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Chicago Pneumatic CP879 Review

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Editor Rating: 4.0/5
Chicago Pneumatic CP879 Review

Reviewed by: Timothy Henderson

Published on: March 6, 2018

Last modified:

February 26, 2018 @ 3:45 pm


  • Design
  • Functionality
  • Price

Review Summary:

The pneumatic right angle drills have a lot of advantages over their electric-operated cousins. For one, working with them doesn’t put you at risk of electric shock, which makes them a preferred choice for those working in moist environments. They’re also easy to service and energy-efficient, which are the additional reasons behind their rising popularity.

That’s why we’ve decided to take a closer look at a model manufactured by one of the most famous producers of these types of right angle drills – Chicago Pneumatic. Their CP879 comes at a reasonable price and brings a number of interesting features.

To find out if it’s worth considering for purchase, we ordered this model and thoroughly analyzed its design, power, ease of operation, warranty, and price. Our goal was to help the readers determine if the unit offers a good value for the money – read on and find out the answer!


  • Weight – 2.25lbs
  • Dimensions – 24″ x 12″ x 12″
  • Chuck Size – 3/8″
  • Maximum Pressure – 175 PSI
  • Warranty – 1-year

Chicago Pneumatic CP879 – The Basics

The Chicago Pneumatic CP879 sports a compact angle head that allows users to drill at places which they can’t reach with a regular drill. It features a slim profile with a low weight, and handling it is more than easy – fatigue and hand cramps are not something to worry about with this model.

The drill sports a reverse valve that allows easy directional change, a standard 3/8″ chuck, and is capable of achieving the maximum speed of 1800 rotations per minute. It has a rear exhaust valve which, fortunately, directs the air away from the surface you’re currently working on.

Even though it’s intended for drilling in confined areas, the CP879 can also be used for general maintenance, as long as you avoid heavy-duty jobs. Let’s check out the features:

The Features

The Design

Sporting a pretty attractive combination of burgundy and black colors, the Chicago Pneumatic CP879 weighs just a little bit above 2 pounds. This, in turn, makes the device highly maneuverable and easy to operate – long drilling sessions won’t tire you and leave you with painful cramps in hands. The top part of the device sports a compact, low profile head whose purpose is to let you drill or drive in places you can’t reach with your regular drill. During our testing period, we found that this works pretty well – plumbers and HVAC installers will be more than grateful for it.

Due to the fact that this is a pneumatic drill, one has to deal with air coming from an exhaust valve. Fortunately, the exhaust valve on this unit will direct the air away from the surface you’re working on, which is pretty convenient and deserves special praise.


The motor of this drill is quite a powerful one, as it easily achieves the speed of 1,800 RPM. This is quite impressive for an air right angle drill and a big plus in our book as it will help you deal with a plethora of different drilling/driving jobs.

We liked that the machine comes with a reverse valve (it allows quick directional change) and the teasing throttle that provides complete control from the startup through the rundown. The CP879 comes with a standard 3/8″ chuck and a 1-year warranty, which isn’t that impressive but it’s something we expected at this price.


Low profile head
Maximum speed of 1,800 RPM
Reasonable price


Quite loud
No variable speed

Things we liked about it

The reasonable price certainly isn’t the only selling point of this pneumatic right angle drill – the model’s efficiency and convenient design are further reasons because of which one should consider buying it. Maneuvering with this drill is a piece of cake since it sports a very low weight and allows one to drill for hours on end. Its motor, capable of achieving the speed of 1,800 RPM, is efficient enough to help you with all sorts of drilling and driving tasks around the household.

We shouldn’t forget the fact that this is, after all, a pneumatic right angle drill – not only will it help you with drilling at weird angles, but will also save you from the risks that come with electricity.


Things we didn’t like

When it comes to things that we didn’t like, the first one we’ll mention is that CP879 is quite loud when it works. Operating it without appropriate protection for the ears might damage your hearing, primarily when working in closed spaces. Make sure to wear earplugs or ear muffs whenever you decide to use this unit.

Furthermore, the unit’s trigger is variable only in theory. In reality, it’s all or nothing – pressing the trigger down for more than about a millimeter will cause the RPM value to jump straight to 1,800.

We should also mention that this drill arrives as a bare tool only, with no accessories of any kind – inclusion of a carrying case would have been nice.

General Impressions

The user reception for this pneumatic drill has been mostly positive, with consumers praising its affordable price, ease of use, speedy motor, low weight, and the ability to work with it in the tightest of spaces. They’re saying that it makes quick work of any material, calling it fast and efficient.

However, they do have a few complaints about it, with the most frequent one being its loudness. We tend to agree with the consumers – during our testing, we’ve also noticed that operating the CP879 isn’t a great experience if you’re not wearing hearing protection.


In the end, we can say that we’re quite pleased with the overall quality of this drill – it possesses the right amount of efficiency and ease of operation for us to deem it worth considering for purchase.

The fact that it comes at an affordable price is yet another advantage, as is its compact profile and the low weight. We recommend it!

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