When Metabo unveiled the first PowerMaxx, its combination of pint-sized convenience and power appealed to both botchers and professionals alike. Now the Li Pro is in town, packing even more torque and some interesting new accessories. In short, it’s the Walther PPK of the DIY world.
Essentially, it’s a miniature electric screwdriver like the Hitachi DB 3DL, but has two speeds for driving and drilling and comes with a chuck that can hold drill bits as well.
In fact, the accompanying plastic carry case includes rather a lot of essential accessories including a 90-degree adaptor that allows you to sneak up on screws from the side, a spare battery and an excellent 20-piece driver bit set including all popular sizes of cross and flathead screwdriver fittings.
From the hip
In regular screwdriver mode, the stumpy PowerMaxx is weighty, but just the right size to fit comfortably in your hand or tool belt holster. A belt clip would, though, have been a useful addition.
It’s very simple to use, with just two speeds to choose from and a selection of torque levels depending on how firmly you want to tighten the screw. Beyond that is the direction switch and a trigger. The battery slides out of the handle like a spent magazine when you squeeze it.
The battery itself is another area of improvement for the Pro model. Now 7.2V, the new battery juices up in double-quick time – 60 minutes to be precise – and charges in such a way as to prolong the battery life too. In reality, each cell seems to last for several days of intermediate work before needing a quick top-up.
Particularly clever is the sideways adapter that enables you to approach awkward screws from the side. The metal crib fits neatly over the chuck and offers you another empty chuck at a 90-degree angle. It’s a simple but brilliant piece of engineering.
Dedicating an entire plastic carry case to an electric screwdriver might seem like overkill, but the flexibility that each of the accessories gives you more than justifies the space it’ll take up in your tool shed. Meanwhile, the nifty PowerMaxx driver itself is small enough to hang from your tool belt and its long-lasting battery means you can leave the charger at home when you’re out on a DIY errand.