Senco DS212 18V Auto-Feed Screwdriver Review

Awhile back we reviewed the Senco Duraspin.  As you know we liked the screw gun but we were looking for more and what do you know?  They took our advice and made some changes.  Well I am sure they didn’t take our advice, but they did make some changes.  Well again, not really changes, they did what we like best, a redesign.  One thing that I really don’t like is when a company takes an existing item, makes a small change and then calls it a brand new product.  No complaint with Senco because they actually made this tool much better. Not only did they add some features, but they made it more ergonomic and comfortable.

The older version we tested was a 3″, while this one is a 2″.  The first thing I did notice was my older bits would not fit the new screw gun.  I am not sure if it’s because the different sizes or that’s just the way the new tool is designed.  Anyway, the new design is head and shoulders above their older model.

First Senco made a big change with the batteries.  The older version used a NiCad battery while the new one uses a Lithium battery.  This means less weight and longer run time, so that is a huge change.   The batteries also have a fuel gauge to let the user know how much battery life is left.  Another big change is the size of the screw gun.  The new one is much sleeker and has a better balance and feel than the older model.  This new model only weighs 4.95 lbs.

Another huge improvement is how you change and adjust the nose piece to match your fasteners.  On the older version you had to break out an Allen wrench and make the adjustment, so you always needed a tool.  With the new style, you just press a button and move the nose piece to match your length of fasteners.  I love this feature.  Not that I am changing the size all the time, but when you are moving and doing different applications, it is nice to be able to make the changes easily.   The depth adjustment is also another change.  Before, you just moved a wheel and guessed where your depth would be.  Now you can see through a small window where your depth is actually set.  Plus now you can lock it in place so it will never move unless you want it to move.  However one thing that is still the same is you do need a tool to change from a wood nose to a drywall nose.  It would be nice to be able to do that without a tool, but that was last on our list of things to complain about because that is not changed as often as the fastener size. Senco also incorporated a button so you can just leave the tool running instead of holding the trigger down and having your finger get tired after long uses.  Just pull the trigger and press the button and you’re set to drive screws as fast as you can.

Senco Auto Feed Screwdriver 07Okay you can have all the cool features, but if you don’t have the power to drive much, what good is the tool?  Senco has a high torque motor in this screw gun and will power through tougher material such as hard woods, sub floors and cement board without any issues.  When I used it on the drywall and sub floor, this tool ran like a champ.  The motor puts out 2500 RPM using a variable speed trigger, so this baby turns screws in fast.

In regards to changing the bits, the new version is the same as the old version where there is a lever on the top.  Just push it back and you can easily change from a square bit to a Phillips.  This tool also has a reverse, just like the older version.  As with the older version, this hold up to 50 screws per strip.  So you don’t have to worry about buying new fasteners.

The kit comes with the tool, drywall and wood nose piece, two drive bits, 2 Lithium batteries, 1 hour charger and a nylon bag.  Plus you get a 1 year limited warranty.

Two cons to this tool.  First, on the older version, the tool came in a nice hard plastic case.  This time it comes in a nylon bag.  Not a huge deal, but I tend to like boxes more than bags.  I also know some people hate the boxes and like the bags.  The nice thing about the bag is you can store more stuff than a box.  This is a tough tool so again I am not worried about hurting the tool during transporting with the bag.  The other item is the belt hook.  While it is nice to have a hook, I found it getting in the way of my hand more than it helped.  I ended up taking it off.  For some people it will be a big help since you can move the belt clip to either side of the tool.

I had the chance to use this on my bathroom sub floor and the drywall.  The screw gun handles great.  Very easy to use and set up.  We also let a local Cub Scout group use this and the older version to fasten some boards down to make a bridge at a local forest preserve.

Overall this is a winner.  The new redesign and all the extra features makes this a tool worth owning.  The better batteries and tool-less nose piece adjustment are huge steps forward to making this a quality auto-feed screwdriver.  The balance, feel and power make this tool easy to work with even over long periods of time.

 

 

 

 

8 COMMENTS

  1. I noticed you guys went from the 4000 subscribers you talked about a week ago to almost 4500 today. Hopefully your years of work will start paying off. Book tours, speaking engagements, tool babes, big endorsements from Home Depot, huge parties with Paris Hilton.

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