Hilti hammer drill / with 1/2" keyed detachable chuck

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Review by devann posted 04-17-2011 05:01 AM 21231 views 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Hilti hammer drill / with 1/2" keyed detachable chuck No-picture-s No-picture-s Click the pictures to enlarge them

This is a review for a drill that I’ve been using for a few years now. I will not do reviews on tools that I have not owned or new tools that I haven’t put through some serious use. I had second thoughts about posting this review, Hilti wasn’t even listed in the tools that have been reviewd in this forum. And the cost of the tool not exactly being in the range of most hobby type woodworkers I realize that many would have no use for such a tool. But I know that there are many LJs that earn a living with their tools and spend some serious cash to purchase quality tools so I decided it would be a worthwhile post.

First let me address the cost. $560.00 for a heavy duty 1/2” drill is a bit on the high end of the spectrum. The drill was $440.00 and another $120.00 for the keyed 1/2” chuck. The extra chuck adds a whole new dimension to the drill. With the standard SDS chuck I could only use the drill for making holes up to 1”dia. in concrete and light chipping hammer work. With the keyed chuck I can use the drill for many of the same applications has my other heavy duty drill. And you can change the chucks in a matter of seconds, you pull forward on a ring and it pops off, no tools required.

Being a carpenter/woodworker I don’t have a lot of use for hammer drills. Most of the time that I use it, is for attaching anchors in concrete and most of those are Tapcon screws. This might seem like overkill to some but I don’t plan on ever buying another hammer drill. After watching my brother buy several of those $100-$150 keyed chuck hammer drills over the years and seeing them burn up after only getting a few jobs done I got hold of a used Dewalt with the SDS chuck. The difference was like night and day. The drill bits that you snap in as opposed to the ones that are used in a keyed chuck hammer drill quickly payed for themselves.
The DeWalt, I gave it to my brother. He’s still using it. I purchased this Hilti after the trigger went out on the DeWalt and I promised that a job would be done on time and my tool repairman could not fix the DeWalt in time.

As I mentioned, having two chucks for this drill adds to the workload that can be placed on it. When we build heavy timber roof trusses we use it to run a 2 1/4”self feeding fostener bit to countersink the lag screws that are required. I have used it with an auger bit but I generally use a Porter Cable 1/2” right angle drill for auger bits.
I’ve also used it to mix sackcrete in a bucket and I sometimes give it to my drywall guy to mix mud. We’ve used it for some light concrete chipping a few times and I’ve even let an electician use it one day to jackhammer out a spot where he forgot to put his conduit in a poolhouse slab. I most recently used the drill to make a hole in the last project that I posted here on LJ. I was going to use the drill press, but setting up the clamp to use a self feeding drill bit to make one hole hardly seemed worth the trouble.

The drill does include an interface for a TE DRS-M dust removal module. And the biggest single sheet of a paper towel that I’ve ever seen. The only negative thing that I have say about the tool are the latches on the tool case. They seem to be upside down, had to write on the case “open other side”. I see that I’m not the only one to do that. Being a foreign made tool it must be me being an American thing. You know, like those people that drive on the wrong side of the road.

I’ll give it the five stars. It’s held up well and paid for itself. That’s what we buy tools for.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

View devann's profile


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9 comments so far

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3995 days

#1 posted 04-17-2011 05:13 AM

Thanx for the your detailed input, Darrell. I don’t foresee a need for such a tool, but it is always good to have such info for consideration if/when the need arises.

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19833 posts in 4593 days

#2 posted 04-17-2011 07:11 AM

Out here the only place you can get Hilti is at the Hilti store. Is it the same back there?

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View devann's profile


2257 posts in 3609 days

#3 posted 04-17-2011 06:53 PM

Thanks for looking, guys. Topa, This drill came out of a HD store. Seems the big orange box has a deal where Hilti gets a section right there with the other tools. Hilti also has a saleman dedicated to that store. I waited until the last minute before making the purchase.
Waiting for my DeWalt to be repaired I had borrowed a TE 6-C model from a GC that I was working for. My deadline was approaching so I ask to borrow their hammer drill again and it had mysteriously disappeared. I decided to purchase my own but a call to my regular Hilti guy showed that he was too far away. So to HD I went and the Hilti guy there showed me that for another $40 I could have one that drilled 1” holes instead of 3/4” holes.
I did purchase the keyed chuck later when I needed two heavy duty drills going at one time. And while I’m here banging on this keyboard about this Hilti review. Let me say that Patrick and the rest of the crew in Austin at the Central Texas Hilti office have given me nothing but great service for their products over the years.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19833 posts in 4593 days

#4 posted 04-17-2011 07:57 PM

I think I vaguely remember Hilti powder actuated tools there briefly many moons ago.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View RJS's profile


89 posts in 3763 days

#5 posted 04-18-2011 02:30 AM

We have a HILTI Impact, Hammer Drill, and sawzall at work. They FAR Exceed the expectations of the tools. I am seriously considering buying these for my house. The batteries last longer and charge faster. The power of both drills leaves DeWalt in the dust, and the sawzall will cut circles around the DeWalt. The HILTI store gave us credit for all DeWalt tools that we turn in. I think that HILTI makes DeWalt seem lie Junk, and no I am not a HILTI dealer, just a user.

-- RJ

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19833 posts in 4593 days

#6 posted 04-18-2011 02:51 AM

RJS, Thanks for the info on their battery tools. i will definitely buy some if my Ridgids go away. I don’t know how much longer I’m going to work. If I had a lot of working years left, I’d switch over just to gain the productivity.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View RonnieLaneDesigns's profile


3 posts in 3833 days

#7 posted 04-18-2011 03:57 AM

Hilti products are great, and their 2 part epoxys are top notch. ALL hilti cases are upside down, I dumped many drill bits all over the ground before it sunk into my head!

View IFHConstruction's profile


13 posts in 3608 days

#8 posted 04-21-2011 02:20 AM

I have a whole row of Hilti products in my warehouse from cordless drills to large breakers. I can’t say enough good things about their tools. They are built tough, very ergonomic, and are more powerful and robust than anything else out there. The only two drawbacks; they are expensive and they are the most sought after brand by tool theifs. 

That being said when you buy a Hilti expect it to last. We beat the heck out of ours and they keep going strong like the day we bought them. I have two of the sf 151 cordless drills that I keep in the truck that see daily abuse and they work like new including the batteries. One is 6 years old and the other is about 3. We have used them to mix countless bags of concrete, thinset, and drilled through everything you could imagine. We have never had a chuck go out either. 

If you can afford them, buy them. They will be with you a long time and make all you jobs easier. 

View pitchnsplinters's profile


263 posts in 4355 days

#9 posted 08-15-2011 04:49 AM

That’s a fantastic drill. They bore holes in concrete like no other. The keyed chuck option is cool too.

-- Just 'cause a cat has kittens in the oven, it don't make 'em biscuits.

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