If you would have asked me a couple years ago about oscillating tools what I thought, I would have told you I don't need them and they are a gimmick. The reason being is because an oscillating tool was something I saw on late night tv and just like the other 150 million items, seem to be junk. Well good thing you didn't ask me that question a while back because I would have been dead wrong. In fact, now it is one of my go to tools. Besides the blades being a rip off, these tools are great and invaluable. Okay, enough small talk, let's jump into the Milwaukee M18 Oscillating tool.
When you first pick up this tool, you can tell Milwaukee put some thought into it. The tool is well balanced and feels very nice in your hand. The tool weighs 4.15 lbs. When using the tool, the vibrations are kept low and you don't feel a lot of vibrations transferred to your hand. This system is like most of the others out there, it has a variable speed dial. This one is located on the handle and can allow the user to adjust speeds from 11,000 to 18,000 OPM. One very cool thing Milwaukee did with this tool is integrate a nice bright LED to the front, which does a great job lighting up your work.
Changing the blade is also easy. Now this isn't the fastest system we have seen, but it does a pretty good job. Just lift a lever up in the front of the tool and now you can unscrew a bolt that is holding the blade in place. Good news is you don't need a tool, but the bad news is you have an extra part on the tool. We all know what happens to these parts, yes they get lost. Plus, you now also have the opportunity to introduce foreign materials into the shaft where the bolt goes. I don't know if I am spoiled with the Bosch and Dewalt, but I would like to see a different system. For most people, this won't bother anyone and in reality, if I own the Milwaukee M18 line, I would buy this in a heart beat and wouldn't second guess myself. If I was looking for the best, I still prefer the Bosch MX30EC for corded and the Bosch MXH180 for cordless.
To wrap this up, Milwaukee did a great job with the design of this tool. While I complain about the blade change system, the reality is it is still quick and easy, much better than using a tool. The main points to this tool are durability, ease of use, low vibration and comfort and Milwaukee tackled all of those points and made a great oscillating tool.