Milwaukee 35pc Impact Drill and Drive Set

An economically priced set ideally suited to the hobbyist woodworker or avid DIYer

Milwaukee_48_32_4402_lead

Milwaukee 35pc Impact Drill and Drive Set



Milwaukee has brought quite a few hand tools to market over the past year or so, and they are now extending their product line to include a comprehensive line of drilling and driving accessories. The Milwaukee 35pc Impact Drill and Drive Set (48-32-4402) provides a sampling of five different drilling and driving accessories - drive bits, drill bits, bit holder, nut drives and socket adapters.
 
The accessory set consists of five styles of driver bits: ECX, Torx, Phillips, Square, and Slotted. The bits come in various lengths — 1", 2" and 3-1/2". ECX bits can be used on screws that have a head that accepts either a square or slotted driver. Unless you work on electrical boxes, conduit couplers, and electrical outlets these may not be of much use. You might find a bit more use for Torx driver bits, though Torx screws are still relatively uncommon outside the electronics and automotive sectors. The other driver styles are common enough that you'll likely find lots of use for them.
 
The inclusion of slotted driver bits in this set is somewhat surprising — I've never had occasion to use a slotted screw with an impact driver and can't imagine a situation in which I might need to do so.
 

Accessories Included in the 48-32-4402 Set
ECX #1 and #2 (one each, 1")
Phillips#1, #3 (one each, 1"); #2 (two of 1")
#1, #2 (one each, 2")
#2 (one 3-1/2")
Square#1, #3 (one each, 1"); #2 (two of 1")
#1, #2, #3 (one each, 2")
#2 (one 3-1/2")
Slotted1/8", 3/16", 1/4" (one each, 2")
TorxT15, T20, T25, T30 (one each, 2")
Magnetic Nut Drivers1/4", 5/16", 3/8" (one each, 2")
Drill Bits1/8", 5/32", 3/16", 7/32", 1/4"
Socket Adapters3/8", 1/2"
Magnetic Bit Holder 2-3/8"
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Anti-slip pads          
                    
The accessories come in a durable high impact 2" x 4-1/2" x 7-1/4" plastic storage case. On both the bottom and top of the case are anti-slip pads that keep the case from sliding about on smooth surfaces.


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Removable tray for smaller driver bits      
                    
While the drill bits, longer driver bits, nut drivers, socket adapters and bit holder are smartly arranged in the bottom of the case, the smaller (1" and 2") driver bits are stored in a tray. Which means you have to peck around for the right bit. As well, while there are three bays in the tray, you really can only use the first two - the back of the lid obstructs the rear bay, making it awkward to put bits into, and take them out of the bay. The tray can be removed from the case, but it's difficult to remove and re-install the tray.


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Shockwave design  
                    
What's different about the driver bits in this set is Milwaukee's new Shockwave™ shank design. According to the company, this design should provide up to 10 times the life over standard impact bits. There are three features that contribute to the extreme durability of these bits: The bodies are made from proprietary steel that is heat treated to control hardness; the forged tips are heat treated twice to provide a secure grip and maximum contact reducing stripping or slipping; and, the scalloped design of the shank creates an 'absorption zone' that dissipates shock and extends bit life — this absorption zone enables the shank to flex under stress preventing it from breaking. Or so goes the theory.


05
L to R: 3-1/2" drive bit, drill bit, bit holder, nut driver, socket adapter     
                    
While the driver bits have the new Shockwave design, the drill bits and other accessories have standard shanks. However, they are still made from the same proprietary steel formula. The drill bits have a common 135° split point angle that does a reasonably good job of starting a hole without wandering (walking) abut the work surface.
 
Nut drivers have colour coded bands which I find helpful to differentiate between various driver sizes. There is a strong magnet inserted in the driver head making it easier to pick up and hold nuts and bolts. As well, the outside edges are chamfered, which provides a slight advantage if you have to push the diver over a nut or bolt head that is submerged in material. However, if the bolt head or nut is submerged too deep you'll still have to chip around it to gain enough purchase to use the driver.
 
The socket adapters have a conventional ball detent for securing the socket to the adapter. The two that come with this kit are precisely milled and hold sockets firmly in place, yet are easy to remove.
 
The bit holder has both a snap ring located near the tip of the holder and a strong magnet inserted at the base of its mouth. I found it difficult to insert a hex shank into the holder, and needed the help of a vise and pliers to remove the shank. After I removed the snap ring it was much easier to insert a bit into the holder - however when backing drill bits out of stock there was a tendency for the bit to slip out of the holder.


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One durable tip       
                    
The tips are not as smoothly finished as I've seen on other impact driver bits, but nevertheless, they fit screw heads snugly. I sunk 100 3" deck screws in a pressure treated post (without pre-drilling) with the #2 impact bit above. The tip shows little wear, and I would expect it to sink several hundred more screws before it needs to be replaced. Or perhaps even more — Milwaukee claims 1,500 deck screws (size not specified) sunk with a #2 driver bit.
 
There are four other Shockwave sets to choose from: a 29pc driver bit set (48-32-4401), which consists of an array of 1" drive bits and nut drivers; an 18pc driver set (48-32-4403) that consists of 1" and 2" drive bits; a 7pc Torx set (48-32-4615); and a 12pc drive bet set (48-32-4507) consisting of 1" bits housed in a storage case that converts into a drive handle.
 
At around $40, or about $1.15 per piece, with a storage case thrown in, this is an economically priced set, which I think is ideally suited to the hobbyist woodworker or avid DIYer. Even if you won't have much use for the ECX or Torx bits, it still represents good value.
 
Tradespeople and contractors will likely realize greater value in purchasing specific accessories that they are likely to have greater use for. Individual bits are available in contractor packs of up to 25 units at a discounted price.


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KEY FEATURES:

  • Custom engineered steel for strength and durability
  • Compression forged tip for better grip
  • Shock zone geometry for better shock absorption
  • Anti-strip tip for longer bit life
  • 1/4" shanks
  • 1" to 2" overall length
  • 2" x 4-1/2" x 7-1/4" plastic box

COMPANY:Milwaukee
MODEL:48-32-4402
PRICE:$39.99
MADE IN:China
SOURCE:Find a Dealer
Carl Duguay, December 2012
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