Author Topic: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?  (Read 4023 times)

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Offline SouthRider

  • Posts: 91
CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« on: February 25, 2017, 07:29 AM »
I have been using full size Makita 18v drills and impacts for years. They are dependable, powerful, and well balanced.

In the shop I fell in love with the Dewalt 12v combo set for it's light weight and small form factor. The Dewalt batteries are dying, and of course new batteries cost about 2/3 of a whole new kit.

Been wanting a CXS, but now Makita has the new sub-compact 18v drill and impact set for $220. They appear to be slightly heavier than a CXS, but possibly smaller and more compact. Buying Makita would tie into myh existing infrastructure for batteries, charger, accessories, etc. In the store they seem very compact and well balanced,and at 18vwill be very powerful for their size. They also have modern features like slow start, battery gauge, led, etc., and are brushless.

I have no dealers within driving distance that stock a CXS for me to touch and look at. In another thread it was suggested I use the 30 day trial to see one, but that just isn't my style.

Cannot find length, width, or height dimensions for the CXS online anywhere, and it's possible that with the extra chucks it would overcome any small difference in size with the Makita drill.

Anyone here who has put their hands on or used both of them?

Would someone measure their CXS and give me some dimensions?

Other thoughts?

Thanx,

Clark

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Offline antss

  • Posts: 1377
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #1 on: February 25, 2017, 08:40 AM »
Having the dimensions of a drill aren't really going tell you anything meaningful about the feel of it in your hand.  Which is prob. the most important thing , especially with something like a cxs.

Wheres the balance point on a cxs? Does that suit you ?

Offline ChrisK1970

  • Posts: 571
  • Wicked Awesome
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2017, 08:55 AM »
I've got the Makita 18v impact and it is super compact and super powerful on heavy mode. Absolutely love the new Makita. I can't see any reason to get the drill driver though as I have the CXS and it's perfect for so many applications. If I need something more powerful I have the T18 and even a Dewalt DCD996 for the hammer function. I guess it's up to you but having the right angle attachment in my CXS makes cabinet work so easy.
Dark Helmet.....Remember! Evil will always triumph over good. Because good is dumb!

Offline Jaybolishes

  • Posts: 358
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2017, 09:59 AM »
I use the CXS 80 percent of the time because it is by far the most comfortable drill I've ever held.  I am redoing two kitchens right now in my apartments and while installing cabinets I have to switch around between 3-4 types of drills and bits.  It is so handy to be able to pop off and on the bits without having to tighten down a chuck.  Very fast if you have extra festool heads. The 90 degree attachment is terrific and I use it a lot.  Get you're hands on a cxs. The bit holding magnetic strip holds a number of 1/4" bits too. But it's powerful for such a small drill.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2017, 10:02 AM by Jaybolishes »

Offline Tracky

  • Posts: 18
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #4 on: February 25, 2017, 10:48 AM »
I really like my older 12V max Makita's. The balance is perfect. They recently changed the battery style from a pod-style to a slide-in style. This is their CXT line (coincidence?). I havn't seen these in person yet, but it looks like the grips are very similar. These drills/impacts are perfect for 90% of carpentry tasks (excluding framing / decking mabye).

Here is another one to consider for cabinet work: Bosch FlexiClick.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2017, 10:57 AM by Tracky »

Offline Pizza Steve

  • Posts: 139
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #5 on: February 25, 2017, 10:59 AM »
...
Here is another one to consider for cabinet work: Bosch FlexiClick.

Sweet- that Bosch has an offset chuck as well!  CXS is definitely missing that accessory.

I've debated getting a CXS for a while, but I think the desire is due more to the slippery slope and a Systainer than actual need.  I have the older model 10.8V Bosch drill as my go-to compact driver... it works so well that I truly can't justify replacing it.  I'd probably go Milwaukee for my next compact tool because there are just so many tools in the collection.  I really hate having so many different battery form factors and random chargers.

Offline DiscoStu

  • Posts: 152
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #6 on: February 25, 2017, 12:59 PM »
I have the compact Dewalt 18v Brushless drill and impact and they are fab (they felt lighter and better to handle than the Makita) but I still find myself reaching for my 10v CXS An awful lot! I love it. Great for so many things especially cabinet doors and drawer slides etc.


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Offline bobfog

  • Posts: 834
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #7 on: February 25, 2017, 01:14 PM »
I had a Makita 10.8v and found it uncomfortable after a short period of continued use, the fleshy part between my thumb and index finger got sore due to the shape of the handle.

I then bought the CXS and it's an absolute joy to use.

Offline charley1968

  • Posts: 488
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #8 on: February 25, 2017, 02:00 PM »
I think the CSX makes sense if you're going to buy into the Centrotec system. The small drill chuck will not take a normal bitholder, t.ex. The CSX does take normal hex bits only without the chuck. So, if you're planning on spending more money on implements: it's definitly a very good dril/ driver. But so is the Makita, i presume..
Just for today..

Offline SouthRider

  • Posts: 91
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #9 on: February 26, 2017, 06:51 AM »
The last post tipped me over the edge in my decision...... Thanx Charley1968, and to all!

I ordered the sub-compact Makita combo last night. It will fit with all of my other 18v Makita tools, is actually smaller than a CXS (though a little taller and heavier), but most importantly will NOT require me to buy all new bits and holders. I actually use a small impact as a driver quite a lot so I don't have to change bits.

At some point I will have a Festool drill, perhaps the next generation, when they realize that the rest of the industry has caught up to them in technology, and is still significantly cheaper.

Offline charley1968

  • Posts: 488
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #10 on: February 26, 2017, 10:32 AM »
..just don't hold your breath on getting cheaper [wink]
Just for today..

Offline Dan-

  • Posts: 30
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #11 on: August 31, 2017, 08:13 PM »
While the OP settled his question, others might find this interesting. The Milwaukee M12 Fuel series have the same stats as the Makita 18v LXT brushless subcompacts. Performance is borne out by videos like this one: and the drivers are the exact same size. Admittedly, I have a bunch of M12 things. You have to love a complete system with cheap accessories (that get covered in paint and thinset and dropped off ladders.

Where I'm going with this is that although I have a bunch of stuff that performs equally as well as the Makita (until the batteries run out earlier on the m12) I still reach for my CXS to screw (most) things or drill more precise holes. It's significantly lighter *feeling* and easier to control. Obviously I'm not using it to screw in hardibacker or drive lags, but that's what impacts are for anyway.

So buy both  [eek]

Offline aloysius

  • Posts: 181
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2017, 04:13 AM »
I think you've already answered your own question.  You already have Makita.  You say you like Makita.  The Makita is much more capable.

Is the grass really any "greener" elsewhere?  The CXS may make (in limited applications) a fairly useful limited access screwdriver, but as a drill or driver (especially in comparison to the 18v Makita combination) it's going to be hopelessly gutless & slow.
FOG-wit since '95:  Some say since birth...

Offline merbau

  • Posts: 1
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #13 on: September 03, 2017, 09:27 AM »
Having owned CXS for a couple of years, and also Makita drill/driver older pod style 10.8V and a new drill/driver with newer slide style (CXT) batteries, I could comment:

Festool CXS is an excellent drill. I especially like the handle: it fits my hand perfectly, and I like being able to apply pushing force right on top of the screw or drill bit, so that applied force will not try to bend the screw or drill bit.

On the other hand, Festool could have made a better job in implementing the trigger, at least the response, on CXS. At least my unit does not respond nearly as fast as I'd expect. If pressed very quickly, I can apply the trigger almost fully, until the drill wakes up and starts to turn. I know Festool can do this better, since my C12 Li and C18 Li are quite different in that respect.

Makita older 10.8V drill didn't fit my hand at all, due to pod style battery. Grip feels very large, and my hand was fatigued after a short duration of drilling / driving. Makita CXT drill (mine is brushless) is a clear step up in ergonomics (for me), and motor control electronics also work very well. Trigger is quite progressive in behaviour: when you press the trigger, drill speed goes up quite steadily, but speed increase get faster, when trigger is pressed further. It is neither a good or a bad thing, just an observation. Response to trigger pull is overall better, and motor responds very fast to trigger movements.

Makita grip is very different in construction than Festool CXS, and it would be fairer to compare the ergonomics between Makita CXT and Festool TXS, but I cannot do that, since I don't have experience with TXS.

My comments are based on hobby activities on renovation, woodworking and tools. My profession is elsewhere.

Offline RobBob

  • Posts: 1165
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #14 on: September 03, 2017, 10:18 AM »
I have both the TXS and the Makita sub-compacts.  Here are my thoughts off the top of my head:

TXS -
- Noticeably lighter than the Makita sub-compacts
- Uses Centrotec
- Shorter, more compact than Makita when using Centrotec
- Comes with right angle chuck if you buy the set
- Much more expensive
- Currently, no other tools available that use the same battery

Makita Sub-compact -
- Heavier than the TXS
- No Centrotec without adapter
- Works great with Centrotec adapter, but makes drill longer
- Less runout than my version of the TXS
- 18V = more power than TXS
- No right angle chuck
- Less expensive than TXS for both drill and impact sub-compacts
- Large selection of tools available that use the same battery
« Last Edit: September 03, 2017, 10:25 AM by RobBob »

Offline mrB

  • Posts: 409
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #15 on: September 03, 2017, 11:23 AM »
The CXS is a hard sell on paper. It's expensive, probably not powerful enough to ever be your only drill on a project, and it uses a battery system completely unique to itself!!!

I've had mine for 4/5 years and in that time I regularly consider selling it to help fund whatever upcoming tool purchase I have..
But every time I use it I re-fall in love with it. It's just so so nice to use - especially for fitting cabinet hardware and the like where delicacy and precision are key.

It's a luxury - but if you think you could use it, and you can spare the cash. . . It'll make you a very happy chappy.
there's nothing like the right tool for the job

Offline DB10

  • Posts: 902
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #16 on: September 03, 2017, 09:21 PM »
The CXS is a hard sell on paper. It's expensive, probably not powerful enough to ever be your only drill on a project, and it uses a battery system completely unique to itself!!!

I've had mine for 4/5 years and in that time I regularly consider selling it to help fund whatever upcoming tool purchase I have..
But every time I use it I re-fall in love with it. It's just so so nice to use - especially for fitting cabinet hardware and the like where delicacy and precision are key.

It's a luxury - but if you think you could use it, and you can spare the cash. . . It'll make you a very happy chappy.

I have to agree on paper the CXS doesn't make much sense but in the real world Like you say, it's a great little drill for cabinet slides and hardware.
 My only wish was that you could keep the light on without activating the trigger like you can with the PDC.

Offline OXCanada

  • Posts: 38
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2017, 10:58 AM »
@SouthRider I am in a similar situation.  My batteries just went out on my makita impact which has been my go to for about 9 years.

I only need a drill/impact driver to do furniture builds.  IE cabinet assembly, Kreg screws and general shop work.

When you have a chance to test out the Makita, which do you recommend (Dewalt 12V/Makita 18V)?  I lean towards the Dewalt since it is very light weight and compact.

Offline antss

  • Posts: 1377
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2017, 03:45 PM »
Here's Makita's right angle adapter   :P

https://www.makitatools.com/products/details/XAD02Z

OX - I'd seriously have a look at either Milwaukee or Bosch's 12v sub compact lines.

They have plenty of grunt for cabinetry work and their smaller size would be a bigger benefit over the 18v .  For the price of a CXS you could have a drill , a driver , and an impact driver from Bosch.   Those lines also have other tools a cabinet guy might find useful like a jigsaw, multi tool,or  LED lights

Offline SouthRider

  • Posts: 91
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #19 on: September 13, 2017, 08:58 PM »
OX - I actually ended up sending the makita sub-compact combo back. When I ordered it Makita was offering a free 3rd battery, but I didn't realize the vendor that I bought from wasn't participating.

Subsequently I totally reversed my decision and bought a CXS with centrotec installers kit, which was the wrong decision for me.

The cxs is a very nice drill, but totally underpowered, and doesn't spin enough RPM for me. It is significantly weaker than my 5 year old Dewalt 12v with old batteries.

Again - it's nice for driving little screws around the shop,but I find myself reaching for the Dewalt more often for most jobs. Likewise I love the 12v Dewalt impact for jobs below my Makita.

I ended up finding a sale on a 2 pack of Makita 4 amp hour batteries, and a similar combo of Dewalt 12v.

Ultimately I still do want a mid size drill, as my Makita drill is the newest one with enough torque to break your wrists with a decent size hole saw. It will do big jobs, but is too heavy for normal use.

Been reading great things about Metabo, which is also sky high.

The Makita sub-compact combo really does make the most sense for $230, but who says we buy this stuff based on logic?
« Last Edit: September 14, 2017, 06:46 AM by SouthRider »

Offline DB10

  • Posts: 902
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #20 on: September 14, 2017, 08:49 AM »
I was lead to believe that the Makita sub compact drills were the same size as the Milwaukee 12v's, it's just the Makita batteries making them a bit larger, haven't seen one myself as I don't think they have been released down here.

Offline Jmacpherson

  • Posts: 118
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #21 on: September 14, 2017, 10:36 AM »
@SouthRider what about Makita's new CXT 10.8/12v drill/impact? Their 18v sub-compact is 95% the same tool except it has the 18v battery stuck on it and has a little more torque but rpm are identical - i'm probably over simplifying it but I can't spot a difference.

Or since you already have Makita 18v batteries and the top-end drill, why not just pickup their lower end 18v drill as a bare tool or would that still be too large? Do you need something smaller?


Offline SouthRider

  • Posts: 91
Re: CXS or Makita Sub-Compact?
« Reply #22 on: September 14, 2017, 03:05 PM »
I'm currently happy with the combination I have - which is:

12v Dewalt Combo of drill and impact
18v combo of Makita impact and drill

CXS set - which I may still sell. I simply don't find it any better than the Dewalt.

There are just a few times when my Dewalt isn't powerful enough, but the big dog Makita is too heavy.
A sub compact Makita is probably all that I need to bridge the gap, but you know we always like higher tech and I could be tempted by something else...........