Smart Power Tools For Security Installs

Author: Ari Erenthal, Published on Jan 18, 2017

Installing a smart camera? Perhaps you should use a 'smart' drill.

The intelligent appliance / IoT trend has hit power tools.

In this note, we examine Milwaukee's One-Key system including:

  • Advanced control / optimization
  • Inventory control
  • Tool tracking
  • Tool security
  • Available models
  • Pricing

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Comments (8)

Lojack for power tools! It sort of reminds me of a 'smart' version of CopDots.

I see a benefit to the remote tracking and disable feature.

On large projects where your tools are on a cart it is not uncommon to step a way for a bit and come back to find your drill missing, only to find an electrician using it while on your ladder he took earlier that same morning.

There have been many sawzalls, drills and laptops left in ceiling by techs where the locate would come in handy as well.

There have been many sawzalls, drills and laptops left in ceiling by techs where the locate would come in handy as well.

lol

If I had a dollar for every tool I left on a job site, I'd be able to afford to start replacing some of them.

Including my dad's avocado green rotary buttset. Wow, was he mad.

I like the locate feature, but the app to adjust settings just seems cumbersome to me.

I have never felt that I needed finer-grain control of speed or clutch settings than what my tools offer by default (Makita 18V platform). If I am doing two tasks (drilling pilot holes, then running screws) I don't swap settings/etc. on a single unit, I have a drill and impact driver. For any professional, it would seem more cost effective to just buy another unit, not fiddle with a phone/app (even more cumbersome if you're wearing work gloves).

Of course, my experience is not as a full-time installer, but seems like full-time techs would have the same concerns.

You only have to use the app for the presets. After that, you just press the button on the tool to select from the 4 modes, which you can do with a glove, easier than adjusting the clutch.

As far as swapping settings goes, I would say the majority of installers change settings multiple times a day, sometimes multiple times per task, depending on what step of the task they're on. Sure, it only takes 30 seconds, but you have to do it every time, you usually can't do it by feel so you have to take your eye off the task to make sure you got the right setting, etc. And while a lot of installers aren't going to care enough to take the time and experiment with different setting combinations (and for them Milwaukee includes premixed presets for different tasks like 'driving screws' and 'drilling wood'), some installers will certainly get a lot of use out of this feature.

For example, I used to do installs in renovations of very old houses. You need different torque settings for new 2x4s and and old 2x4s, because old, dry wood is harder to drill through than fresh wood. Having one button for drilling through a new stud, one for drilling through an old stud, and one for driving screws would have been awesome.

It's one of those features you never knew you wanted, basically. But if you rarely or never change settings, then this is probably not for you.

i cant imagine my self on a skyjack adjusting my drill with a phone app for what , u have settings on every drill for speed and blablabla takes a second

I really like the tracking capability. This is pretty cool.

Maybe the next version will have multiple bits in the chamber, with more preset options. When you hit the button it will not only change the torque/speed, but the bit itself (drill bit to flat, phillips, etc.). Now THAT would be cool. Especially if you typically only use a handful of products. You could setup presets by manufacturer (Axis, Sony, Samsung Hanwha) or specific model

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