Tom Kraeutler: This is the Money Pit Top Products Podcast. I’m Tom Kraeutler.
Leslie Segrete: I’m Leslie Segrete.
Tom Kraeutler: Were on a road trip today attending the 2014 National Hardware Show in Las Vegas. We’re here to learn about the new neat products that are coming out on store shelves across the country. Tools are a big part of what’s being rolled out here.
They’re getting smarter and smarter. In fact there’s a new drill from Black and Decker, that’s no exception. The drill actually senses when to stop, as the screws become flesh with the work surface.
Leslie Segrete: How cool is that? So to tell us more, is Matt Nestorick from Black and Decker. Welcome Matt.
Matt Nestorick: Thank you very much.
Tom Kraeutler: This is going to save a lot of stripped screws and slipping on and then a lot of bruised knuckles. (Laughs)
Leslie Segrete: Right.
Matt Nestorick: Yeah, as we do a lot of our research we’ve found a lot of customers had a lot of frustration and heartache with using a traditional clutch. There’s a lot of confusion and a lot of trial and error. What we really want to do is simplify the product for them so they can focus on their project in hand, and enhance their results.
Tom Kraeutler: You call this technology Auto Sense Technology. Describe how it works.
Matt Nestorick: We have on top of the drill two functions. We have a drill function, which gives you full speed, full torque, and then we have a drive function.
Leslie Segrete: I think I should just explain. When you’re talking about you have a drill and a drive function here, it’s a picture of a screw and a picture of a drill bit, so there’s no second guessing which one you’re using.
Matt Nestorick: So it’s easy (laughs) … Exactly. Very, very [intuitive 00:01:26], very easy for a lot of novices. [Inaudible 00:01:29] who are going in to work for the first time. When you’re in screw mode, you get the Auto Sense Technology. What that does is it monitors a lot of things on the tool, to be able to tell when the head of the screw is meeting with the surface.
Tom Kraeutler: Then this actually adjusts itself based on the density of the material that you’re driving it into. I was practicing with this over at your booth, and I noticed that driving into drywall for example, gives you a different experience, than driving it into pressure treated lumber. It really senses the density of the material, and I guess the resistance, or the tongue, that the [fastener 00:01:58] is undergoing.
Matt Nestorick: Absolutely. We’ve got a great group of engineers, that have spent a lot of time researching and planning this out. It does a lot of algorithms to factor out a lot of the noise you get from bit slippage, and different densities of materials, different screw factors, so we’re going to get the best results for the customer.
Leslie Segrete: Now does that eliminate the need to pilot drill
per say? Or do you still …
Matt Nestorick: We still recommend pilot drilling. That’s going to give you your best results for [inaudible 00:02:20] surface you’re doing, but this absolutely gives you much more control over the tool.
Leslie Segrete: Mm-hmm. (Affirmative)
Tom Kraeutler : Yeah, I would think so, because when you drive a screw in, a case hardened screw into a surface, optimally you want to just drive that just right slightly a below the surface.
Generally what happens is you sort of let the trigger go at the right moment. It usually ends up, either not piercing the surface at all, or way too deep into the surface.
You’re going to get a very consistent experience with the Micro [Processor 00:02:45] Technology, I would imagine.
Tom Kraeutler: We want to eliminate any of that damage that might happen to your work surface. The great thing about it is not trial and error, no feather in the clutch, you just let it go, and it will stop when it hits the surface. Another cool thing that we’ve added here is what we call a depth control. Once its contacted the surface, you remain holding on the trigger, it’ll go into a series of quarter turns. [It lets you 00:03:06] micro adjusted the height of the screw.
Leslie Segrete: Mm-hmm. (Affirmative) having used the drill this morning as well, you really can tell the difference. When it’s making that quarter turn, if you don’t know how it feels or the sensitivity of using a drill-driver, you can actually feel the difference in it turning of screw, so you know when to stop.
Tom Kraeutler: Absolutely. We’re talking to Matt Nestorick from Black and Decker about the brand new 20-Volt Max, Lithium Cordless Drill with Auto Sense Technology. Now, where and when will this be available?
Matt Nestorick: This is launching right now, they May, June time frame, across a broad range of distribution. Suggested retail will be $79.99.
Tom Kraeutler: Wow.
Leslie Segrete: This will work in the same battery platform as all your other tools?
Tom Kraeutler: Yeah, hats the great thing. It runs off our 20-Volt Lithium battery, so it works in all of our power tools as well as our outdoor products as well.
Tom Kraeutler: The tool has a very nice feel to it. It’s very well balanced and that’s important, especially if you’re doing a project that’s going to last you some time.
Leslie Segrete: Well I’ve taken half the front off, I mean look at it. It’s awesome.
Matt Nestorick: As we do a tremors amount of research, listening to customers, putting the tools in their hands, and by far the biggest thing that comes back, is the compactness, lightweight, great feel of the product. We spend a lot of time really focusing on the ergonomics and making sure it’s a great experience for the customer.
Leslie Segrete: The other thing I think is interesting, this one has the light here at the battery platform, right?
Matt Nestorick: Yeah. We put the LED down on the foot. What that does is, it eliminates as much of the shadow on your actually screw bit.
Tom Kraeutler: That makes sense because a lot of times when it’s up too high, the drill itself casts a shadow and you can’t see through it that good, and you really need to see what you’re doing.
There’s a lot of technology, a lot of design and engineering, a lot thought that’s gone into this product. Matt Nestorick from black and decker, thanks so much for being a party of the Money Pit Top Products Podcast.
Matt Nestorick: Thank you very much.
Tom Kraeutler: You can learn more about the new 20-Volt Max Lithium, Cordless Drill with Auto Sense Technology, at the Black and Decker website, which is blackanddecker.com.