Awhile back we reviewed the 909 miter saw. While I did like it, I did complain about some of the parts being cheap. So with that, I used it as my beater saw. Basically when I knew other people were going to be using my saw, I would bring my 909 along so they would beat on that saw instead of my other saw. Over time that saw really impressed me. I can’t say it was the most accurate saw, but it did take a beating and kept on running. Once I figured out what cuts weren’t accurate, I could adjust my cuts. I ended up giving that one away, so not sure how it’s doing today. With my previous experience, I wouldn’t have a problem recommending that saw to someone who doesn’t want to break the bank, but wants the slider with bevel features for their home. Well enough about that old saw, let’s jump into this innovative drill and impact.
So what makes this drill and impact innovative? The trigger system. The 909 has a trigger system like no other drill or impact I have seen. Which makes this hard for me to review as I am torn. Drill and impact tools use a trigger system with an electromechanical switch. The 909 took a different path and uses a touch sensitive control. So it is a system you have to get used to. No longer do you need a switch to move from forward to reverse. Your index finger sits on the forward position and your middle finger sits on the reverse button. To activate the system, you just press both buttons at once and that wakes the system up. Then just press the forward sensitive control to start drilling or fastening. For reverse, you press your middle finger and the drill will turn the other way. One thing I do have to say is while it is hard to get used to or awkward, the pressure pads are neat. You can dial down the speed you need. So it’s not just none or all out speed. You can adjust the speed. One cool feature is the gear switch. While most drills have them on the top, the 909 is located on the side which makes it easy to switch with your thumb.
Picking up the drill, it has one of the most comfortable grips and reminds me of the Dewalt style grip which is great. The drill and impact are powered by a 12V Lithium-ion battery that is 4 A/h. Now the power of these tools are pretty good. The impact has 885 in-lbs of torque and 0-3000 bpm. The drill utilizes a 1/2″ key-less chuck with 17+1 torque controls. The drill has an rpm of 0-440 and 0-1450.
Another unique item about this tool is the battery level. While most have bars to let the user know how much power is left, this has something different. On the side of the tool, there is a light that will go from green, to yellow to red to let the user know how much power is left.
So here is the low down or at least my thoughts. I really do like the concept and ideas behind this drill, but I am not sure if I am 100% sold. First, is the price point. While we usually don’t talk price point, it is my understanding these will be priced around $199. $199 is a lot of money just to have the pressure pads. With nothing else in the line, it’s hard to expand. I could spend money on a different brand and get a bigger line up. Now to be fair, this is new, so I am sure new tools will be added as time goes on. Also the $199 price point could change as I don’t think that is set in stone. While I do love the pressure point concept, it is a little hard with gloves compared to no gloves. A trigger allows for more room for my fingers and it is not as finicky. Overall we found the touch trigger to be harder to control than a traditional trigger. In situations where you have to apply a lot of force to keep the tool planted it was hard to maintain a consistent speed other than high. For lighter duty some may like this setup.
Bottom line, the concept is great and really hope they hit a home run with this technology. I always love to see companies think outside the box. Whether it will be accepted into main stream, only time will tell.