Makita is answering the call from mechanics to add an 18V cordless ratchet to their deep line of LXT tools. The Makita XRW01 certainly checks off a box by joining the system, but it’s more than just your everyday design.
- Slim handle design
- Less than 3 pounds with battery
- Interchangable 1/4-inch and 3/8-inch square drives
- 800 RPM top speed runs long bolt faster than competitors
- Not as much torque as some competitors
- Doesn’t have the advantages of a brushless motor
Makita 18V Cordless Ratchet Performance
If you wanted an 18V version of Makita’s 12V CXT ratchet, this is it. There are a lot of similarities between the two, but this one uses a battery that’s compatible with more than 275 other power tools.
Let’s set the table a little bit here. This is a cordless wrench, not a right angle impact driver or impact wrench, so there’s not as much power available. Their main benefit is eliminating the back and forth action of using a hand wrench or ratchet and saving you time running nuts and bolts.
The Makita XWR01 produces up to 35 ft-lbs of torque and 800 RPM to help you accomplish that. There are stronger cordless ratchets available, but again, we’re not expecting the nut-busting torque of an impact wrench.
The speed is worth pointing out. Competing ratchets tend not to stray too far from the 200 RPM mark. Even Snap-On’s version stops short of 300 RPM. If you’re running longer bolts, Makita is going to get it done faster than other brands.
There isn’t a typical ratcheting mechanism that gives an audible click as the drive rotates. It just catches where it is, making for a very low arc swing when you need to give it some extra muscle to help loosen or seat a bolt. When you engage the motor, there’s a swinging mechanism in the center of the head that moves the drive and gives your ears a more audible indication of a ratcheting action.
There’s a forward/reverse switch at the top to select the direction you’re working very similar to where it is on your hand ratchets.
Even though it’s battery-powered, you can still tighten or loosen manually when the motor isn’t on. We find that no matter which brand of cordless ratchet we’re using, we give the bolt a manual kick to loosen or an extra little pull to tighten it at the end, and Makita’s version does that just as well as anyone’s.
Makita 18V Cordless Ratchet Design Notes
The biggest highlight of the feature set is Makita’s interchangeable drive design. The tool includes 1/4-inch and 3/8-inch sizes that use a friction fit. To swap them, grab a screwdriver, insert it through the hole in the back, and give it a shove with the heel of your hand. The replacement presses in easily with your thumbs.
We love the slim design of the handle. It’s helpful when you want to get into tighter spots and it’s a really comfortable diameter.
The trigger is a two-finger style and centered in a way that offers multiple grip options.
Size and Weight
From tip to tail, the bare tool measures 13 7/8 inches. The battery sticks a little and brings the total length to 14 3/4 inches.
The weight is very easy to manage—just 2.7 pounds with a 2.0Ah battery. You can use a larger pack if you want, but we prefer the weight and lower profile of a compact battery.
- Electric brake
- LED light
Makita 18V Cordless Ratchet Price
As a bare tool, you can add this ratchet to your Makita 18V collection for $159. If you’d rather have a kit with a 2.0Ah battery, single port charger, and soft bag, it’s $229.
Makita backs their 18V LXT tools, batteries, and chargers with a 3-year warranty.
The Bottom Line
If you’re looking for a way to save time installing and removing nuts and bolts, the Makita 18V cordless ratchet is a great way to get the job done while saving your knuckles a bit of grief. Plus it covers your 1/4-inch and 3/8-inch sockets with one tool. Don’t toss your wrenches and ratchets, though. Even with a slim profile on this tool, there are still some areas you might need to get even skinnier to access.
Makita 18V Cordless Ratchet Specifications
- Model: Makita XRW01
- Power Source: Makita 18V battery
- Drive: 1/4-inch square and 3/8-inch square
- Max Torque: 35 ft-lbs
- Max Speed: 800 RPM
- Weight: 2.7 pounds with 2.0Ah battery
- Length: 14 3/4 inches with battery
- Price: $159 bare, $229 kit
- Warranty: 3 years