A month ago we discovered that Black & Decker was working on a modular tool system. We have since verified that Black & Decker is in fact soon releasing a new line of power tools with interchangeable attachments. Here is a preview of all we now know about Black & Decker’s new Matrix modular tool system.
Black & Decker’s power tools, including the new Gyro screwdriver that wooed and impressed us, are typically aimed at homeowners and DIYers looking for light to medium duty tools. We don’t expect the new Matrix tools to go head-to-head with pro-grade tools, but we certainly appreciate the flexibility and versatility the system offers. As of now, our outlook is optimistic and hopeful.
Black & Decker Matrix Cordless & Corded Base Units
Black & Decker will be launching the line with both cordless and corded handle units. Ridgid has already done this with their JobMax modular tools, but over time.
12V & 20V Matrix Power Handles
There will be two cordless Matrix power handles, based off of Black & Decker’s 12V Max and 20V Max lithium ion platforms. The power handles appear similar, but with different battery pack mounting styles. Hopefully we’ll see a more compact 12V Max handle in the future.
12V and 20V Max starter kits will each come with a power base unit handle, charger, li-ion battery, and drill/driver attachment. Both kits will be available in October and will be priced at $50 for the 12V kit and $70 for the 20V kit.
4.0A Corded Handle
A 4-amp corded base handle unit will be available in January with drill/driver attachment for $40. From what we can tell, the functionality won’t change between corded and cordless power handles, although we would expect greater power from the AC model.
Black & Decker Matrix Tool Head Attachments
Black & Decker is launching the Matrix line with a number of drilling, driving, cutting, and sanding attachments. Each tool head will be priced at $29-39.
There is a strong possibility that there will be a number of bundle options available in addition to the drill/driver power base handle starter kits. According to one source there will be a starter kit that includes drill/driver, detail sander, jigsaw attachments, but we have not yet verified this.
We would also expect to see special bundles or promotions around the winter holidays.
The basic drill/driver tool head features 0-700 RPM variable speed and 11 clutch settings. Maximum torque will likely depend on which Matrix power handle is used with the tool head.
The oscillating multi-tool head is rated at up to 18,500 OPM and can be used for sanding, cutting, grinding, scraping, and all the other applications one would use a multi-tool for. It also features a tool-free blade change design similar to that on the Porter Cable multi-tool.
The compact jigsaw features an aluminum shoe (from the looks of it), variable speed 2,800 strokes per minute, 1/2-inch stroke length, and tool-free blade change.
“Up to 1,300 in-lbs” of maximum torque, presumably with the corded tool handle. Expect a little less power from the cordless power bases. The motor is also rated at 0-2700 RPM and 0-5400 BPM.
The compact detail sander looks to be similar in size to Black & Decker’s mouse sander, which is typically used for light sanding, scrubbing, and polishing tasks.
B&D describes the router as ideal for use on decorative edging projects, small woodworking projects and more. It looks like a light-duty trim router with maybe an inch of depth adjustment. Max speed is 9000 RPM.
Circular Trim Saw
The circular saw spins up to 3400 RPM (with 20V power handle) and can be used on plywood, paneling, and small boards. Blade-size is 3-3/8″, with one general purpose wood-cutting blade included with the tool attachment.
Where to Buy?
Three power base handles:
- 12V Max
- 20V Max
- 4A AC Corded
- drill/driver (included with starter kits)
- impact driver
- oscillating multi-tool
- detail sander
- trim saw