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Right now, Amazon is selling the Milwaukee 6519-31 12-Amp Sawzall Reciprocating Saw Kit for $94.75 (and Prime eligible). It’s the sturdy, mid-sized, corded Sawzall that Milwaukee updated earlier this year (see TM’s March 2010 writeup) with a QUICK-LOK blade clamp for speedy, tool-free blade changes and a counterweight system to reduce vibration. The kit doesn’t include a bunch of extra blades, but it’s hard to complain with the affordable pricing.

Milwaukee 12-Amp Sawzall Kit Via Amazon [What’s This?]

 

15 Responses to Dealmonger: $95 Milwaukee 12-Amp Sawzall Kit

  1. Julian Tracy says:

    Funny that a 12 amp sawzall is considered “mid-sized”. Not that long ago, the 10amp sawzall’s were the beefiest available.

    How much you want to bet that the 10amp quality sawzalls of 10 years ago are a much more powerful saw than the 12-15amp saws of today?

    And don’t get too excited about seemingly cheap Milwaukee powertools these days. Every single new model out except for maybe the rotary hammers is now made in China, so that fancy 12amp $99 deal is probably no better than a $89 Ridgid saw.

    Julian

  2. Wade says:

    Julian, those are some pretty harsh words for the only major power tool company that still has manufacturing in the US. Next time you might want to check the label on your tool closer too. Milwaukee Sawzall’s are assembled in Greenwood, MS where they also make Sawzall blades and hole saws among other tools.

    Also consider that Milwaukee maintains a all engineering, development, and quality labs in Brookfield, WI. For that matter Ridgid development is located in Anderson, SC. All told these companies employ thousands of US workers.

    Comments like this are misinformed and very frustrating for folks who are familiar with the tool industry. I hope you consider them more carefully in the future.

  3. dm says:

    @wade:

    thanks for standing up for the US tool industry. I for one know that plenty of good tools are still manufactured in the states, and tend towards Milwaukee tools because of their commitment to manufacturing here when possible.

    a lot of people don’t really end up seeing ridgid’s high-end tools, and I am guessing that their pipe threading and heavy-duty plumbing tools are probably made in the states as well.

  4. Julian Tracy says:

    I’d bet $5 that sawzall above is made in China.

    If not, it’s an exception, not the rule.

    - 15amp tilt-loc circ saw – now made in China
    - deep cut bandsaw – now made in China
    - all cordless – now made in China

    Point is – they’ve taken almost all of the old tools that we all “think” we can trust to be the heavy duty Milwaukee tools we remember, or used in the past and have switched the country of manufacturer, and my assumption is they are probably lesser tools.

    Anybody calling Milwaukee tools part of the US tool industry must be in a time warp. Their parent company is TTI, same owners of Ryobi and Ridgid.

    Has Ryobi improved through the years? They’ve only gotten worse and I think Milwaukee is probably head down that path.

    I’m no super die-hard US pusher – heck, most of my newer Makita LXT cordless stuff is made in China, but at least that’s clear. On some newer Milwaukee tools, they still put the US location of their headquarters on the foil or riveted tool label/tag and hide the made in China in some other location or in supersmall text.

    I own quite a few Milwaukee tools, mostly older US made, but some newer stuff from the M12 lineup. – In general, I’d consider them pretty darn close in quality to Dewalt, Bosch and Makita. But the push from Home Depot to produce for the masses will only lessen the legacy of quality they’ve built up.

    And a LOT of folks buy them solely for the fact that they think they’re one of the last made in USA tool companies. Those folks are, for the most part, uninfomed about today’s new tool reality.

    You want a well built, good quality tool? Buy a used tool.

    Julian

  5. Julian Tracy says:

    …Or a Festool.

    JT

  6. fred says:

    I’m never quite sure where to come down on the US-made versus overseas debate. When I started in the industry power tools mostly came from US manufacturing plants – and we bought brands like Rockwell-Porter Cable, Skil and Black and Decker. Professional grade tools were expensive – and I think even more so if compared to today’s dollars. Mass marketres like HD were nowhere to be found and some brands like – were mostly attached to to their flagship tools (Dewalt to RAS) but others (like Skil and PC) were full line producers. A PC “locomotive” sander cost what seemed like a substantial part of your wages, Makita was the new kid on the block – with Japan being the “threat” to US manufacturing.
    Hand tools were another matter – with what seemed like a mix of US, English and Swiss sources. In the sixties – some US hand tools – from my perspective hand saws and planes were in this category – rapidly degraded in quality – even though manufacturing did not move offshore. As tools became more like other consumer goods, and with the entry of the big box stores – tool manufacture like consumer electronics started to move offshore (Mexico, China etc.) I’m sure that the lure of expanding profits had its impact – and this can be seen in the Rubbermaid brand – and probably the tool brands that Newell Rubbermaid now market.

    So what’s to be done. We can complain all we want – but we still need to continue in our own businesses to earn a living for ourselves and our employees. While my business still employ older US-Made tools – and we do sometime purchase older used machinery – the reality is that we also buy Milwaukee M12 and Makita LXT tools (as examples) made in China – and hope that Milwaukee and Makita will undertake adequate QA to deliver a decent product that they will stand behind. Meanwhile I’m alos hoping that our long-in-the-tooth Oster Pipe Threading machines will outlast me – so I don’t need to see if Ridgid, Rothenberger, Wheeler-Rex or Reed have moved their manufacturing to someplace different.

  7. squidlow says:

    “Anybody calling Milwaukee tools part of the US tool industry must be in a time warp. ”

    @Julian: well put.

    @Wade: I’ve seen the Milwaukee Sawzall “made in China” model at several big box stores and it’s available on amazon.com

    Maybe they’re making it two places (China and the US), but I’m stunned that you could suggest that the sawzall is an American-made tool.

    It’s not. Anymore.

    Same thing with some of the magnum shooter drills from Milwaukee. The older ones (even of a few years ago): US-made. Now? China.

    Forget about it. No thanks. No more Milwaukee for me.

  8. Julian Tracy says:

    It doesn’t help my opinion much to hear stories of Milwaukee service centers refusing warranty service on such an obvious items as drill switches and the like, saying they are an expendable. (within first year of use…) Takes the shine off a 5 year warranty.

    It’s been a while since I was hearing those things, but at one point, there were quite a few examples of Milwaukee service centers making such ridiculous warranty decisions. Even if you think they were within their warranty guidelines, from a customer service standpoint, it’s a dead wrong move.

    Bosch has always been the gold standard in warranty service for me – they have their own corporate owned and run factory service centers. With Ridgid and Milwaukee and Dewalt – that’s not always the case.

    You can say what you want about the value of high-dollar Festool stuff, but they really are one of the only tool companies making power tools with NO excuses or shortcuts. All the other, though they have some real gems in their arsenal – mostly older legacy tools still in production – they have put out a lot of crap as well.

    But let’s show Milwaukee some love; check out this vintage 1959 electric chainsaw:
    http://www.juliantracy.com/MIlwaukee%20chainsaw/index.htm

    If this isn’t the coolest tool you’ve ever seen, that you do not appreciate tools. I’m tempted to mount this on my wall in my living room.

    Found in a box at an estate sale, never used, with the original instructions and parts list.

    Julian

  9. squidlow says:

    @Julian: that is a bad ass tool indeed. Sad reality is that nowadays, few would part with the money for that kind of quality. They all want some disposable cheap crap from the big box stores.

  10. DP says:

    “Forget about it. No thanks. No more Milwaukee for me.”

    I have heard many people say such things and turn around and buy a Dewalt/Makita………..Never understood why people rail against Milwaukee for moving manufacturing out of the US but give free passes to companies that started the trend.

    As Wade pointed out, at least Milwaukee still has some manufacturing in the US, which makes them better than most.

    Trust me, I would like for it all to be manufactured here, but either its going to cost significantly more, or they are going to make significantly less margins per unit. All that time Dewalt and Makita are going to sell more and make more money. Its hard to compete with that.

    I work in retail, and I would say that less than 1/25 people care one bit about where a product is made. They only care about the price. If you want to have a recognizable name, you have to be able to compete on price. What percentage of Americans do you think have heard of Festool? Milwaukee would probably have been squeezed out of the market by Dewalt/Makita/Bosch/etc had they kept manufacturing here.

  11. PutnamEco says:

    Re: Milwaukee would probably have been squeezed out of the market by Dewalt/Makita/Bosch/etc had they kept manufacturing here.
    ——-
    Yeah, just like Harley Davidson getting squeezed out by all the imports…..

  12. DP says:

    Harley Davidson is both a product and a culture, Milwaukee is not.

    For those so against Milwaukee, I’m interested in knowing what brands of tools you own? One guy has already said Makita.

  13. rick says:

    regarding the 10/12 amp comment…. And I have mostly chinese tools just because it is what i can/choose to afford even though I would prefer to own US…

    Anyways, Remember the saying “the chinese have small horses” they frequently oversell the power of the tools, so yes, a 12amp may very well be the same as a 10 amp 10 years ago… I wouldnt be surprised.

  14. PutnamEco says:

    Re:
    Harley Davidson is both a product and a culture, Milwaukee is not.
    —-
    And how is it that they have built this culture? Could it have anything to do with the fact that they are the only American made product in a sea of imports?

  15. Wade says:

    Well I didn’t intend to start a flame war. I will reiterate that the statements I made in my first comment are all factually correct. A majority of Sawzall’s are made in the states. I would agree with the sentiments of other posters when it comes to older tools – they are great. If you have never visited the Old Woodworking Machines site you should – owwm.com. It will turn almost anyone into a old tool junkie.

    Unfortunately tools are not built in the same way today. But consider that much of the change in the tool industry has happened despite the wishes of tool designers and manufacturers. Safety regulations covering electrical isolation have forced metal housing out of production for the most part. And inflation on material cost has changed the way tools are constructed. A saw built with the same materials as one from 30-40 years ago would be considerable more expensive because those base materials are no longer cheap. Take a look at the automobile industry to see the same forces shaping they way products are designed and manufactured.

    Finally liability is a huge concern. A tool sold without all possible safety features exposes manufacturers to lawsuits in the multi-millions. Your old Sawzall was built in a time when these issues were simply not a big concern.

    If you have had a bad experience with a tool brand, I have no issue with your angst. But please don’t crucify manufacturers who because they don’t build tools like they did years ago – whether that is materials or manufacturing location. Given the opportunity they probably would. Instead I suggest you search craigslist for some of those old tools you love and restore them on your dime. You might better understand the real cost associated with some of these tools.

    I know I just purchased some “ol arn” in the form of a DeWalt GA radial arm saw from the 40′s. It wasn’t cheap, it is not very safe, and it will take me a year or so to get it back to good condition. I bought it because I love the tool and the time period it was made in. However it does not make me dislike the way tools are made now.

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