Earlier today I posted a roundup of precision screwdrivers on ToolGuyd, and for a moment it seemed silly that, with all the individual precision screwdrivers I have, I still purchased this Kobalt 18-in-1 precision bit driver. But then I remembered why I bought it – because for $5 I now have a compact all-in-one precision bit kit that can be dedicated to unpredictable field work.
The screwdriver handle is made from aluminum and sports a rubberized finger-gripping zone and hard plastic palm-cap. The handle does not look very ergonomically designed, but it fits well enough in my medium-sized hand. While the handle is a bit wider than I would prefer, maybe the built-in bit storage compartment will come in handy someday.
The 18-in-1 set comes with a precision bit holder that opens awkwardly, but the design makes it easy to retrieve bits when folded out and locks them in when folded closed.
These bits feel somewhat weak, but I have not broken any yet.
The double-sided bits have ball detents that help keep them secure inside the bit holder. While none of the bits I have used thus far have accidentally fallen out of the screwdriver, past experiences have taught me not to rely on the low strength and poor quality control of such teeny tiny ball detents. You will share my hesitation after the first time you have to dismantle an entire project to retrieve a dropped screwdriver bit.
A 1-inch insert bit is only shown for size.
Right now this set is priced at $5, and you can find it in the winter holiday tool gift section at your local Lowes. After the holidays the “normal” price will likely spring back to $10.
Included bits: Slotted: 1/8″, 3/32″, 2x 5/64″, 1/16″; Phillips: #000, 2x #00, #0, #1; Torx: T4, T5, T6, T7, T8, T9, T10, T15.
Will this 18-in-1 precision screwdriver set replace the many individually-sized precision screwdrivers I use on a regular basis? Absolutely not. But it is compact and has proven to be versatile enough to have earned a spot in my tool bag. If you are looking for your first precision screwdriver set, you could do a lot better than this, but not for the price.
Stuart Deutsch is a tool enthusiast, critic, and collector, and writes more about tools at ToolGuyd.