Instructables

Simple 12V Cordless Drill Hack!!!!!

Picture of Simple 12V Cordless Drill Hack!!!!!
Give your 12V battery drill some real GRUNT!!!!!

YAY! Almost finished my scooter for Project: Underglow. (Will be published soon) I just need to drill a hole here...(grabs battery drill, clips in battery)...5mm bit......about there......and drill. Bugger. Battery flat. AGAIN. I was fed up. It was 2:30 in the morning. So I did this real quick hack to my drill. AND took photos :) just to show you'se mob.

It basically involves tapping into the 12V input to the speed controller, which would normally be fed by the crappy battery they give you. Sure, you can re-pack them with some big Ni-MH's, but I'm poor at the moment (around A$95 to repack a pack here in oz). So I decided to just hook it to a big SLA, which will give me some juicy current.

Pros:
*Drill for longer (higher capacity battery)
*more torque (SLA has higher surge current capacity)
*Lighter (only lifting an 800 gram drill, not an 800 gram drill AND a 2.2Kg battery)

Cons:
*Cord hanging out back (I can live with that)

So lets get started!!!!!
 
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Step 1: Stuff you will need

cable.jpg
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You will need:

*A drill
*An SLA
*Some fat cable
*Terminal block (optional)

Step 2: Lets get started!!!!!

First, you need to remove the battery. You won't be needing that for a long time.

Then, take a screwdriver to the beast. There were 6 screws, none were hidden on my drill.

pop the cover off. You should be rewarded with a mess of wires.

Get your cable. Make a note of the polarity. Find where the battery connector is. I decided to just crimp the cable to the back of the connector. worked well enough.

Route the cable out the bottom, clip it back together and put the screws in.
wogga1 year ago
This is a good use of a DC portable drill - especially helpful if you're away from AC outlets for a long time like on a boat or working 'in the bush'.

There are a couple of things that people have touched on, but I'll spell them out in one comment:

1. You need thick, short cabling between your battery and DC device - it draws watts as volts x amps. House wiring is 110v so amps are low and cabling can be pretty tiny. When you are using a 12v device that is somewhat powerful, you will need much thicker/shorter wiring. This shows itself as voltage drop and warming wiring--or worse.

2. Lead Acid- even 'deep cycle etc batteries' - don't like to be used 'all the way'. In fact, if you care about your lead acid battery try to only use it 20% or 50% up. You can get a rough idea of how much 'drill life' your battery has by figuring out how many amps the battery is vs how many amps the drill is rated at. If they give watts, figure it out from watts = volts x amps.
anthonyfca2 years ago
great idea this, I travel a lot by car, and need everything running off 12v where mains 220v etc is never available. I'll use a big "booster" sealed lead acid battery which I can recharge from the alternator when travelling.

The SLA (Sealed Lead Acid?) looks exactly like the type used in some computer uninteruptible power supplies (UPSs)

Thanks for this, just brilliant for what I need - and from some time in the past. Nice .

Anthony
i gutted an old battery and wired it to a mail car lighter socket.....works great....great idea btw
cleardanny2 years ago
i'm a bit late here but now it's not wirreles anymore so you can use a 220 v or 120 v drill.
This is good for a place where is no electricity if you have it's not usefull .
tried with a car battery sitting at 12.6 volts and the wires just get hot with no movement from drill. mine is a dewalt tho
is an sla a car battery???? sure looks likeit
Not usually. SLA means Sealed Lead-Acid, meaning that it doesn't have vent ports, and can be tipped in any direction. Car batteries are more often "floodies," which are also lead-acid, but have removable vent caps to allow you to replenish the electrolyte. This cap doesn't seal perfectly, though, and the case isn't completely filled, so they have to stay upright.
Derin CameronSS5 years ago
maintenance free car batteries are also sla
Not always. SLA has no vents. Most maintenance-free batteries have vents which can only be opened with a large screwdriver or pry bar.

~/Lee
Da_Fudge (author)  CameronSS5 years ago
oh yes. You're correct. I didn't read his comment correct. I thought it said "is it an SLA car battery". But all the things you said above are correct. thanks for correcting me!!!!!
PKM Da_Fudge5 years ago
Also remember car batteries are high current but low capacity and don't like being drained, but the SLA shown is probably a more deep cycle than a car battery so can happily be drained and recharged a number of times.
Derin PKM5 years ago
then keep the engine running that works bcz of a magical device called an alternator
PKM Derin5 years ago
Well if you have to have your car there it's not quite as portable, is it? I thought the point was that you could still have a more or less portable drill but a better battery life than the original. I know running the car engine would keep the battery topped up, but then you might as well run it off the cigarette lighter socket. The sarcasm is unnecessary.
Derin PKM5 years ago
A car is portable.But good idea on the lighter socket,you would at least be safe ps i wasnt sarcastic pss the idea would be useful when you work inside the car
Derin Derin5 years ago
think:being spun around on the "trigger" belt
Da_Fudge (author)  PKM5 years ago
thats also correct
Da_Fudge (author)  campingfreak5 years ago
yep.
mapmaker544 years ago
I did as instructed but I don't have enough power from a 12 volt 7 amp lead acid battery.  What battery did  you use?
Ev mapmaker543 years ago
Mapmaker, Are you wiring a 12v drill? This won't do much for an 18v tool!
Damn, my drill holds the battery in the handle so it is hard to access the terminals.
maysound4 years ago
This project gave me an idea for an old drill I had lying around. I connected a 10 foot cable with a cig. lighter plug on the end. I have several of those portable 12 volt power packs here and can use the drill with one of those. The power packs are basically a SLA battery in a case with a lighter socket and a power inverter AC outlet. Works great for hours. Thanks for the idea.
Do you get your SLA's from Jaycar because they have the Diamec ones (they have the same one U used so I guess u did) in their catalouge here
trogabird5 years ago
don't use terminal block but get crimp on terminals from parts house. Battery will have to replace sometime. I did my 2 million CP light like this after battery died. Pulled high beam out of mu truck light ;1989 and rigged it in light. This gave me a charger and charger plugin for the battery. had to remove the resistor or what ever it was for old battery was only 6 volt. Solder the charger plugin into both your wires going to drill. The charger was a 12 volt power pack 1 amp type. works great. If you have a 12 volt charger that fits lighter plug in car, charge it as you drive. I carry my battery in an arm sling I happened to have. No worries about taking off and forgetting to pick up the battery.
Bubbler5 years ago
My old cheap and nasty 12V drill had a flat battery when I wanted to use it a few days back. I decided to clean up the shed and found a battery powered tool kit that has a sander, circular saw, torch and jigsaw with it. None of these work successfully as the two 14.5 batteries are no longer sufficient and die almost immediately. I tried one of these batteries in my drill, and it almost fitted, only the clips did not match. Pulling the trigger, the drill burst into life, and so I gaff taped the battery on. I used it a lot to do 20 meters of fencing over the weekend, and it goes really well. I now have three batteries and no excuse for a dead drill.
Da_Fudge (author)  Bubbler5 years ago
cool!!!
ej375 years ago
Your innovation is impressive. Great idea Fudge!
Da_Fudge (author)  ej375 years ago
thanks miss walle!!!!
Trans_Am5 years ago
SLA stands for sealed lead-acid. I had to search for it on wikipedia.
Da_Fudge (author)  Trans_Am5 years ago
yep thats right.
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