Impact Driver : Bosch Blue or Metabo

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I've a few Bosch blue tools and tbh, they're pretty good for the money. The older Bosch professional range could be a bit of a mixed bag depending on the tool but by and large, pretty decent. I currently have a Bosch 80mm electric planer (GH 26-82 corded) and it's an excellent bit of kit and just as good as the Makita and Dewalt one's I've previously used. All of these brands seem to go through phases of making good and not so good stuff and a lot of the differences between them I think is partly down to how each tool feels in use to each person. Of all the big brands I've found in professional use that Makita tend to have been the most consistent in quality and durability over the years.
Went for this in the end. Bosch 18v 21...

Sounds good.

I got myself a bosch blue impact driver/drill driver twin pack, Li-ion, not brushless on a good deal around the same time as brushless was becoming 'a thing'. I'm a diy / hobby user, and help out on daughter's house which needs a lot of work. Some weeks not used at all but when they are used its often intensive over a few days. I noticed recently that the batteries were fading a bit, not lasting quite as long as when new but nowhere near needing replacement. I think of it as my new drill but when I looked at the date I had written on the battery base it said Dec 2015. 7 years and still going. That's pretty good news - previously owned NiMH systems only lasted me 2 years. The tools themselves will probably "see me out" as they say (depressingly).
I would love to see a resurgence in power tools and indeed other things being manufactured in countries other than China as I feel their dominance in the world is going to have very serious consequences.
Europe, USA/ Canada, Australia etc. are more than capable but we must be prepared to pay the extra, We are saving now but will pay a high price in the long run, Russia today and within the next couple of decades….
The likes of Dyson moved their manufacturing from the UK to reduce costs but still charge a premium plus price for there products and anyone that’s ever bought one can see that their cordless vac is overpriced by a couple of hundred quid and quite honestly the one we bought is not fit for purpose. Back to power tools I have a B&D hammer drill that as far as I can remember was Swiss made back in the days of the association with Elu
I have drilled hundreds of 125mm cores with it as well as every thing else and is still going strong, In the short term it was relatively expensive but in the long term exceptional value.
The same's happened in all fields of manufacture and it's way too late to be worrying about us being in for trouble due to reliance on cheap labour costs in the Far East, as it's already been dominating world markets for decades. The whole work ethic is very different in the Far East. Japan stands alone as a country which now prides itself in the quality of certain areas of manufacture and they're world leaders still in the quality of everything from cars and engines (Lexus/Toyota and Honda especially) to electronics, to knives and general metallurgy.

I worked as an assistant project manager on multi-£m schemes in Thailand and Singapore some years back. The work ethic there, was much the same as Hong Kong and China. Work is so plentiful that it's not unusual for someone to come into work very late, get questioned by their boss and simply walk out into a new job the same day. Everyone has relatives working in other companies and in Thailand this was especially prevalent back in the 90's when I was there. Staff turnover was quite high and maintaining standards took a greater management effort than here in the West. The same isn't true of all Far Eastern countries of course as in South Korea and Taiwan its more like Japan.

However, COVID showed us how dependant we have become on China. There is now a world shortage of some of the IC's needed for car management systems as China has a huge backlog due to their lock downs and for want of a relatively cheap 10p component, world prices for new and used cars has gone through the roof because manufacturers cannot get the parts. It's the same in other areas of manufacture. Allied to a weakened £gbp it has driven prices up. Timber prices have been hit as hard especially in engineered boards like Ply as a lot of what we get is Russian or Latvian. In my industry (after 25 yrs as a civil engineer I now run a hifi design and manufacturing business specialising in loudspeakers) almost all of the traditional English brands including Quad, Tannoy, Mission, and many others are owned by the IAG group and Behringer and manufacture has switched almost exclusively to China, in spite of what the marketing blurb may claim. My company is one of only a small handful still manufacturing loudspeakers in the UK. It's a state of affairs that combined with high energy costs is putting loads of small businesses to the wall, and ironically the only answer here is a return to traditional very small businesses with skilled artisans manufacturing high quality products yet still able to compete with the mark-ups of lots of Chinese made British Brand products as long as direct sales cut out middlemen and retailers. It's the only model that now permits survival in this field of endeavour. Of course fine quality cabinetry and bespoke timber work is mainly in this field and mostly has always centred around family run firms so lets hope this carries on.

My apologies for the thread drift to the OP. Just my rambling thoughts following ED209's comments.
@Reffc no apology required at all. I'm the same in that I'm a strong believer in Japanese produce and sourcing/peoviding business locally (if not somewhere with excellent work ethic). I'll find the article if you like but in one of my Privateer (by the makers of the famous but expensive Rouleur road cycling mag) articles there was a full interview of Shimano factory/factories in Japan.

The work ethic over there is almost religious. The meeting times and production timing is almost to the second and workers come early but leave late. Not because they have to but because to them, work is (almost like?) part of the religion.

My user name, 'Redefined_Cycles' is from a business/hobby I tried to run years ago. From my community I was finding - and I have experience of this myself - cyclists buying/being bought cheap rubbish to ride. I decided to make a change to this and after a short apprenticeship at Colne Valley Cycles I started building push bikes from the ground up. Inclusive of rebuilding the wheels. I'd but a used (but top quality frame) and rebuild it with second hand parts. Parts mainly being from Shimano but their top-tier stuff (XTR and Dura Ace or XT/Ultegra). Almost all exclusively made in Japan or Malaysia.

Never once had any complaints and a particular happy moment was when an overweight (due to hieght not BMI as he was about 6.2ft) chap got back to me about a GT Agressor I'd fully rebuilt and sold him 6 or so years ago. Only now had he a problem and that too cos his tires had worn to the core!

On a similar subject, I recently bought a Lexus LS430 from 21 years ago. Still riding so smooth and (almost) everything works. A few tweaks have been made due to the local silly person mechanics opening things and not putting evrything back properly. I don't have the words for such idiots and am certain the orignal engineers at Toyota/Lexus wouldn't be too happy...

Buy quality... buy once :)

NB. As an aside I've been buying Darn Tough (lifetime warranty) for the last few years and one pair of socks gives me the same wash/use cycle as 4 other pairs of a dtandard brand. Aside from the merino wearing thin (overuse on my part... maybe) they've been amazing. Just recently I've bought my second set of Teko (made in Scotland with lifetime warranty on manufacturing again) as the first have been absolutely fantastically amazing. One pair is about £20 but saves me buying 5 pairs of cheaper alternates that need washing daily...
I must admit to being a big fan of Japanese philosophy and work ethic when it comes to such things. I gambled on a used GS300 V6 Lexus some years back, for me, the high point in their manufacture being the mid 2000's. Modern ones aren't quite on a par but still very good. After a good few years use I traded that one for a nearly new RX450h 6 years ago and have the same car today which has been almost trouble free, and without a shadow of a doubt the best vehicle I have ever owned. Their attention to detail is phenomenal. The latest owner of my older Lexus contacted me a while back for historical information on it and it had since covered a star-ship mileage with no engine trouble!
Very interesting insight in to Japanese products. I drive a 2008 Honda CRV and it has been super reliable and a pleasure to drive I have always admired Honda’s and indeed other Japanese cars and motorcycles I know it seems a bit hypocritical after my previous post about Chinese etc. goods. But yes some countries make excellent products but can’t compete with the mostly copied Chinese version which they haven’t had to pay R&D for just a bit of reverse engineering.
The other thing that gets me is the use of previous brand names that at one time represented quality products but now just used to sell things and have no association with the original companies apart from the name. A Grundig fridge freezer for example, A ex quality German manufacturer of TVs / electronics the name now owned by a Turkish domestic goods concern. Good luck with your speaker business.
I have started playing the guitar and people seek the ones made in Taiwan as they are much better quality than there Chinese equivalents. We have a picture framers and card/gifts and our policy is not to sell anything made in China unless of course it’s something traditionally Chinese. We do sell wooden toys made of rubber wood from Sri Lanka and knitted finger puppets from Peru ( lots of support from the UK company to the local population).
Admittedly I do buy a lot of things for our business and home use that are mainly from Amazon and inevitably made in China I do feel bad about it.
I have always believed in buying the best and not necessarily the cheapest so getting back to tools my track saw is a Maffell and my routers are Elu, my Domino Festool, have always been a fan of Bosch drills but my old industrial B&D still going well. Looking forward too a reassurances of small companies making quality goods. Going by our customers they are willing to pay more for ethical quality
Yes, I agree. We’ve been going almost 12 years now and it was touch and go for at least the first 4 years. We soon found that in order to compete as a small business you have to have a niche and quality has to be very high. Touch wood (literally!) we are fortunate to have a healthy order book with some willing to wait a year of longer but I can’t say it’s been easy!

Don’t dewalt now make Elu designs such as a copy of their half inch router? Elu always made quality tools so I suspect dewalts may not be quite the same.
The dewalt copies of Elu routers are close enough that dewalt parts can be used to keep old Elu machines going. But the DeWalt armatures for example are not manufactured to the same standards as the originals. Laminations are coarser, balancing is less precisely done ....
A repaired tool doesn't run quite as smoothly and quietly as an original.
Very disapointed with it's on a par with Black n Decker, oh sorry DeWalt....noisey and not so cheap....

WELL, It depends WHICH Bosch Impact driver model...

Their Gen-1 was quite mediocre, Gen-2 also mediocre, but Gen 1.5 that is still being sold (I would better say, DISPOSED OF) in many countries, advertised as a "180 Nm" torque, is an absolute piece of rubbish... it still has a brushed motor, and its anvil is so small and badly matched, that its real torque is just a fraction of the very inflated Bosch factory specification!

BUT, the most recent mid-range model, sold either as "GDX 18V 1860 C" (which means 1860 inch-Lb or 155 Ft-lb or 210 Nm) or a similarly powered one labeled as GDX 18V 200, are good enough (IF you already have 18V Bosch batteries, that is !)...
I would say that the model 1860C (or CN, depending on the country) is perfectly capable for carpentry, but barely just enough for automotive or metal working. In other words, it will remove the wheel nuts of a midsize car, but it could not be enough for a small truck or suspension work.

I am only considering the 1860C bare tool because I bought another 18V Bosch tool thanks to a heavy discount sale offer in my country at Home-Depot, as they were giving a basic 18 V charger and two 4.0 Ah standard batteries for free, included in the purchase of any 18V Bosch bare tool, so that I will probably going to use one of the batteries to power the drill and the other to power the impact driver. The model of impact driver that they were selling that weekend, was the "GDX 18V 180 Li" (also labeled as "GDX 18V 1600b" in other countries),, which as I already said, is brushed, not very compact, and is PLAINLY, TOO WEAK!... So I returned it to the store immediately together with its charger and pair of batteries! (which I suspect, Bosch is pushing out due to them moving onto the more powerful (but highly expensive new line of batteries, named "CORE")...

For those considering the purchase of an impact driver, and specially, a strong Impact "wrench", by all means do a YouTube search for the "Torque Test Channel", as they truly test the torque and performance of many impact tools, and publish a comparative table of their findings, which seem very revealing and scandalous at times... that table which includes a lot of brands and models is not given "for free", as they sell it; but the revelations and throughly tested results could be "enlightening".
I moved to Milwaukee fuel from Makita. Much prefer them. I have the 18v Drill Driver, Impact and the m12 fuel surge impact - M12FQID - that little thing is amazing considering how small, light and quiet it is. It's my go to unless I need heavier duty and with short wood bits is great between joists.
The loose batteries are a bit annoying though.
Get some tools in your hand! I discounted several for lack of local availability, and Dewalt and Bosch based on ergonomics, that being a very personal thing; I went for Makita.

My brother’s joinery business also switched from Panasonic (which served them very well for a long time) to Makita (with Mafell track saws Festool for unique products).
Hi all and thanks for your insight in advance. I heard of the Metabo name on here and previously had assumed Milwaukee to be the best.

Recently I came into a well used Milwaukee impact driver for cheap and it's been a revelation for me. Though, definitely on its last legs. So in my continuing aim of consolidating all my tools I've decided to invest (and sell some of my other various drivers.

Above all I'm trying to stay China free (concentration camps) but I also don't want to compromise on quality. Rounded down to these units as they're both more than likely non-China produce and also very strong. Bosch would probably beat the Metabo in benchmark tests but then again, maybe the Metabo would outlast it. 12v will probably be plenty for me as it's 115nm. Price is also a major factor as I really need for the used-sales to fund the new kit.

The round down...
If anyone has a 3rd option to pop in the mix then feel free. Milwaukee definitely a no no as it's made in PRC (as opposed to Taiwan build, which would be RofC)
Have you looked at Makita? Excellent tools, and my drill/driver set was made in Japan.
Right... So I bought the Bosch Blue set which included the impact driver (about 200nm max AFAIR) combined with wrench. So the head take both type of fitting. That was back in November as I wanted to take advantage of the 18v SDS-plus drill body you get for free by regustering with Bosch Pro-Tools website.

Waited another 2 months for the SDS to make it's way through and now been using the setup with some of my other tools to get working in the outhouse. Lots of red-brick drilling (I think they're engineering bricks) and the SDS cordless is working a treat.

However, ever since I got the impact driver it initially had a bit of stiffness getting the impact bit in there. Yesterday after I pulled one out which got a bit stuck, it's all gone 'toasted'. Seems like the opening has widened or something as it no longer grips the impact philips bit!

Called FFX to see what can be done and it's a 3 to 4 week turnaround as they have to send the power tool back to Bosch and await an outcome of replacement or refund! Continuing with my worn down Milwaukee impact driver for the mo!
Bought the Lidl pro impact driver last month ( brushless, 20V 5 year guarantee ) €50.00 ..used it yesterday..excellent bit of kit, :) , when they show up again I'll buy another, even if they make them twice the price.
Quiet, led light , 4 power levels..made in DE
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Called FFX to see what can be done and it's a 3 to 4 week turnaround as they have to send the power tool back to Bosch and await an outcome of replacement or refund! Continuing with my worn down Milwaukee impact driver for the mo!

Sorry - that sounds like bad service from FFX. Go to the Bosch website and book a repair under guarantee. They will pick up failed device, fix in a few days and then courier it back to you. They will also repair out of warranty items in the same timescales, albeit for a cost.
I just did this with a GEX and the only hassles were with FedEX who cannot understand simple instructions.

However, my bugbear with Bosch is their crazy bluetooth ideas - who wants to have to take a phone out of pocket, remove gloves, unlock phone and open app to set up a device. Festool have a much better idea using Bluetooth to switch on dust extractors.

Back to OP - look at other systems you may want - Bosch and Metabo both share their battery technology - you may find that is a decider.
Another doubter regarding blue Bosch stuff here. It certainly is not what it used to be...

My workshop based on good prior experience was completely kitted out with Bosch back around 2009 with a few more items bought since - drill and impact drivers, routers, sanders, a small circular saw etc.

The drill/impact drivers get the regular use - and have suffered several gear failures. The rest have been OK, but get less use.

The last failure was replaced about a year ago by an 18V 5AH Makita drill driver - which feels more solidly built than the Bosch equivalent and so far has been reliable.

My impression is that blue Bosch these days is only marginally better than the cheap consumer brands of power tool. I in comparion have and still occasionally use a Bosch mains drill (probably the first of the plastic housing variety?) my Father won as a spot prize at a dinner dance around 1970...

It's a difficult matter. There seems to be better stuff than Bosch around but (a) it's hard to get good information without hands on experience and (b) it's hard in a hobby shop/light use environment to justify the often big step up in cost to e.g. Festool or Milwaukee except in the specific cases (e.g. the Festool track saws) where the premium item delivers a very real improvement in performance...
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