Okay I have to admit, I am a little lost with this kit. While it’s nice, I am having a hard time trying to figure out where this company is going. To me, Bostitch was always a tool designed for the professionals in regards to their nailers and compressors. I still see older nailers and compressors being used today, which is a testament of their quality. A while back I heard the news that Bostitch would be selling in Walmart’s, which was a big surprise to me. Not that I am knocking Walmart as I shop there, I just can’t picture a quality tool being on the shelf at Walmart. Why does a company who has built a quality name for over 100 years make this move? My only guess is they are trying to use their quality name and tap into the home market. Now I am not saying contractors don’t shop at Walmart and especially with this economy, we are all trying to save money. But I do have to admit, I am lost at this move. On the other hand, Walmart does carry brand names like Sony, GE and more. Okay I guess only time tells how this will play out. Let’s jump in and talk about the tools.
The Bostitch kit, model BTCK410L2, comes with a drill and impact. These are run off an 18V Lithium-ion platform.
BTC400 Lithium Drill/Driver
Picking up the drill, it doesn’t seem bad at all. In fact, the balance and feel of the tool feels good in my hand. Now don’t expect all the bells and whistles on this drill. While it does have a 1/2″ metal chuck, it doesn’t ratchet (It does lock). Don’t get me wrong, it still holds the bit in place. My concern is heavy use over time, how well will it hold the bit. As with other drill/driver tools, this does have a two speed gear box which produces speeds of 0-350 and 0-1500 rpm. In regards to torque, it does have 480 in-lbs of torque which is below professional model drills. Again the price point is also much lower, but if you’re selling this to the pro, they will require heavy use for various applications.
The drill/driver has a 24 position clutch, so for the user, they do have a lot of control depending upon the application. Overall the drill isn’t too heavy weighing only 3.7 lbs which makes it a very nice drill to use for longer periods of time. Another point to mention is the drill does have an LED light.
BTC440 Lithium Impact Driver
One of my favorite tools, the impact driver. The Bostitch impact, like the drill, has a good feeling and is well balanced. Like with other impacts, this has a 1/4″ hex chuck. In regards to torque, it puts out 1400 in-lbs, while the Ryobi puts out 1600 in-lbs. As with the drill, this also has an LED light.
BOSTITCH BTCK410L2 18V Lithium 2-Tool Combo Kit
Items in the Bostitch Combo Kit
- BTC400 Lithium Drill/Driver
- BTC440 Lithium Impact Driver
- 2 – BTC480L Lithium Ion Batteries
- BTC492L 18V Lithium Ion Charger
- 2 – PH#2 Screwdriving Bit
- Bit Tip Storage
- Belt Clip and Kit Box
So would I recommend these tools? Yes, but to a small market. While the tools are good and have power, the downside is they only have a drill and impact. Which for some homeowners, this is all you need. If you’re looking to expand, you will have to sit by and wait for more tools to be released. I am not sure if they are expanding into new tools, but I would image they would expand the line. Bottom line if you are a homeowner, who wants a quality tool that doesn’t break the bank, and you are not going to expand your line, this is a good kit for you. Bostitch has built a quality tool for over 100 years and I have no reason to believe these tools won’t last a long time. But for me the question still remains where Bostitch is trying to go with this line. They are being sold at Walmart, but the video on their site says it’s for the pro’s.
Are these a poor man’s DeWalt? I really don’t trust anything brand name in tools carried by Walmart. I know that Walmart carries name brands, but they do so by lowering the standards of the brand to keep it affordable. They do this with everything, knives, sporting goods, etc. You can buy a Rawlings baseball glove in Walmart & same one at Dicks (sporting goods store) and they are not the same. The Walmart version is less quality. Beware of this tactic. Just because its a name brand, it’s not the same. Dan has mentioned this is in regards to Snap-On, same case here. Slap on a good name brand & consumers will snatch it up. I can give more examples of this stuff. When you get burned a few times I tend to keep my butt out of the fire (well I try).
Now, I love my Bostitch nailers & compressor, but I can’t buy power tools from Walmart. If they had them at other hardware stores I would consider trying them. I hate that this association exists now. Sorry for gripping about this & it has nothing to do with the tool review. Dang Black & Decker why? Don’t answer that I know why. Later TIA
Pretty much yes it is. It’s “pro-sumer,” it’s on the high end for hanging your pictures but on the low end for actual job quality tools. It fills a special little subset for a person at home who wants a fair bit more than your Harbor Freight bargain basement swill, but isn’t looking to drop a couple hundred on something an actual tradesman would use.
I took mine apart which was manufactured mid-late 2017 to check out what they did right and what they did wrong, where it’s sloppy and where it’s solid. Some of my findings:
The clamshell is PA-6 GF30, very nice bit of glass fiber reinforcing in the nylon. Definitely a good penny more expensive to produce than your Christmas Special B&D where they use practically straight ABS sewer pipe plastic. Where the ventilation slots are, the plastic is quite reasonably thick to hopefully lessen the chance of breaking. The butylene overmold handgrip and other details are a bit sparse on “pegs” holding it to the clamshell, but they went through the trouble of molding T-slots into the clamshell where the ends of the butylene would be that it is injected into which definitely gives the stuff a good fit at least at the edges. Down at the battery slot they use a couple surprisingly long screws to hold the halves together while the remaining screws look about 3/4-7/8″ length like you would expect. The bit holder can be attached on either side and both sides have a nut put in the clamshell for the screw rather than just screwing into the plastic.
Wiring appears reasonably robust, motor is Leshi brand which I’ve not heard of, but there does not appear to be any easy way (if at all) to service the brushes which is a disappointment. A PA-66 GF30 plate screws to the front of the motor, and this place spins a few degrees to lock it in place on the gearbox. The gearbox is also nylon with 33% glass fiber for the shell, not as good as metal but still respectable. The gears inside all appear to be sintered powder metal which is pretty much a given at their price point, not machined. The speed selector is even glass-fiber nylon and even has spring detects on either side of the notch that engages the selector on the gearbox, not sure if that is to accommodate any possible slop in manufacture or to not make it “force” a gear change if some guy is trying to change it while running. The LED is kinda lame and small, and is right under the Chuck where the chuck and bit pretty much block most of the light which makes it almost useless. The switch has a brand logo but nothing I recognize so probably not a big name, but the MOSFET has an alright heatsink. I did not disassemble the chuck.
The battery was kinda surprising to me. Both halves of the shell are polycarbonate + ABS, which gives the flexibility of ABS to absorb impact better with the strength of polycarbonate. The cells are pink-wrap Samsung 18650s! Samsung was a nice surprise to find at this price point. The batteries are all held in this cradle that can separate from the clamshell, isolating the batteries a bit from impact. Huge solid connections where the power really flows though the soldering wasn’t what I would call a 10/10 job, but not crusty and cold either.
UL listed which is a respected company for that kind of stuff, but made in China so it doesn’t support American manufacturing in purchasing one.
I believe Bostich shares same parent company as Black & Decker, Mac Tools, Porter Cable, Proto, Stanley, and Dewalt. To me the Bostich drill looks similar to the porter cable??? Maybe Battery compatibility? I’m sure all these companies have some manufacture similarities. I saw the Bostich hand tools, sockets and box wrenches, and they look to be rebadged dewalt???? Probably find them to be similar to some Mac Tool line…
The batteries aren’t compatible.
There are 11,000 Wal-Mart stores. I Googled it!
Eric–Sorry about your demotion; I’m sure it wasn’t deserved. Not to jump on Bostitch, but I think Juan is right about the quality of tools, electronics, clothing, etc., sold at stores like Walmart, Target and Kohls. The items carry the brand name, but the build quality and specs are below what comes with the item sold through regular retail outlets. That said, they are a better alternative to what Harbor Freight offers, just not as feature-packed as DeWalt, Milwaukee and the others.
To answer your question, “Where are they going with this?”, it seems they are making a foray into the poor man’s Macy’s (Walmart). Bostitch is supporting a limited tool offering to see where this might go, and could expand the line later if it catches on. If it doesn’t, they don’t have a lot of time, money and technical development wrapped up in it. Anyway, that’s my guess.
I like the idea of these budget tools. Don’t understand why they need 3 budget pro/diy brands pc, stanley and now bostitch powertools. But I like that they offer the option. Not everyone can afford top brands but many still want a better performing product than skill and B&D, not knocking those brands either as they perform well in their category.
I think its a good move by walmart, I would have loved tools like these when I moved into my first place.
I don’t agree with 3 different levels of quality/price. It’s like Coke Cola putting their product in 5 different packages. Overall, it makes a lot of money for the company, but too many choices for the consumer. The whole concept of different size packaging and different quality levels is marketing 101. In the long run, the consumer ends up paying over and over.
Owning the name can mean a lot too. For example with GM, the GMT360 platform was what the Chevy TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Oldsmobile Bravada, and Isuzu Ascender were all built on. Heck I think I’m forgetting one but I remember those five. Anyway, there may be some differences in options offered or standard features, and obviously cosmetic differences, but under the hood they all have the EXACT same motor, trans, gearing…. It’s called badge engineering. Maybe someone has always trusted the Buick brand and refuses to touch anything else, well they have a Buick version to cater to brand loyalists. Or in this case, Bostitch loyalists.
I was looking to purchase this set at Walmart today. I was shocked to see it on their shelf. I need to replace my DeWalt set which, after only 3 years ownership, the drill petered out on me. I’m one month past the warranty and DeWalt pretty miserable check said that’s a bummer. I’m just a home owner, not a contractor so I really didn’t get that much use out of the DeWalts. Starting a deck project next week at home and need a new drill. I was happy to see the Bostitch at Walmart but now I’m second guessing whether I should buy it.
Hey, Brandon! Overall Jim was pretty impressed with the Bostich Drill. I definitely think that homeowner geared tools have come a long way in the last few years. The increase in competition has them stepping up their quality and features overall. As a homeowner, if you’re using this for projects consistently, I would maybe step up to Ridgid or something with slightly higher specs. If it’s occasional use though, then this will likely serve you well! I will have Jim get back to you too since he did the write up on this one.
I bought this combo set 4 years ago as a temporary replacement until I could grab a Milwaukee or dewalt set. I’m more than impressed with it. I’m a equipment mechanic and do a lot of service on trucks, trailers and forklifts. I’m not nice to it at all and I have to say it has held up longer than my previous dewalt set. Batteries last other than the chuck being just ok the drill is great, and I almost exclusively drill metal with it and has held up. The driver is the workhorse for me. I use it for disassemble and reassembly to heavy trucks and equipment and other than the auto brake stopped working last year its still great. The plastic cases hold up well to oils and solvents very well too. For the price you can’t beat it. Hell I think its better than more expensive units also. I recommend it strongly for anyone on a budget.
That’s awesome to hear! So glad it is working out so well!
Why did bostitch stop making the battery charger for their 18 volt lithium ion battery