Hammer drill and impact driver combo kits have become very popular lately. In this article, we will discuss about two models from Milwaukee that look quite similar, Milwaukee M18 vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit. They both have brushless motors. So, what is actually the difference between them? Which one is better for the money?
Continue reading below to find out more about:
– What tools and accessories that are included in each kit
– The reason why Milwaukee sells two different brushless models
– The design and features of each hammer drill model
– The performance of Milwaukee M18 vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit
– Which model that is generally more recommended
Milwaukee M18: What’s Included?
As a matter of fact, Milwaukee M18 Brushless is a relatively new model. It was released some time after Milwaukee M18 Fuel. Since the Milwaukee M18 Fuel family already has brushless hammer drills, some people are wondering why the company is selling a different line of brushless units. So, why should we consider this new line? See also: DeWalt DWE7480 vs Bosch GTS1031.
Well, first of all, Milwaukee M18 Fuel does not have any compact unit. As the effect, people who need a compact unit must resort to the compact Milwaukee M12 hammer drill, which has a slightly lower power, or find another product from a different brand. So, Milwaukee M18 Brushless has come to introduce a compact brushless hammer drill for those who need it.
In addition, if we take a look at the price, we can get a clear indication of where it is standing in the price range. Milwaukee M18 Brushless is only a little bit more expensive than the brushed version, while at the same time also being quite cheaper than Milwaukee M18 Fuel. So, Milwaukee M18 Brushless is a suitable choice if you want a brushless unit but you don’t want to spend too much money.
Now that we have a good idea about the position of Milwaukee M18 vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit, let’s take a look at the tools and accessories that are included in the bundle. Just like its siblings, it is available in a two-tool combo kit, which is named 2799-22CX M18 2-Tool Combo Kit. The included items in this set are:
– (1) M18 ¼” Hex Brushless Impact Driver
– (1) M18 ½” Compact Brushless Hammer Drill/Driver
– (1) M18 REDLITHIUM XC4.0 Extended Capacity Battery
– (1) M18 Compact REDLITHIUM 2.0 Battery
– (1) Contractor Bag
– (1) Belt Clip
Milwaukee M18: Design and Features
Both the impact driver and the hammer drill are very compact and lightweight. Just like most other tools from Milwaukee, they are colored in red and black. They both are equipped with ergonomic handlebars that feel very solid and comfortable. You can grip these tools for a long time without making your hand sore, so they are great for extensive works.
The Milwaukee M18 Brushless Impact Driver has ¼” hex chuck. It has a weight of about 3.1 lbs. This tool only has a single speed, and the maximum speed is 2800 RPM. It is capable of generating a maximum torque of 1500 inch pounds, and a maximum impact of 3600 IPM.
The Milwaukee M18 Brushless Hammer Drill is equipped with a ½” chuck. The weight is about 3.9 lbs, so it is also very lightweight. This unit has two speeds. The first setting has a maximum speed of 450 RPM (7,200 beats per minute), while the second setting has a maximum speed of 1800 RPM (28,800 beats per minute). It is able to generate a maximum torque of 500 inch pounds.
The Compact REDLITHIUM battery is lightweight, although the capacity is not very large. It is ideal for light applications, such as fastening screws. The REDLITHIUM XC battery has a larger capacity, and is noticeably heavier, suitable for heavier tasks that require more power and extended operation.
Milwaukee M18: Performance
So, how is the performance of Milwaukee M18vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit? Overall, Milwaukee M18 Brushless is definitely reliable. Its power is more than enough for most household tasks, and it is great for professional jobsite works. However, it does lack the extra oomph of power that Milwaukee M18 Fuel offers.
You can use the hammer drill to build and secure the frame of a workbench.It is able to drill pilot holes for lag bolts as well as pass throughs for carriage bolts without any problem. It can work with the 3/8” bit for the task. It drills the hole confidently to reach a diameter of 1 inch. You can also use it with spade bits and Forstner bits just fine.
The compact impact driver also performs impressively. It is capable of sinking 6” lag bolts very well, although you need to be cautious as you approach the end of the drive. The high torque is really powerful. Perhaps the only weakness is the lack of a side handle. You need two hands to control it properly, and without a side handle, the handling is a bit awkward. If you only use a single hand, the torque will mess your wrist.
Milwaukee M18 Fuel: What’s Included?
We have discussed about why the company sell Milwaukee M18 vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit above, so now let’s go straight to the included tools and accessories of Milwaukee M18 Fuel. We take the 2897-22 M18 Fuel 2-Tool Combo Kit as the basis of the comparison. The included items are:
– (1) M18 Fuel ¼” Hex Impact Driver
– (1) M18 Fuel ½” Hammer Drill/Driver
– (2) REDLITHIUM XC5.0 Extended Capacity Battery Pack
– (1) Multi-Voltage Charger
– (1) Side Handle
– (2) Bit Holder
– (2) Belt Clip
– (1) Carrying Case
As you can see, there are more items included in this set. Most notably, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel bundle comes with two larger batteries. Of course, these batteries are needed in order to power the larger, stronger tools. But they will also allow longer operation.
A side handle is included, which is definitely a very good thing. The tools are very powerful, so you should use two hands to handle them. There are two belt clips instead of just one, and there are also two bit holders for the tools.
Milwaukee M18 Fuel: Design and Features
The Milwaukee M18 Fuel tools are surprisingly quite slim. That said, they are also incredibly powerful. In fact, among the cordless models in the market, Milwaukee M18 Fuel has the highest torque levels. This is quite a notable feat.
The build quality is not to be questioned. Milwaukee usually doesn’t have any problem with build quality and durability, and Milwaukee M18 Fuel is not an exception. Each tool has an overmold placed around the grip and the back. The ¼” hex collet and the ½” chuck are made of metal, and they are very tough. The high-quality electronics are paired with robust components and solid housings.
The Milwaukee M18 Fuel Impact Driver measures 5.25 inches long. It weighs about 2.1 lbs without the battery, about 3.7 lbs with the battery. It is capable of producing a maximum torque of 1,800 inch pounds. The maximum speed is 3000 RPM. It actually has 3 speed settings and 4 drive settings. However, the fourth drive mode is designed for Milwaukee’s Drive Control, which is for controlling self-tapping screws.
Milwaukee M18 Fuel Hammer Drill measures 7.75 inches long and weighs about 3.5 lbs without the battery, about 5 lbs with the battery. It also has two speeds; the first setting has a maximum speed of 550 RPM, while the second setting has a maximum speed of 2000 RPM. The maximum torque is 1,200 inch pounds.
One nice thing about the design is the placement of the bit holder. It is on the tool’s side instead of the back. This will allow you to access the bit holder easily for quick changes.
Milwaukee M18 Fuel: Performance
The Milwaukee M18 Fuel tools are very, very powerful. So, you better be careful when using the hammer drill for the first time. The amount of torque it generates is huge. You should use the side handle and work with both of your hands to avoid messy results and unnecessary accidents.
You can easily bore 1-inch and 1.5-inch holes by using a threaded spade bit. Although using a 1-inch bit in the high speed setting is possible, there will be quite some vibration which makes control somewhat difficult. This is not a major problem, as the tool still drills confidently. Meanwhile, when using a 1.5-inch spade bit in the low speed setting, there is significantly less vibration and a greater amount of control.
The impact driver also works very well. It is lightweight, and after installing the battery pack, the whole thing becomes nicely balanced. It is great for fastening tasks, and it consistently delivers smooth and precise results.
Milwaukee M18 vs M18 Fuel Combo Kit
These two models indeed have different pros and cons. Nevertheless, Milwaukee M18 Fuel is generally more recommended. It has more power, so it will be able to handle a wider range of job. It can take care of the heavier tasks with ease. In addition, it comes with larger batteries and better accessories.