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Thread: Milwaukee Drill/Driver/Hammer/Impact 12V vs. 18V????

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Jamestown, OH
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    90

    Milwaukee Drill/Driver/Hammer/Impact 12V vs. 18V????

    So, I've got the rare opportunity to pick out my own Christmas present this year and I'm looking at replacing my drill/impact drivers with new ones. I currently have Hitachi 18V Lithium ion units now and am looking at the Milwaukee "Fuel" drill/driver combos. Anyone have insight on 12V vs. 18V?

    There is a considerable difference in price and would like to know your opinions on which is better for "all around" use. I will likely use them mostly in woodworking, but they will also be used around the house as needed for repairs and odd jobs.

    I like the power and torque of the 18V, but like the lighter weight and size of the 12V. Any recommendations?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Upland CA
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    5,123
    I have an 18V Makita and a 12 V Milwaukee. In reality I rarely use the 18V except for HD jobs, like drilling concrete. The 12V covers well over 90% of my use. I cannot remember the last time I needed 18V for woodworking or general around the house.

    Home Depot has a 12V fuel hammer drill on sale for $99 right now. Only one 2.0 battery and a charger.`
    Rick Potter

    DIY journeyman,
    FWW wannabe.
    AKA Village Idiot.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    NW Indiana
    Posts
    2,795
    I have the 12v and very happy with it. I like the weight and how it feels to hold.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    N.E. Ohio
    Posts
    6,271
    I just picked up a Makita 18V sub compact drill/driver & impact driver set.
    It's pretty much the same size as my old 12 V Milwaukee set.

    There is no comparison. 12Vsize and 18V power & run time.
    My granddad always said, :As one door closes, another opens".
    Wonderful man, terrible cabinet maker...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Fairfield County, CT
    Posts
    71
    Big Milwaukee fan / user here. I use 12v impact all the time for woodworking - itís plenty powerful in a small form factor. Only break out the 18v for heavy duty work (recently drilled through 1/4 plate steel).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2021
    Location
    Central Pa.
    Posts
    129
    If you're spending the money anyway, do the M18 Fuel and have the best, also it would be power in reserve. Happy with mine!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Lebanon, TN
    Posts
    1,535
    I bought the M18 Fuel cordless trim router first, love this tool, which started the transition to other Milwaukee cordless tools.

    I have two Ryobi 18V drill/drivers, that have served me for 6+ years, usually one setup to pilot hole drill and the other to screw. Both still work fine, but I bought the M18 Fuel 2803-20 drill driver, about 6 months ago, and now reach for the M18 the most of the time.

    All my future cordless tools will be Milwaukee.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    60,594
    For general woodworking, I like the lighter tools. I use a different brand than being discussed, but the comfort of less weight and smaller size is really nice in the shop. I only pull out the heavier stuff for home improvement/construction where the extra power is really required. (Even there, I use the smaller tool when I can for the same reasons as in the shop)

    Since you have Hitachi now, check the Metabo offerings as you may or may not find battery compatibility. Hitachi is now rebranded to Metabo. Their "triple hammer" is one of the best impact drivers going for speed and power. But you can't go wrong with the Milwaukee offerings for sure.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  9. #9
    I have two sets of the 12V Mil. Drill/drivers and the 18v as well. I reach for the 12 first. The 18 is a beast, a very capable machine, but bigger/heavier. As I am finding out as I add tools Iíd suggest you look at the rest of the line. What other tools would you opt for and at what power level. Donít laugh and say that you are only looking at the DD combination. You will be assimilated. Resistance is futile. I think Jimís first paragraph mimics my thinking as well.

  10. #10
    I have 2 of the 12v Fuel drills. They work great!

    I have noticed that some other tools I'd like to have, like the wet/dry vac and a nailer I want, are only available in 18v. That will drive me to have both 12v and 18v at some point. Which in turn costs more. So, if you want to stay with one voltage, you might also want to look at what you expect to buy in the future. YMMV.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Jamestown, OH
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    Thank you all for the advise!! Sounds like I need BOTH 12V and 18V . You are all stating what I've been thinking! Think I will go with the 18V for now as a certain orange company has the combo unit on sale and when you buy it, you get another tool for free! (I have been eyeballing the cordless router they have) Thanks again!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Millstone, NJ
    Posts
    680
    My current setup is an 18volt set(bosch, but dont think it matters to much at this point) and a festool CXS. I grab the cxs for 95%. The drill does holes in things the DP cant reach and pocket holes occasionally. The impactor does screws 2" and longer.

    Im not a fanboy but I love the CXS. Bosch and Milwaukee have similar at this point as well, havent used them yet though.

  13. #13
    The Milwuakee M12 is the most used tool in my shop. I got the ratchet adapters, once I get a bolt/nut cracked, I use it for all my vehicle maintenance too. It's not the fastest thing in the world, but it gets the carpal-tunnel survivor award from me. And I can get weeks off on charge. It helps that I have the Milwaukee heated jacket which also uses M12. And the Pex expander tool...

  14. #14
    I have M12 & M18 both fuel and non fuel in stuff from drills to a chainsaw. Different tools for different jobs. Milwaukee seems to be getting great performance out of their 18v tools, I figured the chainsaw would be a joke but it is what I reach for unless the job requires the Stihl. I have gotten way longer battery life from Milwaukee than others, i have a few batteries that are over 10 years old. I like the chargers because most of the new 18v ones will charge a 12v & 18v at the same time.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Winterville, NC (eastern NC)
    Posts
    2,249
    I have had the 18v Fuel drill and driver combo for about 5 years and they have been a workhorse. Both platforms have numerous tools available. The impact gets used the most; even driving concrete screws into brick. You won't be disappointed.

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