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New Hitachi Tools


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While at Lowes today picking up sheet rock and other supplies for this coming week, I seen a new Hitachi Drill that caught my attention (Hitachi DS18DSAL).  It was not the normal DV18DL Li-Ion hammer drill that we use and that I've been used to seeing, but an all new 18 volt Hitachi drill design with a 'Slide On" battery!

The HitachiPowerTools.com web site that I've visited many times makes almost no mention of these newer tools.  I've even asked Hitachi's tech support personnel as recently as of ~6 weeks ago if Hitachi has any new Li-Ion tools in the pike and I was told "No".  I was told the series of tools I have is the newest line of tools Hitachi offers and that Hitachi will "NOT" be offering any 18V tools with slide on batteries because that would ruin their theme of backwards compatibility.  I really like my Hitachi tools, but I've been terribly disappointed with the customer support I've received nearly every single time I've called Hitachi with questions or needed help and that's one of the reasons why I've been looking at other tool companies (Milwaukee, Makita, DeWALT, etc).  In every single case where I've called Hitachi customer / tech support, I end up knowing more about their products than their people I'm speaking with and that's a bit frustrating since I'm just the user.  The Hitachi support personnel that I end up speaking with don't have 'ANY' real world first hand experience with their cordless power tools and simply read back info from a spec sheet or book or flow chart, etc, and often tell me they don't know the answer to my questions.  Then when I ask them if I can get answers to my questions, they often become silent and seem bewildered on what to do next.  My experiences from calling Hitachi customer / tech support have almost been as bad as I remember when calling Dell Computers years ago and speaking to somebody in India that's reading from a script, but without the Indian accent.

Back to the topic at hand.  In any case, this new 18 Volt drill I seen at Lowes (Hitachi DS18DSAL) now has a built in white LED light just above the trigger, a metal belt hook, a new slide on battery and a much slimmer grip with better ergonomics, better balance and a significantly lighter weight than the DV18DL hammer drills we use.  It also had a plastic coated chuck and was probably (hopefully) not their top of the line product based on its price, but these changes did kind of take me by surprise. 

Hitachi has a number of cordless power tools with slide on batteries available in other countries, but it looks like we'll be seeing more of them here in US before too long.  And Hitachi's newest higher end cordless power tools are looking very interesting.  For instance, their newest 14 volt impact driver not only has the slide-on battery with new ergonomics, but it also features a new high performance bushless motor, a newly designed trigger that uses 50% less force to actuate while offering a longer service life, has a switch and monitor panel that allows the user to adjust the "drive duty / rotational speed" and the "hammer mode" to better suit a wider range of applications, and the user can now monitor battery usage.

Here's a link to Hitachi's newest 14 volt impact driver with these features if you want to read more about it...


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