Impact Drivers - Canadian Woodworking Magazine


Impact Drivers

While an Impact Driver may be new to you, auto mechanics, electricians, pipe fitters, and the like, have been using them for quite some time. Fortunately, a lot of the power tool manufacturers are now making these useful tools more widely available to woodworkers. Unlike a drill/driver that uses a motor and transmission to generate torque, an impact driver uses a hammer-and-anvil mechanism inside the tool housing. The result is more power; typically double the torque you get from a drill/driver.
Most impact drivers deliver from 0 to 3,000 bpm (blows per minute). They are available in both corded and cordless models. Cordless models come in the same voltage range as drills (9.6 to 18 volts). One of the great things about these tools is that they are nearly one third smaller than cordless drills, making them much easier to get into tight and awkward spots. The downside is that they are louder. Impact drivers excel at driving large bolts and nuts. Typically they come with hex shaped chucks designed for standard 1/4” hex bits. You can also use hex shanked drill bits. Some models come with variable speed and electric brakes.