobs the harbor frieght 1" and 1 1/8 hammer drills work just as well and last just as long as the more expensive ones, these are usually around $70 and they chip and hammer drill. Them for some reason always come's with metric bits though, I haven;t figured that part out. I use good bits anyhow.
  6. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,296
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    I absolutely agree with Charlotte. For small jobs, these Harbor Freight drills are great. The come with an assortment of drill bits and chisels, and additional bits are inexpensive. I bought mine from Grizzly, but there apparently do not carry them anymore. Yes, they're Chinese, and no, they are not going to be suitable for major demo jobs, and no they are not going to be suitable for day after day construction jobs. But, anytime I need to drill a hole in concrete up to 1/2" or to break out a small amount of concrete, it performs well. You can use this on materials other than concrete, but their forte is small concrete jobs.
  7. TJanak

    TJanak New Member

    Messages:
    154
    Location:
    South TX
    Second the Harbor Freight. As much as I hate to admit it, I did buy their rotary hammer a year or so ago and use it around the house as I am remodeling. I don't generally buy HF stuff because I like my tools to last but after looking at quality rotary hammers I decided the $70 was worth the gamble. So far has been good.
  8. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,296
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Buying Chinese is still a crap shoot, but their quality is getting better. The Chinese are learning that quality pays just as Japan learned 45-50 years ago. There is no reason why the Chinese, Mexicans, Koreans, Indians, or any other country can not produce quality. The do have to have quality raw materials, quality factories, and perhaps the most important of all, quality control. This is why you can buy a Toto toilet made in Viet Nam and it will match model for model those made in Georgia. We can gripe about jobs sent overseas until we're blue in the face, but like it or not, it's fact, and we have to learn to live with it. Certainly, don't take that $70 rotary hammer drill out on a construction site and expect it to work like a tool costing hundreds of dollars, that won't happen, but it will work for a DIY quite well on jobs it is designed to do.
  9. mudcat

    mudcat New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Texas

    No offense intended here but I would not pay 50 cents for any tool made in China form those harbor freight companies...I tried there electric tools before and when you open them up to look inside after you used them for a couple days and they start smoking or just quit entirely...you see that it was put together the fastest and with the most cheapest crap ever put on this great earth of ours. And buying used tools of a good quality like Hilti or Bosch can work easy and save you $100s..if you know how pay for them without getting ripped off .
  10. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,230
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    A new Harbor Freight roto-hammer will beat a "worn out used" Hilti any day.
  11. mudcat

    mudcat New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Texas

    Wish we could have a contest somewhere..... you drilling fifty 1 1/2" holes in 4inch slab ....all the way through with your Harbor Freight hammer drill, and me with a darn good second hand Hilti or Bosch doin the same...... also chiselling out a 3' x 3' slab section 4" thick with a chisel attachment...let see who wins the contest without the other ones drill falling to pieces or catching fire first. :eek:
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2012
  12. Todd Stull

    Todd Stull Bathroom Specialist

    Messages:
    22
    Location:
    Harrisburg, PA
    I'm sorry to say that I have one of those and I had every intention that it would suck or break but it doesn't... It's pretty good and I beat it up pretty bad.
  13. Hackney plumbing

    Hackney plumbing Homeowner

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    1,174
    Location:
    Alabama
  14. Plumber111

    Plumber111 In the Trades

    Messages:
    76
    Location:
    North Carolina
    I have the Hitachi as well. Just goes and goes.
  15. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,296
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    I did not promote the HF or my Grizzly as industrial strength tools. They clearly are not. The maximum drill bit size is 1/2". So, if you want to punch 50 1-1/2" holes in concrete, get a workhorse sized and intended for that work. My F-150 is a great pickup, but it won't compete with a KW. I'll stand by my recommendation for the HF tool for small and occasional DIY jobs. Let's just compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges.
  16. grahamW

    grahamW New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Used Bosch

    I bought a used, 3 function Bosch rotary hammer that I'm quite happy with. Perhaps I got lucky, but it has served me well and, given how much I've used it, has proved much cheaper than repeated rentals.
  17. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,296
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    I would say that the used Bosch has worked well, it's a quality product to begin with. You might consider it luck that you found a good deal on the price although you didn't mention that.
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