Makita vs. Craftsman – Are these Combo Kits Worth The Investment?

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A combo kit is essential for anything that you want to do in your own home, in your place of work, or anywhere else. You want to make sure that you get something you can rely on that’s not going to break the bank. With Makita vs. Craftsman, you have two brands with solid reputations and a product worth watching. 

Known for producing great power tools, such as compound miter saws, hammer drills and cordless drills with lithium-ion batteries, orbital sanders, fixed-base routers and more, these two companies will go head to head in this combo kit review.

Quick Look - Top Picks

Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-piece Lithium Combo Kit
Makita XT505 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Combo Kit, 5 Piece
Craftsman C3 19.2 Volt Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit
Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-piece Lithium Combo Kit
Makita XT505 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Combo Kit, 5 Piece
Craftsman C3 19.2 Volt Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit
$155.74
from $399.99
from $277.00
Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-piece Lithium Combo Kit
Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-piece Lithium Combo Kit
$155.74
Makita XT505 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Combo Kit, 5 Piece
Makita XT505 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Combo Kit, 5 Piece
from $399.99
Craftsman C3 19.2 Volt Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit
Craftsman C3 19.2 Volt Drill and Impact Driver Combo Kit
from $277.00

Last update on 2018-12-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Craftsman vs. Makita: Brief Company History

Founded way back in 1915, Makita has managed to grow quite exponentially from its humble roots. Starting out with only the electric motor, they’ve now expanded to encompass hundreds of different products in several different field and zones. Now, the company is found in over 40 different countries and has plants in eight. With excellent quality following them ever since, they’re definitely a brand to be counted on.

​Next up, Craftsman, which has also been around for quite a while, providing excellent quality and features. Trademarked in 1927 by Sears, Craftsman got a jumpstart into popularity. Praised almost immediately as being better than Fulton and Trojan, it acquired its own spot in the fall catalog in 1929. Since then, the company has continued to grow and expand, creating hundreds and thousands of different products that are available worldwide.

Craftsman 4-Piece Combo Kit

Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-piece Lithium Combo Kit
  • The Craftsman C3 19.2-volt 4-pc Lithium combo kit includes:1/2" drill, reciprocating saw, 5 1/2" trim saw, work light, two compact lithium...
  • Drill is 1/2-inch with two speed gear box.Circular saw has side-mounted battery, to help distribute weight evenly and increase control
  • Kit also includes 5 1/2" trim saw blade, metal and wood reciprocating saw blades 19.2-volt battery

Last update on 2018-12-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


The Craftsman set gives you a total of 4 different pieces that will definitely give you plenty of power. Working with a 19.2-volt, lithium-ion system, the toolkit gives you a drill, reciprocating saw, trim saw, work light and two batteries, plus the charger and a bag to carry it all in. At a low to moderate price, this kit offers what Craftsman calls ‘fade-free performance’ as well as one-hour charging, so you can get right back to work.

Makita 5-Piece Combo Kit

Sale
Makita XT505 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Combo Kit, 5 Piece
  • Variable 2-speed 1/2" hammer Driver-Drill (0-600 & 0-1,900 RPM) with Makita-built 4-pole motor delivers 480 in.lbs. Of max torque; weighs...
  • Variable speed impact driver (0-2,900 RPM & 0-3,500 IPM) provides 1,460 in.lbs. Of max torque; weighs only 2.8 lbs. With battery
  • Variable speed Recipro saw delivers 0-2,800 strokes per minute with a 1-1/4" stroke; weighs 8.1 lbs. With battery

Last update on 2018-12-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Makita offers an extra piece to their set with five different pieces to give you an 18-volt, lithium-ion system. You get a variable speed hammer driver-drill, impact driver, and reciprocating saw as well as a circular saw and a flashlight, plus two batteries, a charger, and a bag to carry it in. The price comes in quite a lot higher, but you get a 3-year warranty as well as that extra tool to go along with it.

Head to Head: Features and Benefits of Each Tool

So, just what are you looking for when it comes to choosing your next combo tool kit? You want something that has plenty of power, offers variety to the products you get, maybe a bag to carry everything with you, and maybe a few extras.


Power

First up is the power of the unit you’re getting. The Makita version of these products has an 18-volt system, which is definitely strong, but actually not as strong as the Craftsman.

Still, you’re going to get some good power and you’ll be able to get through just about anything that you need (and then some).

The Craftsman tools actually give you 19.2 volts, which is a little bit of extra power, which means they’re definitely going to help you with anything that you might be facing for your next project.

There’s going to be a whole lot of things that you can do with these tools (though you can with the Makita versions as well).


Variety

When it comes to variety you are getting one extra tool if you opt for the Makita combo set. This set will give you all of the things that you’re already getting with the Craftsman version, plus you’re going to get a hammer drill-driver.

Of course, you’re going to have the drawback of the added cost that you’ll pay for that extra tool. So variety is there, but the price is going up as well.

The Craftsman version gives you plenty of options and variety to get most any job done, but you’re going to have a little bit less because there are only four tools instead of the five from the Makita.

Still, you’ll be able to do quite a bit and you’re going to save a decent amount of money, so you may be able to buy one separate if you really need it.


Carrying Case

With Makita, you’re getting a tool bag that can carry these tools and maybe a few extras.

That way you don’t have to worry about how you’re going to transport things when you’re trying to work on projects that may not be in your own home.

The Craftsman tool set also comes with a large tool bag that will hold everything you need with you to another location and those extra pieces like the screws and drill bits that you’re going to need to get the job done right.

You won’t have a problem transporting these either.


Extra Features

So, what about those extras that you’re going to want? The Makita set will give you an extra tool, but you’re also going to get a 3-year warranty, which is a great benefit to have as well.

You also get a rapid optimum charger, which offers a built-in fan to keep your battery cooler and make sure it charges even faster.

The Craftsman set has quick charge capabilities and will get ready to go in only one hour.

It also offers fade-free performance so you’ll get the same amount of power at the beginning and at the end. Not only that but you’re still going to get a one year warranty.


Wrap Up

Overall, it seems that Makita has a bit of an edge with that extra tool. So, if you’re looking to get more you’re going to want to go with them.

On the other hand, Craftsman is offering a little extra power and a whole lot lower price.

It’s difficult to come up with a clear winner here, but that warranty also gives Makita a bit of an edge.

Therefore, we’re going to go with Makita as the overall winner, but know that if you go with Craftsman you still can’t go wrong and you’re still getting a great kit.