Milwaukee has FINALLY brought out a compact ‘compact drill’ to their Australian 18V line in recent months. Users of the red tools have always had great premium drills available (including the amazing FUEL) but never a good compact drill, until now.
What’s in the box?
- M18 2606-20 Compact Drill Driver
- M18 2657-20 Impact Driver (2-Speed)
- 2 x 2Ah slim batteries
- M18/M12 charger
- Blow-moulded plastic case
M18 Gen II Compact Drill Driver
- Model number: 2606-20 | M18 BDD
- Weight (no battery): 2.9lbs | 1.43kgs
- Length: 7-1/4” | 196mm
- Torque: 500 in lbs | 60 Nm
- No-load Speed: 450 / 1,800 RPM
- Motor: Brushed 4-Pole
- Chuck: 13mm ratcheting metal sleeve
This drill is what Milwaukee users have come to expect, elegant and powerful. It had no trouble in our tests driving a 16mm, 250mm auger bit deep into treated pine, though it did heat up. I’ve never had a drill pump out hot air that was uncomfortable to the hand, but this did. I suppose I’m glad the heat was coming out rather than staying in the tool.
The metal chuck on this unit is really nice. It has no wobble at all and is very comfortable to use. If chuck crush were a real thing, I’d have it bad. You get two gears, both of which do an excellent job delivering the drill’s hefty punch.
PROS: Rock-solid chuck, Powerful, Compact
CONS: Puts out a lot of heat
M18 Gen II Impact Driver
- Model number: 2657-20 | M18 BID
- Weight (no battery): 2.2lbs | 1.00 kg
- Length: 5-1/2” | 140 mm
- Torque: 1500 in lbs | 169 Nm
- No-load Speed: 2,000 / 2,750 RPM
- Impacts per Minute: 2,450 / 3,450 IPM
- Motor: Brushed 4-Pole
- Chuck: 1/4” quick-change
In refreshing the M18 brushed drill and impact, I’m pretty impressed Milwaukee has gone beyond the standard single-speed impact driver. Their 3-Speed FUEL impact driver is of course still top dog, but having a 2-Speed brushed unit at this price point is sweet.
It’s also a powerhouse, at least the match of the brushless impact drivers we tested against.
What else is there to say? It’s comfortable, well-made and simple. My only disappointment with this tool is that Milwaukee has stuck with a single LED light, rather than the popular three-LED ring setup.
PROS: Powerful, Compact, 2-Speed
CONS: Single LED light
Final thoughts on the kit:
On sale this twin pack can be had around AU$300, an absolute steal. The slim 2.0Ah batteries are great for keeping down the size and weight of the tools. We were surprised that Milwaukee has supplied this basic kit with the dual voltage charger, capable of charging M12 and M18 batteries.
At this price point, and backed by the Milwaukee 5 year tool, 2 year battery warranty, I can’t recommend the kit enough.