Tool Addicts

Tool Addicts

AWFS Tool Update: Festool Makes its Wonder-Drill More Affordable

comments (2) July 19th, 2011 in blogs

AsaC Asa Christiana, Special Projects Editor, Fine Woodworking magazine
thumbs up 5 users recommend

We finally got our hands on the new Festoll CXS drill.
The CXS follows the current trend of incorporating LED task lighting.
We gave the right angle attachment a brief test drive and were impressed with just how smooth the mechanism operates.
We finally got our hands on the new Festoll CXS drill. - CLICK TO ENLARGE

We finally got our hands on the new Festoll CXS drill.


There are no cordless drill-drivers quite like the Festools. From their German pedigree to brushless motors that transfer more power and promise decades of service to their ingenious system of innovative chucks, nothing else is really close. But that near-perfection comes at a price, keeping Festool technology out of the hands of many woodworkers.

So we were excited to hear about Festool's latest drill, the 10.8V CXS, priced at $225, roughly half the price of its bigger brothers. And we stopped by the Festool booth before the show opened (and before the air-conditioning was turned on!) for a sweaty preview of this cool little drill.

It might just be perfect for woodworkers, able to do everything but drill the largest holes (leave those for your drill press) and biggest lag screws (That's construction not woodworking, anyway). It doesn't have the brushless motors of its big brothers but it does have the ingenious system of chucks.


BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE! 


Festool reps were on-hand with some prototype models. Expect an update on these models shortly. click to enlarge 


 

$225 gets you the drill, two batteries, the charger, one of Festool's fancy interlocking Systainer boxes, and the two chucks you'll use most often, the keyless one and a quick-change model that holds standard hex shanks. Most drills force you to attach a quick-change chuck to an existing chuck, creating a long, wobbly assembly. Festool's chucks all attach directly and positively. You have to try them to see the big difference.

And for another $50 you get the CXS's version of a right-angle chuck, which will get you into the tightest corners. It's the only compact drill on the market with such a chuck.

You might think the drill is underpowered, but Festool tends to undersell its power. Festool product manager Rick Bush told us the CXS was able to drive 200 #8, 1-5/8-in. screws into Douglas fir on one charge. Can't wait to test it in the Fine Woodworking shop.



posted in: blogs, AWFS, tool news, drill, festool


Comments (2)

woodchuck1954 woodchuck1954 writes: You can buy any other major brand 10.8V two pc. set for half the price of one Festool. You get a 3/8" chucked driver drill and the quick chucked impact driver. I think I will still stay away from black and green.
Posted: 5:04 pm on July 23rd

Eric35 Eric35 writes: Sounds pretty neat but my compact 18 volt makita works pretty good, is paid for and the system has a cordless blower, jigsaw, angle drill, on and on etc. But then again I drive an old p/u truck, not a mercedes e class and if i had an eclass budget I would probably buy these tools!
Posted: 4:07 pm on July 20th

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ABOUT TOOL ADDICTS

If you enjoy woodworking then you probably also suffer from an addiction to tools. Whether you collect hand planes or seek out the latest and greatest in power tools, our expert tool addicts will keep you in the loop with news, reviews, and commentary on the latest in woodworking tools.

New: Don’t miss posts by contributing editor Roland (aka Rollie) Johnson. Over the year’s Rollie’s tested countless tools for the magazine. His fascination with motors and gears goes beyond woodworking, he's also an enthusiastic hot-rodder who likes to restore old cars, and is the author of Automotive Woodworking (Motor Books International, 2002).

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