No, not that über, Über as “ubah” as in being a superlative example of its kind.
On my drive every year to the Milwaukee Tool New Product Symposium I often think about the surprises that await in terms of new tools, technology and trends. This past summer was a bit different in that I believe Milwaukee built upon its core strengths to make its product offering stronger. Yes, there were some new introductions this year, but the focus remains on the end user, advancing core technologies and game-changing innovation. “We provide solutions which deliver productivity to our users,” says Milwaukee Tool president, Steve Richman.
Being known as a solutions provider, Milwaukee remains steadfastly committed to the trades, “When we say we are focused on the core trades, we mean it,” says Alex Boll, senior product manager, Milwaukee Tool.
For example, expanding upon existing, increasingly popular lines such as the PACKOUT storage system, creating a monster with an even stronger Sawzall and packing more punch with the introduction of M18 Red Lithium High Output HD 12.0 battery have only strengthened the brand.
It all starts with the battery, and as the competition increases the voltage number in its batteries, Milwaukee is focused on keeping the 18V battery platform, which provides consistency throughout its use—the M18 Red Lithium batteries are compatible with M18 system, which includes 150+ tools.
“Can Milwaukee do more with M18?” asks Paul Fry, vice president of cordless product management. ”The answer is ‘Hell Yes!’” Fry says emphatically. “It’s really about what the technology can do for our customers,” says Fry.
The next breakthrough in M18 FUEL continues the story of delivering best-in-class power, run-time, and performance. These tools are faster, more powerful, and lighter due to dramatic re-engineering of their most crucial components—motors, electronics and batteries, and they’re still on the same battery system.
Milwaukee introduced its M18 Red Lithium High Output HD 12.0 battery, which, according to Milwaukee, provides 50% more power and runs 50% cooler vs. M18 REDLITHIUM HD battery packs. The increase in power elevates the performance of the entire M18™ system, delivering the power of 15A corded product. It delivers fade free power and runs substantially cooler through heavy applications, is touted as the best performing cold weather pack ever made, providing increased power in extreme cold weather conditions (below 0F / -18C). At the Tool Symposium, we heard that the pack runs at temps as low as -20 F, just sayin’.
PACKOUT with a Punch
The super popular PACKOUT Modular Storage system just keeps getting better. Designed to provide users with the ability to interchange and interlock a wide assortment of heavy duty tool boxes, organizers, and storage totes in multiple different configurations, Milwaukee boasts that the PACKOUT is the most versatile and durable modular storage system in the industry. The new PACKOUT Low-Profile Organizer and Compact Low-Profile Organizer are half the height of the current PACKOUT Organizers with the same impact resistant body. Each Organizer has removable bin dividers and no-travel bin seals to keep products from shifting around. In addition, the organizers are IP65 rated to keep water and jobsite debris out. Oh, and it’s available with optional foam inserts.
And, the new 15” and 20” PACKOUT Tool Bags unzip to reveal large open space for tools, and have cushioned shoulder straps, top handles, and side handles for flexible carry. Each is constructed of tear resistant 1680D ballistic material and have an impact resistant polymer base are up to 5X more durable than other bases, protecting contents from water, abrasion and impact.
Seen at the Symposium, creative uses for the PACKOUT included truck-mounted kits and a movable skid to allow easy mobility. But all of this PACKOUT talk has contractors wanting more. A PACKOUT storage system with drawers for easier access when units are stacked, perhaps? We’ll see.
How can you improve upon one the most game-changing tools in the industry? Well, Milwaukee did just that with its new SUPER SAWZALL Reciprocating Saw, which generates 15A corded power, faster Cuts than 15A reciprocating saws, and delivers up to 150 Cuts in 2×12 SPF per charge. Designed to perform in the toughest applications, the M18 FUEL SUPER SAWZALL combines Milwaukee’s legendary performance and durability with the portability of the M18 platform. The POWERSTATE Brushless Motor Provides 3,000 SPM and higher speeds under load for corded cutting performance. REDLINK PLUS intelligence ensures maximum performance and protection from overload, overheating and over discharge.
M18 FUEL 16″ Chainsaw Kit
And from the “Because they can” category, Milwaukee introduced its M18 FUEL 16″ Chainsaw that delivers the power to cut hardwoods, cuts faster than gas, and delivers up to 150 cuts per charge. The unit is designed to meet the performance, durability and ergonomic needs of professional landscape maintenance, power utility, and the installed M18 user.
The M18 FUEL™ ½” Drill/Driver delivers up to 60% more power, up To 1.5” shorter length and up to 2X faster speed under heavy load. The POWERSTATE brushless motor delivers 1,200 in.-lbs. of torque and 2,000 RPMs, providing fast drilling through demanding applications.
The M18 FUEL ¼” Hex Impact Driver features the POWERSTATE brushless motor, which delivers up to 2,000 in.-lbs. of torque and up to 30% faster driving speed, increasing user’s productivity for the most demanding fasteners on the job.
M18 FUEL 8-1/4″ Table Saw w/ One-Key Kit
According to Milwaukee, its new M18 FUEL 8-1/4” Table Saw with One-Key generates the power of a 15A corded saw, 24-1/2” of rip capacity and up to 600 linear Feet of cutting per charge. The table saw is optimized for power, portability and productivity. The POWERSTATE brushless motor provides 6,300 RPM and higher speeds under load for corded cutting performance. REDLINK PLUS intelligence ensures maximum performance and protection from overload, overheating and over discharge.
USB Rechargeable Heated Gloves
From the “pretty frick’n cool” department, Milwaukee expands on its outer wear line with its Heated Gloves. This fall Milwaukee Tool will launch the first heated gloves designed to survive the jobsite and outlast the elements. Powered by rechargeable REDLITHIUM battery technology, the new gloves heat on-demand, providing up to six hours of run-time. To be worn both on and off the jobsite, the gloves are also designed with features to improve overall dexterity and mobility.
“At Milwaukee we understand that trade professionals are expected to work in some very tough conditions, cold weather being one of the most inclement. This is why we’ve been leading the industry in heated jobsite work gear ever since the introduction of our M12 Heated Gear in 2010, and we’re now introducing our first ever heated accessory,” said Kaue Cavalcante, product manager for Milwaukee Tool.
Powered by REDLITHIUM USB, these gloves feature three heat settings—low, medium, high) and fully heat up in just 2.5 minutes. Users will experience up to six hours of continuous run-time, with heat extending to the fingers and back of the hands.
It’s amazing to me to watch the transformation of Milwaukee from what is was, say, more than 10 years ago. As president Steve Richman says, “We are not a lick and stick company,” which basically means that the company does not shop product, not developing solutions. It starts with battery technology, the innovation that goes into producing game-changing tools and the employee dedication to make it the best solutions provider it can be. “We are not overconfident; the day we are satisfied with success is the day we die,” says Richman.