cordless tools, Ridgid

Ridgid Mega Max Brushless- #THDProspective

This post is sponsored by Home Depot

I’ve always been intrigued by hybrid multi headed tools.  I remember really considering  a Shop Smith when I was in my 20’s.  In the end I decided dedicated tools were more efficient for my needs.  At the other end of the spectrum are drills with interchangeable heads.  I really like them for many reasons so I have several.  I have known about other systems with many tool attachments but I stayed  away from them since they were light duty tools for homeowners.

The first multihead tool that I used and liked was the Ridgid Jobmax oscillating multitool. (Check the review here) It was surprisingly solid and powerful.  It performed better than some dedicated multitools.  There are quite a few attachments for it.  While I haven’t used all of them, most seem to be well made.

 The new Mega Max Tools are now here!

 Since the first time I saw a picture of these new extra duty tools I have wanted to use them to see how they compare to current  dedicated top-tier tools. They really seemed to be a powerful yet economical solution to many a tradespersons needs.  With this system you can basically have two heavy-duty tools for the price of one.  The third SDS plus head is a lot less money than a third dedicated tool.  We are used to single use tools but face it tools are very expensive and for most of us we can only use one at a time.

I finally got my hands on them a few months back and let me tell you they do not disappoint!  The power head is straight up beef🥩!  I don’t know the actual wattage of the motor but it’s ample for the tool heads included.  The coupling is mostly metal for strength and durability.  There are some plastic areas for smooth engagement. The actual drive gear is a tough rubber piece that looks like it can really take a beating.

To attach a tool head you need to hold the power head at a 45° angle in relation to the head.  Engage the two pieces and twist.  It will have a positive click and then a flash of the status led and a chime to let you know it is ready for action.  To disengage simply slide the unlock button, twist 1/8 turn and pull apart.  It’s such a slick system.  Changing power heads is just as easy as changing a battery on most power tools.  I don’t find it inconvenient at all.

Each tool compares very well to class favorites.  

This was something I wasn’t sure about until I tried them out myself  at the Home Depot Prospective event in New York City.  I purposely tried to stall the right angle drill with the bits they had on hand and couldn’t do it.   All I got was a strong performance from each tool and that’s what I am finding here as well.  On the job and in the shop they are pulling their weight and then some.


The tool I was most interested in was the reciprocating saw.  In remodeling and fire and water damage restoration work we do far more demolition than right angle or concrete drilling.

 When configured as a reciprocating saw it is just slightly longer than the class leaders from Milwaukee and Makita.  With a 6.0 battery it weighs 10 pounds 12 ounces which isn’t too bad  for such a powerful tool.

There is no extra rattling and just a little more vibration with the MegaMax recip than other saws on the market.  The tool free blade clamp seems to work fairly  well. It is not as smooth and easy to use as the Makita or Bosch saws but it seems well designed. It is closer to the old style Milwaukee clamp. Right now it is easier to insert a blade than it is to take it out.  If that changes  as it breaks in I will update as needed.  The adjustable shoe is something I wish all saws had.  It increases blade life considerably, especially in metal.  One thing missing is a rafter hook.

 With the MegaMax reciprocating saw you get straight line cutting and orbital action.  This has been a feature  sorely lacking in cordless tools until recently.  Ridgid was one of the first to offer it in their gen 4x and 5x 18v Saws.  Now Bosch and Milwaukee also offer it in their newest saws.  Orbital mode essentially thrusts the teeth into softer materials (not generally used on metal) for a deeper bite with each stroke.  It’s almost always faster than straight mode on any saw.  This not only saves time on each task, it also reduces the time your hands, wrist and elbows are subjected to the vibration.
This is no small matter.  When I am doing comparison tests on recip saws my elbows wrists and hands ache for weeks after the tests are over.  
 On speed and power tests the MegaMax performed  well.  It is in the middle  to upper half of the class as far as I can tell.  I would put it up against any current cordless recip saw for most tasks.  It looks like these are aimed at contractors more than past Ridgid offerings.  It is far far better than any of the cordless tools I bought when I was starting out.

 The right angle head is not as frequently used in my work but it is no less impressive. It is absolutely a workhorse of a drill.  I am not a plumber or electrician.  We almost always sub those trades out to licensed professionals.  The only time we don’t is if it is in a rural locality that doesn’t require it and we can’t get subs to do the job.  Nevertheless we do still have to drill joists and studs occasionally and this drill is just crazy powerful.  In one test with a 4 5/8” self feed bit it actually got through a 2 x12 faster than the DeWalt 60 volt stud and joist drill.  This makes me think it will outperform the Superhawg as it is well-known to be less powerful than the DeWalt.

It comes with a solid side handle to help you handle all that torque.  I know a lot of guys laugh at side handles.  I don’t recommend laughing at this one.  The overall length is shorter than the Superhawg so you have less leverage with which to control it if the bit binds.  I didn’t seem to be able to find a mechanical clutch.  I think it’s all electronic.  When the bit binds the tool shuts off.  The margin is pretty high so you are going to feel it.  At the point where  it stalls the DeWalt and Milwaukee’s are already clutched out mechanically  This is NOT a tool to use while distracted!  It can and will smack you.

 One complaint I have early on is the chuck key and storage.  It is not a standard key. It is an angular cast piece and I feel it is uncomfortable when trying to loosen bits. The other issue is it falls out of the storage slot easily.  I feel it will get lost all too easily.   Also the slot is in the upper head handle. If you need to remove it for any reason there goes your slot.  The keys and storage are much better on the DeWalt and Milwaukee offerings.

 The third head is the SDS plus rotary hammer.  As with the other head it performs very well.  I’ve used it side by side with some of the best on the market and it is right there on speed and power.  It effortlessly drills concrete and with 2 ft lbs of impact energy it will easily outperform the biggest hammer drills while making less noise. In addition to the regular drill and hammer mode you can use it for chipping.  This is always a desired feature on a rotary hammer. It makes tile removal a breeze.  It can also be used on light chipping of concrete.  It’s not for breaking out a basement floor or sidewalk but it does great on smaller tasks.
 


It will be fun and interesting to see how these tools hold up over time.  We will periodically update on how they are doing.  The lifetime service agreement should reduce any worries in that regard.  Just don’t forget to register them.  These are available only at Home Depot.  You can order them in the link below.

HomeDepot.com

Tell us what you think below in your comments.  Be sure to let us know what trade you are in and where you are located.  Leave your instagram name, facebook name or email for giveaways.
 
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17 Comments

  1. @JoshTheTooldude

    I bought the Ridgid brushless hammer drill and impact driver kit a little over 2 1/2 years ago and have been very pleased with the power, runtime and build quality. Since then I’ve add many of their 18v tools to be arsenal and have very few complaints on all of them. From what I’ve seen the MegaMax is very well designed and has good build quality, both of which are unfortunately lacking on many other multi head systems out there. And the MegaMax is undoubtedly the most advanced and powerful yet. I haven’t heard anything yet but I assume they’ll introduce more heads for it and that’s very exciting for anyone who is looking at this system. Personally I’d like to see a high torque impact wrench head, winch head, water pump head and maybe even a miter saw head. Think about it. The handle is right for a miter saw and it looks to have the power. Overall I’m definitely considering picking one up for work around the house and shop, and as I get into the trades it could be just what I need.

  2. James Rankin

    Im young and just got my red seal as a plumber. I live in a small town with a low economy so I work a lot on the weekends doing odd jobs and so on. With my new license , I’ve been helping friends and family out with renovations as a lot of my friends are buying their first houses now. Im currently on the dewalt platform and have had my eyes on the new right angle drill from dewalt since It came out. Not having a right angle drill makes renovations quite tedious as my current drill isn’t capable of drilling anything over 2” holes ( which as a plumber can be a big problem) . The new Ridid tool has really interested me since it came out, as I have need for a hammer drill as well, and the less space this tool would take as opposed to a hammer, a right angle , And my dewalt recip , would be a big help as I don’t have much storage.

  3. Jacob Trick

    This would definitely be convenient for a truck toolbox with limited space. Sure it seems just alittle heavier and bulkier but alot less than having two seperate tools. And so much more affordable buying seperate heads. And being an electrician, having a right angle would save so much time for my jobs drilling through studs.

  4. Brian Green

    If this is half as useful as the jobmax than it’s worth the money. I can’t wait to get my hands on one of these. The jobmax is one of my most used tools. Handyman.

  5. Charlie Kumpf

    As a handyman who does a wide variety of repair and remodel work, I love the idea of the flexibility this tool gives me to do that work. Working out of a pickup truck, I love the idea of using the mega max to be more efficient with the space I have but not limit the capabilities of what I can do in the job. Love the tool reviews and incredible feedback you give here on your website and over on instagram! Thanks for sharing all that you do!

  6. Adam Baumgartner

    I think that this is a great muscle tool addition to their Gen 5x platform where there was definitely tools of that caliber lacking. The combination with the Octane batteries strengthens this setup. This is a no brainer addition to anyone that currently has their lineup and wishes to expand. I would love to use this for some lines I have to run in my basement and garage to drill ass through holes through the joists.

  7. Nick Tanner

    What a great versatile tool system! This would be a true game changer with all the attachments! 3 tools in one that’s nuts! And having such great performance is a super plus! This looks like a great tool to have in the arsenal!

  8. Brian

    After being a craftsman guy for years working part-time for contractors, doing my own projects, and helping out friends whenever they were in need, I decided I was getting so many referrals from friends to help out friends that I decided to start working for myself (IG @greatapecontracting). What didn’t take me long to realize was if it wasn’t a forged hand tool, craftsman couldn’t take the beating of being a job site tool unless it was corded. After months of research I started to buy ridgid whenever a craftsman broke and I could not be happier. From pneumatic to cordless, rigid takes everything I can throw at it. It’s very funny I saw your post on Instagram, not only do I live the ridgid JobMax but my old right angle decided to finally give out on me the other day. I would love to try out this system on a much bigger scale.

  9. Charles Murphy

    I am a HVAC tech\installer the need for a right angle and sawzall high. The right angle drill alone would be great to have so the sawzall is a bonus. Dryer vents, line set holes, bath fan penetration, condensation lines, flue’s and more! Amazing to see such generosity from the Toolpig! Great to meet you in PR DRC!!

  10. Jason Raper

    My local store finally got a display of the megamax so I could put my hands on em. They definitely look and feel extremely durable for sure. I have had the Ridgid platform for years now and have never been dissatisfied with them. The Jobmax has been one of my favorite 12v tools as well with all the attachments! I’m sure that it’s BIG brother Megamax will not disappoint! FYI, Also ive seen some reviews in past complaining about the battery being in the way when using angle drill, but the tool has 4 different positions you can lock it into putting the battery out of the way.👌

  11. Steve Dusek

    As a newer company we have started to take on more and more remodels. This jobmax would come in handy for our current job which is a 70yo Farmhouse. The ability to be able to have tool that can handle the concrete and demo work we’ve had to do without stalling the tool out would be priceless. Since we are just starting out we don’t have all of our “wants” as far as tools go and have overheated a few tools during this remodel process.

  12. Ken Warywoda

    Love to have all the tools I need for whatever job that comes up but to be honest I don’t have the room for every tool I need. This platform having the same base and interchangeable heads is amazing. Love anything from ridgid because of their workmanship and guarantees.

    IG. Steelcitylegend

  13. Dirk

    This is a great tool for people like me who have a need for the individual tools but not the money to buy each individual tool. Heavy duty tools in a very budget friendly package!

  14. Ken Warywoda

    Look I’m all for having all the tools for the job and having the best tools. But to be honest I don’t have room for every tool that I need. But with this ridgid system it’s awesome that you can have a platform use the same base and be able to switch heads and get multiple tools and uses out of one. Plus with ridgid and their guarantees and workmanship you know you’re getting a great tool.

    IG. Steelcitylegend

  15. Tyson

    I have a friend on the ridgid platform who runs a small setup, being able to do more with less with a tool like this is perfect for his type of setup.

  16. Joe

    I think it’s an awesome idea i would love to own one

  17. Michael Mills

    I love the fact that you can have a bunch of tools on a great platform! Already own a bunch of Ridgid products so it would fit right in for me!

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