Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


Milwaukee M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander

Milwaukee M12 Variable Speed Polisher - Sander

When the news about the new Milwaukee M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander, I took a quick look at the picture and realized that many people might wonder, “Why not just use a drill with the polishing and sanding heads?”  One look at the specs, specifically the RPM’s that the M12 runs will tell you just how much different it is from a drill.


With that realization, you have to take your  expectations of how you think about power tools and be completely open minded. I have an M18 Fuel Impact Driver that I can run for what seems like all day without stopping to recharge it. With the M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander, you can expect to get a full pass on the exterior trim. This may not seem like much to those of us using Milwaukee’s drill/drivers, but that kind of run time wasn’t possible in a cordless polisher before now according to Milwaukee.

“As the most compact cordless polisher on the market, the M12 Polisher/Sander is the perfect complement to a full size polisher for a faster finish,” says Andrew Plowman, Group Product Manager for Milwaukee Tool. “In our field research with this tool, we found that automotive detailers were saving up to 20% of their detail time by going over small/thin/curved surfaces with the M12™ Polisher before coming back through to cover larger surfaces with a traditional full size polisher. By simply adding this step with the new Milwaukee product, the user could service another car every few days, ultimately getting a full return on their investment in less than three weeks.”

Milwaukee also tells us that the performance of the M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander is up with the pneumatic tools normally used. Obviously, the convenience of not being attached to a hose and compressor is attractive. The variable speed trigger and compact size allow the user to have excellent control in those smaller areas that they are working on a vehicle’s exterior. Accessories can be change with no need for a tool to make the switch.


Milwaukee M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander Specs

  • Model Number: Milwaukee M12 Polisher/Sander 2438-20 (bare tool), 2438-22 (kit with 1 battery), 2438-22X (kit with 2 batteries)
  • Polishing Mode Speed: 0 – 2800 RPM
  • Sanding Mode Speed: 0 – 8300 RPM
  • Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Length: 5-1/8 inches
  • MSRP: $149 (bare tool), $199 (1 battery kit), $229 (2 battery kit)
  • Warranty: 5 year limited

Each of the of options (2438-20/22/22X) also includes an accessory pack with a 3″ polishing backing pad, 2″ sanding backing pad, wool pad, yellow foam pad, and white foam pad. The M12 Variable Speed Polisher – Sander is due out in August. For more information, visit Milwaukee’s website.

Milwaukee M12 Variable Speed Polisher - Sander

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I’m gonna try using it like my small angle dye grinder

Thanks for pointing out the RPM, I’ve read a few places where people said the same thing “Why not just use a drill”. My reply “because, there is no drill on the market that goes 8,900 RPM”s”.Read more…

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