FLEX, a ToolGuyd sponsor, has sent over a couple of their new 24V Max cordless power tools for testing and review.
I have been working with a couple of FLEX’s new cordless power tools, and will report more on them shortly. Here in this post, I’ll be talking about 5 things that stand out to me about the new FLEX 24V Max cordless drill specifically.
Newly Launched FLEX Tools at Lowe’s
What’s FLEX and Why Should You Care?
FLEX has launched a new cordless power tool system that’s focused on power, performance, and advanced next-gen features. Their parent company, Chervon, is a major player in the cordless power tool industry, and they have been for a very long time. Chervon is the company behind EGO, Skil’s relaunch in recent years, and now FLEX.
FLEX’s parent company has been pushing forward, developing and manufacturing cordless power tools and related products for themselves as well as other popular tool brands, and so you might already have some of their products and innovations in your kit without knowing it.
Despite being a newly launched brand, FLEX is built on a foundation of years of experience, know-how, and advancements. Their goal isn’t to be just another brand on the shelf, they’re aiming to be the *best* brand on the shelf. And to do that, their tools need to be compelling.
Read More: FLEX Cordless Launch Teaser
FLEX 24V Max Cordless Drill/Driver
There are lots of things to like about the new FLEX 24V Max cordless drill/driver.
- Turbo Mode – Speed boost for faster results
- Anti-kickback braking tech – for more confident and safer work
- Incredible power – 1400 in-lbs max torque
This is what everyone has been focusing on. And yes, these are compelling features in a cordless drill/driver. Who doesn’t want a faster and more powerful cordless drill that is also equipped with modern safety features?
But the questions I’ve been getting from readers have not been about power, or speed. The common question is simply “what do you think?”
So, at first impression, here is what WOWed me.
Flat Back and Perfect Alignment
Hey, look at that – the drill can take a break on its back.
Sometimes I can’t stand a drill up, or I can’t lay it down. So I lean it on something, it falls over, and something ends up getting scratched. The drill can be placed down on its battery, or it can rest in this odd position.
It’s not a big deal, but this is what comes to mind – FLEX thought of everything!
It’s not just about being able to place the drill down like this. Consider if you’re working within a stud cavity. If you back up a drill against one stud, having the tool’s motor housing and battery lines up like this will give you a little more working room.
This usually stands out to me like a conscious “quality user experience” decision.
Next up, I love the textured handle grip. The FLEX drill has comfortable ergonomics and the grippy handle design immediately stood out.
This again comes down to thoughtful attention to details.
You can tell when a brand throws some components together and calls it a day. Some drills are clunky to use, and others are comfortable to the point you never even think about it. This one’s the latter.
A Very Different Battery Fuel Gauge
I have not seen a battery fuel gauge on a cordless power tool battery pack like this before. This is easily the most visible fuel gauge on the market today.
The activation button is on the front of the battery.
AND – yes there’s more – there are actually TWO battery fuel gauges, one on each side of the battery pack.
I know, this is talking about the battery and not the drill, but this is the first FLEX tool I started working with, and so it was my first introduction to the battery and its large double fuel gauges.
Drill Chuck with Carbide Teeth
The 1/2″ all-metal ratcheting chuck has carbide teeth within its jaws. I need more work with different sizes and styles of drill bits, but so far this is one of the most secure drill chucks I’ve ever used before.
If you look closely, this is a Jacob’s chuck.
I don’t often run into issues where a bit slips within a drill chuck, but I know it’s something a lot of users do experience, with some going so far to replace the chucks on their cordless drills with aftermarket parts. I think those users will be happy with this one.
The Most Effortless Battery Connection
Lastly, FLEX has one of the smoothest battery interfaces I have used. Press down on the release button with your finger(s) or hand, and the battery effortlessly slides away from the tool. The release button is also very well protected against accidental contact.
A Couple More Words
The newly launched FLEX cordless power tool system holds some very strong bragging rights. They say their tools deliver 20% more power than competitors’ – “unrivaled power” – and not only but faster charging rates, more advanced features, and faster performance.
All of that is very impressive, but for me the user-centric experience can be an even bigger deal.
This is “the platform’s most powerful drill,” with a whopping 1400 in-lbs max torque, and with claims of “dramatically faster results” thanks to the 2500 RPM delivery during Turbo mode. (Note: There is also a hammer drill version as well.)
I love a powerful drill, and I appreciate faster performance. For high power needs, it’s got muscle, and it has anti-kickback tech to protect me from the type of counter-rotation that can happen when a large drill bit jams. But it has also been a joy to use so far, and I don’t often need maximum power or speed.
This is the kind of drill that I know everyone will fight over if I include it in my next Habitat or Dept. of Public Works donation. I’ve been getting the feeling that a lot of FLEX tools are going to be like that. Sorry guys, but no I’m not ready to part with it yet.
I am enjoying my exploration and testing of these tools, and am eager for more.
They say “FLEX – it’s What’s Next.” I think they are off to a very good start.
What’s With The Excitement?
Let’s say I have 10 cordless drills on a shelf. (Actually… this isn’t so much of a hypothetical!)
Why pick up any one of those drills for a task over the others? Because a piece of paper says it has 5% greater max torque than the others?
The little things are important.
For me, cordless drills tend to pile up. Every now and then I pare things back, donating and giving away the samples (purchased by ToolGuyd or provided by brands and retailers). The tools that are left need to deserve and earn their spot on my long-term test bench or in my personal kit.
If you’ve read about FLEX tools recently, I’m sure you’ve seen the power and performance claims. I’ll be going over those too, separately, but here I wanted to look at what stood out to me. Provided by a sponsored brand or not, this FLEX drill – and anything I look at – will have to earn a place on my bench, in my bag, in my hand.
Any cordless drill will satisfy maybe 80% of my needs, with deliberate choices needing to be made for certain tasks and operations. This post is about what excited me about this FLEX drill, and some of the reasons it immediately earned a spot on my long-term test bench.
What kinds of questions do YOU have? What other tools from FLEX’s lineup do you want to see reviewed here?
This kit is priced at $229 and comes a charger, hard case, and one each of 2.5Ah and 5.0Ah batteries. There’s also an optional belt hook and bit holder that I haven’t installed yet.
Buy Now via Lowe’s
More FLEX Tools via Lowe’s
FLEX tools are covered by a 5-year end-to-end warranty. Register a new tool, battery, or charger within 30 days of purchasing through the end of 2021, and receive special FLEX FOUNDERS LIMITED LIFETIME WARRANTY coverage.
Thank you to FLEX for providing the review sample. FLEX is also a ToolGuyd sponsor as of the time of this posting.
I thought the point of this post was to make fun of the marketing or something along those lines…Your first thing that WOWed you is that it can sit on it’s back?
This is honestly the closest thing I’ve seen to a shill post from this site in a long time.
I understand that it is sponsored, but the talking points are very cringeworthy. It sounds like you wrote this based off a list of talking points provided by the manufacturer. I’m honestly ok with that when you put some ?nuance/honesty? into the writing, but this one is difficult.
4 of the 5 things that “WOWed” you are honestly the most minor alterations to existing tech.
Sitting on it’s back is not new, but implying that it’s any better than sitting any other way is just not a selling point especially when followed with “FLEX thought of everything!”.
A textured grip…really?
Two battery gauges might not be better than one. Milwaukee is on top/front, Dewalt is on the back, both are universal for lefties and righties. Both sides is at best a compromise because if it was only one side, it would be deemed an inconvenience. This is not a complaint on the design, it’s a disappointment in the sense that this is a “WOW” talking point.
The carbide teeth in a metal chuck might be nice, I’ve yet to hear about this and I don’t know if it’s common and unmentioned or uncommon and impractical (isn’t carbide brittle in certain situations). Either way, this might be a nice addition.
How is the battery slide a “WOW” worthy mention?
Is this not the same design used by multiple manufacturers. Some notable small companies that come to mind would be Dewalt and Makita…
I know you won’t like this comment, because I probably sound like an @#$, but I’ve been checking this site daily for years and I honestly expect better than what sounds like a ProToolReviews article* (Cough, Ad, Ad, Ad, cough). I don’t trust anything they publish for this reason.
Sponsored shouldn’t be a compromise in quality and honesty.
I love design differences – you’ve been commenting here long enough to know that I get excited over little things.
Take out the site sponsorship aspect and I wouldn’t change a word in this post. There’s always pushback whenever I’m especially excited about a tool.
“The most minor alterations to existing tech” is what drives improvements. A positive user experience is very important to me, and little things that contribute to this can be very impactful.
Everyone is focusing on the power and performance specs right now. That’s beneficial, and a lot of time and energy went into that aspect of these tools given how important it is to users, but how often do *I* need a 1/2 second faster drilling time with a 2-1/2″ auger bit through LVL?
What’s important to YOU?
There have been so many questions via email, none of them are asking how much faster this can drive a 4″ lag bolt – the questions are “what do you think so far?” And this is what I think so far. If you want to know something differently, ask for specifics.
For what it’s worth, I WANT you to question everything. I’ll always give it to you straight, even if you might question otherwise.
Agree Chris. Well said.
I find the single 5 led bar on the Bosch core batteries more useful than the two 4 led bars here.
But I can see the side location on these useful when in a circular saw etc if the button is still accessible.
I’m not surprised by all the wank in this article given that he also sold out to O-light who are absolutely scum of the flashlight world.
What is wrong with O-light. They may have a lot of market hype but the product is sound, much better than any of the Chinese fire brands.
Just curious why you think o- light is so bad? The lights or the company. I have a few(not from seeing on this sight) and find them nice lights.
O-lights are way O-ver priced!😉
Why are they scum of the flashlight world?
I bought a fair share, and they’ve been great.
They send samples and we have an affiliate relationship, just like with 4 other flashlight brands.
Olight answers my questions and helped out a reader with a frustrating warranty issue. Just because you’re biased doesn’t mean I “sold out.”
I am a little confused by this post and wonder if perhaps you’re looking for something nice to say since they are a sponsor but you’re hoping we read between the lines regarding the actual function of the tool.
Regardless, I am a safety-oriented worry freak. Sitting the drill on its back with a pointy drill bit or screwdriver tip pointed up in the air ready to impale a person if they fall kind of horrifies me.
Looks like you responded to the first post while I was typing mine. So, strike my first sentence and just count the second statement, I guess.
No – it’s just that everyone (reviewers, influencers) is focusing on the power, but that’s not something any readers have asked about so far.
I’m been asked for my thoughts and initial take on things, and differences in the user experience are what always stand out to me.
I don’t place drills or impacts like this often, but I’ve had to do it at times, placing it on a window sill, shelf, or other surfaces where there’s zero chance of impalement. That’s something where I read between the lines. It’s possible this is a coincidence, but I think it’s deliberate.
Also consider if you’re working within a stud cavity. If you back up a drill against one stud, having the tool’s motor housing and battery lines up like this will give you a little more working room.
Thanks for your reply. In the situations you’re describing, the risk would be much lower. The impalement thing is always a big worry for me, especially when people put things down in a “convenient” place and then leave them there.
“The hell is he talking about? Someone go see it if really sits on it’s back”- Chervon
“You sold out!”- Angry Tradesmen
That’s my personal paraphrasing of this post. Haha Flex is causing wars across all the sites. The milwaukee buffs are plenty angry at how well these things are performing in their own real world testing. The ad frenzy has been laughable to the true tradesmen as you can almost see the controlled ad oozing from the articles (not with toolguyd), and well yeah, Flex is definitely making noise hahaha. Now we wait for AvE to rip one open and do a composed rage taredown of a flex drill. Toolguyd through and through, the best of the sites. Honest, even when sponsored..The little things matter.
Agree Rob, disappointed in the team for the first time.
Sorry, I won’t ever apologize for being honest.
Any insight on the Sensor free brushless motors? They mentioned that quite a lot and would be great to understand what this means and how it can benefit the tools vs brushless motors with sensors.
That’s an area I’m still looking into.
Some brushless tools, to me, seem to have a slight but still frustrating startup lag. It’s not a big deal but it can affect slower and more precise tasks. Maybe that’s due to the controller requiring sensor measurements? It’s the only thing I can think of because these tools start up and stop on a dime.
Not in the tool industry but work with electric motors…
Sensor free isn’t something that really impacts the end user (at least not directly), it should actually be a cost savings feature for the OEM since they don’t need the sensor(s) to tell the control where the rotor is. It does remove a component that can fail, so theoretically can be more reliable.
Sensorless control is easier once the motor is actually running, so one method of control is starting the motor in a fixed way, then transitioning to sensorless. That can be the cause of the startup lag that Stuart mentioned.
Zero RPM sensorless, or sensorless starting, is a bit harder since you have to truly control the rotor position from zero RPM, when there isn’t much the control can “see” about the rotor position.
Not trying to take anything away from their sensor free claims, as it indicates they are utilizing the latest tech. The instant start/stop Stuart mentions is a bigger deal – it means they did a good job on their implementation since starting sensorless is the hard part.
If you want to know more about sensorless vs sensored brushless motor control, go to the websites of the big motor control semiconductor manufacturers (e.g. TI, ST, NXP, Microchip, Renesas, Infineon).
Brushless control technique using sensors (typically 3 hall effect sensors; I’m sure power tools aren’t using commutating encoders) should have no startup lag, because with the sensors you know where the motor’s rotor is.
Sensorless control typically on back-EMF feedback (which induces voltages in the non-driven coils, which can be measured by current sensors), and thus typically isn’t as good at low speeds (where there isn’t much back EMF). Another approach is magnetic anisotropy, which requires a decent theoretical model of the motor, which could work for power tools (you know what motor is in your drill).
Nice focus on the details. Fit and finish is important. It’s nice to see someone excited over details. YouTube is a cesspool anymore, and, as such, I appreciate your take.
I think there’s a lot of inherent backlash to this product line that’s just looking for a chance to spill over. Nobody likes seeing their favorite tool brand finish behind a newcomer, and when Flex came out and immediately started comparing their stuff to Milwaukee you just knew it wouldn’t go over well.
Either way, I’m happy their 24v line looks as good as it does. It’s only going to help their competition up their game, too.
It seems like they have done their homework, but so much of it seems to be too good to be true.
Any thoughts on how they are able to offer the performance and features at such a competitive price?
Not that I need one. I hear you on having too many drills. I have 4 (5 counting the installation driver), am not even in the trades, and I had to pay for all of mine!
I really don’t know. I would guess that they produce some products around features and performance, and others around price points, and they know how well different tools sell, and so they adjusted their balance point perfectly.
A very experienced chef can tailor the ingredients of a cookie to appeal especially to kids, to adults, or to all kinds of tastes.
I’m still working with the tools and have a lot of questions piling up. I’ll add yours and other readers’ questions to the mix and try to arrange for some interview time next month.
“Despite being a newly launched brand”. They are not a new brand, they have been around for about a 100 years, angle grinder was their invention. Guess they are a new brand in North America.
Good and bad grip can make a huge difference on a tool. Grip is one of the biggest things for me when making a purchasing decision on any tool.
I know, but it’s effectively a new brand here, kind of, and these tools are not tied into existing Flex products.
Some of the details you mention may be trivial to others, but are deal breakers for those of us who will wait until the “just right” bowl of porridge is released.
Thanks for ALL of your content. Unless it’s an emergency, I always try to look for a tool review here before buying something new, as I find more fact than opinion in your posts and it enables a well-informed decision.
I can barely make out a “Fast” sign on the charger. What would be a fair amount of time to assume it could charge the included 2.5 and 5.0 battery? To my knowledge, I can’t think of any other power tool companies that provide a fast charger out the box
All of the included Makita chargers are rapid chargers. Though, they don’t make a slow charger any more so it’s a little weird calling the one charger a rapid charger. But still, it charges a fully depleted 5.0ah battery in 45 min. That seems to be on par with the rapid chargers of other brands.
Makita includes a cost reduced charger with no fan (and no fast charging) in their bargain kits and with their holiday drills. It’s slooooowww. But, otherwise, yes. Bosch randomly includes quick chargers. All Metabo (not HPT) chargers are fan cooled “quick” chargers…alas..they really don’t put out enough amps to call it that.
Is this Flex the same as this German Flex?
Did Chevron buy the German Flex, or was Chevron always linked to the German based company? I have one of their dust extractors, which is great (but like most high end dust extractors, OEM’d from Nilfisk). I was reading somewhere that Flex invented the electric grinder in 1954, a their tools are supposed to be top shelf.
Any info on this Flex and the German Flex would be appreciated
Doublechecking online, Chervon acquired Flex in 2013. I didn’t learn about the brand at all until maybe towards the end of 2019, and it wasn’t until a couple of months ago that there were hints Flex was coming out with an entirely new cordless lineup.
Over here in Europe I know some tradesmen who say they are going to flex this or that when they whip out their anglegrinder. So it is a known name and has been for a long time. Even though I would always think of Metabo first when speaking of anglegrinders.
The Flex lineup at Lowes is different from the rest of Flex. It’s Chervon’s power tool line with Flex branding. Likewise, I’m confident that no one at Flex proper had anything to do with this product lineup. Chervon has owned Flex for awhile, but they’ve been pretty much been hands off aside from providing technology for the Flex proper cordless tools (and manufacturing some of the ancillary stuff like drills) and providing some of the bargain priced grinders. Ironically, currently, none of the German Flex grinders are available here, only the budget models. In the US, Flex is really only represented in the auto detail world (much like Rupes) with some random additional offerings like the “giraffe” wall sander and stone polishing tools. Some europeans call grinders “flex” the same as we call everything a band-aid. Here, the brand is mostly unknown, which is why Chervon used the name (I presume). Metabo HPT 2: Electric Boogaloo. At some point they were owned by either Porter Cable, Pentair or Black and Decker or Stanley Black and Decker…. German Porter cable tools = Flex.
Some tools are so well designed, it’s hard to find fault. I use Milwaukee, but I commend Flex on their obvious research, and if I ever needed a backup set of tools and lived closer to a Lowe’s, these would come under greater consideration. I’m most interested in the 6 1/2” circular saw, as I’m sure many are, and I wonder how it’ll affect Milwaukee’s development of a new 6 1/2” circular saw. The current one is a few years old, and Flex appears to be driving competition for that particular tool. I’m eager to read more!
From comments about being shill to appreciation. I enjoyed the post as much for the content as the post. I only buy into systems these days. I have my two systems. I wonder if this brand will develop more like ryobi or milwaukee. The details are more important to me than specs I can read off a chart. I rarely trust those anyways. Sponsorship annoys me on most sites. I’ve lurked here for years, if there is anyone who would keep their integrity, its Stuart IMHO.
I’ve written maybe 4 posts about my evolving thoughts on sponsorship, but it always seem to come across oddly, so I never publish them.
The writing was on the wall a few years ago that it was the direction marketers and advertisers were going in, and I started experimenting with different practices and policies to see what worked well for me and ToolGuyd. I’m still experimenting, but so far every brand or retailer partner has been eager to work with me on my terms.
supposedly chevon bought Flex. And this is the premium offering to the Skil devices.
At least that is what I’ve seen so far. I wonder if there would have been as much angst over this post if it had been red or yellow?
While I don’t agree with all of Stuart’s highlights I do agree I like to see some design and build differences. The carbide chuck – if I recall correctly both red and yellow offer that on drills. or hardened anyway.
I do agree with others I’d never set a drill with bit up like that, but it does point to build quality. it’s tolerance stack and assembly line up well and they appear to care about it. It does look well made.
I’m a bit more intrigued by the speed instead of the torque – I’ve always wanted to have the ability to have around 2K+ RPM for some drill applications even in wood. looking for cleaner holes.
I had to laughed at the WOW points. I don’t doubt Stuart’s editorial ethics but this post came close for me.
I love my EGO outdoor power tools but Flex reminds me of all the house brands that are only relevant if you have already entered the battery ecosystem of company via gift or wild sale.
I see no compelling reason as of yet to pay any attention to this brand.
One of these days I’m going to need to set up a webcam so people can see all the smiles and faces I make when I post about certain tools, or the crazy running around when I first open something and start comparing it against other products.
Paul E Hacker
I know that feeling …. lol ..Just like Christmas a few times a year for you ….
I’d venture to guess that for most people who *could* be interested in a new brand/system, the deal-killer on something like this isn’t the feature set. I read this article and some of the FLEX features are compelling…the battery gauge is cool, I love that inserting/removing the battery isn’t a pain (looking at you M12), and overall it’s just a really nice drill. The deal-killer is batteries. Batteries are so expensive, once you get into the 9ah and 12ah batteries (plus a slew of smaller ones) in other systems it’s hard to seriously consider other brands. I’d actually love to give this drill a shot but I’m not willing to add another charger/battery type to my garage. I know I’m preaching to the choir but that’s my $0.02 on any of these new cordless tools.
Lolz, I knew the lifetime warranty was to good to be true. Yes, they are offering a lifetime warranty but only for those who purchase and register a product within this year. Before release, I was under the impression the lifetime warranty would be applied whenever a new flex tool was purchased, be it this year, or 5 years from now, or even longer.
Frankly, I think that’s a crummy thing to do.
5 years is an excellent warranty length. The Founders warranty is a bonus for early adopters.
Dual LED bars to show power levels for the lefties and the righties. OK.
For the rest?
Comfortable … it better be.
But to start with the fact that you leave a drill on its back with the bit pointng up?
I 100% seriously and honestly cannot comprehend how this is considered a feature or wowing or anything. Never in my nearly five decades have I ever desired to leave something sharp pointing up. Stand a drill on its battery without falling over. 100%. Putting it awkwardly on its battery and back of the drive unit pointing to the sky ??? I am lost for words.
You’d be surprise all the little things I often check for.
It’s like an eased edge on a woodworking project.
Some brands design a product from the ground up, others imitate and miss some things.
I am not surprised that you go above and beyond in checking things. It is why we love you and TG!
It is just that you were wow’d and headlines something that has no benefit or practical use that I can discern and ends up being a safety issue.
I have a dozen drills and drivers. I know two or three of them likely won’t do it, but I will try to line then up tomorrow and will see what happens 🙂
As you stated at the beginning of this post, this was a what do you think so far. Ergonomics are very important. I’ve, I love my Bosch core 18 tools. However their angle grinder and reciprocating Saw are of sub par design.
I’ve been a follower of the site for a long time but this sponsored post missed the mark for me. I understand social media/ direct marketing but I don’t feel like any of these features are WOW.
How about a comparison against competitors? What’s the size like? The grip sounds nice but what’s the rest of the form factor like? Power? Great…..how about a comparison to other class leading drills. Power on paper is one thing…..does the performance live up to hype in real world testing?
Not sure about others but I reach for my 18v Fuel hammer drill less & less. LVL’s, framing, decks…..I’m mainly running an impact. If it’s inside work…..I’m running a 12v as it does almost everything I need and the form factor is better for overhead/ delicate work.
What about talking about how a bigger battery system stacks up against these others. What’s the sweet spot for the average user in terms of batteries? I get that it’s sponsored but man…..
Standing a drill on its backside is a sure fire way to drop/ bump/ hit/ nudge it from where it’s balanced to the floor potentially damaging counters/ floors/ furniture not to mention the inherent safety risk to those below/ beneath the work and your own self. If it can be knocked over, it’s not in a safe enough position…..efficient work also means not making boneheaded mistakes…or leaving yourself / tools in a manner where you can make them.
The pc. offers little in the way of a substantive review. It reads like mostly sound bites from a marketing mail…..that’s cool if that’s where you’re going but if the ToolGuy is going to geek out over marketing hype, I can’t come here as a resource.
I can appreciate that – and I do have comparisons in the works.
I wanted to get some of the little things out of the way first, and also to get a feel for what you need.
The questions I’ve been asked so far were about what I think about this particular tool and the system. Well, this is what I like so far, the little things that would give ME a reason to buy it over other brands.
Some of them are small “nobody else ever really notices” things, like the flat back, and others are going to be a very big deal, such as the battery connection and form factor.
It seems a lot of people want comparisons, so that’s coming next.
Let me help you on one of those points. One measly extra battery (21.6=24 in Chervon speak) ain’t gonna gain you squat. Do Hilti tools out-perform other 18v tools?
Oh no, a new tool brand that Stu has a favorable initial opinion of! Better can him a shill and fanboi all over his site! Dear lord, bet y’all are peaches on the job lol Nobodies gonna make you buy new tools, and the internet will always have something to stroke your ego, your not unearthing some conspiracy theory between toolguyd and Lowe’s to get us to buy more volts or something. Good write up, Stu. Always good to see what others look at in tools and you’ve made several interesting points as I’m concerned. Also interested in where this line is going.
Here’s my question, I am already heavily invested into dewalt 20v and milwaukee m12, what does flex bring to the table now or in the future that would make me want to switch?
Also why should anyone considering pro grade tools consider flex over dewalt, milwaukee, or makita given the amount of tools offered by each brand?
If you’re fully invested, wait and see if there are any singular tools that complement your setup.
Look at the features or designs of individual tools, and see if any of them ease a frustration.
There are a lot of nuances.
This is one of very few high powered drill options that has anti-kickback functionality. Of those options, I know some users complaint about a particular brand’s chuck slipping on smaller drill bits. This has the carbide inserts. Sometimes speed is important, and the Turbo mode is going to be the decisive factor.
There are reasons to buy nearly every brand, this might or might not be the one for you, it depends on so many different things.
If I want a subcompact drill, for instance. Flex’s 24V Max battery and drill size (there’s another model) are not going to be as competitive. Yet? They have a long product roadmap.
“Their goal isn’t to be just another brand on the shelf, they’re aiming to be the *best* brand on the shelf. ”
Best can mean so many different things. To a pro – weight, power and reliability are super important. To a weekend warrior – price is a big deal. We all have our own reasons why we own the “best” tools (mine are red, but that’s irrelevant).
That statement is just meaningless marketing fluff. Knowing what makes it the best would be much more valuable to me. You mentioned some nice features, but none of those seem like that big of a deal. Are they exclusive to Lowes?
Who are they competing with? Kobat, Ryobi, PC & CMan or DeWalt, Makita & Milwaukee? That would tell me more than
They’re looking to compete with pro brands – Milwaukee et al. I haven’t done comparisons yet, and Flex is still so new it’s important to provide their claims and stated positioning for context and introductory information.
Please tell me it’s made in Germany. Otherwise I’ll stick with Metabo (not HPT). I’m not in love with my Metabos but I’m tired of sending money to China for disposable cordless tools. I suppose the German made Metabos won’t be around for much longer either.
LOL, it’s made by Chervon….this is Flex in name only.
Metabo started a plant in China years before Hitachi-Koki bought them. Their cordless lineup is 98% Chinese. Cordless: they make the SDS drills and most drill/drivers at the German Metabo plant. Anything else of European manufacture has been outsourced (Collomix, Steinel, etc). Outside of China, they have some stuff made in South Korea.
I have a Flex buffer from Germany so I figured there was at least a chance.
My Metabo cordless drill/driver and drill/tapper were made in Germany, the impact driver and recip saw are from China, so in my case the 98% figure doesn’t add up. The important thing, at least to me, is that they still do make cordless tools outside of China, even if it’s not the entire line. The best-in-the-world angle grinders are also made in Germany, by Metabo.
Some Bosch 12V Max is made outside of China – some of mine were made in Malaysia.
I wonder if this is lowes way of telling sb&d to stick it because of home depot having exclusivity over flex volt? It has to sting that your competitor has three high end brands compared to your one and gets the highest end of that one as well.
Personal opinion lowes should have offered makita whatever it took to get them in store.
Lowe’s has Dewalt 12V Max exclusivity and 20V Max Power Detect. And Craftsman.
Also, Skil, Kobalt, Flex.
Bosch (middling selection).
To me power detect seems like a middling way to placate lowes. Dewalt 12 volt is nothing compared to m12 and the rest aren’t even worth the conversation.
My cousin is a district manager for lowes. The #1 asked questions by customers are about Milwaukee and flex volt. There is a reason home depot is killing them in the pro market.
Lowes not has EGO, one of the top players in cordless OPE. Flex is claiming to be a directly competitor to Milwaukee so lets wait and see what Flex turns out to be. So far if your being objective with what they have available now they match and Flex has surpassed in some cases. Of course only time will tell other factors such as build quality and longevity.
Dewalt 12V is far superior to Milwaukee M12 at least for compact drill/drivers. The ergonomics are just unparalleled. Dewalts problem with their 12V line is that they just don’t have many tools and that is where Milwaukee really shines.
Yep or Ergonomics, especially those of you with small hands. But, it isn’t even close for power, selection, design, go to Milwaukee in 12 volt.
Looks like a very interesting drill. More competition should be beneficial to the consumer. I’m a little underwhelmed with all of the manufacturers battery fuel gauges. My phone has accurate readings 45%-77%, ect. Why does the battery have to have such vague rough estimate readings, 1 light, 2 lights, 3lights? I would rather know the exact percentage! At least have an adapter to slide on the battery to give you an exact percentage. I know it’s not that critical, but my phone has the percentage readings & i’m spoiled.
User manuals will usually list out what those indicator lights mean, with percentage thresholds for different LED counts.
Your battery can read out its approximate voltage, compare it to a reference number, determine a percent, and light up x-number of LEDs.
LEDs are durable, and they can be “light-piped” from a circuit board to a lens or display. Or they can have extended leads to get them into needed position.
Displays take up much more space, they can have tricky mounting or visibility conditions, and they’re usually not as durable.
It’s possible to have a specific percentage readout, but not feasible. If brands made a slide-on battery fuel gauge adapter with digital display, but it probably wouldn’t sell.
Finger sander please.
Corded or cordless. Don’t care.
When might you expect flex to be available at lowes stores? I haven’t been to my local store but if lowes app is accurate they are only available to purchase online.
I’m not sure, but I believe they should be rolling out shortly.
I would absolutely expect (with 99.99% certainty) we’ll see displays ahead of Father’s Day at the least.
A new Cordless tool “brand” is a good thing – as it may push Milwaukee, DeWalt, and Makita to make similar improvements on their next generations.
I currently use Milwaukee for Auto, HVAC Mechanical, Electrical, and Plumbing work, and Bosch for Carpentry/Woodworking. I will need to replace the Bosch in the next couple years. (Bosch is lagging in selections in the U.S.)
I’ll consider Flex, based on Chervon’s success with Ego which to me it means they’ll be around for awhile. That said if I had to pick a successor to the Bosch, today it would be Makita.
It will be interesting to see who loses shelf space at Lowes. SBD has locked down DeWalt and Craftsman. Will Chervon made Kobalt be cut back? I suspect Bosch and/or Metabo will lose space.
Any word on the new tool lines? What type of tools (ie, metal working, wood working, handheld Band Saw), Release Dates, etc?
Flex needs to speed things up!!
There have been some gradual launches, but not a lot of specialty tools yet.