Skil 3.6V Li-ion iXO3 Screwdriver

A compact driver with enough power for a range of low torque screw settings

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Skil 3.6V Li-ion iXO3 Screwdriver



(NOTE: This model has been upgraded to Model iXO4. #2346-05)

The Skil iOX has been on the market since at least 2006. It's been a very popular product, particularly because of its lithium-ion battery, which holds a charge for up to 18 months (depending on the frequency of use), and light weight. This new incarnation, the Skil iXO3, maintains the 3.6V Li-ion battery and a svelte 11.2 oz weight, plus adds a couple of new features that are sure to appeal to DIYers and home owners.
 
The iXO3 has a 1/4" magnetized hex chuck and three LED indicator lights -  forward and reverse operation (which take the guess out of which way the bit is spinning), and a battery charge level (the battery is located in the handle of the screwdriver). The charge indicator turns red when the IX03 is out of power. When plugged into the charger the light turns green, and then shuts off when the battery is fully charged. Since you can store the screwdriver on the charger, the battery essentially remains continuously charged.
 
The LED work light is a nice touch, particularly when working in dim lighting. It doesn't provide a lot of light, but certainly enough to illuminate a screw head. The charger now has on-board bit storage, and it can be attached to a wall for easy access. I'm glad to see that Skil included the three common sizes of Robertson bit drives. The variable speed trigger is quite sensitive making it easy to control drilling speed.
 

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The iXO3 won't replace a standard drill/driver; the 3.6V motor doesn't generate much torque, and delivers a maximum 200 RPM. Still, that's adequate power for a lot of household tasks - tightening loose screws, installing curtain rods, bathroom fixtures and the like, and putting together ready-to-assemble furniture. In the shop it can handle the bulk of assembly work when your working with screws up to about 1-1/4" in length (as long as you pre-drill the screw holes.)
 
The auto shaft lock allows you to use the iXO3 as a conventional screwdriver when you need to apply a bit more torque - a useful feature when trying to set long screws. I used the iXO3 to drill 1/8" and 3/16" holes with hex drill bits without any problem. And, in a pinch you can set screws without pre-drilling. I managed to set 28 1" holes in 2" pine on a single charge. Recharging the battery takes about 3 hours.
 

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What I found most useful is the inclusion of a right angle attachment. It makes the screwdriver considerably more versatile. Simply pop the rubber cap off the end of the drill and snap the right angle attachment on. It can be mounted at varying positions (offset by 45°). With this set-up you can work in tight, hard-to-reach places. I would have liked to see on-board storage for the right angle attachment on the battery charger.
 
The iXO3 has a very comfortable handle and the large trigger is easy to depress. Anyone with hand problems (stiffness, tremors, etc) might find this screwdriver less taxing to use.
 
If you're looking for an easy to use, capable power screwdriver, then take a look at the Skil iXO3. It's light, has a reliable lithium ion battery, a right angle attachment for when you need to get into tight places, and just enough power for a range of low torque screw setting.


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KEY FEATURES:

  • 3.6 Volts
  • Battery holds charge for up to 18 months
  • 0-200 RPM
  • 11.2 oz (317 g)
  • 1/4" hex chuck
  • Forward/reverse/battery charge indicator lights
  • Work light
  • includes: 14 piece bit set, charger, right angle attachment
  • 1 year warranty

MANUFACTURER:Skil
AVAILABLE FROM:Tool and equipment suppliers nationwide
RETAIL PRICE:$39.99 to $44.99
MODEL #:2346-05
MADE IN:China
Carl Duguay, October 2009
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