I recently came across a new Husky screwdriver at Home Depot, and it immediately called to mind similar “Double Drive” screwdrivers that continue to be sold at Lowe’s under Kobalt branding.
Home Depot describes the new Husky tool as a continuous drive ratcheting screwdriver on its packaging, and as a ratcheting Double Speed screwdriver online.
The description isn’t important, but I am mentioning this in case you go looking for the screwdriver online at a later time (I also have a link at the end of this post). As the descriptions are different, this screwdriver won’t show up in a web search for “Husky continuous drive screwdriver.” But I digress.
The main thing about this screwdriver is that, as it says on the packaging, it can drive your fasteners 2X faster than with traditional ratcheting screwdrivers.
With a ratcheting screwdriver, the reverse motion can be considered as wasted energy. You turn a fastener with one turn of a ratcheting screwdriver, and reset its gearing position by rotating the handle in the opposite direction.
But with this Husky screwdriver, a reverse motion will also serve to drive a fastener in the desired direction. Thanks to this process, you can turn a fastener in the desired direction no matter which direction you rotate your handle. Toggle the direction switch and you can get dual-action torque transmission in the opposite direction instead.
What’s the catch? You need two hands to activate this special 2X speed mode. You use one hand to turn the screwdriver handle, and the other to hold the special gear collar in a fixed position. You’ll find the collar towards the front of the handle.
Husky looks to offer a lot with their version of the Double Drive screwdriver, such as built-in bit storage and two shaft sizes.
Unfortunately, the handle can only accommodate one of the bit cartridges, although that’s better than not offering bit storage. The handle looks and feels surprisingly compact, which is why I think it’s a plus to offer bit storage at all, rather than a minus that it cannot accommodate all three.
The driver comes with (15) 1/4″ hex screwdriver bits.
I have had mixed feelings for this style of screwdriver over the years, but it has its merits. And, based on the last couple of similarly-designed screwdrivers I tested, the driver should still be useful even if you can only hold it with one hand.
When operated with one hand and without holding onto the gear collar, similar screwdrivers behaved in a way comparable to that of traditional ratcheting screwdrivers.
My local Home Depot stores are reporting anywhere from 3 to 92 units in stock.
At the time of this posting, online ordering is disabled unless you opt for “scheduled delivery,” which involves courier-style delivery straight from your local store for a free ($8.99 for my area).
If you’re interested in the screwdriver’s 2X driving speed functionality, its $10 price tag seems reasonable. If your Home Depot still has these in stock, you can the Husky screwdriver display at the holiday tool deals and gifts center.