Craftsman is coming out with quite a few new C3 19.2V cordless power tools this season. We previously discussed the new Craftsman brushless drill, which boasts a 600 in-lb torque rating, and a new multi-speed impact driver. One more new tool we’re excited about is the Max Axess auto ratchet.
Basically, Max Axess sockets feature a pass-thru design, which makes it easier to access fasteners on longer bolts or threaded rod.
This new cordless powered ratchet, as well as the manual ones, can work with special adapters – often included – that allow them to be used with standard square-drive sockets and accessories. When used with an adapter and standard sockets, Max Axess ratchets often provide low-profile benefits.
- Up to 360 in-lbs of torque
- Variable speed paddle trigger, 225 RPM max
- Forward/reverse/locked (manual) switch
- Pass-thru socket design
- Built-in LED worklight
- Comes with 3/8″ square drive adapter, as well as 3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″ sockets
Price and Availability
The Max Axess cordless ratchet is powered by Craftsman C3 battery platform, so you can use it with newer lithium-ion or older NiCd battery packs and chargers. A battery and charger are NOT included, this is packaged as a bare-tool add-on.
MSRP is $70, but you should be able to find the ratchet on sale for $60 or less.
Buy Now(via Sears)
I like the idea and the price point. For $60 for the tool, or ~$130 for the tool and Li-ion starter kit (more options discussed here), you get a reasonably capable cordless ratchet that can fit into areas drills, impact drivers, and cordless screwdrivers cannot.
It can be easy to dismiss pass-thru sockets as gimmicky, but they do come in handy from time to time. And if you don’t need the pass-thru feature, they work just as well on fasteners that you might use ordinary square drive sockets on.
There are two things left on our wishlist: a more complete C3 and manual ratchet bundle kit, which should be easy to do at the $150-200 price point, and a 1/4″-sized Max Axess ratchet that comes with a couple of sockets and screwdriver bit sockets.