Hammer drills replaced star drives as the best way to drill a hole.
Hammer drills replaced star drives as the best way to drill a hole.

A star drive and hammer were the tools of choice for concrete contractors 50 years ago, not exactly the most sophisticated or productive system (drilling a simple anchor hole could take more than 90 minutes, but an essential system because it was the only technology then available). About ten years later, Hilti, still in its early days as a building and construction product manufacturer, introduced a tool that dramatically changed concrete construction forever. With the electropneumatic hammer drill, the time needed to drill an anchor hole was shortened to about one minute. In the 1990s, vibration reduction systems were developed for hammer drills that are easier on the hands and arms so they are less tiring to use, increasing productivity.

—Renee Robinson

Read more highlights from 50 Years of Concrete Construction Progress.