Milwaukee Tool

The leadership team at Milwaukee Tool continues to push the “disruptive innovation” ideology—an idea that a product takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves up market, eventually displacing established competitors to a new level—when talking about new tools. As a company that professes itself as a Read More

The leadership team at Milwaukee Tool continues to push the “disruptive innovation” ideology—an idea that a product takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves up market, eventually displacing established competitors to a new level—when talking about new tools. As a company that professes itself as a solutions provider first, releasing dozens of new tools every year, the disruptive part fits this narrative, sometimes with its own products. With 88 new tools at this year’s New Tool Symposium to show off, there was plenty of jaw-dropping moments, and Milwaukee showed off some plumbing tools that not only disrupted the space, they obliterated it.

In particular, there were four new plumbing offerings—coming to market in November (minus the short throw press tool below)—that really caught my eye:

The M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine

• M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine — Almost 75% of the time spent on secondary drain line jobs is in the preparation for the job, and then packing all equipment back up. The M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine aims to change all that through the use of an interchangeable drum that allows users to select the right cable for the job, the ability to backpack transport the entire unit (including the ability to separate the drum from the machine to lighten the weight), and an electronic drum break so users can react faster when the cable starts to bind up in a pipe.

M18 FUEL Drain Snake

 

 

 

 

• M18 FUEL Drain Snake with CABLE-DRIVE Locking Feed System—Building off Milwaukee’s current M12 Drain Snake, the M18 FUEL Drain Snake represents the next level in performance for hand-held units by offering more power, cable drive locking feed system, and zero drum contact. With 2X more power than corded, it boasts a max power of 50′ down the line and is the first brushless drain cleaner. The CABLE-DRIVE Locking Feed System is the only automatic cable feed system that allows users to select and maintain a desired feed speed.

According to Corey Dickert, vice president of Product Management-Plumbing & Electrical at Milwaukee Tool, “The simple cordless setup of the M12 Drain Snake frees users from the hassle of wrestling with cords, carrying extension cords, or spending time looking for outlets—allowing them to get back to the job at hand. In addition, this is the only handheld unit with a fixed drum shield to protect the fixture and user from the spinning drum. When we combine these cordless benefits with our new-to-world design, we’re able to truly provide a level of productivity that these users have never experienced before.”


• M12 AirSnake Drain Cleaning Air Gun—
The first cordless alternative in pipe cleaning tools, the M12 AirSnake Drain Clearing Air Gun drastically changes the way users clear grease clogs, slow drains, and other non-retrieval clogs. The tool is the first cordless version on the market to use compressed air to flush away clog build-up. Completely cable-free, the tool allows for fast setup time and no disassembly of fixtures, drain covers and p-traps. With a 0-50 variable PSI gauge, the tool can instantly reach clogs 35′ out. To see the demo in person was impressive; the process does not affect the integrity of the piping installation.

M12 AirSnake Drain Cleaning Air Gun


• M18 Short Throw Press Tool—
Milwaukee touts pressing 40% faster than competition, delivering force optimized for PEX installation, and eliminating downtime caused by calibration intervals. With the introduction of the M18 Short Throw Press Tool w/ PEX Crimp Jaws, Milwaukee is able to provide a solution that can accomplish the majority of residential installations.

The lightweight, in-line design of the new M18 Short Throw Press Tool enables the installer to press with just one hand. And, with a 3-second cycle time, and the ability to press 400 1” connections on a single charge, this new tool allows residential installers to do their job faster and easier than any solution they’ve had up until now—without paying for more force than is needed,” said Alex Boll, product manager for Milwaukee Tool.

M18 Short Throw Press Tool

 

Whereas hand tools often cause difficult and inconsistent ring positioning on fittings, the spring-loaded design of the Short Throw Press Tool’s jaws assists in holding the ring for precise alignment to the fitting. With no calibration interval, the new tool delivers consistency in installation over the entire life of the tool.

A pre-press battery check prevents the user from starting a press the tool cannot complete due to insufficient battery charge, while Auto-Cycle ensures a full press every time and indicates to the user via a green light that the connection is complete. The new M18 Short Throw Press Tool w/PEX Crimp Jaws is compatible with the F1807/F2159 copper crimp ring system, one of the leading systems in residential PEX installations today. The Short Throw Press Tool is also compatible with the Viega PureFlow Jaws, which are optimized for the PureFlow PEX Press System. ‬

The leadership team at Milwaukee Tool continues to push the “disruptive innovation” ideology—an idea that a product takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves up market, eventually displacing established competitors to a new level—when talking about new tools. As a company that professes itself as a Read More

The leadership team at Milwaukee Tool continues to push the “disruptive innovation” ideology—an idea that a product takes root initially in simple applications at the bottom of a market and then relentlessly moves up market, eventually displacing established competitors to a new level—when talking about new tools. As a company that professes itself as a solutions provider first, releasing dozens of new tools every year, the disruptive part fits this narrative, sometimes with its own products. With 88 new tools at this year’s New Tool Symposium to show off, there was plenty of jaw-dropping moments, and Milwaukee showed off some plumbing tools that not only disrupted the space, they obliterated it.

In particular, there were four new plumbing offerings—coming to market in November (minus the short throw press tool below)—that really caught my eye:

The M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine

• M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine — Almost 75% of the time spent on secondary drain line jobs is in the preparation for the job, and then packing all equipment back up. The M18 FUEL Sectional Drum Machine aims to change all that through the use of an interchangeable drum that allows users to select the right cable for the job, the ability to backpack transport the entire unit (including the ability to separate the drum from the machine to lighten the weight), and an electronic drum break so users can react faster when the cable starts to bind up in a pipe.

M18 FUEL Drain Snake

 

 

 

• M18 FUEL Drain Snake with CABLE-DRIVE Locking Feed System—Building off Milwaukee’s current M12 Drain Snake, the M18 FUEL Drain Snake represents the next level in performance for hand-held units by offering more power, cable drive locking feed system, and zero drum contact. With 2X more power than corded, it boasts a max power of 50′ down the line and is the first brushless drain cleaner. The CABLE-DRIVE Locking Feed System is the only automatic cable feed system that allows users to select and maintain a desired feed speed.

According to Corey Dickert, vice president of Product Management-Plumbing & Electrical at Milwaukee Tool, “The simple cordless setup of the M12 Drain Snake frees users from the hassle of wrestling with cords, carrying extension cords, or spending time looking for outlets—allowing them to get back to the job at hand. In addition, this is the only handheld unit with a fixed drum shield to protect the fixture and user from the spinning drum. When we combine these cordless benefits with our new-to-world design, we’re able to truly provide a level of productivity that these users have never experienced before.”


• M12 AirSnake Drain Cleaning Air Gun—
The first cordless alternative in pipe cleaning tools, the M12 AirSnake Drain Clearing Air Gun drastically changes the way users clear grease clogs, slow drains, and other non-retrieval clogs. The tool is the first cordless version on the market to use compressed air to flush away clog build-up. Completely cable-free, the tool allows for fast setup time and no disassembly of fixtures, drain covers and p-traps. With a 0-50 variable PSI gauge, the tool can instantly reach clogs 35′ out. To see the demo in person was impressive; the process does not affect the integrity of the piping installation.

M12 AirSnake Drain Cleaning Air Gun


• M18 Short Throw Press Tool—
Milwaukee touts pressing 40% faster than competition, delivering force optimized for PEX installation, and eliminating downtime caused by calibration intervals. With the introduction of the M18 Short Throw Press Tool w/ PEX Crimp Jaws, Milwaukee is able to provide a solution that can accomplish the majority of residential installations.

The lightweight, in-line design of the new M18 Short Throw Press Tool enables the installer to press with just one hand. And, with a 3-second cycle time, and the ability to press 400 1” connections on a single charge, this new tool allows residential installers to do their job faster and easier than any solution they’ve had up until now—without paying for more force than is needed,” said Alex Boll, product manager for Milwaukee Tool.

M18 Short Throw Press Tool

 

Whereas hand tools often cause difficult and inconsistent ring positioning on fittings, the spring-loaded design of the Short Throw Press Tool’s jaws assists in holding the ring for precise alignment to the fitting. With no calibration interval, the new tool delivers consistency in installation over the entire life of the tool.

A pre-press battery check prevents the user from starting a press the tool cannot complete due to insufficient battery charge, while Auto-Cycle ensures a full press every time and indicates to the user via a green light that the connection is complete. The new M18 Short Throw Press Tool w/PEX Crimp Jaws is compatible with the F1807/F2159 copper crimp ring system, one of the leading systems in residential PEX installations today. The Short Throw Press Tool is also compatible with the Viega PureFlow Jaws, which are optimized for the PureFlow PEX Press System. ‬

                One of the biggest hits at this year’s Milwaukee Tool New Product Symposium—from the plumbing department—was the new, self-priming M18 Transfer Pump. The Hub shot a Facebook Live video from the event and received more than 8,000 views within the first couple of hours of seeing a Read More

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hot rod

Bob Rohr

Eric Aune Mechanical Hub

Eric Aune

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Andy Mickelson

 

 

 

 

 

One of the biggest hits at this year’s Milwaukee Tool New Product Symposium—from the plumbing department—was the new, self-priming M18 Transfer Pump. The Hub shot a Facebook Live video from the event and received more than 8,000 views within the first couple of hours of seeing a demo for the first time.

Our ProStaffers were chomping at the bit to get their hands on one, so we sent it out to Bob ‘Hot Rod’ Rohr; Andy Mickelson, owner, Mickelson Plumbing & Heating; and the Hub’s Eric Aune, owner, Aune Plumbing LLC, for testing and review.

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Hot Rod tests out the tool.

According to Rohr, the pump is well built and has nice fit and finish. “If weight—7.9 lbs.— equals quality, and the tool is properly used and maintained, this should be a coveted, long-lasting tool,” says Rohr. Aune and Mickelson agree, “The pump is lightweight compared to typical transfer pumps used on the job—cast iron usually,” says Aune.

“The weight is a big plus, as we are frequently packing our equipment though a house. This unit easily fits in a 5-gallon bucket with hoses for transportation,” says Mickelson.

The pump has a nice balance when carrying and using with one hand. Yet, says Aune, while the carry handle protects on/off switch, the handle makes it somewhat difficult to access the button. Rohr’s solution? If you hold the tool with your right hand, index finger towards the battery, “I found you can use the tip of your thumb to activate the switch.  This frees up your left hand, and allows one-handed operation.”

The battery is protected under a hinged, tight fitting cover. Warranty is a generous—5 years. Performance on 5.0 battery, washer hoses, draining 50-gal H2O heater, for instance: 12 minutes—that’s fast, would be faster with larger hoses. Runtime on 9ah battery increases by almost 2x. “When paired with the 9.0 battery I see this being a very versatile tool, providing an exceptional run time for a cordless tool,” says Mickelson.

And, no additional cord to plug in is added value and makes jobs easier/faster.

 

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Rohr says that he did not see any pump curve information included in the box. The spec sheet indicates 18’ maximum lift and up to 75’ head, or about 35 psi.  (144 gallons per battery charge, about 20 minutes.)

The pump does run much louder when it is pumped dry, indicating it is time to power it down. Milwaukee indicates not over 10 seconds of dry run.  The pump should shut down after 1 minute of dry run, via the battery technology.

Rohr considers the pump a flexible impeller style of pump, a design around since 1800s.  Some refer to this style as a positive displacement-style pump also. Mickelson continues that even with mild system back pressure the pump does not spin backwards when turned off, acting as check valve almost. And Aune says that the impeller is replaceable. If left to run dry, it will need replaced at some point.

What about glycol? The instructions mentions clear water use only—note the 140°F maximum fluid temperature—so check with Milwaukee regarding glycols or GEO fluids. It is rated only for water but Aune Plumbing has pumped straight undiluted glycol and rinsed pump without problem. Mickelson pumped thick cold glycol with the pump and had great results thus far. “Perhaps if the pump is flushed with clear water after use this will be acceptable. Milwaukee mentions flushing with clear water should ‘anything but clear water be accidently pumped.’ For plumbing and HVAC use it needs to be able to handle the typical, clean heat transfer fluid, in my opinion,” says Rohr.

Funky Fittings?

If you want full performance from this pump, I’d suggest a 5/8 or 3/4” hoses, says Rohr. I did need to use a pliers to get a new hose to seal tightly, the threads seem a bit tight, time may wear these in so hand tightening is all that is required. Aune did notice some issues with the connections. “The hose fittings are odd in that some of my hoses will not tighten properly without wrench and effort,” says Aune.

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UPDATE:

Since the original posting of this review Milwaukee has taken our concerns about the hose fittings to the product engineering team for a solution. Effective immediately all new transfer pumps have been fitted with hose adapters that work with a wider variety of hose connections.

On the Job

Hot Rod perched it on top of a 6-foot ladder and pumped from an open 5-gallon bucket.  The pump primed instantly, first time out of the box. My first test was with a common washing machine-type hose, about 3/8 actual hose inside diameter. The operation manual does suggest a ¾” ID hose.

It took just under two minutes to empty the bucket, with the restrictive, off-the-shelf wash machine hoses. Pumping straight out of the pump, no hose on the discharge.

He then switched to a hose with a full 5/8” ID and the bucket emptied in 37 seconds! So at 6-ft. lift, wide-open discharge I measured just under 8 gallons per minute flow rate.

screen-shot-2016-11-02-at-1-23-44-pmHis first job was to re-prime a siphon hose that fills a stock watering tank. The inlet end hose plugs with debris from the pond source from time to time. Rohr pumped clean water from a 5-gallon bucket into the siphon line to get the system flowing gain. This is one of the many tasks Rohr sees this cordless pump being used for around the shop.

Mickelson has flushed two tankless water heaters with this pump and he loves the self-prime feature. “The rubber impeller seems to be holding up nicely with the acid solution we use to clean the heaters. It also has shown no ill effects of pumping glycol or acid solutions.”

The techs at Mickelson Plumbing and Heating were able to pressurize a heating system with 33% propylene glycol to roughly 22 PSI with the pump. During this process we had pumped 30 gallons of fluid into the heating system, and purged the air out of the system with the pump for an additional 25 minutes, and the 9.0 battery still had 2 bars left on it!

The verdict

• Rohr: This should be a homerun for Milwaukee Tool. With the versatile M-18 battery pack, this useful pump should find it way on many service trucks.

• Aune: Easily the handiest pump for cleaning/flushing tankless water heaters I’ve ever used. Slam-dunk design and performance for the money. It’s not inexpensive but fits perfectly within the M18 platform, which is very popular in the plumbing/HVAC trades

• Mickelson — This model, less the battery is less money than the current transfer pumps that we use. Will be buying more cordless versions very shortly.

Finally, for the HVAC contractor, Rohr suggests this as a transfer pump for filling or topping off hydronic, geothermal or solar systems. Plumbers may find it ideal for empting water heaters, assuming the drain cock is not plugged. If so add a PEX dip tube from the top of the tank to prevent pulling sediment from the bottom drain valve.

Retail price:

$179.00 for bare tool

$279.00 for kit

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Milwaukee Tool expands its industry-leading M12™ System with the introduction of the M12™ Drain Snake, developed specifically for the challenges plumbers, maintenance technicians, and property managers encounter when cleaning fixtures and small drain lines. Providing the benefits of both handheld and floor-mounted drain cleaning machines, the Drain Snake’s simple cordless setup, as well as its Read More

Milwaukee Tool expands its industry-leading M12™ System with the introduction of the M12™ Drain Snake, developed specifically for the challenges plumbers, maintenance technicians, and property managers encounter when cleaning fixtures and small drain lines. Providing the benefits of both handheld and floor-mounted drain cleaning machines, the Drain Snake’s simple cordless setup, as well as its new-to- world design, deliver game-changing productivity for plumbers and contractors cleaning sinks, tubs, and other small drain lines up to 25’ long.

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Through a ground-up re-design, the new Milwaukee Tool brushless M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool is now smaller and lighter than ever before. 20% lighter than the leading competitor, and more compact than its predecessor, the Press Tool is best in class – offering 20% more run-time, 10% faster cycle time, and the industry’s longest calibration Read More

Through a ground-up re-design, the new Milwaukee Tool brushless M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool is now smaller and lighter than ever before. 20% lighter than the leading competitor, and more compact than its predecessor, the Press Tool is best in class – offering 20% more run-time, 10% faster cycle time, and the industry’s longest calibration interval at 50,000 cycles.

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“FORCE LOGIC™* is all about revolutionizing traditional processes so our users can be significantly more productive and profitable. When we introduced the first FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool solutions a few short years ago, we achieved that for plumbers and mechanical contractors,” said Alex Boll, Product Manager for Milwaukee Tool.

2773-22_2_480px“With the introduction of the new M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool we’ve reset the standard for productivity. State of the art brushless motor technology enables the tool to run faster each cycle, run more cycles on each battery, and run longer before calibration. And it’s able to accomplish all of this while being the lightest and smallest in the industry, allowing the users to get the job done where other press tools can’t.”

The most intelligent full-sized press tool on the market, the new M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool delivers piece of mind, even on the most critical jobs. A pre-press battery check prevents the user from starting a press the tool cannot complete, while Auto-Cycle ensures a full press every time and indicates to the user via a green light that the connection is complete.

49-16-2773_1_480pxThe M18 FORCE LOGIC™ Press tool and compatible jaws are designed to work with all major fitting manufacturers, currently compatible with 13 unique systems and continuing to expand. Powered by Milwaukee REDLITHIUM™ batteries, the new M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool is fully compatible with the entire M18™ line, now offering more than 100 power tool products.

* FORCE LOGIC™ is engineered to not only improve upon, but fundamentally change the way high-force tools are used in the field. Through thoughtful design focused on workflow, each tool simplifies a complicated process to deliver the best user experience of its kind and the smartest way to work.

Specifications
M18™ FORCE LOGIC™ Press Tool (2773-22)
Force: 7,200lbs
Pipe Capacity: ½” – 4” (Varies by material)
Approx. Cycle Time: 3.7 Seconds
Length: 14.1”
Weight: 6.5 lbs
Jaw Warranty: 2 Year