Drivingscrews by hand gets old fast. Whether you’re a contractor with light duty jobs to complete, or a homeowner with occasional repairs and projects, you need a good general-purpose drill. Here are two compact lightweight cordless models from Bosch. Let’s look at them both to see which one will be the best for your tasks.
Bosch DDB181-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 1/2-Inch Compact Tough Drill/Driver Kit with 2 Batteries, Charger and Contractor Bag
The Bosch DDB181 has the versatility of a ½” drill in a compact size. It measures just 7.1 inches long and weighs just 3 pounds. But just because it’s small doesn’t mean it isn’t powerful.
Like most drills, it has a variable-speed trigger with a safety lock-off. There is a two-speed transmission with a low gear of 0-400rpm for high-power fastening and a high gear of 0-1300rpm for fast drilling. The 20+1 clutch settings help you do precision work.
The lastclutch setting is marked with the symbol of a drill bit. Choosing this setting locks the clutch for drilling and driving in tough materials.The drill’s brake stops the chuck immediately after the trigger is released. This helps prevent stripped screws, keeps you safer, and saves battery life.
The maximum torque is 350 inch-pounds. No, this isn’t an impact driver or a hammer drill, but it can handle drilling and driving in wood, plastic, and mild metal at a decent speed. Bosch recommends this drill for plumbers and electricians who want a smaller drill for ordinary tasks. Its maximum capacity in wood is a 1-inch bit and 3/8-inch in metal.
There are a couple of other user-friendly features: the LED light in the foot of the DDB181 illuminates the work area without casting shadows. There is also a built-in bit holder at the back of the handle at the bottom.
It runs off the 18V batteries that come with the drill. Both lithium-ion batteries have a capacity of 1.5Ah which means they are slim, light, and recharge in under an hour. The drill, charger, and batteries have Bosch’s Electronic Cell Protection to protect against overload and extend runtime.
More features of the Bosch DDB181-02 drill
- Bosch offers a 1-year limited warranty
- Comes with two 1.5Ah capacity batteries, charger, screw-driving bit, and contractor bag
Bosch DDB180-02 18-Volt Lithium-Ion 3/8-Inch Cordless Drill/Driver Kit with 2 Batteries, Charger and Case
The DDB180 drill has a 3/8” keyless chuck so it is compatible with fewer accessories and bits, but still good enough for household jobs and light duty at the jobsite. It weighs 3 pounds and is 7.7 inches long.
Just because it has a smaller capacity chuck doesn’t mean it lacks power. The DDB180 is rated for a maximum torque of 400 inch-pounds. That’s more power than the DDB181 has.
It has a two-speed transmission, with low gear between 0-400rpm and high gear between 0-1300rpm. There are 15+1, or 16, clutch settings.The sixteenth setting is marked with the symbol of a drill bit. Choosing this setting locks the clutch for drilling and driving in difficult materials. The drill’s brake stops the chuck immediately after the variable-speed trigger is released. This helps prevent stripped screws, keeps you safer, and saves battery life.
The DDB180 is compatible with both Slim Pack and Fat Pack batteries, although it comes with just two Slim Pack batteries. The Slim Pack batteries typically have a capacity of 1.5Ah. Bosch says that capacity means this drill can drive up to one hundred sixty 3-inch screws on one charge. Bosch’s Electronic Cell Protection keeps the batteries in top condition for longer runtime. The Electronic Motor Protection keeps the motor from burning out if the drill stalls.
The LED light on this drill is located under the barrel, so it may cast shadows depending on the angle of the drill. There is also an on-board bit holder located at the rear of the drill at the bottom of the handle.
More features of the Bosch DDB180-02 drill
- Bosch offers a 1-year limited warranty
- Comes with two Slim Pack batteries, charger, double-ended Phillips bit, and bag
These drills are close in size and weight. The 3/8” drill is actually more powerful than the ½” drill.
If you want compatibility with a wider range of bits and accessories, consider getting the DDB181 ½” drill.
If you need more power, and chuck size isn’t as important, get the DDB180 3/8” drill. Keep in mind you’ll have fewer clutch settings to select.