Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall

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Milwaukee One-Handed M18 Hackzall Reciprocating Saw 2719-20

Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall

4.5/5
Manufacturer: Milwaukee
Model number: 2719-20
Price: $249 as a kit and $149 as a bare tool
Power source: M18 battery
Motor size: Brushless
Weight: 5.7 lbs

Milwaukee just released the brand new M18 Fuel Hackzall.  This new saw is designed to be a one-handed saw and has had SWEEPING improvements to it, compared to the earlier M12 Hackzall.

Milwaukee is focusing this Hackzall on core users in the remodeling, electrical and plumbing trades. They’re goal by going to the M18 platform was to respond to earlier user feedback, to make a more powerful and durable Hackzall.

Powered off their 18-volt platform, the Hackzall has five new features that differentiate this new tool, and make it worth looking at, they are:

  1. Brushless motor
  2. 7/8-inch blade stroke
  3. HD Gear Box w/ Dual bevel counter balanced gears
  4. Pivoting blade shoe plate
  5. Increased durability to water ingress

Brushless Motor

The M18 FUEL Hackzall weighs 5.57 lbs, is compact and lightweight. Its brushless motor has a contact-free operation, which relates to no wearable parts. Without contact resistance, a brushless motor will run cooler, last longer before needing service, and be more efficient. Basically, a brushless motor communicates directly with the tools windings and adjusts the motor power to the cutting application. If there is less resistance, the motor draws less power, which extends the battery life on the tool.

7/8-Inch Blade Stroke

The M18 FUEL Hackzall has a 7/8-inch blade stroke compared to the 5/8” stroke of the M12 version.

Why 7/8-inch for a stroke?  Well, the longer and more aggressive a stoke, the more material can be removed, every time the blade advances and retracts. It also allows the tool to use MORE of the blade teeth.

Many of the M12 core users provided feedback to Milwaukee that they’d like to see faster wood cutting capability with the Hackzall. Milwaukee wanted to go after that goal, and achieve longer runtime. They increased the blade stroke, went with a more robust motor assembly and increased  the tools voltage to 18-volt to achieve it.

Robust Gear Box with Dual Bevel Counter Balanced Gears

A BIG PLAY into the tools durability is a newly designed gearbox. Milwaukee recognized that there was a gap between the M12 Hackzall and their Sawzall.

To bridge this gap, they designed a new heavier duty gear box and interior synchronized gear mechanisms.

This gear box is where all the MAGIC HAPPENS.  Inside the gear box, dual counter- balanced gears, propel a drive spindle via a Scotch Yoke mechanism. The result of this new gear and drive shaft design is reduced vibration and blade chatter. Reducing the blade chatter produces a much better cut on rounded materials.  All of this was done without increasing the tools size.

Pivoting Blade Shoe Plate

The pivoting blade shoe plate was a feature that comes from the reciprocating saw and one that results in a smoother cut from start to finish. Being able to maintain contact with the material being cut results in a safer and better efficient cut.

Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall

Increased Durability to Water Ingress

Many earlier versions of the M12 Hackzall failed due to long term exposure to water.  Dust and water, over time would create internal sludge and rust which can negatively affect the tools electronics, rust components and gum up the gear box and bind the spindle mechanism.

Milwaukee increased durability to water ingress by potting of the electronics, adding a rubber seal around the blade spindle. They also recognized that water will enter the tool, from cutting slightly charged water lines, so they designed a way to get the water out. They achieved this by adding weep holes under the gear case and vent holes at the bottom of the tool to drain water.

[Potting is a process of filling the electronics with a solid or gelatinous compound to resist shock, vibration and moisture.]

Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall Features

  • Brushless motor
  • Compact
  • 5.7lbs
  • 180 cuts in 2x4s and over 220 cuts in ¾” EMT. With 5.o Ah battery.
  • Intelligence ensures maximum performance of the tool under load and prevents against overload and overheat.
  • 7/8” Stroke Length:
  • 3,000 SPM
  • ½” shank
  • Variable speed trigger
  • Pivoting shoe
  • LED light
  • Quik-LOK™ Blade Clamp
  • Length: 16.3” (14.03” bare tool)
  • Weight: 5.57 lbs (4.07 lbs bare tool)
  • 0 to 125 degree operating temperature

Testing the Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall

To test the M18 FUEL Hackzall used it to cut out and remove a furnace, and water lines on a large remodeling project we are doing.  We cut out a bunch of pipes and some framing. While cutting slightly charged water pipes the tool did get wet. It’s been designed to handle water ingress, over time.

We DID NOT fully immerse this tool, to test its durability, since this is not a tool designed for underwater welders.

Blade Collet

The blade collet is spring loaded and takes a quarter turn – it is a 2-handed operation.

Variable Speed Trigger

The tool has significant more power than its predecessor and less vibration. We liked the VS trigger for slow start cuts on pipe and plunge cutting. there is a trigger lock, located just above the trigger area.

The tool has significant more power than its predecessor and less vibration and is a must have for one-handed cutting.

LED Light Improvement on the Hackzall

The Hackzall has an LED light under the blade. I feel like manufactures ass an LED simply to say they have an LED light

This LED does provide good light at the beginning of the cut but once your into the cut the shadow of the blade overtakes your vision. Adding a 2nd light above the blade would eliminate this. [Similar to the Dewalt 3-LED system]

Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall Cost

The M18 FUEL Hackzall sells for $249 as a kit and $149 as a bare tool.

Overall Impression of the Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall

Is this tool worth purchasing?  Yes it is. If you’re looking for a one-handed saw with more power, and better durability, the new M18 Hackzall will not disappoint. For remodelers, it’s the perfect complement to your reciprocating saw, for electricians and plumbers its possibly the only saw they’ll need.

Nah…. The more the better!

Milwaukee M18 FUEL Hackzall Video Review

About the author

Rob Robillard

Robert Robillard is also the Editor of Tool Box Buzz and the editor of the blog, A Concord Carpenter and principal of a carpentry and renovation business located in Concord, Massachusetts. As a carpenter and web editor, Rob is a recognized leader in tool and how-to information for building professionals. He is the carpenter correspondence for and writes a Q&A column, in the Sunday Boston Globe, called "Ask the Carpenter."He hosts the Concord Carpenter Cable TV Show,, offering the do-it-yourself audience in Boston’s Metro West region expert advice on home repairs and maintenance. Rob is in charge of our Tool and Product Review - Video Channel, where we post all of our tool reviews and video editorials. Rob enjoys using his knowledge and experience to help and educate on best practices in the remodeling industry. The Concord Carpenter's motto: "Well done is better than well said!" : Read more about Rob

http://www.aconcordcarpenter.com/@https://twitter.com/robertrobillardRob Robillard

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