I like to think that I’m perceptive, and that my experience helps me sort out the differences between two similar but separate tools. That’s not going to be the case here.
If you want to skip the chatter and get straight to the deal, just scroll down to the end of the post.
Over at a popular online deals forum, they have a “hot deal” featuring this discounted Dewalt DWARA120 impact-rated right angle attachment, which is for use with cordless drills, impact drivers and other such tools.
Amazon and Lowe’s have similar deals on this, where the price is $20.
Compare via Amazon – ( but don’t buy anything until you read this whole post!)
Lowe’s *might* drop the price further, but it’s unclear.
Although, it looks like they sold quite a few at my local Lowe’s store so far, so maybe $20 is indeed a hot price on this impact-rated Dewalt right angle screwdriver bit adapter?
But wait – I saw this Dewalt MaxFit screwdriver bit set at Home Depot (and bought one on the spot), priced at $15.
Everyone is hyped up over the right angle adapter deal over at the deals forum, but you can save a couple more dollars AND get some screwdriver bits in a nice and tidy organizer box?
There’s got to be a catch. Right?
Price: $14.88 via Home Depot
Okay, so what’s the difference?
On the left: Dewalt Impact Ready DWARA120, with packaging that looks to say 5X longer life*.
On the right: Dewalt MaxFit DWARA60, and it’s impact-rated.
Look closely – even the Torx screw head is in the same angular position – Dewalt’s graphics team simply swapped the housing and logo colors between the two images or renders.
But wait… Dewalt’s website says:
The DEWALT MAX FIT Right Angle Attachment features a compact 1-1/2 in. front-to-back design to provide users with accessibility in close-quarter drilling and fastening applications. The metal-gear case design provides durability and 2X longer lilfe* while the addition of a robust magnet provides fastener retention.
Longer “lilfe?” I love it when I’m not the only one making typos.
Aha – only 2X longer life.
Oh, hold on, Home Depot has an image of the MaxFit adapter packaging card.
“5X longer life.”
Magnetic bit holder.
This one is on sale at Home Depot for $18.
See: MaxFit Adapter via Home Depot
Here’s the DWARA120 again, in its packaging on Lowe’s website.
Both are 1.5″ long (head length), rated for impact use, magnetic, and said to have 5X longer life – which doesn’t mean much to me aside from simply being similar marketing language for both.
Hmm, so what’s the difference?
How is the Amazon deal such a “HOT” buy at $20? It looks like $20 is the regular price at Home Depot, where it’s on sale for $18 right now.
And, then there’s this Dewalt DWAMF35RA 35pc screwdriver bit and right angle attachment set! So, you save $3 compared to the current sale pricing for the right angle attachment, and get an entire impact-rated screwdriver bit set to go along with it.
I saw this Dewalt DWAMF35RA MaxFit screwdriver bit set at the store, bought one on the spot, but not before looking up the price of the adapter by itself on my phone. There were a couple of times recently when I could have used this adapter, and so it seemed like a very good deal for $15.
Afterwards, once home, I came across the confusing deal posts for the standalone adapter.
Not to belabor the point further, I have no idea if there are any differences between DWARA60 and DWARA120 adapters, aside from one being black and the other yellow.
Could there be any differences? Maybe – but without any apparent external differences in a geared adapter this small, and despite identical marketing claims?
Frankly, I don’t really care. I bought the MaxFit set, as it’s clearly the best deal by far. If there are some differences between adapters, I’ll live with it, and with a couple extra dollars in my pocket and a bunch of new screwdriver bits in my tool box.
HOT DEAL PRICE: $14.88
At the time of this posting, you can only opt for in-store pickup, but I expect (hope for) Home Depot to enable shipping on this item.
Do YOU know if there any differences between the two adapters, aside from purely cosmetic?
Home Depot Deal: Dewalt 35pc MaxFit screwdriver bit set (DWAMF35RA): $14.88
Lowe’s Deal: Dewalt impact-rated right angle attachment (DWARA120): $19.88
Been eye-balling these for a couple years now. Does anyone have any hands-on experience with either model…..or any other brand? I just haven’t found myself in a position yet that would require the need, but still…….”just in case”. Seems you would need to push on the backside to keep from stripping the screw out.
This is the case and I’ve not really had a use for it – maybe with the right bit it’s not too bad.
I have the Milwaukee equivalent and the Dewalt bendy one, but rarely use them.
I often can use a really long bit instead.
I have the yellow one. Purchased from Ace Hardware a couple of years ago on sale. I needed it to drive a Kreg screw in a tight corner.
It worked for the task but that’s about all I can say for it. You do have to push from the backside of it to keep contact with the screw and even then it’s a bit of a guessing game to keep it locked in tight. Since that time I have purchased the M12 installation driver and I use that for tight corners whenever I can.
Was it this one, or the older one?
Doh! Thanks, Stuart. That is the model I have. I use it so infrequently that I didn’t notice the design differences. I got the one you linked for $5 on sale at Ace. I apologize for the erroneous review. Perhaps this newer model won’t be as annoying.
I have the M12 but still run into places where I need the dewalt adapter – it fits where the M12 won’t.
I bought the Milescraft one from Lowes because I cheaped out to save a couple bucks. It works, didn’t need to push to hard and didn’t strip any screws, yet. The casing feels cheap but the internals all appear to be metal.
I had the older version and used it successfully for random projects over the past few years. Was useful when I was building my deck as I sometimes had to get in some tight spots to drill holes or drive some screws. It worked well. The bit holder was a bit finnicky and the old one had this “eject” lever that broke pretty quickly, but didn’t impact the useability of it.
I picked up the HD set on Saturday – I really wanted some additional bits, but the new attachment just sealed the deal.
Have used both. Didn’t see any difference in the two. Use it every day for hvac installations for hard to get to sheet metal screws. Very durable and super handy.
I can at least give a potential use case for consideration: Installing the catch plate to the upper edge inside a cabinet face frame frame for child safety drawer latch/locks.
I do NOT have a specialty driver like the M12 installer unit and no length of bit or bit driver was any use getting anywhere near vertical for drilling or driving the screw, after angling around the lower cross piece of the narrow drawer opening.
A 1.5-2″ adapter would have made this task infinitely easier compared to my resorting to using a ratching wrench, adapter, and hex shank bits.
I received the black sleeved one yesterday and immediately ripped open the packaging.
Buyers should be aware that it has (at least this version) a really deep hex slot – 1″ bits get lost in it, protruding by not quite 1/8″.
I also have a Bosch flexi-click and the metal-bodied Milwaukee right-angle adapter, which does come into use in really narrow spots <3".
I figured this one would fill a similar role and live in a different kit, but the shortest it can manage is going to be 2" power bits for an overall headlength of just a fraction longer than 2.5" overall… for comparison, the Milwaukee version is about 1.625" with a 1" bit.
This does feel like it could manage a paddle bit on an impact driver a little better than the Milwaukee, but that's not my use case.
Looking closer, I'm guessing this was originally designed without a magnet, but then someone in product testing pointed out how exasperating it was to drop screws in difficult access positions – a big criticism of dewalt's previous RA attachment. The ring magnet on this unit is quite strong, but it sits forward of the hex shaft. protruding almost 1/8".
I'm disappointed at $20. TBH, I'd be disappointed at $15 bc I really don't need the driver bits…
Well, the more I sit here and tinker with it… maybe I’m wrong. You can still drive screws with 1″ bits, but I was wondering how in the world you’re supposed to extract the bit if you don’t have a really good needle nose or the bit tip is chowdered…
On the back head of the dewalt RA, turns out, there’s a small hole where a nail-set or nail can push from the back and pop the bit out. It actually works really well, but you do need an extra tool to do so… I don’t know why there’s no instruction or mention anywhere on the packaging.
With 1″ bit, it does come in at a very usable 1.5″. Feeling a bit better…
Thanks for sharing your feedback!
That Milwaukee is a fairly new model too: https://toolguyd.com/milwaukee-shockwave-right-angle-bit-adapter/
I figured that I didn’t need one enough to justify full-price, but with a case mixed in, and mini bit holder case within that case, it was an easy sell.
And my link was incorrect as well. The Milwaukee I have is alloy steel version 48-32-2390
I have a very simple and quick answer. You visited both stores. But both, bring them home and spend 10 minutes taking them apart. It is an extremely small investment in time and money to both answer the question and provide value to your audience.
Update: I’ve got one on the way from Amazon.
Daniel’s mention of a difference in weights (see his comment below) makes further investigation absolutely warranted!
My experience has generally been Lowe’s is higher priced in general but when they go on clearance they really drop the prices far – lower than Home Depot will ever go.
Maybe, but I wasn’t referring to the clearance prices in my before-being-edited comment, but that many of the promos are once price before Thanksgiving and immediately lower for Black Friday.
Home Depot’s gift center items are mostly at their seasonally-low prices already, with some being different prices before and after Thanksgiving.
If I were to buy 10 gift center items at Home Depot, and 10 at Lowe’s maybe 1 or 2 at Home Depot would require a price adjustment, but maybe 8 of the tools at Lowe’s.
Do you think that maybe one has metal gears and the other plastic?
I had the Dewalt yellow one a few years’ back but striped the innards pushing too hard- i should have taken it apart but alas, time got in the way
I really don’t think so. I would assume that any cost savings would be negated by having to have two different production lines.
I’ll see if I can find a chance to take mine apart.
Cancel that, refer to Daniel’s comment below.
I’d be happy to open up my black one and send pics.
I own both. I’m an HVAC tech: I’ve bought just about every variant of these: milwaukee, dewalt, that ares model from Amazon: they’re life-savers when you really need them.
I’ve been using the DWARA60 for the past few months as my go-to. Previously I had been using the metal-bodied milwaukee model, but the handle was cumbersome, and the unit was overly heavy for how often I used it. The DWARA60 won me over with it’s low clearance requirements and light weight.
That said…it’s got a problem. I usually use it with my M12 Fuel Surge, and I found that it absorbs A LOT of torque. I’ve found my driver struggling to remove tight 3/8″ and 7/16″-head fasteners with the DWARA60 attached. This is the kind of stuff the M12 surge eats for breakfast…I mean, the thing cuts through galvanized steel ductwork with a 1 3/8″ hole saw like butter. And that’s with a 3ah compact battery.
So…I wondered…whats the deal? Why do the black and yellow models have different model numbers? Following dewalt naming conventions…does the larger #=a more robust unit?
I was unable to find any official information: dewalt’s website is opaque as to if there are any differences, but there are some folks that think that the DWARA60 is an updated DWARA50, and that the DWARA120 is an updated DWARA100.
The upshot? Supposedly the gearing in the DWARA120 is a bit more beefy. I ordered one from Amazon and just got it in today.
I have not taken it upon myself to disassemble each one yet, but I can tell you that there is a weight difference. The DWARA60 weighs about 5.29oz, the DWARA120 weighs about 6.67oz.
A that makes a delta or 1.38oz: the 120 is 26% heavier than the 60. Seems like far too much to simply be a manufacturing variance. I’m willing to believe that there is a difference in the actual mechanisms.
I haven’t been able to use it yet, but I’m hopeful that the 120 will be more efficient at transmitting power than the 60.
One thing to note for anyone looking at these: the newer milwaukee RA adapter is a hair shorter in height than the newer dewalt, but the newer dewalt RAs require less clearance due to the fact that bits sit so deeply in the unit.
Thanks for the helpful info, this is good to know!
This is good stuff! Maybe we need to send a copy of each to Ave.
This is awesome. Thank you
That is indeed too different to be a coincidence!
Now it definitely warrants further investigation!!
But here’s the question now: if the 60 is weaker or less robust, is it still worth it at 75% the cost of the 120, and with the bundle of bits that comes long with it?
I suppose that all comes down to what you need to to with it.
In my case: part of my job involves documenting motor information. If I’m trying to disassemble the motor shroud to get eyes on the motor nameplate for a Greenheck ECM-driven in line fan: being able to remove a few 3/8″ head screws in tight quarters saves me a good 15-20 minutes versus having to take apart the whole fan enclosure, especially if my sheet metal department has already pookied the outlet of the fan.
I’ve found the 60 struggles to remove those from time to time. I can always break it loose with a 3/8″ open ended wrench and finish the job with the 60, but that often involves me having to climb off the ladder, rummage in my toolbag, let loose a string of explitives…etc.
I took it upon myself to disassemble both in order to see if I could get pictures and discern the real mechanical differences between the two.
The plastic body slides off easily with the TX15 screws removed on either side. The plastic housing on both is identical: a hex shaft with a flanged metal sleeve bearing held in place by a circlip and a plastic bushing at the end to guide the shaft into the gearbox.
It appears that the difference exists in the gearbox, the metal portion: there, the bearings are press-fit and held in place with a pair of snap rings.
I was able to remove the internal snap ring with a standard pair of snap ring pliers. The external snap ring is a bit more difficult: it requires using a thin, flat surface (I used a wiha slotted 2.5mm driver) to slide behind the tapered portion of the ring while somehow preventing it from sliding around the slot that it fits into…it’s extremely possible to damage the lip that holds the clip in place during this process. The metal is relatively soft in comparison to the clip and peels away easily.
Removing the bearings would take a bit of heat applied to the metal exterior and…I imagine…some locking pliers wrapped around the exterior of the tip where you insert a bit.
I’ve taken mine about as far as I’m willing to though…to go much further would risk destroying the bearings.
I can’t report much else aside from the weight of each gearbox. The 60’s gearbox is about 2.96 oz and the 120’s gearbox is about 4.34 oz. Both have a fair amount of ferrous material inside, judging by a quick magnet-test.
If you want to see the pictures, I could send them via email.
If you were up to sending images, I’d appreciate it! I’ll have both versions in front of me within a day if you’re not.
If the comparison requires destructive disassembly, I might refrain until I see what the 120’s final seasonal price will be.
There are also right angle drives (hex and 1/4-28 aircraft style screw adapter styles) from Tight-Fit Tools:
Some are available on Amazon
We used a lot of stubby cobalt aircraft drills with one of these – but nothing really beats an integrated (instead of two-piece) tool if you are doing a lot of close quarters work. Something like the Milwaukee M12 2467 and M18 2667
This is not new. This is another case of HD vs Lowes. The MaxFit/MaxImpact line is available at HD and online retailers, while the Impact Ready line is available at Lowes and online retailers.
They do this with other bits and sets. the MaxFit/MaxImpact line will be gunmetal finish, while the Impact Ready version will be black. See below double ended nut drivers, MaxImpact version at HD, Impact Ready at Lowes.
You won’t find any Impact Ready accessories at HD, and won’t find any MaxFit/Max Impact accessories at Lowes. Basically same tool but different name, finish, and retailer.
Some Years ago Consumers Reports did a piece about what they considered deceptive practices among some retailers. One such example they mentioned were electronics where sometimes the differences between some model numbers were merely cosmetic. In other cases, they noted that the differences were for all intents and purposes just a change in model number. The article went on to say that some big retailers could pressure manufacturers to provide them with “exclusive model numbers” to allow them to make claims like “if you can find the exact same item at a lower price we will beat it” – knowing full well that others might sell the equivalent item – it would bear a different model number.
Gotta love retail and marketing. Now, that’s not to say there aren’t some other differences in in performance, longevity, quality, etc., at least in this particular case.
Is it weird that the added confusion on the two models is actually helpful?
I don’t know why, exactly, but the confusion between the DWARA60 and DWARA120 seems to be more helpful than having to draw a line in the sand, and say “THIS ONE IS BETTER!!”… I HAVE a DWARA100. When the Impact-Ready attachments started rolling out with the 20 Volt Max line several years ago, the DeWALT Facebook page was running some daily participation contests, and someone didn’t claim, or want, their prize at one point. So they PMed me, since I was so active on the page at the time, and asked if I wanted a prize pack. The actual prize that was ignored was the DWARA100, and I said okay to it, because I intended to buy one anyways. They talked to me and asked me some other questions about what I like about DeWALT and stuff, and they ended up sending me a bunch of stickers, a T-Shirt, and a FlexTorq bit set along with it, just for being a fan. I’ve always felt guilty for getting that much just because someone didn’t really care about the DWARA100.
If I may offer a purely opinion-based theory on the 60/120 question? As Daniel stated above, the 60 seems to absorb a great deal of the Torque provided to it. It might not be breaking inside, but, it is absorbing, or eating up?, much of the Torque applied.
Could the DWARA50/60/100/120 designations be an OUTPUT TORQUE Gear Rating? Perhaps, if Stuart is capable of a simple Torque test somehow? Maybe finding a way to, if he has one, use one of those Milwaukee Torque-Measuring Ratchets, with a 1/4″ drive to 1/4” hex end bit, attached to the DWARA60… Pull the trigger on an Impact Driver attached to it, and see what the Torque reading is… Then replace the DWARA60 with the 120, and repeat that? See if the numbers are the same, or if more Torque is transferred in the process?
It’s the only quick-and-dirty torque test I can think of… I know Wiha has a Torque-controlled micro driver, but I don’t think it can handle the amount of torque something like the Torque Ratchet is designed for, and therefore the amount of torque an Impact Driver, with a known amount of Torque output on any given setting, might output. The unknown X number representing how much the DWARA device transfers from system-to-system, becomes shown on the Torque Ratchet Display.
Cue Stuart’s PhD telling me the flaws in that idea… I know, without a doubt, I’ve made a mistake in there somewhere. Maybe he already has another tool for measuring the torque output better? I didn’t account for repeated strain on a hex bit? It’s not precise enough? He hasn’t got the Torque Bar in question, and I’m hurting his wallet?
Actually, andybody can chime in on this. It’s only an Opinion Based theory. I like my DWARA 100, but if the torque-transfer ratings are the difference between models, I’M PUTTING THE 60 AND 120 ON MY PURCHASE LIST. Both are available here in Canada from Atlas tools, last I checked. And they can order them, if necessary. Plus Amazon.ca has them both.
I commented on your original post with this de that it seemed worth buying the bit set just for the right angle attachment. I also like to think that I’m perceptive- I couldn’t see “impact” markings on the original post, so I held off purchasing. Glad you put this up!
Thank you and you’re welcome!
I triple checked that this one was impact-rated. That’s partially why I included the image of the packaging card, it says impact-rated right on there.
I imagine if I’m using this, I’d want the smaller form factor of my impact.
Thanks I actaully need the right angle piece but I still like the idea of the flex right angle device they make.
I bet lowes lowers their price next week or by thanksgiving.
Thanks for the heads-up! I have been eyeing it in your first Black Friday post, but did not see them on Thursday while in the store.
Will grab one to get me by until Dewalt finally puts out a multi-head installation driver.
I think the one they sell at Lowe’s has a ring magnet that surrounds the insert bit. The one from Home Depot doesn’t.
These are some great posts!
Went into Lowes Yesterday and purchased an Impact Ready DWARA120. The package is marked 10X Longer Life*
How does something like this compare to the right-angle options?
Is this any more durable? Sure, its not 90 – but, is it enough of an angle for most circumstances, admitting that there are situations where only the 90 will work.
I haven’t tried that yet either. Definitely looks more compact.