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  1. #1
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    Default Cordless Recip Saw Battery Life

    We are a small rural dept. that responds to an average of 6 to 10 vehicle crashes per year. We have a good set of resuce tools but are in need of replacing the batteries for our DeWalt recip saw. I have done some reading and understand the need for doing maintenance on the battery. Just curious as to what others are doing about this issue. We also have a corded saw but the generator is on our Enigine and it is used to block traffic, so it is set back a ways from the scene and running a cord that far does not seem practical. We also currently do not have room on our rescue for another portable generator but are considering buying one and not using the cordless anymore.
    Any thoughts?


  2. #2
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    The best option for your replacement batteries... www.aircraftdynamics.com Check out the RoboPak battery system. It is worth every penny of you rinvestment.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Isitjustme View Post
    The best option for your replacement batteries... www.aircraftdynamics.com Check out the RoboPak battery system. It is worth every penny of you rinvestment.
    That looks like a great system. And it's not even that pricey. The one that runs 6-28v Milwaukee and DeWalt tools is $399. That is less then the cost of 5 batteries for those tools.

    The downside? Your tool is no longer "cordless". While it's great that you have a remote power pack and do not need 110vac extension cords, you do not have the ultimate flexibility of no cord at all. And what do you do when you need to use multiple tools at the same time?
    Last edited by WD6956; 10-26-2011 at 02:10 PM.

  4. #4
    Forum Member bburton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WD6956 View Post
    That looks like a great system. And it's not even that pricey. The one that runs 6-28v Milwaukee and DeWalt tools is $399. That is less then the cost of 5 batteries for those tools.

    The downside? Your tool is no longer "cordless". While it's great that you have a remote power pack and do not need 110vac extension cords, you do not have the ultimate flexibility of no cord at all. And what do you do when you need to use multiple tools at the same time?
    My Squad has found great success in Honda's EU2000i portable generator. Compact package and reliability that keeps on taking a beating. Have one on every truck for just such applications. You can pick it up and run with it if need be and it's EcoThrottle makes it quiet enough to work around.

    Battery tools are great and provide a solid strike at a niche, but when you need that reliable cut a good generator and good old corded saw gets the job done, and won't die mid way through.

    http://www.hondapowerequipment.com/p...elid=EU2000IKN
    The MSRP noted is more than you could find at say Northern Tool, etc.

    However, if you are only running 6-10 MVA's per year, you might do better with a 2 pack of Li-Ion Dewalt batteries from your local big-box hardware store. $100 and some anal-retentive battery rotation may do the trick for your need.
    Last edited by bburton; 10-27-2011 at 04:37 AM. Reason: reread original post

  5. #5
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    While Ryobi no longer makes their gas powered reciprocating saw,the EJ 100, they can still be found used for a decent price if you look long enough. There is also a gas powered hammer drill. I have a set of these twins and they are absolutely the most powerful tools to do what they do.

    There is a company still making gas powered drills, not sure about the cip saws though. A quick google search turned up nothing.

    If you can find one, it would certainly solve your battery issues.
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  6. #6
    Forum Member Trkco1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WD6956 View Post
    And what do you do when you need to use multiple tools at the same time?
    We have mutiple RoboPaks and adapters. I don't have a picture of the Hilti Sawsall with the adapter, but here's the Holmatro BCT-3120 set up.
    FTM-PTB-EGH-RFB-KTF

  7. #7
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    On the Robo pack, what is the projected lifespan of the battery in it? As an example, i have a pair of Milwaukee 18volt batteries that are coming up on 10 years old and while they still hold a charge right off the charger, the run time is less then ten minutes and they will lose power just sitting on a shelf.

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    i work for a larger dept that runs an average of 2-3 mva's each shift we use the robo pack and would consider any other way now they work extremely well and if im not mistaking we have had ours for close to ten years and they are still working as well as they did new

  9. #9
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JSMV72 View Post
    We are a small rural dept. that responds to an average of 6 to 10 vehicle crashes per year. We have a good set of resuce tools but are in need of replacing the batteries for our DeWalt recip saw. I have done some reading and understand the need for doing maintenance on the battery. Just curious as to what others are doing about this issue. We also have a corded saw but the generator is on our Enigine and it is used to block traffic, so it is set back a ways from the scene and running a cord that far does not seem practical. We also currently do not have room on our rescue for another portable generator but are considering buying one and not using the cordless anymore.
    Any thoughts?
    If you use the stock batteries,figure on replacing then yearly. They may well last longer but we find they lose long term performance after 12 months. The fact that you would use them Infrequently accelerates their EOSL. T.C.

  10. #10
    Forum Member scooby0066's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    If you use the stock batteries,figure on replacing then yearly. They may well last longer but we find they lose long term performance after 12 months. The fact that you would use them Infrequently accelerates their EOSL. T.C.


    bingo.. about a year. ours are all about in need of a change. we have about 10 battery paks (Milwaukee brand)

    I think we are going to try the robopak, and also have 2 batteries. in the event we need to not be connected for a few cuts, we can throw in the battery pak.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rescue101 View Post
    If you use the stock batteries,figure on replacing then yearly. They may well last longer but we find they lose long term performance after 12 months. The fact that you would use them Infrequently accelerates their EOSL. T.C.
    Slightly off topic, but it does tie in...This forum is exactly what cracks me up when I see departments actually considering replacing hydraulic rescue tools with some of the new battery powered extrication tools being marketed.

    Batteries and firefighters are like oil and water. They just dont know how to cycle or condition them properly. They last the "expected" run-time for the first few months and then bottom out from there. Now add cold air in the winter, maybe a little rain- forget it. You'd be lucky to get 3 minutes off of them.

    Now, like this guy said, throw in the price of replacing the EXTREMELY expensive replacement batteries every year and you have purchased a 10 year headache and budget buster rather than a convenience. I think I can deal with a hose and power unit.

  12. #12
    Forum Member Rescue101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by laddercompany20 View Post
    Slightly off topic, but it does tie in...This forum is exactly what cracks me up when I see departments actually considering replacing hydraulic rescue tools with some of the new battery powered extrication tools being marketed.

    Batteries and firefighters are like oil and water. They just dont know how to cycle or condition them properly. They last the "expected" run-time for the first few months and then bottom out from there. Now add cold air in the winter, maybe a little rain- forget it. You'd be lucky to get 3 minutes off of them.

    Now, like this guy said, throw in the price of replacing the EXTREMELY expensive replacement batteries every year and you have purchased a 10 year headache and budget buster rather than a convenience. I think I can deal with a hose and power unit.
    BTDT. For US,battery powered tools don't work well. Yes, it's a charging and care issue.YES, they have a annual cost(High)to maintain reliability. I'd rather have CORDED Hi-amp saws,they are faster and stronger. The Li-on's have helped but we are sticking to corded after a Beta run with the cordless. Your mileage may vary. T.C.

  13. #13
    Forum Member scooby0066's Avatar
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    I'll have to say, out of all the posts, this has been useful. Of all the times I have used the robopak, its never occurred to me to buy it for my own uses..lol

    knowing that i'm in desperate need of buying some batteries, this has allowed me to re-think and re-direct some thought

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