Professional Builder reports on Milwaukee’s European dealer conference.
Delegates attending this ninth Milwaukee tool conference were left in no doubt that the company is steadfast in its determination to keep one step ahead of the pack, with the totally cordless job site now a very real possibility.
“Every year, thanks to our engineering and technical expertise acquired over more than 95 years of tool production, the cord becomes just that little bit more obsolete,” said TTI vice president of marketing and key accounts, Jason Chiswell. “The universal acceptance of cordless power for a range of tasks deemed impossible just a few short years ago is the result of a multi-million pound investment by Milwaukee to fundamentally change the way tradesmen work both in terms of efficiency and safety. And, of course, paramount to all this are our accredited tool distributors and merchants, who can provide the day-to-day back up and support these tools richly deserve.”
Absolutely key to achieving these targets has, of course, been the adoption of the REDLITHIUM-ION high performance, high durability battery pack. This resulted in the ground-breaking M18 range, which has continued to set new standards in cordless performance and, with the subsequent M12 launch, there’s now even greater end-user flexibility with enhanced running times and high force manual applications in currently well over 100 power tool options.
“Our customers are some of the most discerning in wanting increased performance in tools, which are at the same time easier to handle in terms of reduced weight and size. By constantly monitoring this end user feedback we are now able to meet both sets of criteria with the expanding High Output battery platform now featuring a 3.0Ah battery offering the same 12.0Ah in a lighter and more compact package,” said Oliver Lerch Ice, vice president product manager.
“And the evolution continues in many other areas of the range, with a new generation of brushless motors known as POWERSTATE which utilises high grade magnets and 175 per cent extra copper. Generating more power and enhanced running times, its development has led to the introduction of the M18 FUEL SDS Max tool, the most productive tool of its kind. Delivering comparable AC style power it features the new REDLITHIUM-ION high output 12.0Ah battery pack with enhanced electronics and fade-free performance, as well as the next generation of Redlink plus intelligence system which delivers an advanced digital overload protection for tool and battery, enhancing the performance of the tool under load. And, of course, the built in ONE-KEY tool tracking service and security offers a cloud based inventory management platform that provides tracking and theft protection.”
Similar attributes are also shared by what the company claims is the world’s first 18V battery operated large angle grinder, which can make up to 68 cuts per charge in 42mm stainless steel pipe. New additions to the TrueView high definition site lighting range and upgrades to many of the nearly 3,000 different accessories from Shockwave impact bits and drills to bi metal blades and hole saws were also given a first airing to the suitably impressed delegates. The company confirmed that carbide, offering greater performance for quicker cuts, will become the focus across all accessory lines, including the new Carbide Holedozer, which boasts 10x more life than previously.
From humble beginnings, recent years have also seen a considerable ramping up of the company’s hand tool range and 2019 is no exception, with extensive end user research leading to what the company believes is the toughest tape measure on the market, the aptly named Stud. With dropped tools from height a major contributor to a disturbing rise in on site head injuries, not to mention cost of replacement, the company has developed an innovate range of tool lanyards to slow the descent of a dropped tool. In fact, on some larger sites it was reported that lanyards are now a mandatory feature.
One of the areas of greatest growth potential for the company has been in its Packout Modular Trolley storage and transportation system comprising an extensive array of organiser boxes and tote style tool and cool bags with extra protection for electronic business aids, duffel bags and backpacks. There are also some nifty additions to the rapidly evolving heated workwear and leisure garments as well as new European Cut Level 5 Protection gloves.
As usual Milwaukee will be continuing to paint towns around Europe red, with a host of events both on and away from the job site through monthly super draws and spot prizes as part of the ongoing Truck Tour. Thanks to the new Thunderbolt challenge there will also be the chance for one lucky tradesperson to win a brand new van packed with more than £15,000 of Milwaukee tools and accessories. Taking place throughout Europe it involves contestants putting together a Steel Lightning bolt with the new M12 Fuel half inch Impact wrench in the quickest time possible. Best times will go forward to a regional final progressing to a grand European finale.