Four Speeds = Flexibility and Control
Not all trades need endless power and lots of batteries in a drill kit. Many don’t need the raw power of 18v or 24v, or the weight and bulk that goes with it! Also, Ah is not that important either - a small 4Ah cordless combi can last for several days on a job.
With a smaller driver what you should get is precision control. Two speeds may be enough on an 18v drill, but control and accuracy are required on smaller fitting - enter the 12v machine.
I tested this machine on various site jobs and I found flexibility, versatility, perfect control, ease of use and particularly quick changes between modes. One minute I may be driving screws, the next, drilling small holes and later, sinking a slot for a cabinet hinge or removing the chuck to drive a screw inside a 300mm wide cabinet.
The Fein ASCM12 is part of a range of three 12v drivers and has four selectable speeds via a sliding switch that can be moved so quickly between speed settings that you will use them – to your advantage.
The trigger is speed sensitive and it is possible to hold a slow speed, but a harder press quickly accelerates to max speed of either 400, 700, 1,400 or 2,500 rpm.
The 'Made in Germany' quality of the tool is evident. Rubber mouldings protect the casing and provide the user with a good ergonomic grip. While I was using it on site the Fein fell 2m onto a brick path, followed a bit later by a 1m fall off a ladder. Both times, the tool was unharmed and worked perfectly afterwards.
In retrospect I should have used the reversible belt hook supplied for safety.
The Fein has a 20-position torque setting collar for fine control. Drill setting allows a 40mm diameter hole in wood with the correct bit, and the motor brake stops the chuck almost instantaneously.
It has a Rohm keyless chuck and a quick pull back on the collar releases it, leaving a standard 6mm/1/4 inch hex fitting. Now the tool is only 150mm long – cramped spaces? No problem.
You get a custom case, two 2.5Ah battery packs and smart charger. Charging is quick – just over the half hour. Battery packs have a simple four LED light system to indicate battery charge.