Cordless Drill Overhaul


[Alexander.m] shows us how to do a major overhaul on a cordless drill, replacing pretty much everything but the case. He needed some more power, but found the price tag of the bigger drills to be prohibitive. He opted for a more hacked together approach and used a  24 volt 1.4 hp hobby motor as a drive. He had to make a custom enclosure for the batteries too. The final result may not be the prettiest thing in the world, with that giant battery pack on the bottom, but it probably gets the job done pretty well and cost less than half of what a new one would have.

15 thoughts on “Cordless Drill Overhaul

  1. mean looking drill but not worth the effort. That thing would be really unbalanced and doesn’t have a strong side handle for the bigger outdoor drilling projects. An unbalanced drill will cause a lot of hand fatigue if you use it for any period of time. I don’t know who pays $300 for a single drill but I know you can get a really nice 18-24v drill for under $100 that has a side handle, charger, light, stud finder, quick chuck, 2 speeds, and the torque stop thing for screws.

    Cool project though.

  2. please someone tell that guy that photo booth has an option in the menus to auto-flip new pictures, so they’re not all mirrored.

    [remarkably good pictures from a computer webcam though]

  3. also, almost any consumer-quality drill you get for around $100 USD will control the speed of the motor with PWM. This guy’s hacked drill, however, merely changes the voltage by connecting the batteries in series or parallel. not only does that lower the torque at low speeds, but you only have two speeds to work with.

    like they say, don’t build what you can buy, you’ll always pay for it in the end.

  4. @andrew “like they say, don’t build what you can buy”

    Um… it looks like you’re on the wrong website. This one is for people who enjoy hacking things, rather than simply buying ;)

  5. I worked on the maintenance crew at a summer camp this this past year. Without a doubt, a good drill is worth every penny. I used one, without fail, every single day for 3 months. It is worthwhile to pony up for something that will be comfortable to use and durable, even if you’re just a homeowner.

  6. This is awesome, I want to go the other way and make a tiny “screwdriver” drill with li-ion battery packs (I have a couple of the $12 cell phones from walmart to strip the batteries from, and now that I think of it I bought a black and decker screwdriver that I never use because of its pitiful performance with 4 AA NiMH)

    While I agree that you can get a “better” drill/screwdriver for the price, that isn’t what this is about. This is about learning engineering with a hands-on approach and getting exactly what you want at the price you want to pay.

    Face the fact that the exact features or format you need is probably not available (if you are as picky as me), and modifying is probably the best option.

    All this guy needs to do is move up to Li-Ion power (I suggest using commercially available battery packs though) and use epoxy and fiberglass for the external mod, then it will look great and weigh less. (I am not saying the bearings and gears will last, but for $30 you can get spares from a new drill when they do go.)

    This seems relevant:

    Maybe Hackaday could contact Tim Hunkin and get an interview? That would be epic and cool.

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