Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

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dustandsnow
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Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby dustandsnow » Mon Jul 25, 2016 12:32 pm

Hey everyone,

I already have a Dewalt 18-Volt Compact Drill and am wondering if it can deliver enough torque to drive lag screws on the playa. Or is it necessary to have an impact driver?

Thanks!

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Jackass » Mon Jul 25, 2016 12:55 pm

It might have enough torque to wrap you up and twist your wrists something fierce. Try it at home first, but I don't think it's going to cut it. Unless it's a hammer drill it won't produce the "hammering" impact action that you need to continue driving lags.
Sooner or later, it will get real strange...

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby mudpuppy000 » Mon Jul 25, 2016 1:42 pm

Actually you don't want a hammer drill, that pounds the drill bit in and out for drilling into concrete. An impact driver is what you want as it's a rotational hammering action.

As far as using a normal drill it might go in most of the way but you'll need something else to finish it off/extract it.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby trilobyte » Mon Jul 25, 2016 2:12 pm

I've never tried using a compact drill for playa lag screws. From the first time it was demonstrated to me (thanks, Just_Joe!) it was one of those 'clearly the right tool for the job' situations and I didn't want to risk both trashing the wrong tool and getting stuck with a bunch of screws to get in/out of the playa without power tools.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby dustandsnow » Mon Jul 25, 2016 2:26 pm

Cool, thanks for the replies all. I will pick up an impact driver and test both of them.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Just_Joe » Mon Jul 25, 2016 7:47 pm

trilobyte wrote:I've never tried using a compact drill for playa lag screws. From the first time it was demonstrated to me (thanks, Just_Joe!) it was one of those 'clearly the right tool for the job' situations.....


My pleasure.
One of these days I'm going to start with a drill and finish with a ratchet wrench, just to see how it goes. I can't imagine it's any more difficult than those screw in earth anchors that required a concrete stake to twist in.
I'll be on playa Aug 12 for an event. Maybe I'll remember not to forget......

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Joeln » Sun Aug 07, 2016 9:28 am

We just hammered in our 18 inch lags with one of these and had no trouble last year. Pull them out with a flat prybar.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby maladroit » Sun Aug 07, 2016 11:03 am

Joeln wrote:We just hammered in our 18 inch lags with one of these and had no trouble last year. Pull them out with a flat prybar.


That's some expensive rebar.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby A-RockLeFrench » Sun Aug 07, 2016 11:15 am

The first year we brought lag screws we only had one impact driver in camp but several 18v drills.

Because everybody wanted to play with the screws we used the drills to set/pull a good chunk of the screws. The impact driver was faster but the drills also worked fine, YMMV.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby GreyCoyote » Sun Aug 07, 2016 3:31 pm

With an 18 inch lag, my 550 ft/lb impact was struggling to turn it for the last two inches.

There seems to be a disproportionate increase in drive power required after about 14-15 inches.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Rusted Iron » Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:02 pm

I'm considering trading the sledge hammer and very long stakes in for an impact wrench and lag screws. My hesitation is my wrist. I tore cartilage a couple of years ago while cutting sheet metal with a powered shear. (It bound up and twisted. ) It healed well enough for everyday use but flares flares up with certain activities, particularly torquing activities. I can use drills, saws, and other undemanding tools but I'm not sure about this one. I'm hoping that voices of experience can address this question.

Thanks.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby A-RockLeFrench » Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:30 am

Screwing a lag into the playa with an impact driver is probably way easier on your wrists than the damn sledge hammer and yanking those stakes back out. If you can use a drill, you shouldn't have any problem with the lag screws. Use an impact driver though, it will be easier than a drill/hammer drill.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Rusted Iron » Sun Jul 09, 2017 7:51 pm

Grazie

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Canoe » Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:25 pm

Rusted Iron wrote:... It healed well enough for everyday use but flares flares up with certain activities, particularly torquing activities...

When my nephew broke his hand, he couldn't use a hammer drill, but could use an impact driver/drill: put the drill in place, then placed his leg to brace the torque of the driver/drill handle, then held the driver/drill body-grip seam in place against his leg while he squeezed the trigger. Either hand works, as the torque is contained by the leg when holding/pressing the drill against against the leg. Awkward, but works. Squeeze lightly the first time until you get the hang of holding it against your leg without it taking off. Not perfect for the healing hand, but much better.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby markusze » Fri Aug 04, 2017 11:07 pm

Good power drill will sink and retrieve lags in 10 seconds. No need to turn the hammer action on at all. I save that for rebar hammering. But it also needs a gennie to deliver 8+amps. I also have a socket wrench backup if gennie or drill dies. Had to use ot once and it was a breeze

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby global village idiot » Tue Oct 10, 2017 11:50 am

Is there any point to pilot holes?

I use one of these at work for drilling property corner holes into sidewalks (not my image but I have a few that are functionally identical):

Image

I also own a couple brace-and-bit drills with auger bits I think might be appropriate.

Image

In addition, I can see no reason for the brace not to work with a socket sized for the lag bolt.

My friend is keen on an electric impact wrench, and I'm inclining to her opinion as well. I also believe in having "High Tech/Low Tech/No Tech" approaches for really important stuff - and getting shelter secured is more than a bit important.

Any thoughts on the tools above? Are pilot holes drilled in the ground worth the trouble? Will the tools above do a decent enough job of drilling a pilot hole and then sinking a lag bolt to justify bringing them as a backup to the impact wrench?

Thanks!
gvi

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby BBadger » Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:01 pm

Unless you're driving much larger bolts you probably don't need one. The typical 3/8" or 1/2" screws don't need a pilot hole, and may weaken the hold on the screw.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby torrey.smith » Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:27 pm

GreyCoyote wrote:With an 18 inch lag, my 550 ft/lb impact was struggling to turn it for the last two inches.

There seems to be a disproportionate increase in drive power required after about 14-15 inches.


I use a 780 ft-lb cordless Makita. It's worked for:

3/8x14
1/2x18
3/4x24

...and 1.75x36 custom (took a while :mrgreen: )

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Ratty » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:10 pm

So i happened to be at harbor freight and home depot today. I want a cordless impact driver for my 12 lags. 20volt 1.5 amp...18volt 3 amp...its all a mystery to me.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby BBadger » Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:30 pm

Ratty wrote:So i happened to be at harbor freight and home depot today. I want a cordless impact driver for my 12 lags. 20volt 1.5 amp...18volt 3 amp...its all a mystery to me.


You'll probably be fine with the 18V varieties which are pretty common. I think some of the 20V ones are just a different higher-end line or something, maybe just to differentiate.

There are also some "oil impulse" impact drivers that are quite a bit quieter and still just as powerful. I'll probably get one to replace my burned out impact driver, and it'll be nice having it quieter for night time setup. I think Home Depot's brand Rigid has one for a decent price and with 2x batteries.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Ratty » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:43 am

At HD the lady showed me one on sale. She said all of the brands will have one on sale before xmas. I have less than 20 lags to put in. Oh, and then there is quarter inch drive or larger???
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby burner von braun » Wed Oct 11, 2017 10:25 am

I was looking at impact drivers the other day Ratty, and the way I understand it, at least in regard to the 'yellow' brand that I was looking at, the main difference between the 18v and the 20v is that the new 20v is going with the Lithium Ion battery pack vs. the older 18v which uses Nickel Cadmium battery packs, and the two are not interchangeable, thus they emphasize 20v versus 18v to draw a clear distinction. The tests as I recall show the 20v marginally more powerful, but with longer, better battery life. I went with the 20v, but then I'm starting fresh, with no other 18v legacy tools that I'd be 'leaving behind'. So far I'm using it a lot and really happy with it. If you're getting one strictly for on-playa use, you may not need one quite as expensive as the 'yellow' brand. Meanwhile, amps are your friend, the more the better in this case, but beyond that I'll leave it to others who are more knowledgeable about electrical components if they wish to explain the particulars.

I had not heard of the quieter 'oil impulse' models, BB, thanks for the info.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Meat Hunter » Wed Oct 11, 2017 11:25 am

Ratty,

Knowing how you like to camp; just a thought. You might wish to consider how (if you need to recharge the battery) how you will do this.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Ratty » Wed Oct 11, 2017 12:34 pm

I'll go to the neighbors and borrow a cup of electricity. (or use a giant ratchet). I have to draw the line somewhere. I figure a battery can put in all 16 of my 18 inch lags.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:48 pm

I've always used a 1/2" drill cause it's what I've got.

Don't go with anything smaller than 3/8".

More amps = more better.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Just_Joe » Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:31 pm

Ratty wrote:At HD the lady showed me one on sale. She said all of the brands will have one on sale before xmas. I have less than 20 lags to put in. Oh, and then there is quarter inch drive or larger???

The "Green" ones are only sold at HD.
Look for the kit that has an impact driver (for lags), a drill/driver, two batteries and a charger for $99.
You'll love it.
I've fully embraced the "green" ecosystem and have tire inflator, work light, jig saw, skill saw, sawzall, fan, leaf blower, buffer,12V charger, etc.
Some of my stuff is ten years old and still going strong.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Ratty » Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:48 pm

Thanks Joe. I'll take another look. I am going to toss out all of my old battery op drills.

Thanks Figgy, I had a feeling that size matters.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby BBadger » Wed Oct 11, 2017 7:17 pm

For driving in lag screws into playa, or regular use around the house, you'll probably be fine with a 1/4" driver though.
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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby Ratty » Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:33 pm

http://toolsinaction.com/power-tool-inf ... and-volts/

Hmmmm. Think I'll buy something on sale at Home Depo instead of a cheap imitation.


Now for something a little different.

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Re: Compact Drill vs. Impact Driver for Lag Screws

Postby FIGJAM » Wed Oct 11, 2017 9:24 pm

Little known fact.

Lou Costello invented the ice machine. 8)
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