Dewalt Heavy-Duty 18V Cordless Reciprocating Saw Kit (DC385K) Reviews
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Dewalt Heavy-Duty 18V Cordless Reciprocating Saw Kit (DC385K)

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A high quality tool with good battery life

Jun 7, 2010
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:easy to use, durable, good battery life, good charger

Cons:pricey

The Bottom Line: glad I bought it


While I have no particular talent for using tools, I still find myself talking myself into buying some pretty darned expensive ones.  I may not get my money's worth out of all of them, but that is not the case with the DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit.  This is one that I find myself using pretty heavily, and it has performed well for me.

Item Description
The DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit is a long saw, with a blade on one end and a handle and trigger on the other.  The kit also comes with a 1 hour charger and an 18V XRP battery, as well as a case.  The following specs are from the DeWalt materials that came with my set.  The saw features a 1-1/8" stroke length and a 0-3,000 spm for faster cutting speed.  The 4-position blade clamp allows for flush cutting and increased versatility and the keyless lever-action blade clamp allows for quick and easy blade changes.  The variable speed with trigger lock offers increased blade control.

My Experience
A reciprocating saw is sort of a do everything kind of tool.  I have seen then them cut pipes, walls, and even radiators.  Well I have mentioned that I am not all that handy, so I have really only used my saw for one purpose.  I use my DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit in the outdoors.  I have used it very extensively on vegetation, mostly honeysuckle, but certainly on all kinds of branches.  There is still a portion of my yard that is quite overgrown.  The saw takes much more effort to get through branches than a chainsaw, but it is also lighter, easier to use, and runs on batteries.  (I know there are battery operated chainsaws, I owned one.  It stunk).  They do make blades for every purpose and the one that comes with the DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit is sort of a multi-purpose blade.  I bought a pack specifically for cutting wood.  Whether I am working on oak or honeysuckle, I have been very happy with battery life and ease of use.  Getting through larger branches certainly takes some elbow grease but the saw does it all and doesn't even really show any signs of wear.

Battery Life
I am not sure how to score battery life.  I have owned another cordless reciprocating saw.  It was a Ryobi, and the DeWalt dominates it as a tool and in battery life.  So it is very much improved over the Ryobi, but when I really work it hard I can work faster than I can charge.  I own two XRP batteries and a single 1-hour charger.  When I drain one battery I place it on the charger and I am able to get through the fresh battery in less than the hour it takes to recharge.  Take note if that is going to be an issue for you.  I don't use them that hard often, but when you get working it really breaks the rhythm to have to stop and wait for a battery to charge.  I have actually just ordered a second charger in the form of the DC012 Job-site radio and there may even be more batteries in my future.

Value
I think the DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit is actually a contractor grade tool, and I don't use it nearly that hard.  The quality is top notch, but so is the price.  If you are budget minded I feel confident you can get by with a cheaper saw.  The DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit goes for about $200.  I can only give it average value scores.  It is high quality, but that is a lot of money.  On the plus side the charger will charge the XRP batteries as well as smaller DeWalt batteries, like the one for my cordless screwdriver.

Conclusion
I can only find a single drawback with the DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit and that is the premium price.  It is sturdy, easy to use, it performs well, and has relatively good battery life.  The charge only takes an hour, and it is all compatible with other DeWalt 18V tools.  I recommend the saw for serious users (which I don't think I am) and for those who won't mind the premium price.  I am very happy with the DeWalt DC385K Cordless XRP Reciprocating Saw Kit.


Recommend this product? Yes


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