Not long ago we shared the news that the Milwaukee M18 FUEL Sawzall, Circular Saw, 4 High Torque Impacts and 2 Grinders would be hitting the market in the post How Milwaukee is Leading the way in Cordless Power Tools. It now looks like Milwaukee is really gearing up to release these units starting as early as October. At the time of the original post we did not know pricing, strategy with their existing tools, target launch dates or even some of the torque ratings. Hopefully this will shed some additional light on some of the Milwaukee M18 FUEL Tools.
Milwaukee M18 FUEL Sawzall 2720-22
The Sawzall is a huge source of pride for the folks at Milwaukee, having invented the tool, and we knew this would be the first non-drill/driver they would be working on. The 18 volt recip saws have always left something to be desired in the way of power and runtime but for the first time ever in an 18 volt we think we might have a tool that could replace the corded tool all together. It would appear the plan is to leave the current Sawzall 2620-20 ($129, Ohio Power Tool) in the lineup as the inexpensive option and the FUEL Sawzall 2720-20 ($199, Ohio Power Tool) as the premium alternative. It will also be available with 1 M18 4.0Ah battery & charger 2720-21 ($299) as well as 2 batteries & charger 2720-22 ($399). Check out the video below which does a great job of demonstrating how well this new unit works against other cordless and event their own corded Sawzall.
Milwaukee M18 FUEL Circular Saw 2730-22
The cordless circular saws for us have always been the most disappointing tools. Because of the mess they make you will always want to be outside when using them, so not dragging a heavy cord around is a great idea. Corded circular saws typically pack 15 amp motors so the cordless tools are inevitably underpowered and very short runtime. In the past we’ve always been frustrated but again that might well be in the past with the new M18 FUEL Circular Saw 2730-20 ($199, Ohio Power Tool). Not only can it zip through 3 sheets of stacked plywood, thanks to the new 4.0Ah batteries it can now put out double the runtime of their closest brushed cordless competitors. It will also be available in kits with 1 M18 4.0Ar battery & charger 2730-21 ($299) or 2 batteries & charger 2730-22 ($399). Hopefully we will see these brushless saws in some combo kits soon but our thought is it will probably not be until sometime in 2014.
Milwaukee M18 FUEL 5” Grinders, Paddle & Slide Switches
Here is another terrible, disappointing cordless tool category we’ve continued to be let down by in the past. The new FUEL grinders really do change all that, these tools are actually grinders which can be used for grinding and surface preps not just as cut-off tools with limited run time. The bare tools Slide Lock-on 2781-20 ($169, Ohio Power Tool) and Paddle No-Lock 2780-20 ($169, Ohio Power Tool) are well priced and with the demand for a real cordless grinder tool as big as it is we’d expect these tools to sell very well. Of course the grinders are also available in kits with 1 M18 4.0Ah battery & chargers – 2781-21 Slide, 2780-21 paddle ($299) as well as 2 batteries & charger – 2781-22 Slide, 2780-22 paddle ($399).
Milwaukee M18 FUEL High Torque ½”, ¾” & 7/16”
For many of the people we’ve been talking to the high torque impacts have been the most anticipated M18 FUEL tools to get the brushless upgrade. At the media event launch we had an opportunity to use these however they were not able to give us any data on specific torque ratings. They were only able to say they would produce more torque than the most powerful 1/2” pneumatic tools which they backed up with some actual hands-on applications. These impacts also feature the 2-Mode Drive control which is very unique and useful feature for tools with so much power.
We now have a better understanding on just why they were not able to provide the exact torque ratings as it seems they have really optimized the different tools for some different applications. The M18 FUEL ½” detent-pin 2762-20 ($219, Ohio Power Tool) secures the socket on the tool, making it ideal for structural steel and utility workers that could be high off the ground where a socket that slips off seriously hurt someone. This tool is also available in a kit with 2 M18 batteries & charger 2762-22 ($429). Typically these workers are not going to be switching socket sizes as often so the locking pin is a good fit. These tools have a 2 torque settings of 350/600 ft.lbs. which is optimized for these users.
The M18 FUEL ½” friction ring 2763-20 ($219, Ohio Power Tool) is geared differently for the automotive, agricultural and heavy equipment maintenance users who will be looking for a higher max torque and easier ability to switch sockets. The friction rings do wear and eventually the sockets will slip off but for these applications nobody is going to be impaled when that happens. The 2 torque setting on this tool are 100/700 ft.lbs. (1100 ft.lbs. nut busting) which again is very well thought out with these trades in mind. This tool is also available in a kit with 2 M18 batteries & charger 2763-22 ($429).
Another popular configuration for utility trades is the M18 FUEL 7/16” hex 2765-20 ($269, Ohio Power Tool) which allows for easiest use of auger bits with 7/16” hex shafts for drilling through telephone poles, guard rails, railroad tie and other thick wood applications. Adaptors back to 1/2” square are readily available as well so these tools can be used for most applications. The 2 torque settings on these guns are 300/500 ft.lbs. The 2 M18 batteries & charger kit for this tool is 2763-22 ($499).
The final impact in the M18 FUEL line up is the ¾” 2764-20 ($269, Ohio Power Tool) and has the highest output of them all at 750 ft.lbs. (1200 ft.lbs. nut busting). The lower gear is still an impressive 375 ft.lbs. which is more than most cordless ½” impacts were only a few short years ago. These also use the friction ring to hold the sockets on so the typical user is the same as the 2763-20 but who just demands a little more torque and larger socket options. This tool is also available in a kit with 2 M18 batteries & charger 2764-22 ($499).