SDS vs SDS Plus: Differences

SDS and SDS Plus drills are not considered as two types of drills. SDS is the geometry of the shank. SDS was developed by Bosch in 1975 and was invented by the Hiliti. The first SDS drill bit was TE type. 

SDS drill bits are mainly two types. Those are SDS Plus and SDS Max. SDS plus drill bit diameter is 10mm, and it has 4 rails on the shank, while SDS max has a 15mm 5 rail shank. Due to this shank geometry drill bit does not slip during the hammering action.

When considering the SDS and hammer drills, there are clear differences, which are related to the mechanism, usage, chuck and hammering power. SDS drill bits can be used in the hammer drill, but it is not effective.

What is SDS Drill?

SDS is a shank type of drill bit which was developed by the Bosch that was invented by the Hilit in 1960. SDS drill bit was invented as a solution of reduce the drill bit removing and attaching time. The first SDS system was TE. Now it has improved as TE-C, TE-T, and TE-Y.

SDS drill bits are mainly two types. Those are SDS plus and SDS Max drill bits. Those drill bits have various shank diameters and geometry. Hence, those can be used on harder materials without slippering the drill bits.

What is SDS Plus Drill?

corded cordless sds plus drills

SDS plus drill is a slotted drive shaft drill that produces hammer action by compression air using a piston driven by a crankshaft. SDS drill bit is a TE-T type drill bit. It can attach 10 mm drill bits with 4 groves on the shank.  SDS Plus can drill a maximum 1 1-inch diameter holes. SDS plus drills weigh less than 5kg.

SDS-Plus drill bits have 4 grooves on the shanks. Among those 4 groves, 2 of them are open and two of them are closed. Those grooves can lock securely by using a ball when it is attached to the chuck. Due to the ball and rails, the drill bit allows it to move forward and backward while the hammering action is without moving the chuck.

Due to the high hammering action, SDS plus drill bits can be used to drill harder materials such as bricks, concrete, and stones. However, SDS plus drill bits are not able to use on reinforced concrete.

What Are the Differences Between SDS and SDS Plus Drills?

SDS and SDS plus drills have no differences. Because SDS and SDS plus drills are considered the same type of drills. When the BOSCH needed to introduce the SDS drill to the USA, they introduced it as SDS plus drill.

  • SDS and SDS Plus both have quick-change chuck
  • SDS and SDS plus use 10 mm diameter 4 rail drill bits.
  • SDS and SDS plus both can be used on harder materials such as concrete, brick, stones and many harder materials.
hammer and sds drill bits

How to Identify SDS and SDS Plus Drill?

SDS and SDS Plus drills can be identified by using its chuck. SDS and SDS plus drills have a quick change chuck with inside balls. After the drill bit is attached, it can freely move 15mm forward and backward without any rotation.

sds plus drill bits

Can I Use SDS Drill Bit in Normal Drill?

Yes, You can use an SDS drill bit in a normal drill if the SDS drill bit can fit into the normal drill chuck. SDS drill bits do not tight well in chuck jaws due to the rails of the SDS shank. Hence SDS drill bit can lose or wobble and slip while it is rotating.

When the SDS drill bit is attached to the hammer drill, its performance will not increase due to low-power hammering action.

Are SDS and SDS Plus Interchangeable?

SDS and SDS Plus are interchangeable. Both SDS and SDS Plus have a diameter of 10 mm. SDS is the original slotted drive system. SDS Plus is an improvement of SDS but was designed to be backward compatible.

Tom Mackency

Tom Mackency

Hi, I am Tom Mackency. It has been 10 years that I have been working as a professional woodworker since 2013. I am really enjoying my carrier by creating many kinds of projects in my workshop. But mostly I like for home improvement projects. Home improvement and DIY projects are the most interesting things for me. More than that, the coolest things are power tools. Those are very precious and efficient than a decade ago. So I try to introduce so many things about power tools, woodworking, DIY projects, home improvement and many more interesting topics here.

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