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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had to install the letters shown in the attached photo to the stone-faced monuments. Each letter has 3 or 4 studs, so I have to drill a 3/16" hole for each stud. There are 6 sets of these letters altogether, so when drilling that many holes, my mind always wanders to whether or not I'm using the best tool for the job.

I currently have a bunch of the DeWalt 20v stuff including the SDS rotary hammer which works great and is what I use for installs like the above one. I'm always reading up on new tools, specs, etc. though just to see how everything compares. So I figured this morning while I'm laid up sick, I would compare the various cordless SDS rotary hammers.

Milwaukee kills it in IPM and RPM but the Impact Energy is significantly lower than everything else. So that makes me wonder if there is a perfect combination of IPM, RPM and Impact Energy when it comes to rotary hammers or.......? It really makes me wonder how these would shake out in a head-to-head comparison. Take all the tools listed below, use the same brand bit in each, and drill twenty ¼" holes then twenty ½" holes....who wins?

Anyway, here's a breakdown:

Hilti TE 4-A18

Weight: 7.3 lbs.
RPM: 1090
IPM: 5200
Impact Energy: 1.5 ft. lbs.

DeWalt DCH253

Weight: 6.4 lbs.
RPM: 1200
IPM: 4500
Impact Energy: 1.7 ft. lbs.

Milwaukee M18

Weight: 5.5 lbs.
RPM: 1300
IPM: 7000
Impact Energy: 1.0 ft. lbs.

Makita X2 LXT (specs are if using 2 batteries I believe)

Weight: 7.3 lbs.
RPM: 1200
IPM: 4800
Impact Energy: 2.21 ft. lbs.

Bosch RHH181-01
Weight: 5.7 lbs.
RPM: 1400
IPM: 4500
Impact Energy: ?? Not Published ??

Bosch RHS181K

Weight: 4.6 lbs.
RPM: 1050
IPM: 4950
Impact Energy: ?? Not Published ??
 

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Wouldn't apply to this job, but might a lower impact energy help in situations like drilling through porcelain and ceramic tile to lower the chance of cracking a tile?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Good question. Drilling porcelain and ceramic is something I pretty much thought should mainly be done with a diamond core bit in a standard drill. I thought using any kind of a hammer or SDS was a big no-no due to the likelihood of it cracking.

That being said, I think there was a video that showed that once you get past the glazing on the tile, you can use a masonry bit in non-hammer mode to finish the hole. I think also the amount of thinset or whatever is behind the tile comes into play. If the tile has a nice, even backing, it reduced the likelihood the tile will break. If there are air pockets, the likelihood of breaking goes way up.

I could be wrong. I'm not a tile guy, I'm a sign guy. I actually started a discussion a while back about drilling tile for another sign I installed...
 

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Ceramic is soft ...

Porcelin tile - start it with a PTC bit, once through tile, use the appropiate hammerdrill bit.

Moze - I have the M18 Fuel Hammer. Have yet to put it through it's paces. I generally reach for the corded Hilti Tec7 if power is available....

Bearing your pic - application, I can see how you would prefer a cordless.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Ceramic is soft ...

Porcelin tile - start it with a PTC bit, once through tile, use the appropiate hammerdrill bit.

Moze - I have the M18 Fuel Hammer. Have yet to put it through it's paces. I generally reach for the corded Hilti Tec7 if power is available....

Bearing your pic - application, I can see how you would prefer a cordless.....
Thanks for the info.

Is the glazing on the ceramic 'soft' or just the 'core' of the tile? From my (limited) understanding, the glazing is the part that's hard to drill through and once you get past that, it's easier.

This is another thread I started a while back. Still not sure what kind of tile it was...I assume porcelain. It was tough drilling though. I didn't have a great way of keeping the bit wet....next time I'll plan ahead for that part better. In one of the PTC videos on YouTube, they show a drip dispenser that mounts above the hole. I may try to find one of those.

I'll have to give the PTC bits a shot. What is their life compared to a diamond core bit?

And do you mean you have the Fuel hammer drill? I didn't think Milwaukee had a Fuel rotary hammer yet...?
 

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I doubt I would ever use a cordless anything for drilling masonry or stone, the performance is just not comparable to the corded tool.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Then I would guess you haven't used a cordless SDS rotary hammer.

On paper, no, the performance isn't the same. But it depends on what you're drilling, how many holes, what size holes, etc.

I guarantee I can drill a hundred and fifty 3/16" holes (a typical install for me) with my cordless DeWalt faster than I could with a larger and heavier corded version.

And actually, the performance is closer than you might think:


Hilti TE 7 (corded)

1050 RPM
4980 IPM
1.3 ft. lbs. Impact Energy

DeWalt 20v (cordless)

1200 RPM
4500 BPM
1.7 ft. lbs. Impact Energy

The cordless DeWalt has higher RPM, less BPM and higher IE.

For reference, this is a comparison I did showing my cordless DeWalt vs. a Hilti TE 30. The difference between the two wasn't noticeable enough to tell a difference.
 

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I just bought a Milwaukee SDS plus, it drills just as fast as my corded. As a matter of fact I retired my Bosch corded in favor of the cordless.
 

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The Grand Wazoo
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Then I would guess you haven't used a cordless SDS rotary hammer.

On paper, no, the performance isn't the same. But it depends on what you're drilling, how many holes, what size holes, etc.

I guarantee I can drill a hundred and fifty 3/16" holes (a typical install for me) with my cordless DeWalt faster than I could with a larger and heavier corded version.

And actually, the performance is closer than you might think:


Hilti TE 7 (corded)

1050 RPM
4980 IPM
1.3 ft. lbs. Impact Energy

DeWalt 20v (cordless)

1200 RPM
4500 BPM
1.7 ft. lbs. Impact Energy

The cordless DeWalt has higher RPM, less BPM and higher IE.

For reference, this is a comparison I did showing my cordless DeWalt vs. a Hilti TE 30. The difference between the two wasn't noticeable enough to tell a difference.
I own the Hilti TE-7 in both corded and cordless, if I'm drilling more than three holes I'm stringing a cord and starting the welder.
 

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No need to go crazy buying a water containment system to keep the bit cool. The rule of thumb is water+cooling just extends the bits a lot better than without. The tile in Your link was most likely porcelain. The PTC would have ate through that like butter. Ceramics is a much softer beast, but any decent drill should get through. What's critical in either application is getting through the top to start - and this is where the PTC excels.

Different strokes for different folks. The PTC only comes in those 3 sizes listed, and it's superior for critical hole placement drilling. If you need to go larger - more towards rough plumbing holes like 1" , 1 1/2 " - non segmented produces a cleaner cut IMO and has less tendancy to walk on the tile.


And you are right. I briefed the original post wrong. I though you were discussing just hammer drills. I'm not sure specs spell it all......

FWIW, I have done some crazy crazy things with my Hilti Tec7C when I'm too lazy to grab the Tec50. I've pushed it beyond what it should be doing and it's never gotten hot on me
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I own the Hilti TE-7 in both corded and cordless, if I'm drilling more than three holes I'm stringing a cord and starting the welder.
99% of the holes I drill in stone, concrete, etc. are 3/16", so cordless works fine for what I do. I wouldn't want to use a heavier, larger tool even if it was stronger. I'm guessing you're drilling holes for supply lines and fixtures so using a corded version makes sense.

I'd love to try Hilti's cordless stuff to see how it compares.

Anyway, hope my other post didn't sound snarky...you obviously know what works best for your specific work.

No need to go crazy buying a water containment system to keep the bit cool. The rule of thumb is water+cooling just extends the bits a lot better than without. The tile in Your link was most likely porcelain. The PTC would have ate through that like butter. Ceramics is a much softer beast, but any decent drill should get through. What's critical in either application is getting through the top to start - and this is where the PTC excels.

Different strokes for different folks. The PTC only comes in those 3 sizes listed, and it's superior for critical hole placement drilling. If you need to go larger - more towards rough plumbing holes like 1" , 1 1/2 " - non segmented produces a cleaner cut IMO and has less tendancy to walk on the tile.


And you are right. I briefed the original post wrong. I though you were discussing just hammer drills. I'm not sure specs spell it all......

FWIW, I have done some crazy crazy things with my Hilti Tec7C when I'm too lazy to grab the Tec50. I've pushed it beyond what it should be doing and it's never gotten hot on me
I'll pick up one of the PTC bits. Fortunately they make them in a 3/16" which is what I use. Not sure when I'll need it next, but at least I'll have it on hand.

Milwaukee has new diamond core bits out that I'd like to try as well. They claim they use a higher quality of diamond and claim "10x longer life". Don't see them for sale anywhere yet though.
 

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The Grand Wazoo
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99% of the holes I drill in stone, concrete, etc. are 3/16", so cordless works fine for what I do. I wouldn't want to use a heavier, larger tool even if it was stronger. I'm guessing you're drilling holes for supply lines and fixtures so using a corded version makes sense.

I'd love to try Hilti's cordless stuff to see how it compares.

Anyway, hope my other post didn't sound snarky...you obviously know what works best for your specific work.
My corded Hilti is lighter than it's cordless counterpart, 36 volt batteries are a little heavy.
 

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Wouldn't apply to this job, but might a lower impact energy help in situations like drilling through porcelain and ceramic tile to lower the chance of cracking a tile?
You would use a hammer drill on porcelain?

And, all of these years I've been wasting money on diamond bits and water feeds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, turns out there was comparison done, I just didn't know about it and it didn't turn up in my search earlier.

For those interested: click

My first choice would be the Hilti. Second and third would be a tie between Bosch and Milwaukee.

I'm half thinking of selling my DeWalt and upgrding.
 

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99% of the holes I drill in stone, concrete, etc. are 3/16", so cordless works fine for what I do. I wouldn't want to use a heavier, larger tool even if it was stronger. I'm guessing you're drilling holes for supply lines and fixtures so using a corded version makes sense.

I'd love to try Hilti's cordless stuff to see how it compares.

Anyway, hope my other post didn't sound snarky...you obviously know what works best for your specific work.

I'll pick up one of the PTC bits. Fortunately they make them in a 3/16" which is what I use. Not sure when I'll need it next, but at least I'll have it on hand.

Milwaukee has new diamond core bits out that I'd like to try as well. They claim they use a higher quality of diamond and claim "10x longer life". Don't see them for sale anywhere yet though.
For your application a cordless TE2 would be ideal, not too expensive either.

You would use a hammer drill on porcelain?

And, all of these years I've been wasting money on diamond bits and water feeds.
I tried it twice and cracked the tiles.
 

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Lanya LaPunta said:
You would use a hammer drill on porcelain? And, all of these years I've been wasting money on diamond bits and water feeds.
I wouldn't use the ones that my company has (Makita corded SDS and a couple of Dewalt cordless), I was just curious if the lower impact energy might make it where you could use it on porcelain with a good solid backing. Currently I use a diamond bit and water as well, it's just tedious and time consuming.
 
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