Are you a home owner looking for a combo kit, but don’t want to pay the hefty price tag associated with some other manufacturers? When Skil designed this system, they designed it for the homeowner which means they could make these tools lighter and a lot more affordable for the DIY enthusiast. The kit comes with four main power tools – a drill, Skilsaw, reciprocating saw and a flashlight. The kit also comes with two Lithium Ion batteries, a charger and carrying case, which is a nylon tool bag. The accessories are a 5 – 3/8″ circular saw blade, a double ended bit and 2 reciprocating saw blades. So in essence Skil provides you with everything you need to get started on a home improvement project.
The drill/drive is actually very nice and easy to work with. The model number on this drill is 2895. The reason we say actually is because we were quite surprised. Sometimes on power tools designed for homeowners, when you pick these tools up you can tell the difference right away. With the Skil drill that’s not the case. The drill is very light weighing only 4 Lbs. with the battery and the balance is great. Not too heavy in the front or on the backside. The grip is very nice with a one trigger variable speed trigger – low 0 – 450 and high 0-1,400. As with most cordless drills it has a 1-20 clutch setting with a drill setting too. The forward and reverse switch is very easy to access with your thumb.
The 1/2″ keyless chuck system almost looks like the old Bosch chuck systems and if we are correct this is a great system. The bit will stay in place even under heavy conditions. One cool item to note is on the top back of the drill, there is a little slide bit index. This is very nice feature in case you have a tool box full of drill bits and are not sure what size a bit may be. On the other hand if you don’t like this feature, you can always buy the stud finder accessory that slides into the drill.
Ah the famous Skilsaw, the one we know, the one we have loved for years. Overall this little circular saw isn’t too bad. The model number is 5995. The no load RPM is 4200 and the bevel is 0-50°. The saw is on the light side weighing only about 5.12 lbs. The saw has a nice feel in your hands and the balance is good. However the blade is only a 5-3/8″. The top D-handle is very nice and allows the user much control. This saw really surprised us. We will go into more detail on our review, but with this saw only having a 5-3/8″ blade and a 1.3A battery, it definitely seems that it puts out a lot more power then the facts tell us.
Skil Reciprocating Saw
Another power tool Skil included in this kit was the Skil reciprocating saw, model 9350. Overall it is not too bad for a homeowners reciprocating saw. This uses a 1 finger variable trigger switch that is 0-2800 and has a stroke length of 7/8″. This only weights about 5.9 lbs. with the battery. The balance of the tool is great and seems very easy to control. Skil has large rubber grips where a user would place their hands, which helps prevent slips and gives more control. This system uses a keyless blade change system and the blades are very easy to take in and out. We will test to see how well they stay under pressure. While the footplate is adjustable, the shoe is not.
There is a safety switch that needs to be pressed in order to run this saw, which can be pressed with your thumb while your hand is in the D-Handle. One nice feature is their orbital action, which this saw has. Orbital action is great for cutting wood. If you are cutting pipe or plastic, you can leave it in the standard mode. If your cutting through wood, you want to place the switch in the orbital mode, which they call “Turbo”. We looked around, but couldn’t find any stats on how much orbital action is put forth. One really cool idea Skil implemented in this, is a blade storage system. On the top, you can hold some more blades.
Another item that comes in this kit is a flashlight, model number 2897. This light uses a Incandescent light bulb. We know some of you really like the LED lights better and we agree that they are more white and natural, but again this is a homeowners kit and this light works great. It puts enough light out where we didn’t see any reason to complain about what type of bulb it uses. The head pivots 90°, so you are able to light up anything you need. The battery acts like a base and since these batteries have a nice wide bottom, the light is a little more stable when you bump into it. We all know how annoying that can be when your in a tight dark spot and you barley move, whoops you just knocked down the light and now you have to mess around with that instead of performing your task. Again the base is nice and wide, so this shouldn’t happen. The on/off switch is a push button trigger finger switch.
Skil Charger and Flashlight
One item we really took a liking to was the battery and charger. The charger is extremely nice because it is not as bulky or big as some other chargers on the market. This means more room on your work bench. On the battery there is a fuel gauge to let the user know how much power is left on the battery. There are three small blue LED lights. The best thing about the battery is the weight and the low profile. While most Lithium Ion batteries are very light, some are still pretty thick which can make it hard to get into tighter spaces. The skil battery, since it has a low profile battery, should be able to get into some tighter spots that other drills would not be able to. Now if you own older Skil 18V systems and want to upgrade your tools, we should note this system is backwards compatible as it will accept NiCad 18V Batteries. Another item to note is that these batteries are 1.3A.
Overall if you are a homeowner and looking for a kit that won’t break the bank. When you compare it to some of the other manufacturers combo kits that have the same tools, your looking at about half the price with the Skil system. Not too bad. We would definitely recommend this system for a homeowner. Considering this is designed for a homeowner, we would have hoped the owners manual would be a little more detailed and help explain the tools in greater detail for those who many not be familiar with power tools. We are keeping our eyes open to see if Skil is going to be coming out with some other tools for this 18V line. Again we are going to go through each tool in greater detail, so you can see more about the pros and cons to each tool.
Have you used the Skil 18V system, if so let us know your thoughts.