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Weekend Warrior/DIY'er vs Tradesman: Tool Proliferation


n00b

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If some brands are built exclusively with the random-on-weekends-hang-a-picture-type in mind, then why the vast array of tool line-ups amonst the "Big Dog"/Tradesman tool companies?

 

I can only speak to the Milwaukee brand, because that's what I'm familiar with...and spent many a sleepless night before pulling the trigger on Milwaukee as a brand AND the choice to go M18.

 

SO...my point...Milwaukee makes the M12 and M18 line of tools...and within each line of tools is the "sub-line" of Fuel (brushless) equivalents.

 

Why?

 

The M12 has power...the M12 Fuel has more power...The M18 has even MORE power...the M18 Fuel has EVEEEENNNNN MOOOOOORE power.

 

To what end?

 

Wouldn't it reason that the M12 "base" be more appealing to the "random-on-weekends-hang-a-picture-type" while the M18 line be more appealing to the Tradesman?

 

Sorry if this is a dumb question...but a post from yesterday about someone opining the vast cost difference between a Black & Decker and Milwaukee drill got me thinking.

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I think there is a place for all four lines.  Price may dictate where you are able to get into and task may dictate the power you need.  If you have M18 tools but don't need the most powerful, you can buy in at a lower price point.  If you need the most powerful and longest lasting battery and don't mind lifting the weight, the top of the line FUEL with 4 ah battery is worth the money.

 

I think the m12 line is perfect for the weekend guy, but sometimes you may have a hard time selling that to the weekend guy who had an 18v nicad that lost it's juice a few years back.  

 

Also the m12 line is great for tradesmen that don't need the most powerful, but rather need something small or light.  Given enough batteries, the m12 FUEL may be the ideal tool for some trade.  

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there is a hurdle that needs to be over come as well...take for example someone that did have a 18V nicad drill and thought it was crap.....they see a 12V and no one is gonna tell them it is better than their old drill......and yet it is even the regular version never mind the fuel version.

back to the point.

its all about economics, companies like Milwaukee put out a great line of 12V and 18V tools that will preform at a DIY level and then some, their reputation is Quality powerful tools. They also have the fuel line of both 12v and 18v and of course these are more powerful and cost more. they even had 28V too

they know not all DIY'ers make Trademan's salary and not all tradesman make top salary so there is a big difference in what people can afford. 

they also know if they only had 1 line of tools at a set price and it is directed to the pro they are not gonna sell it to the weekend warrior because of the price. so they make cheaper models and run with it.

lets face it a some tools can only have so many options for a price difference so add more power add more battery life ect ect.

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The Milwaukee M12 Fuel line is perfect for tradies. Compact size, really powerful and the M12 line is huge answering different tradies needs. Electricians, plumbers etc. It's like your a gun nut. Sure they make big guns but do you need to carry around a 12mm Magnum rifle for personal protection or do you carry a small compact pistol? They are purpose built with different applications, just like guns. My brother is a pro plumber and his M12 Expander is his favorite tool but he uses that along with a M18 Fuel hammer. My shop is chock full of differ et sized tools from different manufacturers and each has an application.

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And Comp is dead on about price too. My friend Kevin uses Ryobi 18v tools for his carpentry business. Actually so does my Dad. Until I get him his first Festool pretty soon (CXS). But he doesn't go out and buy Festools and Milwaukees to get his job done. Money is money.

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for me I have always been the type that likes to be able to put my foot in it on the highway and have the power I need /want right then and there......am I needing that power every time I go get a coffee up the street no but I know it's there......I guess I'm the same way with tools.....if I'm paying 70% of the cost of top of the line..... I see it as only costing me 30%  more to get it..... just my own little battle in my head....

 

Disclaimer: I have weird thoughts while buying tools, no way shape or form should anyone follow my advice......unless you think like me....

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What made the M12 line so popular to begin with was that it enabled lots of tradesmen to work sufficiently with less size and weight. Just because you're doing professional work doesn't necessarily mean you need the biggest, baddest tool on Mother Earth, and Milwaukee capitalized on that fact.

There are literally thousands of examples you could use, but take a guy in a small engine shop for example. He uses an impact wrench every day. Does he need a 700 - 1000 ft.-lb. monster to work 10-12 mm head bolts? No, he needs something small and light that he can finagle in tight areas with 150 ft.-lbs. of breakaway torque. He needs to be able to drill small holes in plastic and thin gauge metal, does he need an M18 hammer drill to do it? The same goes for tens of thousands of service/maintenance people. These are the people who realize the most benefit with the M12 Fuel.

On the other hand, a plumber who runs 2" pipe through studs and floors ever day is wasting his time with a 12V drill

I have several drills, but I wanted something small and compact to use for pilot holes in wood projects, thin gauge metal for equipment repair work, and drywall. The M12 was clearly where I needed to be, but the M12 Fuel was almost as big dimensionally as the M18 and while I'm using it several times weekly I'm not using it enough to realize a big benefit of a brushless motor. For this the brushed M12 was just the ticket.

It all just depends on what you need to do with the tool and Milwaukee has given us plenty of options to satisfy need and budget

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