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DCF899H Brushless Impact Wrench Review


Stercorarius

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So I figured with Jimbo's great video of the Milwaukee counterpart I'd do a short write up on the DeWalt for anyone that is thinking about getting one. As some background this thing doesn't see frequent use currently but when I was working summer hours it saw enough action that I'm confident in assessing it. I purchased this unit within a week of its release on amazon early this summer, before HD even had it online. I was for sure going to go with a Milwaukee before DeWalt released this piece. The only reason I went with a DeWalt was that I could get it for cheaper and there was no chance of anyone mistaking my batteries for theirs or the company's. I needed one to replace my older Milwaukee brushed 2663-20 that was stolen. The guy I work with has the Milwaukee 2762-20, my boss and his son have the Milwaukee 2763-20. I've handled all of these and so it has given me a background with Milwaukee Impacts that I will draw on for the review.

Pictures:

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Stats:

(DEWALT)/(2763-20)

Constant available torque (ft-lbs)

700/700

Speeds

3/2

Speed

1900rpm/?

Max Breakaway torque-reverse (ft-lbs)

1200/1100

Weight

5.8lbs/?

Review:

I'll try to be systematic about this but I warn you I do tend to get side tracked so bear with me.

The gun has an impressive aesthetically pleasing look compared to other bulky, awkward looking guns that DeWalt and their competitors have put out, but beauty can cover a multitude of sins so it was interesting to me to see how this gun would hold up.

The over-molded grip seems to hold up well to abuse and lubricants. The gun looks and feels very solid and can really take a beating. Everything from the battery mount to the direction selector feels very solid and the grip is extremely ergonomic. The quality feel is on par with my 2663 Milwaukee. It feels a lot better than the 2762 and 2763. I don't know if the new Milwaukees I have dealt with have been outliers but they all seem to have a less solid plastic shell and the batteries have a lot of play in them in the tools, not that it detracts from usability in any way, what does annoy me about the Milwaukees is the foofie direction switch. The 2663 had an amazing switch but the newer ones are stiff and flimsy even after they have gone in for warranty repair. The guy at the counter said they've been seeing a lot of direction switches go bad.

I know I sound hella biased right now but I'm trying to be objective as possible. The fact that the Milwaukees were able to have warranty repair done to them at no cost and were returned within a week gives them a huge leg up on the DeWalt. It took over a month for DeWalt to just get me replacement friction rings for my anvil that I paid freight for. Anyways back to the impact wrench.

First impressions were very positive. It has more than adequate torque. You can pull off seized axle nuts like nothing. If you want to it is more than capable of shearing lags or splitting 6x6 pressure treated posts right down the center if you over tighten a bolt running through it. Power and speed are no problem. It can run side by side with the Milwaukee all day with no noticeable difference between the two on power. It has three speeds over the Milwaukee's two. The mechanical sliding switch is nicer to deal with than Milwaukee's buttons but it is stiff at first and the force it takes to slide the thing out of first often makes you overshoot second and land in third so that was kinda a PITA till it worked itself out.

The one thing that is important to note is that the Milwaukee fuel has the buttons because their unit actually has an electronic control system so when it is in first it runs at 100 ft lbs and 700 ft lbs in second. Independent testing shows that the Milwaukee consistently gets fasteners to within a couple foot pounds of 100 with the feature. The Milwaukee has electronic torque control while the DeWalt relies on just changing speed to limit the torque. The speed selector on the DeWalt chooses a specific speed (400, 1200, or 1900 rpm) and the button on the Milwaukee chooses a specific torque (100 or 700). From what I hear the next generation of Milwaukees coming out this year will be equipped with one-key and you will be able to program the buttons from your phone to be a specific speed and torque independently of each other. Not only will the buttons be independent but you can change torque without adjusting the speed. It will cost more than the current Milwaukees so it may be worth holding out for, just be prepared to spend a good lump of cash. I think they said about 800 for the kit but I don't really remember and none of this info is official so don't quote me on it.

Back to the impact wrench though. As far as pros go it is affordable if you are into the system, it has a good balance, it feels quality in your hand, amazing run time and power, it holds up to harsh weather and dirty environments. Its an overall great impact wrench. As far as cons go the speed selector stiffness was kinda annoying but it isn't a big deal. I dislike how they don't offer a protective boot. I know it is rated for a six foot drop but I use it in harsh environments and I would like the added protection like Milwaukee offers. The other problem is I don't like how loose the tolerances are. It makes me think that the quality feel is only exterior and doesn't apply to the internals. What I mean by this is that the anvil (part that you stick your socket on) has a lot of play to it. It isn't just mine, the display models have it too. The Milwaukees have little to none. under extended extreme loads (a lot more extreme than you will see in any usual scenario that doesn't involve components that have seized together with plenty of corrosive "organic liquid fertilizer") the anvil starts to leak oil out the base so I have to oil it regularly. I'm not sure if that is a defect unique to my gun or if that is normal. Either way it doesn't detract from its functionality.

Here's what I want you to walk away from this with. If I had both the Milwaukee and the Dewalt side by side I would probably reach for the DeWalt every time because it feels better and I'm used to it. Other than that and the torque control (I always keep it in top speed so it doesn't matter to me) both are pretty identical. Both guns are extremely capable, quality guns. Neither have any real fatal flaws. If you are into the Milwaukee system get the Milwaukee, if you are into the DeWalt system get the DeWalt. If you aren't on the fence about getting the DeWalt you won't regret purchasing one. DeWalt really exceeded expectations on this one and proved that it can still run head to head with Milwaukee in an industrial setting. Great tool. It is a permanent fixture in my toolbags and will continue to see heavy use in a variety of applications.

I still want to see a tool fight between them though.

-Stercorarius

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Hey mate, great write up! I have not used either of the impact wrenches but you mentioned you wouldn't mind seeing a comparison between the two.

Here is one I stumbled upon on YouTube, although I don't think the TIA crew are a fan of this guy.

Sent from my 0PJA10 using Tapatalk

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Another important thing that I forgot to mention is that with the DeWalt all three versions,(detent pin, hog ring, and 7/16 quick attach), you get the same gun with the same internals and specs, just a different head. With the Milwaukee you have two separate guns. The hog ring 2763 and detent pin 2762. The detent pin has significantly less power for about the same price and is a pain to change sockets on. Milwuakee has a 3/4 drive with 1200 ft/lbs, putting it on par with the DeWalt. DeWalt doesn't have a 3/4 and Milwaukee doesn't have a 7/16 (right?). So that being said if you are required to or want a detent pin anvil I would go with the DeWalt because the Milwaukee is substantially lacking in power.

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Another important thing that I forgot to mention is that with the DeWalt all three versions,(detent pin, hog ring, and 7/16 quick attach), you get the same gun with the same internals and specs, just a different head. With the Milwaukee you have two separate guns. The hog ring 2763 and detent pin 2762. The detent pin has significantly less power for about the same price and is a pain to change sockets on. Milwuakee has a 3/4 drive with 1200 ft/lbs, putting it on par with the DeWalt. DeWalt doesn't have a 3/4 and Milwaukee doesn't have a 7/16 (right?). So that being said if you are required to or want a detent pin anvil I would go with the DeWalt because the Milwaukee is substantially lacking in power.

I like your write up on the Dewalt dcf899, it is a very capable tool. And yes if you are a current Dewalt 20v user then it would make sense to stick with the Dewalt brand and the same for Milwaukee. Milwaukee does have a 7/16 high torque impact, #2765-20 almost the same size and weight as the 2762 and 2763, but torque is lower at 300 ft lbs. and 500 ft lbs. in a two,speed switch. Tool is geared towards the installer with the quick bit exchange. The only deciding factor if getting into a new tool with no brand loyalty would be the warranty. Dewalt 3-years and Milwaukee 5-years.

Now with that all being said, I would like to see what the new makitas are offering, have seen the preliminary specs and they are close to the Milwaukee and Dewalt offerings. I see a nice Friday night tool fight brewing.

And james10million, we don't mention that guy or promote anything he does on this forum http://professional-power-tool-guide.com/power-tool-forum/index.php?/topic/7495-rule-update/.

Thanks.

John, Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk[emoji848]

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I like your write up on the Dewalt dcf899, it is a very capable tool. And yes if you are a current Dewalt 20v user then it would make sense to stick with the Dewalt brand and the same for Milwaukee. Milwaukee does have a 7/16 high torque impact, #2765-20 almost the same size and weight as the 2762 and 2763, but torque is lower at 300 ft lbs. and 500 ft lbs. in a two,speed switch. Tool is geared towards the installer with the quick bit exchange. The only deciding factor if getting into a new tool with no brand loyalty would be the warranty. Dewalt 3-years and Milwaukee 5-years.

Now with that all being said, I would like to see what the new makitas are offering, have seen the preliminary specs and they are close to the Milwaukee and Dewalt offerings. I see a nice Friday night tool fight brewing.

And james10million, we don't mention that guy or promote anything he does on this forum http://professional-power-tool-guide.com/power-tool-forum/index.php?/topic/7495-rule-update/.

Thanks.

John, Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk[emoji848]

Damn, sorry guys!

I don't hang out enough In here to be up on that, my bad...

I'm more of a periscope guy :)

Hand on heart no more RTR... to be honest I have never really herd of the guy, was just searching a comparison to help out in the thread.

Take care.

Sent from my 0PJA10 using Tapatalk

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Nice write up, I know what you mean with the selector switch, my DCD 995 and my DCF 887 have the same problem, except the switch on my 995 has only gotten stiffer. Milwaukee does have a 7/16 quick change model as well. Nice write up though dude!

Jimbo

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Not sure on the comparable build quality of newer tools, but on older Dewalts the selector switch was always the first piece to go. Never had that problem with Milwaukee but that's just my personal experience.

Yeah the reversal switch problem seems to be unique to the impact wrench. All the new Milwaukee drills and impact drivers I have handled had no issues with the switch. They all felt nice to me with the exception of the loose batteries. Idk why the loose batteries annoy me but they do.
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Stercorarius I got the DCF899H in today bro and I gotta say it's nice it's a bit shorter then my 2763 but feels good in the hand any way I'm not good at specs in stuff but here's a couple pics, the only bad thing is this Dewalt doesn't belong to me :( ordered it for my bro through my Amazon account I'm almost tempted to jump on one.....almost ;) Oh and Big Congrats on getting front page man!!!

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