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#1
Old 01-02-2005, 11:54 AM
Oy! Oy! is offline
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Is there such a thing as a drill bit adaptor?

I have a couple of cordless screw-driver/drills from Black and Decker (Pivot Plus, for one). They're very handy, but limited, because the only bits they accept are those hexagonal-shaped base drill-bits and screw driver heads. I have lots of drill bits in a a wide variety of round bases, but I can't figure out how to make my drill hold them (I lost the manual, so if it came with a built-in way, it's not making itself known to me).

Is there some kind of adaptor I can get that would fit into the hexagonal drill bit holder and then grab onto drill bits ranging in diameter from a sixteenth inch to a quarter inch?

THanks!
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#2
Old 01-02-2005, 12:23 PM
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IANA Tool Expert, but I have never seen an adapter like this. The physical problem with such an adapter would be the need to have the drill bit held tightly and securely to prevent slippage. This is the job of the chuck on a normal drill. I'm not sure how you could accomplish this with an adapter bit that would fit into a hex screwdriver shaft, unless you built some kind of chuck assembly into it. I'm not sure how feasible that would be.
#3
Old 01-02-2005, 12:23 PM
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FWIW this is really a more of a screwdriver than a drill in terms of functionality. Any decent sized home center (Home Depot, Lowes etc) will have several kits with lots of hex based bits including some which include twist drills with a hex shaped bottoms. Not aware of a hex shaped adapter with an adjustable chuck.
#4
Old 01-02-2005, 12:32 PM
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Yeah, they make them, but except for very limited uses, I think you'll be disappointed, most dedicated electric screwdrivers don't have the RPM, torque or battery capacity for most drilling tasks. They're okay for making a few small diameter holes of shallow depth, but in my experience, the idea sounds cooler than it actually is.

They're cheap enough to keep in the drawer "just in case", but whichever size you get will probably end up being the wrong one, and getting several probably isn't cost effective. There are many sellers of cheap [in both senses of the word] hex-base drill bits for occasional use] which may actually be fluted for low RPM.
#5
Old 01-02-2005, 12:45 PM
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Sounds like I need to invest in an inexpensive cordless drill with a real chuck (recommendations welcome). A pity - the Pivot Plus is a handy little guy, fairly lightweight and pretty powerful for what is, in essense, a power screwdriver. But I only have two sizes of drill bits that fit - having bought a full set of screwdriver heads and bits only to find that the drill bits in the set are useless! Pooh.

THanks for your help.
#6
Old 01-02-2005, 01:21 PM
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I'm with KP. Instead of buying a limited use adapter for a limited use tool, go ahead and get a real cordless drill. You'll be much happier.

Keep your Pivot Plus and use it for it's intended, though limited, purposes.

When buying power tools my rule of thumb is to try to visualize what I think I might need, and then get the next size up.
#7
Old 01-02-2005, 01:26 PM
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Something that looks like a miniatire electric drill chuck with a hex shaft?

I got one...damned if I know where it came from though
#8
Old 01-02-2005, 02:01 PM
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Here and here.
#9
Old 01-02-2005, 02:52 PM
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I have one similar to Danalan's second link. Limited usefulness, but handy for some things. If I'm installing wood screwa, for example, I put the pilot drill bit in the chuck and then swap the screwdriver and drill as needed. It's also good for itty-bitty drills.
Just about any gadget's worth eight bucks.
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mangeorge
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#10
Old 01-02-2005, 03:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oy!
Sounds like I need to invest in an inexpensive cordless drill with a real chuck (recommendations welcome). A pity - the Pivot Plus is a handy little guy, fairly lightweight and pretty powerful for what is, in essense, a power screwdriver. But I only have two sizes of drill bits that fit - having bought a full set of screwdriver heads and bits only to find that the drill bits in the set are useless! Pooh.

THanks for your help.
A quality cordless drill/driver is one of the best power tools you can have around the house. There's a number of good ones out there, and personally I'm a fan of spending a little bit more and getting something high-quality which won't burn out or break as easily as the $30 blue-light special.

I like my Porter-Cable but if you want a decent & inexpensive tool you might take a look at the 14.4v Ryobi. Home Despot sells them, it's about $80 (you get the drill, two batteries, charger and a flashlight). My friend has one that he uses for normal home repair stuff and he likes it. It's not perfect (it doesn't have a high/low setting but that's not critical for most people) but it's pretty good.

Unless you plan on doing a LOT of heavy work with it you don't need an 18v tool, they're noticeably heavier. I would also stay away from the 9.6v and 7.2v tools, they are lightweight but lacking in power and battery life. 12v or 14.4v is fine.

Go down to the store, heft a bunch of them and see what feels good.
#11
Old 01-02-2005, 04:57 PM
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I second Valgard's advice.

I bought a 14v Ryobi with 2 batteries on sale for $60 because this was approximately the cost of a single replacement battery for my otherwise excellent Milwaukee drill. (Mine has 2 speeds, but no flashlight. ) I assumed the Ryobi would have a short life, but it is going strong two years and many jobs later.

Even serious construction types who use them will often say that you should avoid the cost & weight of the 18v drills unless you have a specific need for their capabilities.
#12
Old 01-02-2005, 05:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xema
Even serious construction types who use them will often say that you should avoid the cost & weight of the 18v drills unless you have a specific need for their capabilities.
The only guy I know who has an 18v Dewalt is a former defensive lineman so the weight isn't really an issue He once held a rolling track in place while lying underneath it until I could get to the emergency brake...

Another friend of mine who builds custom homes likes the Ryobi tools for two reasons:

1. They do a decent job.
2. They are less of a theft target than the Really Good Stuff, and it's less of a pain replacing a $60 drill than a $150 drill.
#13
Old 01-02-2005, 06:24 PM
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DeWalt? Pah! If you really want to impress your friends, try one of these.

Makita makes some decent home improvement grade cordless drills. I like mine.
#14
Old 01-02-2005, 06:28 PM
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My 18v Craftsman (from Orchard Supply) is about the same size and weight as the 14.4v Ryobi. Cost about the same, too, about $60. The Craftsman brand doesn't mean what it used to, but this thing seems ok. It's nice sometimes to have that little extra torque. I suspect the tradeoff is lowered battery life. Between charges, that is.
All these modern cordless drills are a far cry from those old, pitifully underpowered, 7v B&D's of the past.
Did you know that DeWalt is part of Black & Decker?
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#15
Old 01-02-2005, 06:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mangeorge
Did you know that DeWalt is part of Black & Decker?
Yes, but so far they've kept the two product lines distinct. The Dewalt brand still implies a quality tool; B&D, well, not so much.
#16
Old 01-02-2005, 06:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bnorton
Yes, but so far they've kept the two product lines distinct. The Dewalt brand still implies a quality tool; B&D, well, not so much.
Oh yeah. They're not even similar in construction. And B&D doesn't even offer a "Jobsite Radio" (and batt. charger). Just about the coolest thing I ever saw.
#17
Old 01-02-2005, 08:04 PM
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I snagged a 13 piece set of titanium nitride coated bits that range from 1/16" ~ 1/4" with the hex shank for $9 and change at MCM Electronics. They're really Harbor Freight brand, but MCM is selling them cheaper than Harbor Freight.
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#18
Old 01-02-2005, 08:12 PM
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Sears has a whole line of tools called Speed Lok, all are 1/4 inch hex drive and will work in your tools.
#19
Old 01-02-2005, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bnorton
Yes, but so far they've kept the two product lines distinct. The Dewalt brand still implies a quality tool; B&D, well, not so much.
When I bought my Dewalt sander it came with a B&D instruction manual in the box (manual for the wrong sander altogether). They're certainly being made under the same roof :-)

Not a huge fan of the Big Yellow, myself.
#20
Old 01-02-2005, 10:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valgard
The only guy I know who has an 18v Dewalt is a former defensive lineman so the weight isn't really an issue
Believe it or not, I am a huge fan of the 24 vdc DeWalt batteries. That entire venture has failed, mostly because of what you are saying- if 18 is heavy, 24 is murderously heavy.

I used to own 10 of them, and 4 fast-chargers for a piece of camera gear. The gear is still run on the 24 vdc DeWalts. They take the place of a battery pack that costs ( no kidding ) $ 1,000. To me, in that application, a volt is a volt is a volt. Each pack was $ 100.00, a 10-1 price ratio. LOVE that. The chargers? $ 35.00 PER charger with smart-cycling circuitry in them.

However..as a hand-held power supply they're wretched.

As for the OP, yeah. Go with a nice powerful all-purpose drill. You can chuck up a screw bit of either gender, and all of your drill bits and grinders. I currently use a Craftsman that does me just fine.

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#21
Old 01-03-2005, 08:49 AM
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You also might want to evaluate your actual needs, and decide whether a cordless drill is necessary.

For the needs I have (light household drilling), I found a corded Ryobi works great, and it cost next to nothing.

If I were doing more projects, I'd get a cordless. But I just don't need one right now.
#22
Old 01-03-2005, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Moto
You also might want to evaluate your actual needs, and decide whether a cordless drill is necessary.

For the needs I have (light household drilling), I found a corded Ryobi works great, and it cost next to nothing.

If I were doing more projects, I'd get a cordless. But I just don't need one right now.
You can get corded drills at garage sales and flea markets for next to nothing, due to the popularity of cordless I'n sure. I'm talking $5 or even less. Standard cautions apply, though. Do beware of used cordless tools. Batteries have a finite life, and it's hard to tell if one's any good without cycling it completely through charge and discharge.
#23
Old 01-03-2005, 08:55 PM
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Thank you all for your knowledge and advice. Mr. Moto, you're right; I don't have any pressing need for a cordless drill (the six volts I have seem to have been adequate for everything I've done thus far), and I think my best bet is to get a set of hex-shank drill bits such as the one [b]danceswithcats[b] recommended. In fact, I just did get one on Ebay - 13 titanium bits for $9.99 plus shipping.

Thanks for everything, guys!
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