Stynus saw the Drill Battery Charger Repair article and sent in his drill repair to Make a Cordless Drill with a Dead Battery a Corded Drill. By gutting the battery pack of the old nicad cells and installing a connector directly to the internal power connection you now have a simple way of powering the drill using an external source. One other thing that can be done is rebuild your drill battery pack, you can often get replacement nicad cells quite inexpensively compared to the replacement battery unit from the manufacturer. I wonder if cordless drill manufacturers will take notice: half the time I find myself using a cordless tool in a place where I could have easily plugged its power supply into the mains power. I wonder how the drill feels to use balance-wise when it doesn’t have the battery weight on it.
You could use a high VA output transformer connected to mains voltage with a bridge rectifier to convert to DC, A cordless drill will withstand a much higher voltage than it’s rated, so higher the better. ElectroNick, c’mon, if the tool manufacturers made a way to use your cordless tool hooked to 120ac how would they sell you all their overpriced batteries! IMHO this would require a bulky power source providing at least 10A – something like the one from a desktop PC. Join 11,264 of us on the Homemade Tools forum, and get your free 50 Must Read Homemade Tools ebook. Homemade conversion of cordless drill to corded operation as a means of extending the tool's utility following battery pack failure. I currently have a 4 peice cordless tool set from Coleman, that I always wished had an option to be run off of an outlet. I decided to use one of my microwave transformers for this project because they are easy to find and free.
Since the transformer won’t fit inside the battery pack itsself, I decided that I would build a box to house the transformer, which would plug into the wall, and then I would have a long cord running from that box to the battery pack which would could be inserted into the drill, circular saw, saws-all or flashlight. The only thing that would be housed in the battery pack is a bridge rectifier that I had purchased at radioshack for another project and never used. I decided to keep the ends on the extension cord so that they could be used to keep the cord from being able to be pulled out of the box.
I hooked up the AC side of the bridge rectifier to the end from a computer power cable which was plugged into the extension cord. I closed the box back up, gave it another test and the battery pack side of the project was complete. I used small bolts to connect the connectors from the secondary to the prongs on the extension cord.
Then, I taped them up so that they couldn’t contact anything else and stuffed it into the box.
I cut notches in the side peices so that when I screwed them in place they fit over the cords comming out of the box but were too small to let the cord ends come out. After the box was all sealed up I added some rubber feet that I salvaged from microwave ovens. Cordless Drill to Corded was posted on June 16, 2012 at 10:03 pm in Uncategorized and tagged as batteries, tools. Cordless power drills are quite powerful these days, so much in fact that I don’t recall the last time an 18V model was too wimpy for my drilling or driving needs. Corded hammer drills typically operate at higher top rotational speeds than cordless models, making them more suitable for non-drilling accessories such as paint stripping and metal buffing wheels. There’s also something to be said about pulling out a corded drill and knowing it will be ready to go. As wonderfully ergonomic as cordless tools have become, they are also designed to be lightweight and compact.
My corded hammer drill is maybe 5 years old now, and I expect it to endure periodic use for the next 5 years. Cordless drills have come a long way since the early days when they were underpowered and homeowner only tools.


We find that cordless roto-hammers of the 18V (we have Makita BHR241) and hammer drills (we have a few different Makita models and some M12 tools) are OK for light-duty work – especially when working from staging or ladders where the cord (or air hose) would be a real nuisance.
The question of corded or battery operated has as much to do with frequency of use as it does the specific application.
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After 3.5 amps the laptop power supply will cut out to protect itself from burn out because the components are not rated for that high current.
It does not seem very practical but still I think I will try it next time my battery goes dead.
I’m sure I could have gotten by with a smaller transformer because this one can put out a lot more wattage than would have been needed to power these tools.
The bridge rectifier will convert the 18v AC comming from the transformer into 18v DC that the drill needs to operate. I also taped the two batteries together and pushed them back in there just to have something to hold the connections in place. I inserted the top of the battery pack into the drill and hooked up the transformer to a wall outlet. This way I could have a short cord going from the transformer to the wall so that the transformer could just sit by the outlet and I would be able to take the drill up to 25 feet way.
This thing will probably take a bit of a beating while being used around the house and shop so I didn’t want the cords to get yanked out. Then I hooked the wires I previously soldered into the battery pack to the DC side of the bridge rectifier.
Higher torque motors, plus how Li-ion batteries have great runtimes and low self-discharge rates, means I haven’t had to plug in my corded Bosch hammer drill in years.
No charging batteries in advance, no having to check the power gauge, no having to know where your charger is at all times. There are times when a large-handled corded hammer drill is going to be more comfortable to use. But for that occasional use where I want or need a drill with a stronger or more precise chuck, I pull out my corded hammer drill. He reported back that the battery isn’t working and is giving errors when used with his charger. We bought our first batch of cordless drills (Porter Cable 12V Magnequench #850) over 20 years ago. I’ve got a simple lightweight cordless, but I reach for my corded whenever I’m faced with the need for a hammer drill. Packaging should be the same as what is found in a retail store, unless the item is handmade or was packaged by the manufacturer in non-retail packaging, such as an unprinted box or plastic bag.


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He still has the ability to use it as a cordless drill since he still has one functional battery pack. A simple series diode protects the power supply from reverse EMF that would be caused by the motor. The other pack doesn’t last very long anymore so pretty soon I knew I would be out of luck.
There was a bunch of them in the bottom portion of the pack and two that stuck up into the part that slides inside the drill.
However, I already have a few of these around and to buy one the exact size needed would have been expensive.
These connections are where I would need to connect my wires that would be hooked up to the DC side of the bridge rectifier. I didn’t want the connections to get pushed down when the battery pack was inserted into the tool. I connected the bridge rectifier on the other side of the transformer and to the battery pack and fired it up. Corded tools especially come in handy when misusing a drill for continuous-use non-drilling and driving operations, such as cleaning metal with a small wire brush attachment.
On the other hand, a long work session with a corded hammer drill is probably going to be fatiguing due to the tool’s weight. It was considered by some the first tradesman quality cordless drill – and was much superior to the 9.7V Makita and some others that were available at the time. For example, I might do “simple” drilling on a frequent enough basis to justify a decent cordless drill. For all the reasons in this article and others, the advantages sometimes outweigh the inconveniences. If you reside in an EU member state besides UK, import VAT on this purchase is not recoverable.
So, I decided to take apart the battery pack that didn’t work and change it so that it could be plugged into the wall. The batteries will eventually wear out, at which point the manufacturer will probably have already moved to a different form factor.
For us today – 18V Makita’s and 12V (M12) Milwaukee’s are in heavy use – but not for everything.
In spite of even the best technology, the worst thing you can do to any battery is to leave them unused for extended periods. For more serious applications, I can get by with a lighter corded hammer drill that would otherwise require a substantially heavier cordless. We use corded right angle drills (Milwaukee 1680-20) for large selfeed bits and (Milwaukee 1670-1) for smaller selfeed bits. That’s especially true when I can get as much torque out of a much lighter basic cordless for “routine” drilling.
Cordless tools are just not up to drilling with these – especially through ganged studs or heavy timber. In our shops corded specialty drills and air drills are in use – somewhat tied to workstations.



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