Okay before we get started I would like to start out by apologizing for my mistake. We usually like to take pictures of each tool we review, so you can see all the close ups and features. However we gave this kit away to one of our viewers. It wasn't until I sent the tool out, did I realize I forgot to take pictures for the article.
Hitachi is a company that has been around for a long time and we have heard good things about them, especially with their routers and cordless. For us, we don't have a lot of exposure working with them. This is the first Hitachi I have picked up in a long time and have to say I am torn. While I have heard good things about them, I really can only go by the tools we have used. For some reason Hitachi isn't a big fan of ours. We have requested to deal with them since you guys are always asking questions and getting our opinion on their tools. We occasionally hear from them, but only the tools they really want to show off, which always makes me wonder. I just wanted to let you know where I am coming from before the emails start flying in about Hitachi.
Overall I am torn on these tools. While they do have lots of power, they do lack a lot of features you see in today's tools.
Hitachi Drill/Driver DS18DFL
The hammer drill uses a brushless motor and is powered off of a 3.0 Ah battery. This drill puts out 440 in-lbs of torque which is great and has a 1/2″ metal chuck. The drill weighs 4.2 lbs. making it a very lightweight drill and easy to maneuver. As with other drills, this has a two speed transmission of 0-400 and 0-1,500.
Using the tool, it has a lot of power and is very nice. One problem I was having is on the handle. When we did heavier applications the two pieces would separate and pinch my fingers. Now I am not sure if this was just my model or all the models in general. As I noted, don't expect all the thrills of other drills. There isn't a fuel gauge which is disappointing. While the drill chuck seemed true, the covering sleeve did wobble a lot and was annoying.
Hitachi Impact WH18DFL
This is a great impact and feels real nice. As with the drill driver, it's brushless and is powered off of a 3.0 Ah battery. The impact puts out 1,150 in-lbs of torque which is impressive for the weight of 3.5 lbs. In regards to power it has 0-2,900 rpm and 0-3,200 bpm. The impact has 1,460 in-lbs of torque.
As with the drill, the impact pinched my fingers. Again it could just be the unit we had, but it was disappointing. Especially since the grip felt so nice in my hands.
Some other notes include a charge time of 30 minutes and it does come with a case. The tools are covered by a lifetime warranty and a two year warranty on the batteries.
Overall the Hitachi combo kit isn't bad. Both have lots of power and do as advertised. However I still prefer the Dewalt compact hammer drill instead. I like the features of the Dewalt, but mainly because I know Dewalt. I have used a bunch of their tools and know how well they are made and what to expect. Now I am not saying don't go with the Hitachi. If you're already into Hitachi and looking for a compact hammer drill and impact, this will fit your needs and be a great buy. However if you are looking to get onto a line, I can't comment on their other tools and how well everything holds up. With Dewalt or some of the other manufacturers, I know how they perform and know their line of tools.