Category Archives: Plumbing Tools
There have been some discussions going on about the new M18 tools and why Milwaukee is coming out with a second 18 volt lithium ion line and what will happen to the current V18 line. There have also been some frustration that the batteries are not compatible between the two lines of tools. First let’s take a look at the current market for hammer drills including the new tools soon to be on the shelves in October.
Milwaukee M18 2611-24 – 1700 RPM – 650 in/lbs – 5.3 lbs – $329
Bosch 18V 17618-01 – 2050 RPM – 650 in/lbs – 5.? lbs – $342
Makita 18V BHP451 – 1700 RPM – 560 in/lbs – 5.1 lbs – $299
Dewalt 18V DEW 927 – 1800 RPM – 500 in/lbs – 5.5 lbs – $349
Milwaukee V18 0824-24 – 1700 RPM – 550 in/lbs – 6.2 lbs – $344
*M18 2611-24 comes with a free impact for all pre-orders from Ohio Power Tool
This is a very very rough overview because there are many other factors to consider such as tool size, battery life, etc which have all greatly improved as well with the new M18 tools. Milwaukee has built a reputation for building the best tools on the market and their target customers are professionals. The second generation of lithium ion was necessary for them to stay on top; obviously they need to beat Dewalt in everyway possible.
Why do the batteries not work with the current V18? I did get some technical answers part of which was that the new M series batteries have 5 connection points vs. 3 connections, with the V18, which allows for more power transfer etc needed for higher performance. In reality they probably could have made it work but do they build to work with previous tools or do they try to build the best tools possible? Obviously there is no money in making batteries that would essentially work with decade old NiCd tools. Maybe their problem is they make tools that last to long. They set expectations pretty high when they made the V18 batteries work with the NiCd tools, unfortunately this probably won’t be the norm. If you currently have V18 tools they will probably last you much longer, which is good unless you are like me and need to have the latest and greatest. Either way you will still be able to pick up new V18 tools from Ohio Power Tool for at least another year and batteries for probably the next 10 years.
¼” Hex Impact & Recip Saw comparisons with M18, V18, Makita & Dewalt:
Milwaukee M18 2650-21 – 3200 IPM – 1400 in/lbs – 3.3 lbs – $229
Makita 18V BTD140 – 3200 IPM – 1280 in/lbs – 3.3 lbs – $313
Dewalt 18V DC827KL – 2700 IPM – 1330 in/lbs – 3.7 lbs – $359
Milwaukee V18 0881-22 – 3200 IPM – 1400 in/lbs – 5.2 lbs – $325
Milwaukee Sawzall M18 2620-22 – 3200 strokes/min – 7.9 lbs – $349
Makita 18V BJR181 – 2900 strokes/min – 8.1 lbs – $363
Dewalt 18V DC385K – 3000 strokes/min – 8.2 lbs – $199
Milwaukee Sawzall V18 0819-21 – 2700 strokes/min – 8.6 lbs – $300
*Pricing for Makita and Dewalt are best prices from national Big Box websites.
Back in July we posted on these tools in their European versions (see here). Finally the Bosch Brute Tough Lithium Tools are here, well soon at least. These have been long anticipated and probably not a coincidence these tools will be released almost exactly at the same time as the new Milwaukee M18 line of tools. The Bosch Brute Drills have been the preferred cordless drill of choice by many for some time. The delay in coming to market with a Brute 18V may have caused some to switch brands but hopefully not too many. Bosch is making up for lost time with one of the most powerful 18 volt tools we have seen. The new hammer drill has 650 in/lbs and 0-475/2,050 RPM well above the current competition. The battery system will be similar to the 36 volt tools with SlimPacks and FatPack options.
The only down side of the release of new Bosch 14.4 and 18 volt tools is this means no more amazing deals on Bosch 36 volt which we have seen all summer long. Since Bosch didn’t have an equivalent 18 volt product they rewarded all their loyal users with 36 volt tools at 18 volt prices. A hammer drill kit for instance can still be picked up for $249 while a 4 tool combo is still only $497. These prices are part of a limited time promo and will go back up in September before the new tools are released.
The new 14.4 & 18V tools both Brute Tough and Compact Tough can be pre-ordered at Ohio Power Tool and will be shipped in early October. We will all patiently wait for the different saws, lights and other tools that will work with these systems to be released.
Read The Full Bosch Press Release Below:
Mount Prospect, Ill., August 25, 2008 – Building on the success of its award-winning 36-volt and 12V-Max Litheon cordless tool platforms, Bosch Power Tools and Accessories today unveiled its first Litheon-powered offerings in the popular 18V and 14.4V size ranges. The core of Bosch’s mid-range Litheon™ launch is a full range of cordless drill/drivers and hammer drill/drivers purpose-built to offer the best runtime, battery life, durability and performance in the industry.
“With our launches of 12V MAX and 36V lithium ion tools, Bosch brought compact power and corded power innovation to the category at both ends of the cordless spectrum. With our renowned Brute Tough™ drill design we brought unprecedented durability to the category. And with our Litheon™ system we brought the most unique battery technology to the category” says Edwin Bender, Bosch’s group product manager for the cordless tool category. “Now we’ve combined the best of these innovations to deliver the best-built lithium ion tools in the business. Guaranteed.”
Whether you’re an all-day, everyday user who demands uncompromising toughness or a lighter duty user who prefers light weight and value, Bosch has developed six new tools to give each user exactly what he/she needs.
Bosch’s Brute Tough lineup boasts best-in-class speed and runtime, perfect for the most demanding professional users and applications. All of the new BruteTough products deliver phenomenal increases in speed and runtime versus the competition, especially in tough applications such as spade bit drilling, hole saw cutting and large fastener driving.
But that’s just half of the story. Bosch’s Brute Tough tools have always been known for unparalleled durability and toughness, and the new lineup takes things a step further. The combination of distinctive Bosch unibody motor construction, all-metal gear train and DuraShield housing yield a tool that will last long-term and even withstand drops from 10 feet. Additional durability-enhancing features include a sturdy 25+1 clutch and tight-gripping ½” metal chuck.
In addition, Bosch has improved the tools’ ergonomics – better balance and more comfortable grip surfaces – to minimize user fatigue and increase long-term productivity. The new Brute Tough lineup, equipped with Bosch FatPack batteries, includes:
17618-01 – 18V Litheon BruteTough Hammer D/D
17614-01 – 14.4V Litheon BruteTough Hammer D/D
37618-01 – 18V Litheon BruteTough D/D
37614-01 – 14.4V Litheon BruteTough D/D
For users who desire comfort, convenience and value, Bosch has upgraded its popular Compact Tough lineup. Known for lightweight, maneuverable performance at a friendly price point, Bosch’s Compact Tough tools still deliver great speed, power and performance. Even when using the SlimPack battery, the Compact Tough Drill/Drivers feature up to 50 percent greater runtime than the competition.
The new Compact Tough tools also deliver improved ergonomics, a versatile 20-position clutch and a robust ½-inch single sleeve chuck. Bosch Compact Tough tools come standard with Bosch SlimPack batteries. The lineup includes:
At the heart of the new tools is Bosch’s outstanding Litheon™ battery technology. Offering up to 35 percent more runtime than the competition and two times more recharge cycles over the life of the battery, the Litheon system keeps users moving forward in any application. Bosch’s patented Electronic Cell and Motor Protection, meanwhile, protects both the battery and the tool by preventing the three main causes of battery failure – overheating, overloading and deep discharging.
Another key feature of Bosch’s new mid-range Litheon™ family is the Flexible Power System, an option first made popular by Bosch’s 36V Litheon tools. The FatPack option delivers maximum runtime, while the SlimPack option offers light weight. All of Bosch’s Brute Tough and Compact Tough tools are compatible with both options.
Bosch is so confident in its Litheon system that it backs the platform with its Provantage 3-year Tool Protection Plan and 2-year battery replacement plan. “Our Provantage Protection Plan is the best cordless tool program in the industry,” says Bender. “No questions asked, no worries about number of charge cycle
s, no fine print. We guarantee our system – period.”
Bosch’s new Brute Tough and Compact Tough 14.4V and 18V offerings will be available nationwide October 2008. Also launching later this fall will be an impressive lineup of complimentary Litheon tools, including an 18V circular saw, an 18V reciprocating saw and an 18V heavy duty jobsite flashlight. All tools in the system will be compatible with both FatPack and SlimPack battery designs.
Each of the new Brute Tough and Compact Tough tools comes with two batteries and a 30-minute charger.
Earlier this week we took a quick look at all the Milwaukee Tools launching in October which included several new M12 tools. In this post we will take a more in-depth look specifically at two of the new M12 tools, the Hackzall and Copper Tube Cutter. The whole M12 line is aimed at Tradesmen specifically plumbers, HVAC, electricians and remodelers. The tools are very lightweight and compact, perfect for working in confined spaces.
Overall I am very happy with their strategy and glad they found creative new product for professionals to use with the M12 battery system. My initial fear is that we would be hit with a bunch of cheap consumer products and that Milwaukee might lose focus on their professional customers. That is not the case with these tools at all.
M12 Copper Tube Cutter 2471-22
This is the first product of its kind and will directly compete with the Ridgid manual pipe cutters which have been very successful. The battery powered M12 unit should save a large amount of time for anyone that is continuously cutting copper pipe. On a ½” copper pipe the 2471-22 can make a cut in 3 seconds and do up to 200 cuts on a single charge. The same cut might take 20-30 seconds with a manual cutter. The tool also automatically adjusts to different sizes from 3/8” to 1” tube.
Of course when you talk about electric pipe cutting tools one of the first concerns might be working with pipes full of water and getting it wet. Certainly the tool is not waterproof so don’t take it in the bath tube with you but Milwaukee has make serious efforts to keep the unit’s electronics sealed as well as built the head with corrosion resistant metal.
M12 Hackzall 2420-22
This is not Milwaukee’s first effort to build a smaller cutting tool. Milwaukee had the NiCd 18V Hatchet which was a smaller version of the Sawzall that bent 90 degrees in the middle was very popular among plumbers. The Hatchet has since been phased out along with the rest of the NiCd tools but the idea or a compact reciprocating saw is very much alive in the new Hackzall. The Hackzall however goes way beyond a compact Sawzall. The smaller size and new tool configuration are not only intended to make regular cuts but also to use for detail work of a Rotozip or jigsaw. The small unit has 0-3000 SPM and can cut wood, drywall, PVC, fiberglass, plastic and ever galvanized pipe.
The Hackzall can use any Sawzall blade but will also accept New Hackzall Blades specifically made for the unit. The new blades are smaller 3.5”-6” and include scroll saw blades and other blades specifically made for the Hackzall. The unit also features similar preventative measures to keep water out of the internal parts of the tools when using on pipes that may have recently been in use.
In October Milwaukee Power Tool will launch its largest release of new products ever. The 2 lines of products currently exist but this will greatly expand on both of these lines and truly give them a foothold into several new markets. The new products will be part of the new M12 (12 volt) & M18 (18 volt) tool lines.
The Milwaukee M12 tool line currently features the Micro Driver 2401-22 and M-Spector Camera 2310-21. Soon to be released (October 1st – target date) are an Impact Driver 2450-22, Copper Cutter 2471-22, Flashlight & Hackzall 2420-22. These new tools will be very popular among plumbing and HVAC contractors. The copper tube cutter especially will be a huge time saver and can handle 3/8” to 1” copper tube. The Hackzall is ideal for cutting pvc tubes or putting boxes in drywall and plywood. It will be a handy tool to have but will not replace your Sawzall for all jobs. You can find a few extremely well priced M12 combo kits available on Ohio Power Tool which will be available in very limited quantities to promote the new tool launch.
The Milwaukee M18 line expands on the current battery system used by the compact 18 volt model 2601-22. The 2601 however has a slim battery which is light weight but not powerful enough to use with the new hammer drill 2611-24, Sawzall 2620-22 or circular saws 2630-22. A new larger M18 battery will work with all the tools and will be called the XC battery. The new M18 line features a light weight hex impact that outperforms the competition in speed, torque and run time available with compact batteries 2650-21 or XC batteries 2650-22. The new line will also add additional tools in the following months such as a grinder, jigsaw as well as other new tools. The new M18 will eventually replace the current line of V18 tools as the only Milwaukee 18 volt tools but that will not happen until some time in 2009 and the batteries and accessories will of course be available for at least 5-10 more years.
All the new M12 & M18 tools are available now for Pre-Sale from Ohio Power Tool. The Pre-Sales will be fulfilled in the order they are received so if you want to be the first kid on the block with the new tools you should probably make a pre-order ASAP. On the other hand if you are looking for a great deal on great tools you can get a V18 4 tool combo 0920-29 for $426.36 or a V18 Hammer Drill & Hex Impact 0824-24 for $299.
Look for several in-depth tool reviews and more information on the M12 & M18 tools over the next week.
There is a new addition to the 12V Max Litheon line. The PS30-2A which is a drill/driver with a 3/8” three jawed chuck, instead of the hex type that is on most other models. The obvious advantage is that this will use any standard drill bit, hole saws in addition to all the standard driver bits. I am happy to see this option finally available in the line up. These ultra compact are certainly powerful enough to handle basic drilling and consumers having been waiting for a compact drill like this for some time. The advertising from Bosch last holiday season said “4 now, 12 models in 2008” with the flashlight FL11 and this new PS30 drill we now have a total of 5 by my count so hopefully we will see some additional tools periodically through the end of the year. Ohio Power Tool has the new 12V models available now: Pocket Driver PS20-2A, i-drive PS10-2A & Impactor PS40-2A. Read the full Bosch PS30 press release below.
Bosch Press Release
The latest foray into ultra-compact tool design from Bosch Power Tools and Accessories has yielded what may well become the ideal do-it-all tool for users looking for maximum versatility in a small package. Bosch’s new PS30 12V Max Litheon™ Drill/Driver takes the company’s successful ultra-compact platform one step further with best-in-class speed and torque and a host of new features.
The most immediately noticeable feature is the PS30’s 3/8” three-jawed chuck. The new single sleeve chuck is designed to accommodate almost any need a typical user might encounter in a day’s work – simple drilling, drilling with spade bits, cutting with hole saws, socket fastening, screwdriving and more. To keep users moving in all of those applications, the PS30 delivers a robust 220 inch-pounds of torque, more than twice the torque of any other ultra-compact drill/driver on the market. And, to keep all of that torque under control, Bosch utilizes a 20+1 clutch.
Bosch’s PS30 also offers users the flexibility to choose between speed and precision based on their specific needs. The tool’s two-speed drivetrain delivers between 400-1,100 rpm. At full speed, the tool delivers 2.2 times the speed of any other drill/driver in its class.
With a weight of barely 2.4 pounds, an ergonomic soft grip and a profile that is 50 percent slimmer than a standard 12V drill/driver, the PS30 is both maneuverable and comfortable. The tool is small enough to reach into tight areas and corners with ease and light enough for all-day use and sustained overhead work. In cramped quarters, a robust built-in LED light offers outstanding visibility.
As with Bosch’s previous ultra-compact tools, users can count on quick 30-minute charge times and unparalleled battery life from the proven 12V Max* Litheon battery platform. Bosch’s 12V Max Litheon batteries are compatible with all other Bosch Ultra-Compact tools (PS10, PS20, PS40 and FL11).
The PS30 Two-Speed Ultra-Compact Drill/Driver comes with two 12V Max Litheon batteries, a 30-minute quick charger and a sturdy canvas carrying bag. The PS30 is covered by Bosch’s standard cordless power tool warranty and is eligible to be registered in the Bosch ProVantage Protection Plan. It will be available through authorized Bosch distributors nationwide this fall.
* Bosch now refers to its ultra-compact Litheon battery platform as “12V Max.” The change is due to lithium ion battery voltage ratings that have been adopted in the marketplace since Bosch first introduced its ultra-compact Litheon products in 2006. The new terminology, which replaces 10.8V, is meant to reduce confusion in the marketplace by clearly identifying tools that are rated at maximum voltage (i.e. 12V) rather than nominal voltage (i.e. 10.8V) by using the “Max” designator. Bosch’s 12V Max Litheon batteries are 100% compatible with all past and future Bosch ultra-compact tools..
Typically when you cut and thread pipe you need oil to continuously pump to keep the pipes cool and cuts smooth. Ridgid has introduced the world’s first completely oil less threading machine. This is a big advantage because with regular oil threading the job can get very messy, so it must be done away from the installation. With the Ridgid Oil-Less threader 1210 you can now thread right where you are installing, in basements, on rooftops, even in finished rooms. To eliminate cutting oil, the Model 1210 combines specially-formulated Ridgid Thread Cutting Coolant and unique Ridgid Oil-less Gold® Dies. Ridgid Thread Cutting Coolant will evaporate on contact with the pipe and leave you with a clean, dry, extremely high quality thread that is ready for immediate installation. The coolant system can also sit idle for any amount of time and go into use right away saving valuable time in setup.
To promote this exciting new threading machine, Ridgid has decided to give one away along with some other great Ridgid products. 1210 Promotion Registration If you are not interested in waiting to see if you’ve won the contest you can always get the Ridgid 1210 Oil-Less Threader ($1,865) or any other Ridgid Plumbing Equipment at Ohio Power Tool. The portable stand is a good idea for most jobs which will run an extra $190.
There have been many different attempts at the compact ladders over the years but for the most part these simply can not stand up to industrial applications. For occasional use or changing a light bulb around the house that infomercial ladder you got a few years ago probably works well, but why can’t anyone build a compact ladder for real professional use? These are the people that would use the product every day but need something compact that will fit inside the van.
Well I think we have final found it in the Pro Series 780P. The Xtend & Climb ladders originally came out some time ago but it started with a consumer ladder with a 225 lb limit and was not built for heavy use. The original was light and compact and handy for apartments and other light applications. The nice folks at Xtend & Climb recently did a very smart thing and built a new professional grade ladder, the 780P. This new ladder is rated by Occupational Safety and Health Administration, (OSHA) as a Type IA, 300 lb, Extra Heavy Duty Industrial. I have had a change to test this ladder out and as a true skeptic from the beginning I am now a believer. I weigh about 225 and full extended there was no flex to the ladder at all and it just felt very sturdy. It is pretty light for a professional ladder at just over 30 lbs and very easy to carry around when collapsed.
As a previous skeptic myself, I understand most people think a compact professional ladder could never happen but it has. The professional 780P Xtend & Climb is available at Ohio Power Tool and you know those guys only sell true professional grade tools and equipment.
It has been rumored Bosch was going to change from 10.8V to 12V for some time. Yesterday Bosch officially announced the launch the second generation of the PS20 which is a 12V Max tool, the new model number is PS20-2A. The upgrade for the originator of the ultra compact tool market features a 25% increase in power and speed to 100 inch-pound of torque and 500 RPM operating speed. Below is the explanation of the name switch from Bosch’s recent press release:
The new terminology, which replaces 10.8V, is meant to reduce confusion in the marketplace by clearly identifying tools that are rated at maximum voltage (i.e. 12V) rather than nominal voltage (i.e. 10.8V) by using the “Max” designator. Bosch’s 12V Max Litheon batteries are 100% compatible with all past and future Bosch ultra-compact tools.
So don’t worry, all your old 10.8V tools will work with the new 12V tools coming out, only a small marketing tweak to keep up with Milwaukee and Ridgid who decided to give the “Max Voltage Rates” and make people think their tools are more powerful. Basically all the ultra compact tools use almost identical batteries with equal number of lithium cells. Milwaukee has recent changed the name of their ultra compact tools as well to M12 Lithium Ion tools. Hopefully everyone has settled on their new names and we can stop confusing everyone. Personally my favorite of all the ultra compact tools remains the Impactor now also a 12V max PS40-2A , still more powerful than any of the competitors with the conservative numbers.
In addition to the PS20-2A Bosch also announced the launch of a 12V Max flashlight, model FL11. The unit is sold without batteries as an add-on unit to your other Bosch tools. Both new models will be available on Ohio Power Tool shortly, under Bosch Litheon 12V Max.
57 years ago Milwaukee invented the reciprocating saw so it is no surprise they still have the best tool in the game. The Milwaukee Sawzall has been copied by almost every competitor out there and although there are some other good tools, Milwaukee is still numero uno.
Popular Mechanic conducted the comparison below a few months ago which I though did a pretty good job creating real testing subjects with multiple materials. The two tests were named the “Nail Biter” and “PM House Sandwich”
The Nail Biter – Two 2 x 4 pieces hammered together with an entire box of 16d common nails.
PM House Sandwich – Smashed together 1/2-in. drywall, 2 x 6 lumber, 1 x 4 lumber, 1 1/4-in. PVC pipe, steel conduit, two 12-ga. cables, two pieces steel strapping, insulation.
Milwaukee 15 Amp Super Sawzall | $187.50, OhioPowerTool.com
Blade Damage: A /// Smoothness: A- /// Power: A- /// Overall: A-
The Nail Biter: Two pieces of wood and a whole pile of nails were no match for our winner—it took just 6 seconds to slice through the 2 x 4s with a remarkably smooth and straight cut.
PM House Sandwich: The Milwaukee ripped through all 10 layers in just 14 seconds. The almost-pristine blade that emerged impressed our team of testers.
Craftsman Professional 12 Amp Variable Speed | $110, craftsman.com
Blade Damage: A- /// Smoothness: B+ /// Power: B /// Overall: B+
The Nail Biter: In the showdown’s biggest surprise, a Craftsman bested a DeWalt saw across the board for the first time in recent PM history. Slicing the wood took just 8 seconds.
PM House Sandwich: Again, the Craftsman proved to be a pleasant surprise, carving through our sandwich in just 16 seconds with hardly more effort than the champion Milwaukee needed.
DeWalt DW311K Heavy-Duty 13 Amp | $170, dewalt.com
Blade Damage: B- /// Smoothness: B /// Power: B /// Overall: B
The Nail Biter: Cutting the lumber took 11 seconds—and required a fair amount of force to push the blade through the boards.
PM House Sandwich: The DeWalt split our sandwich in 23 seconds, and required far more muscle. The blade sustained about three times as much damage as the Milwaukee’s.
Black & Decker Firestorm 9.5 Amp | $80, blackanddecker.com
Blade Damage: C- /// Smoothness: D+ /// Power: C- /// Overall: C-
The Nail Biter: Our least expensive tool barely cut it, taking 25 seconds to complete the task—more than twice as long as the second slowest finisher—and requiring an enormous amount of effort.
PM House Sandwich: This saw is simply not powerful enough for most demolition jobs. It finished slicing in 29 seconds, but the rickety feel left our hands sore, and the blade was rendered unusable.
Test Results from Popular Mechanic
No Surprise that the Milwaukee Super Sawzall took the prize. I wish these tests could be done over and over to see which tool lasts the longest and I’m sure the Milwaukee would stand completely alone on top.
The tools themselves are obviously the most important consideration to overall performance but do not overlook the importance of blades and accessories. See the Ice Hardened Sawzall Blade Comparison Video. These were both done using the same Sawzall, so keep that in mind next time you buy blades.
At Ohio Power Tool the primary focus is professionals that rely on their tools everyday to make a living. In an effort to provide the best deal, on the best tools with the best accessories the Milwaukee 15amp Super Sawzall 6538-21 is on sale for $187.50 (currently lower than any big box or well known internet retailers). In addition to simply providing a great price the deal also includes a free 14 Piece Ice Hardened Blade Kit 49-22-1131 ($29.98) which features six 9” Torch Blades.
It’s no secret there has been some very big success in the Pocket/Micro tool market. It started with the Bosch 10.8v tools, then the Milwaukee 12v (newly named the M12 tools) and now almost every tools company has some form of these compact lithium ion tools. One of the common complaints for most of these tools is that they don’t have a standard chuck but instead a ¼” hex. This means you can’t use standard drill bits for pilots or any other form of drilling and if you need to carry two tools around that pretty much defeats the purpose. Obviously if you are going to do some serious drilling you may want to look at a slightly larger tool. Perhaps something like the new Milwaukee compact 18V Lithium 2601-22 ($199), still lightweight just over 3.5 lbs but it is built for heavy use. That being said you should still be able to do some occasional drilling and detail work with the 10.8v and 12v tool.
The internet is an amazing place to shop, compare and learn about products but I do feel there is something that maybe hasn’t been completely figured out when it comes to recommendations and accessories the way you get when you come into a store, hold the tools and talk to the guys behind the counter. A great instance of this is with the Milwaukee 38 Piece Quik-Lok 48-32-1500 set which sells incredibly well with any brand of the Micro & Pocket Drivers in the store because it just makes sense. The kit comes with 7 different sized ¼” hex drill bits, ¼” & 3/8” square socket adapters, Quik-Loc connectors and all sorts of different size driver bits. This is way more than just another driver bits which you already have but some however that gets lost online. With so much “upselling” going on it’s really hard to tell if this is really a recommendation from someone who know what they are talking about or simple a computer program matching compatible accessories, trying to add a few extra bucks on the sale.