The Ridgid R969 18 Volt Lithium-ion 4 Piece Combo Kit includes several great tools in one affordable package. It’s more than just a great starter kit, it provides a perfect framework from which to build upon the excellent Ridgid 18V battery platform and construct your tool arsenal. Add in a Ridgid R8831B 18V Orbital Jig Saw and a Ridgid reciprocating saw and you’ll have everything you need for demo, framing, and trade construction. The Ridgid R969 combo kit includes the following tools:
- Ridgid R86014 Autoshift 1/2″ Drill/Driver
- Ridgid R842303 Impact Driver
- R84081 MaxSelect Portable Radio
- R849 Work Light
Editor’s Note: Check out the Ridgid X4 Combo Kit and the new Ridgid Gen5X cordless tools for even more options. Plus, if you have this kit, get even more power and run-time with an upgrade to Ridgid 2.0Ah and 4.0Ah batteries.
Also included in the deal are a heavy-duty contractor’s bag, two battery packs and a smart single battery charger. All the tools come with the standard Rigid 3 year Warranty and Lifetime Service Agreement—one of the industry’s best power tool warranty deals. For pretty much the price of just the drill and the impact driver, you’re getting the other tools as a bonus!
The Ridgid R969 18 Volt Lithium-Ion 4 Piece Combo Kit is made up of two great tools and two tools that are thrown in for fun. From our previous Ridgid R86014 AutoShift Drill/Driver review we found it to be a great performer with plenty of power, good build quality and an automatic gear transmission. The same goes for the Ridgid R842301 impact driver with its class leading high torque rating and impacts per minute. The radio is compact, loud, and has an integrated storage space for an mp3 player. The flashlight has a 180 degree rotating head and and adjustable beam.
The Ridgid R969 18 Volt Lithium-ion 4 Piece Combo Kit arrived in a large size heavy duty nylon contractor bag. The Contractor bags seem to be a trend with a number of manufactures now rather than a molded plastic storage case. We like to see hard cases as it helps to protect the tools better and in many instances it makes it easier to stack up the tools for storage on shelves. The one good thing with the tool bags is that they are usually very well sized and allow room for additional accessories and even more tools.
All the tools share the same familiar orange and gray plastic bodies with rubber grips. Each tool feels well built and solid. The radio does have a very inexpensive paper cone speaker with a foam surround that looks prone to eventual dry rot. Given this fact we do not recommend leaving the radio exposed to the weather at all.
Ergonomics and Use
Let’s start with the compact R84081 MaxSelect Portable Radio. It is built with a digital tuner, 5″ rubberized antenna, integrated MP3 player storage (via an elastic strap on the rear side of the radio) and the ability to use both 18 and 24 volt battery packs. The one feature that we really liked was the integrated 1/8″ mini jack for connecting to your portable MP3 player. The radio operates off one of the 18V batteries and can not be plugged into 120V power. The only downside to the radio from our testing is the cheap paper cone speaker. The longevity of the radio will most likely be compromised because of the speaker, especially if you expose your radio to the elements.
The R849 work light is a pretty basic. The head does pivot 180 degrees and the beam can be focused by rotating the ring around the head. The switch is a toggle on/off type design that is engaged by squeezing the trigger. The light source is a basic miniature bulb – odd since LEDs seem to be the growing trend and produce much more light for the power. They also last a lot longer than traditional lamps. The lack of rubber gaskets or other waterproofing means indicates that the flashlight is also not weather resistant.
The R86014 AutoShift Drill is a great machine. It includes a 1/2″ keyless Jacobs chuck, an automatic transmission that will sense if you need low or high speed, and packs in 450 in-lbs of torque for driving fasteners. For an in-depth analysis, you can read our complete review of the Ridgid R86014.
With class leading torque, the included impact driver has good balance and feel. You can check out our full review of the Ridgid R842301 for the full analysis.
One of the best attributes of this kit is the 18V Lithium-Ion battery packs. Not only are these batteries and very compact, they only take around 20 minutes for a full charge! This will definitely help to ensure that your down time is kept to a minimum now that you can kiss those 1 hour long charge times goodbye. The charger is a “smart” charger that will evaluate the batteries and give a status on charging progress and will also diagnose if the battery packs are defective or need to be replaced.
The Ridgid R969 18 Volt Lithium-Ion 4 Piece Combo Kit represents real value for the money. This kit is ideal for the handyman or weekend warrior. Given that the street price has come down from the listed MSRP this kit won’t break the bank and will provide a very solid foundation for when you decide to add more 18V Ridgid tools to your arsenal.