Why choose an impact wrench for drilling and threading holes in metal (but never use a Hammer Drill)
This article describes how Impact Wrenches can be used with VersaDrive® cutting tools to make and modify holes in metal components quickly and safely – but a Hammer drill is not suitable for this purpose.
A Hammer Drill and an Impact Wrench might sound similar when in use – you hear a sharp burst of hammer blows. However, these tools use different mechanism designs. This can be descriped as the difference between Rotary Impact and Linear Impact
- Hammer Drills work by Linear Impact – in-line percussion that drives the drill bit forward into the workpiece at the same time as rotating. This linear striking action drives masonry bits and chisels into construction materials such as masonry, concrete and brick. These silica-based materials are pulverized by the linear hammer motion of the drill tip, and then this dust is removed via the spiral flutes on the masonry drill bit. Using a hammer drill in percussion-only or rotary-percussion mode on metal components is likely to cause damage to both the cutting tool and the power tool and could even injure the operator.
- Impact Wrenches work by Rotary Impact – rotational percussion. The gearbox contains a spring-loaded anvil that releases in the same direction as the chuck rotation. So the shaft is powered around in a rotary action which drives around the cutting edges of the Versadrive tool through the metal workpiece
Why doesn't an impact wrench snag and snatch like a regular drill
- Most cordless drill users have experienced ‘kickback’ at some stage, where the drill bit snags in the material, and the drill tries to spin around its own chuck. This kickback can lead to hand, wrist, elbow, or even shoulder injuries. In a site work environment, this kickback action can knock the operator down, or even off a working platform, leading to further slips/trips/falls injuries. The multiple hammering action will stop the rotation instantly if the bit cannot rotate anymore, so the impact driver will not attempt to spin around.