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Makita Vs. Ryobi

By Ollypj @OllyPJ

I hold to an intention and hope of finding a new workshop this year. I won’t even begin looking until these dark and chilly months have passed but, when the time does come and I’m physically able to walk through that door, I will be looking to add a few tools to my arsenal. If not immediately then, sensibly, over time.

Basically, there are only current two manfufacturers that I would consider: Makita for the trust I have in their quality and Ryobi, for their price. I’m also a fan of Metabo tools but they seem to be a bit more expensive than Makita and, well, my opinion on pricing will hopefully become more clear further on.

Impact Driver?

I already own a 10.8v impact driver from Metabo. I’ve had it for about eight years and I really like it. This is not a tool I ‘need’ to upgrade, even though I do find that 18v drivers have a greater range in their variable speed triggers.

Impact Impluse Driver

Since I heard of Makita’s oil-lubricated impulse driver, I’ve wanted one. They’re very similar to the traditional impact driver but, for the fact that they have an oil lubricated mechanism than reducing the working noise by a number of decibels. If you’re working on site, this may not be an issue. But, working in or around residential properties and every decibel may count. I would rarely use my 10.8v impact driver in my previous workshop, sadly, because the neighbour’s dog would immediately begin barking in response.

I cannot justify spending £300 on a Makita tool that still needs batteries. Ryobi, however, have come up with their Quiet Strike driver with a much more affordable price tag.

Brad Nailer

If I am to invest in a new driver, batteries and charger, I may as well look to acquire a second tool to make it worthwhile…

I always wanted a pin gun or brad nailer in my previous workshop. Sometimes, you don’t have to clamps or space to spare to allow to dry over a number of hours. I think they’re incredibly useful for jig making and, at the same time, I would not want a noisy compressor in my workshop.

Makita, of course, have an 18v model in their LXT range. Ryobi, also, have an 18v brad nailer of their own. Makita’s naked tool would cost in excess of £300, while I might be able to find the Ryobi equivalent for no more than £200.

Combi Drill?

When I bought my impact driver, it came in twin-pack set with a Metabo 10.8v drill/driver. No good for drilling masonry and, to be honest, the 1.3Ah batteries don’t last very long with any drilling operation. If I was looking to buy a pair of batteries and charger to serve the two tools mentioned above, it may make even more sense to buy them in a package with a combi drill. I’d still prefer to use something larger for drilling holes through walls but I don’t think there’s much else in it financially.

Jigsaw? Circular Saw? Router? Sander???

I already have each of those power tools and I’m happy with them, even if they do have a cable and plug on the end. I can see the benefits in owning cordless saws but I don’t expect they’d get a huge amount of use. So, I wouldn’t view any of these purchases as being as ‘essential’ as any of those mentioned above. I would be spending most of my time in a workshop, with other tools and machinery aroud me and never far from an electrical socket or extension lead.

Makita or Ryobi?

From a strictly financial point of view, it does make the most sense for me to look at Ryobi tools… As much as I detest the ‘high visibility’ colour! I like to think I could wait until the warranty expires on each tool (assuming they’d last that long), take them  apart and recoat the casings.

Makita Vs. Ryobi


I spend a lot of time thinking about tools, things I’d like to buy and excuses I could use them for. Hence, this post!

Thanks for reading.

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