Bosch Cordless Hammer Drill: light, snappy and blows through brick like butter

I needed to make some holes. Specifically, I needed to drill into the brick support-pillars in my office because I have run out of wall-space to hang pictures. We've got a big 9mm Black and Decker drill at home and some mortise bits that I've used from time to time, but it's slow, heavy and difficult. I remember drilling the outside wall to put in a hammock-hook — it took an hour and afterwards my arms and shoulders felt like I'd been broken on the rack. I also blew through two bits before the hole was done, and even then, it was sloppy and I needed to go buy a larger-gauge plug.

Being a poor workman, I blamed my tools and set off in search of a better one. I'd heard good things about cordless hammer-drills — the last time I looked into them, most of the power-packs were NiCad and subject to all kinds of finicky recharging crap, but LiOn is everywhere these days — and so I started reading online reviews. I hit on the Bosch Uneo "3 in 1" Cordless Lithium-Ion SDS Hammer and Drill/Driver, a sweet little 1.1kg tool that seemed almost too good to be true.

When it turned up, I charged it for a couple of hours and then went to work on the walls. Ever used a Demel to carve up styrofoam? That's about how smoothly the Bosch went into the brick while in hammer-mode, making quick, neat holes with just the lightest pressure. The clever chuckless head is the easiest one I've used so far, a collar that tugs up to admit a new bit, then snaps back to form a dust-collar. The rubber grips are right where I wanted them, and easily absorbed the shock of the hammer-drill action.

Around the same time, we got a big plastic storage shed for the back porch that had about a million screws. I brought the drill home for the evening, thinking I'd give it a shot (even though I usually find that the wrist strain from a manual screwdriver is usually less than the pain of slinging around a heavy corded drill). It was almost magic. The drill's trigger is a variable-speed control, making screwing much safer — I didn't crack a single piece of plastic by overdrilling, nor did I strip any heads (good thing, too, since I inevitably installed the wrong screws in the wrong holes and had to use the drill to reverse them all out again).

Since then, I've drilled plenty of holes around the place — once they're this easy to make, it's hard to resist the temptation — and hung up my raygun collection, some framed assemblage sculptures, and many other little jobs besides. I'm sold — going to get another one for home and give away the old Black and Decker.

Bosch Uneo "3 in 1" Cordless Lithium-Ion SDS Hammer and Drill/Driver (Amazon UK)