Practical Boat Owner Review Draper 18V Cordless Drill 20496


The May 2016 Issue of Practical Boat Owner Magazine performed a product test on 7 cordless drills under £125. Included in their test was the Draper 18V Cordless Rotary Drill.

“Cordless drill / drivers are an essential tool for any boat owner – but which to choose from the bewildering array available? Julian Peckham sets a top price of £125 and finds out.

A cordless drill / driver is an essential part of any boat–owner’s toolbox, both in the year and on board. You can pay hundreds of pounds for powerful, all-singing, all-dancing battery drills – but do you really want to spend that kind of money on something that’s likely to be exposed to a salty sea or coastal environment? Are you better off spending less on a tool that’ll do the job, but won’t break the bank – and you won’t feel quite so sorry about when it finally packs up? We looked at a selection of popular, widely available battery drill/divers costing less than £125. All they had to have in common was that they were 18V models, and that they came supplied with two batteries so you could always have one on charge while you were using the other.”

The only NiCad battery drill we tested, its 1.3Ah battery acquitted itself well against its more modern competitors, actually bettering both the 1.3A and 1.5Ah Li-ion batteries. For lighter duties it ran longer than all but two of the others tested. It loses out in the build quality stakes, though. There can be no complaints with the rubberised grip and armouring, but the rest of the plastic case feels a bit more brittle than most of the other tools. It has all the features – drill, hammer action, 15 screw torque settings, work light and a bit holder, but the impressions in the collar to switch torque settings are quite smooth, making it difficult to grip and turn easily. The separate hammer/screw collar in particular was very stiff to operate. Charge time for the batteries varied markedly, but averaged out at around an hour. The charger has commendably long 1.95m cable. It’s quite a heavy beast, so you probably wouldn’t want to be using it above head height for any great length of time. The battery has to be removed from the drill before it’ll fit inside the tough plastic case.

PBO Verdict: ” … the low cost of the GMC and Draper make them an attractive proposition. …”

Practical Boat Owner – May 2016.