Speed Is The Name Of The Game For Milwaukee’s Cordless Ratchets
There’s nothing like the feel of a quality ratchet in your hands and a Saturday to wrench around your latest project. If your paycheck depends on your production rate, though, you don’t have the luxury of a slow pace, and that’s where a Milwaukee M12 Fuel cordless high-speed ratchet can be your best friend. We put them in the hands of diesel mechanic, Isaac Leuchtefeld, to see what he learned after putting them to work.
- Fast bolt removal/installation
- Good balance
- Fast trigger response
- Multiple grip options
- Not as much torque as some cordless ratchets
Milwaukee M12 Fuel Cordless High-Speed Ratchet Models
For the newest generation of Milwaukee cordless ratchet options, you have four models to choose from. The extended reach versions match the standard lengths in performance and add 3 1/4 inches more length. It’s really just a matter of which ones you need for the way you work.
- 2566-20: 1/4-inch standard length
- 2567-20: 3/8-inch standard length
- 2568-20: 1/4-inch extended reach
- 2569-20: 3/8-inch extended reach
Milwaukee M12 Fuel Cordless High-Speed Ratchet Performance
- Brushless motor
- 35 ft-lbs of torque
- 450 RPM
- Variable speed trigger with lockout
As part of the M12 Fuel system, all four models feature a brushless motor that gives you up to 35 ft-lbs of torque and a quick 450 RPM top speed. The control comes primarily from a pneumatic-style variable speed paddle trigger. There’s a lockout for it so you can keep it from accidentally turning on.
As we expect from any cordless ratchet, you can also use these manually in case you need to give the fastener more encouragement than the motor does by itself.
The performance level is different from Milwaukee’s earlier ratchets. Here’s a quick look at how they compare:
|1/4-Inch 2556||40 ft-lbs||250 RPM|
|1/4-Inch High Speed 2566||35 ft-lbs||450 RPM|
|3/8-Inch 2557||55 ft-lbs||200 RPM|
|3/8-Inch High Speed 2567||35 ft-lbs||450 RPM|
Going with a high-speed model, you have a noticeable trade-off in torque, especially on the 3/8-inch model. On the diesel engines Isaac was working on, there were more fasteners that he hadd to manually get started. The plus side is that once they break loose, they come off much faster.
Milwaukee M12 Fuel Cordless High-Speed Ratchet Design Notes
- 3/4-inch head profile
- Steel yoke housing
- LED light
- On-board battery level indicator
- Protective boot available
- Compatible with all M12 batteries
Cordless ratchets don’t need to be complicated and Milwaukee avoids overcomplicating the M12 Fuel models with a lot of bells and whistles. The 3/4-inch head profile is small enough to get into most of the same spots you can with a standard ratchet and a steel yoke housing adds strength to the build.
There is an LED light that’s helpful when you’re reaching into darker areas that are awkward for your headlamp or neck light to position into.
If you’re coming from the world of pneumatics, you’ll notice the handle section has a generous girth to make room for the battery. It’s something to note, but it doesn’t take long to get used to.
You can use any Milwaukee M12 battery for power, but the compact packs are your best bet most of the time. The extended capacity packs stick out at the base to make room for the extra cells and they can get in the way when you’re reaching into the depths of an engine compartment. Regardless of which battery you use, there’s an indicator on the tool to help you keep an eye on your charge level.
The size and weight vary depending on which model you’re using. Here’s how they stack up:
|2566 1/4-Inch Standard||11.1 inches||1.7 pounds|
|2567 3/8-Inch Standard||11.1 inches||1.7 pounds|
|2568 1/4-Inch Extended||13.5 inches||2.0 pounds|
|2569 3/8-Inch Extended||14.3 inches||2.0 pounds|
All told the weights are very reasonable, even if you’re used to air ratchets. They’re also well-balanced tools. Even the extended reach ratchets don’t feel as front-heavy as others.
Pricing is a little different between the standard and extended reach models, but they all have the same 5-year warranty. In addition to the options below, there are also a few combo kits running around and a protective boot ($29.99).
|2566 1/4-Inch Standard||$199.00||$299.00 (2-battery kit)|
|2567 3/8-Inch Standard||$199.00||$299.00 (2-battery kit)|
|2568 1/4-Inch Extended||$249.00||NA|
|2569 3/8-Inch Extended||$249.00||$349.00 (1-battery kit)|
The Bottom Line
With a Milwaukee M12 Fuel cordless high-speed ratchet, you can certainly boost your productivity level. What’s great is that these aren’t replacing the earlier versions. If you prefer the higher torque/lower speed combination, you can still get it. What these really do is help you completely bracket your ratcheting needs. While some folks may just need one model, professionals are likely to find that they can use several as part of a larger cordless system to fully round out their work.
Visit Milwuakee’s website to discover more power tools!
Interesting. The big gripe about the new fuel ones over the older brushed one was the size… Yes, they were more robust, but if you can’t get it in there, then what good is it…and so…we finally see them trying to get the head size back down while maintaining robustness…and it appears that 55 is too much torque while 35 is the sweet spot. ???