I have a Porter-Cable 20 volt impact drill and circular saw... I just came across to 6 amp hour Milwaukee M18 batteries for free... I want to run my Porter-Cable impact off the M18 battery how do I connect the wires?

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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because trying to connect different brands of tools and batteries can be dangerous (batteries can catch fire or explode) – Machavity Dec 30 '18 at 17:27
  • Sell the Milwaukee batteries and buy PC batteries. You'll come out ahead. – Aloysius Defenestrate Dec 31 '18 at 0:08

Batteries are not as simple as they used to be. This isn't like swapping a C-cell for a D-cell with some wire to make up for the different size.

  • Voltage

Based on the names, it sounds like you are mixing 18 V and 20 V batteries/tools. That may be close enough to be OK, or it may not.

  • Discharge rate

Different battery technologies can handle different rates of discharge. If you have a battery that can't output high current as well as the original then you may find performance problems or serious overheating problems.

  • Charging

All batteries used to charge pretty much the same (except the alkaline batteries that should never be recharged) - essentially push current into the battery "backwards" and keep going until the battery output voltage shows that it is fully charged.

But the circuits are now a bit more sophisticated and will typically perform some tests of the battery to determine the current charge level and then charge accordingly. In order for this to work properly, the basic technology (chemistry) needs to be the same and there is often electronics within the battery pack to monitor charging and protect from overcharging, overloads (during usage) and other problems.

Bottom line: Unless you can really determine that the batteries are "compatible except for physical form factor", this is probably not a good idea.

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    Whatever bodging someone comes up with to connect a battery to a tool, you'd be insane to try to charge one manufacturer's battery with another's charger. Research 'hydrogen fluoride gas' with regard to lithium ion fires. – Aloysius Defenestrate Dec 31 '18 at 0:15

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