Before we jump into the Milwaukee SDS Max Rotary Hammer, I have to make a confession. When it comes to concrete, I think Bosch and Hilti are the powerhouses in this category. However, I wasn’t surprised that Milwaukee jumped into this category. Now Milwaukee does have rotary hammers on the market, but this rotary hammer is a big boy and made to compete against Bosch and Hilti. So in the summer when we went to the Milwaukee event and heard the announcement, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this to see how it stacked up to the Hilti and Bosch tools. Our world is filled with concrete, it’s strong and fairly inexpensive. Concrete lasts a lifetime and since it’s so integrated into our world, we need tools that will help us deal with this type of material. Not only do we need to attach fasteners into concrete, but there are times we need to destroy it also. So that brings me to the Milwaukee SDS Max Rotary Hammer.
A rotary hammer is considered a high demand tool, which means to produce a cordless rotary hammer, you need some serious power. Over the years these tools have been produced as a corded tool. In recent years battery technology has increased and we are starting to see more and more cordless rotary hammers on the market. Most of these cordless rotary hammers we are seeing are under an 1″. We are starting to see the big bad boy rotary hammers that are over an 1″ come in cordless and that is what we have today with the Milwaukee SDS Max Rotary hammer model 2717-22HD. The Milwaukee SDS Max Rotary hammer is a 1-9/16″ which is pretty amazing for a cordless tool. I know what you’re thinking, how can a cordless tool of this size do much work? Well, I was thinking the exact same thing, but then I gave it a test drive. This is a tool that will keep up with corded tools in regards to speed and even surpassing them.
When Milwaukee designed the first ever SDS Max rotary tool, they started with the inside and worked their way out. They designed this tool with a brushless motor and magnesium gear case. The magnesium gear case provides durability and doesn’t add a ton of weight. Using a brushless motor, they can achieve a more efficient tool, which means longer run time. The Powerstate brushless motor delivers a whopping 5 ft. lbs of impact energy. This is some serious power for a cordless tool. In regards to speed, it produces 0-450 rpm and 0-3,000 bpm, using its variable speed trigger. Speaking of cordless, get this, it’s an 18V tool. Again, I know what you’re thinking, why would I trust an 18V tool to get the job done? The answer is simple, Milwaukee designed this tool to work in conjunction with their High Demand 9Ah battery. 9Ah for a battery is huge and just what this tool needs in order to get a job done. Okay, so what about performance? According to Milwaukee, you get over 20 minutes of chipping, which is a heck of a lot of chipping for a cordless tool. Now don’t get me wrong, I doubt anyone who is chipping all day long will go with a cordless tool. If you are chipping all day long, I personally think a corded tool is the way to go. However, this tool does have its place. There are plenty of jobs and applications where you need a powerful tool to get a quick job done. Here is where I think the tool shines, in these situations.
So this is the first ever cordless SDS max rotary hammer on the market. All fine and dandy, but how does this thing perform? First, you will not notice any difference from the corded version except this tool is actually faster. How nice is it to lose the cord, but keep the power and speed. Not having a cord makes certain situations not only easier, but safer. What about those times you have to hold the tool above your shoulder? How nice is it not to fight with the cord and fight with your chipping or drilling application. On the top of the tool, you can change modes. One great thing about this is changing the modes is easy, even with gloves on. The dial is nice and big, so you’re not trying to fiddle with a small dial. This SDS Max, along with the design of the tool and the 9Ah battery will let any contractor get some serious work done.
Milwaukee SDS Max Rotary Hammer Specifications
Weight 12.15 lbs
Blow Energy 5.1 ft-lbs
BPM 0 – 3,000
Solid Bit Capacity 1-9/16″
No Load RPM 0-450
Tool Warranty 5 Years
Battery Warranty 3 Year
Overall I am a huge fan of this tool. It’s robust and full of power and speed. Again, I am a huge fan of Bosch and Hilti when it comes to concrete tools, but this is an eye opener. Considering it’s Milwaukee, I have no doubt this will keep up on any job site and last for years. I love breaking free of the cord but still having the ability to do some serious work with this rotary hammer. If you are looking for a big boy rotary hammer, this is one you should consider taking a peek at. If you have experience with this tool, let us know your thoughts.