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The Makita 12V Impact driver is really bad


DR99

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Every time I think Makita's cordless line has hit bottom, they go and release another piece of shit. I have some Makita electric stuff that's been great, but the cordless line is dog shit.

The cold weather test was interesting as it's a topic that pops up from time to time.

Milwaukee on top? The hell you say :lol: no surprise there.

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Well besides Bosch which teased some 12v brushless tools. The other brands 12v lines haven't been touched in awhile regarding updates. Milwaukee has added brushless and updated the brushed tools. Makita has 4.0 ah batteries on the way, but their 12v line is pathetic. The 36v line is good though. They might not be the best but they have any tool you could think of on the 18v LTX line of tools

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All good points, but it was overall quality I was really thinking of. Constant battery issues, dlow adoption of consumer expected features, drills smoking like steam locomotives, etc., etc., etc.

It wasn't too many years ago Makita was considered the standard in quality among the big 4. Maybe not performance spec wise, but there was no better build quality than Makita. Now you just expect crap.

Last year I predicted 2013 would be a big year for Makita and would include a total overhaul of the 18V line and a significant 12V expansion. Boy am I eating crow.

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I think the only 12v tool they added was a jigsaw and the heated jacket. They have been really slow on updating their brushless tools it's hard to figure out what they really have been doing. They have been quiet the past few years with the other guys firing salvo's of new stuff. Plus the new 20v Porter Cable stuff isn't a joke like the older 18v items which was more Ryobi quality.

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Batteries were the weak point on Milwaukee lithium tools till the Red Lithium era of battery packs. Makita is running the same cells they did from the beginning of the LTX line. The have packs with now overload protection they have star marked on them now but the circuitry has some major issues with batteries dieing and tools smoking because it's not properly working. Hopefully the new 4.0 ah packs help with the issues. Makita seems to not be as popular in Michigan stores didn't really didn't stock their tools.

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In our area, back before Home Depot arrived and before Lowe's adopted the big box format and was just a little bigger version on the hardware store down the street, the only dedicated tool distributor of significant size was a Makita retailer and service center. Accordingly, Makita dominated the area and outnumbered everything else on job sites probably 3 or 4 to 1. When Dewalt came out in the early 90's Lowe's pretty quickly picked it up and it wasn't long before the Makita majority was quickly cut in half. It pretty much stayed that way until HD came to the area in the mid 2000's and you started seeing a lot of Milwaukee stuff.

 

Milwaukee was always around, but tended to be found on industrial sites rather than the General Contractor type setting.

 

Now days Makita is a jobsite oddity . I think my father in-laws crew has 1 Makita circ saw, everything else is Milwaukee, Dewalt, and Ridgid. A few Bosch items as well.   

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Makita was an innovative company at one time. They were the first to market cordless power tools. They were using Nimh packs when everyone else was using Nicad, they beat everyone to the punch on brushless, and were the first to use lithium packs way back in 2005.

Now they're like Marlon Brando in the twilight of his career. They show up a day late, dollar short, overweight, drunk, and incoherent as to what's going on around them.

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Dewalt was really slow on the uptake to lithium batteries they tried with the stempack era and it seemed like they didn't get much uptake on upgrading to Lithium and the stores stocked the nicad versions too. When they did come out with the 20v it was slow going the first year and a half with new tools releases but now they are updating and improving things with brushless tech and such.

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I hate the Makita impacts for the simple fact that I constantly hit the directional switch inadvertently.

I can't say whether it's poor placement of the switch, or just the way I grip it, but it happens nonetheless.

Never had that issue with Milwaukee, Dewalt, or Ridgid.

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  • 2 months later...

In our area, back before Home Depot arrived and before Lowe's adopted the big box format and was just a little bigger version on the hardware store down the street, the only dedicated tool distributor of significant size was a Makita retailer and service center. Accordingly, Makita dominated the area and outnumbered everything else on job sites probably 3 or 4 to 1. When Dewalt came out in the early 90's Lowe's pretty quickly picked it up and it wasn't long before the Makita majority was quickly cut in half. It pretty much stayed that way until HD came to the area in the mid 2000's and you started seeing a lot of Milwaukee stuff.

 

Milwaukee was always around, but tended to be found on industrial sites rather than the General Contractor type setting.

 

Now days Makita is a jobsite oddity . I think my father in-laws crew has 1 Makita circ saw, everything else is Milwaukee, Dewalt, and Ridgid. A few Bosch items as well.   

And your evaluation may be correct in your area of the world, but it varies greatly by region. I see Makita on job sites daily and these are commercial jobs not residential.

 

 

Makita was an innovative company at one time. They were the first to market cordless power tools. They were using Nimh packs when everyone else was using Nicad, they beat everyone to the punch on brushless, and were the first to use lithium packs way back in 2005.

Now they're like Marlon Brando in the twilight of his career. They show up a day late, dollar short, overweight, drunk, and incoherent as to what's going on around them.

Innovative at one time, I see that every company has their strong points and weaknesses. I still see that Makita leads the way with many new ideas. The X2 system is brilliant and in my experience works well, for example.

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In our area, back before Home Depot arrived and before Lowe's adopted the big box format and was just a little bigger version on the hardware store down the street, the only dedicated tool distributor of significant size was a Makita retailer and service center. Accordingly, Makita dominated the area and outnumbered everything else on job sites probably 3 or 4 to 1. When Dewalt came out in the early 90's Lowe's pretty quickly picked it up and it wasn't long before the Makita majority was quickly cut in half. It pretty much stayed that way until HD came to the area in the mid 2000's and you started seeing a lot of Milwaukee stuff.

Your talk about hd and lowes begginings makes me remember a home improvement store that would advertise a lot on tv when I was a young'in. Do you remember Homebase? and what happened to them? Did they turn into what is home depot today or has home depot been around since them? Growing up I was oblivious to tools and hardware stores

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Yes, my experience is confined to my area. However, Makita releases the same tools here in WV that they do in the rest of The United States. We may be the last people to get things like high speed internet and cell phone service, but we've got power tools covered. The same issues that affect Makita here affect them elsewhere as well. Battery issues, late adoption of popular features, lack of available tools, etc.

They are starting to act like they give a damn, but they still have a lot of catching up to do. They've spent the last 3-5 years sitting in their nuts and they've lost a tremendous amount of market share as a result. When they have released new tools they have largely failed to wow anyone and they've all but given up on the blogs.

I'm not saying Makita is garbage, I'm not even saying they aren't worth buying. Hell, I have several Makita tools and have been happy with all of them, but they have fallen behind the pack in the cordless market and their marketing team is awful.

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Your talk about hd and lowes begginings makes me remember a home improvement store that would advertise a lot on tv when I was a young'in. Do you remember Homebase? and what happened to them? Did they turn into what is home depot today or has home depot been around since them? Growing up I was oblivious to tools and hardware stores

We never had any Homebase stores in our area. They are still around, but my understanding is that they are only in the Western States. I grew up a stones throw from a Coast to Coast Hardware. They were eventually bought by ServiceStar who was in turn bought by True Value if IIRC. Once TV came into the picture our local store started selling Trust Worthy Hardware for a short time before throwing in the towel. Now it's a Mexican restaurant.

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