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New Tools from the Builders' Show

- Continued

7 1/4-inch Cordless Circ Saw

Also new to the Hitachi 24-volt lineup is the C7D 7 1/4-inch Circular Saw, providing the depth of cut you'd get from an AC saw with the convenience of cordless operation. Designed similarly to the well-received C6D 18-volt 6 1/2-inch saw, you even get the built-in miniature work light, which is pretty handy at times. The average street price is $380.

Dust-Free Cutting

Dust is a concern on many job sites, especially where fiber-cement products are involved. With the introduction of the Hitachi C7YA Dust-Reducing Circular Saw, or the C7YAH (for fiber-cement), you now have another option for almost dust-free cutting. I haven't tried this tool out yet, but the manufacturer claims over 90% collection efficiency for the saw, which can be used with a vacuum, a dust bag, or a "flow deflector." An adjustable plastic guard can be positioned to maximize dust collection efficiency or provide a better view of the cut line. Both models feature a spindle lock and a shroud configuration designed for fast, easy blade changes like a regular circular saw. The average street price is $250

Improved Compound Miter Saws

Heading up the DeWalt pack were a couple of miter saws that boast features any user will appreciate. Designed for greater cutting capacity and versatility, the DW703 10-inch Compound Miter Saw and the DW706 12-inch Double-Bevel Compound Miter Saw both cut 50-degree left or right miter angles, have 48-degree bevel stops, and 11 positive miter stops. Suggested retail for the DW703 is $239; $449 for the DW706.

Cordless Drywall Driver

The high-torque 2,300 rpm DS200 14-volt Dura-Spin cordless screwdriver, introduced last year by Senco, has a new cousin designed specifically for drywall. The 4,000 rpm DS162-14v is said to drive nearly 1,000 1 1/4-inch drywall screws on a single charge. The new tool handles collated screws from 1 to 1 5/8 inches for fastening drywall to wood or steel studs. It features a clutch and depth-of-drive adjustment, and comes with two batteries, a charger, a belt hook, two spare bits, and a case. Expect to pay about $200 for the DS200-14v and $229 for the DS162-14v. Phillips and square-drive collated screws are available in tubs of 1,000 with a variety of point configurations.

Electric Drill with Clutch

Craftsman came out unexpectedly strong at the show, underscoring its recent decision to develop a credible presence in the professional-duty power tool market. A unique introduction, the new Model 27994 3/8-inch Drill/Driver comes with an adjustable clutch.

The two-speed (0-400/0-1400 rpm) 5.5-amp AC drill also features a single-sleeve keyless chuck, an advertised torque range of 150 to 700 inch-pounds, and a 10-foot cord. I don't know why it took this long to put a clutch on a corded drill, but at $100, this looks like a winning idea.

New Right-Angle Drill

Part of a new line of Hitachi drills, the D10YV 3/8-inch Right-Angle Drill features 3 1/4-inch head clearance, a 4.6-amp motor, and a no-load speed of 500 to 2,300 rpm for a drilling capacity of up to 3/8 inch in metal or 7/8 inch in wood. The average street price is $165.