Milwaukee has come out with a new 52″ mobile workbench, 48-22-8522, which features a raised work surface and pull-out shelf-drawers.
Husky recently came out with an updated 60″ mobile workbench, and it had me asking “why would I buy Milwaukee’s?”. I love the Husky’s added benchtop and drawer depth.
When the press release for this 52″ workstation came in, I was practically bouncing. I find some of its new features, despite its 8″ shorter length, to be highly appealing.
Update: The worktop and cabinet depth is a respectable 22″ deep.
First, there’s a raised work surface, meaning you can clamp things down. You get this under-the-benchtop clamp clearance under the front and both sides. The back is fully enclosed.
This should also make it easier to mount things to the benchtop, such as if you wanted to mount a vise with through-bolts instead of lag screws.
Then there are the pull-out trays. I like to call them shelf-drawers. They’re basically drawers with short fronts and extra tall clearance.
They’re large enough to fit Milwaukee organizers.
The box wouldn’t be complete without some of Milwaukee’s standard side-panel details, such as a tray, mounting points for M18 chargers, a power strip with USB charging ports, and a tubular handle.
I’m liking the configuration too – a full-width drawer and 2 banks of drawers for a total of 9 drawers and 2 pull-out trays. So let’s say 11 drawers.
This is what you get. No clamps, tools, or supplies are included, just in case you were hoping.
There’s an included screwdriver and like-shaped tool holder, but there are 2 other things to see here.
First, it clearly shows that the back panel is enclosed, meaning you have open access at the front and both sides, but not the back.
Second, you can reverse the side handle to the left side if you choose to. It looks like there are mounting holes for the side panel shelf as well.
Here is the internal power tool organizer. It’s removable if you don’t care for it. On the other models, the organizer can be fit into the right bank of narrower drawers instead. I’m not sure if the organizer can be moved to a different placement here or not.
The power rail has an on/off button, and Milwaukee’s usual cable wrap. I have yet to install the cable wrap on a test unit – I instead push the power cord slack back into the box through the grommet, nesting it behind the drawers.
Never do this to a tool box – I’ve seen them topple forward. The left bank of drawers aren’t shown, but it’s safe to say that none of the drawers on the right have doubled-up drawer slides. Not even that full-width drawer, which I’d guess (and hope) has a third slide on the bottom at the center.
Is it me, or does it look like the drawer slides are attached crookedly and off-level on those drawers? If so, and the drawers are level but the slides are slanted downwards a little, that would help them self-close a little bit.
- Angle iron frame
- 100 lb-rated drawer slides
- Soft-closing drawers
- 1800 lbs total weight capacity
- 4x 5″ casters, 2 locking swivel and 2 fixed
- Raised work surface with pull-out trays
- Built-in power center
- Multi-position tool tray and integrated organizers
ETA: May 2017
Buy Now(via Home Depot)
Update 1/1/2020: There’s a new version of this workbench.
Buy Now: New Model via Home Depot
Here is the Milwaukee 60″ mobile work center, for comparison.
The new 52″ mobile work station offers a different featureset, but also looks simpler. It’s smaller, and has 1 lock instead of 3. It looks like perhaps the 2 pull-out trays are not lockable.
I wish that Milwaukee equipped the new 52″ workbench with 4 lockable swivel casters, instead of 2 swivel casters and 2 fixed casters. That would make this a far more mobile work center in my opinion. But I suppose one could always build a mobile base with 4 swivel casters if they wanted it to be more mobile.
The 52″ workbench is 8″ shorter than the 60″ model, but since the 60″ model’s cabinet is longer, this should mean that the drawer banks are wider. It looks like it’s the drawers on the right side that are wider. This is one more thing to like about this model.
I like that there’s a full-width drawer, and hope that Milwaukee went with a third drawer slide underneath the drawer at the center.
If this box is a full 24″ deep, I’m just about sold. If it’s 22″ deep, I’d be nearly sold.
Update: It’s 22″ deep.
The pricing is fair too. Milwaukee could have made it cheaper, but I’m happy that they instead chose to make this shorter model more functional.
Thank you to Nick for the heads-up!
I wanted the Milwaukee 60″ mobile workcenter so bad when it came out. Then the all black Husky workcenter came out and now I want that one instead. Then suddenly another challenger appears.
I could see having this AND the mobile workcenter with peg board. They serve two different purposes.
This seems like it would be used more as a workbench. Not sure what i would put in the drawers even if I had both because I don’t have that many tools.
How easy it it or is it even possible to remove and change out the wood top?
They finally did a full drawer so they are listening to the customers.
Small design flaw I could see is having something clamped down and the clamps are in the way of the 2 pullout drawers.
Looks nice. I think its worth the price especially if you’re a Milwaukee fan.
If I were a bettin man I’d say a Husky counterpart will be arriving on the scene soon. What a time to be alive.
If you look at the second photo, which shows 3 clamps holding down a piece of wood, you can see a fastener holding down the work top. In another photo I can see a fastener at a corner.
So, with the worktop being bolted down, I’d say that it should be replaceable if needed.
With careful clamping positions, the trays should still be openable, even if loaded with tall contents.
I think I would use the trays to hold current project supplies. Most of the clamps I have should fit in that clearance space no problem.
Right on those flush fasteners. I see em now.
Doesn’t look like you could open the drawer with a Milwaukee organizer with clamps holding something down. If you needed more screws etc… Not a deal breaker just noticed that was a thing. I have the Keter table and other clamping surfaces.
You must be new here…. We don’t buy tool boxes to fit ALL of our tools in…. We buy tool boxes to put SOME of our tools in and then we have a excuse to buy more tools… 😀
I have a feeling that this will be 22″ depth. This could be great for someone that doesn’t have a place to clamp things down or that needs to be mobile.
I personally think that $499 would be a more fair price point. You lose 8″ of width, pegboard, side cabinet, and space in general but it’s only 100 cheaper. Currently it would be the same as the 60″. Maybe they will have a special buy price upon release.
I’m going to wait for the new 60″ Husky to go on sale as I’m sold twice over with that unit.
I just heard back, and it is.
It’s slightly taller than the 60″ mobile workbench. I asked for measurements, will update the post when I hear back.
Home Depot has it for $498.
I miss pre-inflation threads. I’m looking up reviews on this unit, now priced at $1,198
This unit isn’t sold anymore. The new model is $898.
Prices of most things changed in 5-1/2 years.
The taller is nice – I like that. and to be fair this is more mobile so price vs use if mobility is a issue this makes lots of sense. Per your comments I agree first thing I’d do with one is mount a vise on one side of that table. I’d purposely get a vise that swivels too. Second thing I would do is look to see if you could put swivel castors on both ends with the existing holes – as that might be a win win.
I would like to see a husky model with slightly different features and cheaper. (none of the specific milwaukee stuffs)
I’m probably in the minority but I wish it had the pegboard attached to it like the 60″ to help make up for it’s smaller size.
That’s something that can always be figured out in a DIY fashion.
I can link to it later, but I spotted some (new?) Husky pegboard back wall add-ons on HomeDepot.com. I believe there was one 52″ long.
Nice unit but overpriced as usual. If you’d know how much HD is making on these boxes, you’d be outraged. I was lucky enough and bought a 46″ Milwaukee tool chest from a wholesaler for $220, while in store it cost $450.
Overpriced compared to what, cost?
In my opinion it’s very competitively priced for what you get, and when looking at other consumer mobile work stations.
You can’t compare liquidation or clearance cost to regular retail pricing.
If we complain about the markup on tool chests – how about other consumer goods like clothing where the markup might be 3X or even more. So that $900 leather jacket – might get clearance-priced at $300 and the merchant may still make money on the sale. What I’m saying is that a 100% markup over cost is probably the norm not the exception – not that we have to like it – but it is a fact of merchandizing.
What I try to remember when judging a price is that everyone wants a profit.
For something like this, there’s the manufacturer, who typically pays for materials, use of equipment, and labor.
Then there’s Milwaukee, who pays the cost + OEM markup.
Then there’s Home Depot, who buys the products from Milwaukee.
And then Home Depot charges a set retail price.
There are additional costs involved, such as marketing, quality assurance, returns, transportation, etc.
The 60″ workbench is currently $598 plus $75 curbside shipping. Do you know much it would cost ME to ship something this large and heavy via freight? A lot more than $75.
Now, I’m not saying that some things aren’t overpriced. But these mobile workbenches are hitting the market at competitive and appropriate prices, given what they offer and compared to lesser-priced units.
Is this supposed to be a replacement or an additional model. I could see preferences going for either side, 60 and 52. I guess maybe by the name difference “Mobile Workcenter” vs “Mobile Workbench” would seem to imply it’s just an additional model. I have the 60 and I love it.
Additional model – to the best of my knowledge.
I didn’t pay attention to the “official” name, I called it a mobile workbench because that’s what I see it as. =)
Personally I have found the tool chests/work bench from Milwaukee and Husky to be highly competitive. I am very grateful for their offering because I found that they are hitting the sweet spot for me as far as pricing and quality. The next step up is really nice but out of my reach for home use. The next step down definitely shown a drop in quality. With that said you won’t see me complaining when they dropped the price 😀
As far as markup, a 100% markup is very reasonable for retails when it come to item like this. They move enough but it’s not like they are flying off the shelves. So let assume it cost them $200 to stock it. That’s $200 that sat around for a long time not to mention the space that it would take.
Personally I just don’t get these things…there’s been a lot shown off lately and I just can’t figure out who they’re for. I get tool cabinets, but I don’t get why you’d need a chest of 100 tools to be mobile. I get work surfaces, I get why you’d want them mobile, to get them into the middle of the room to work around, but most of these “workbench” tops are fairly narrow compared to what a woodworker would design for themselves, and totally flat..they’re more just “benches” that someone would do whatever at, and basically too low for a whatever bench. And a whatever bench need not be mobile. I guess the wheels are just for in case you ever want to move it, given that loaded it could be 500+ lbs. But then they aren’t so much mobile, just moveable.
Help me understand, what purpose do these serve?
For the same reasons that tool box combos and bottom cabinets are often equipped with casters.
But consider this… what else would it take to create a stationary unit with toe kick? Greater cost.
If you don’t want the casters attached, there’s the option to build a DIY base.
I’m guessing there are more users who want casters or don’t care than those that don’t want the mobility option.
I don’t see why you wouldn’t want them. Unless they add a significant cost to the equation. For about $50-75 extra I would rather have them just in case. It’s a pain to move anything 300+lbs around without casters.
I wish this was table-saw height. Then I could use up as feed top, then when done, wheel back against wall.
I am miffed in that I spent some recently on Craftsman toolchests (Sears points and coupons) and would rather trade them all in for two of these.
For those complaining about casters, well, sometimes you have to move them to get that socket that you dropped, or clean underneath. 🙂
No way! I’m working on a post for later.
My SawStop jobsite test sample has a height of 36″, pretty good, but I’ve been looking into typical heights and it seems 32″ to 34″ is the norm.
34″ is going to be inconvenient. Take away 6″ for casters, 1″ for the top, say 5″ for the top and bottom spans and locking system, and that’s only 22″ of height for drawers and clamping.
Plus, 34″ is not a good height for most types of work, for average heights.
UPDATE: Pricing at my local Home Depot shows 498 for this unit. Store recently received 4 of these units.
Has anyone figured out how to add peg board to this 52” inch unit?
Just bought the 40″ one with teh metal top…one thing, I can’t open up the drawers lol to install wheels, etc. I currently have it laying on its back.. Do I need to stand it up for drawers to open/unlock or did they just forget the key? thx
You might need to find the key in one drawer and unlock the bottom drawer that has the casters.
It’s going to be far easier to retrieve the casters and other installation hardware with the tool box upright than on its back.
Thanks. It is upright now, but all drawers still locked. The key must be inside? This is a little odd? Is there a way to open any of the drawers without the key?
I believe that one of the top drawers *should* have a key. Sometimes they’re connected to a string or similar.
There is a new version of these now available, model 48-22-8553. Same dimensions, same weight rating, same caster size, same capacity. The differences I spotted at first glance are aluminum drawer pulls, corner bumpers, and a double slide for the full width drawer. And the price – now $798 (at Home Depot anyway). I didn’t buy the previous version but am now in the market. I’ll wait for the inevitable price drop and see where it lands. At $598 I’m a buyer. But $648 may get me too. At $698 I’ll wait some more.
It looks like the styling was updated to match the other current models.
Does HD ever mark down the Milwaukee workbenches? I think I’ve seen a 698 price but don’t know if it would go lower.
Home Depot and maybe some other dealers sometimes have holiday promos.
If I remember correctly, the previous version dropped from $598 to $498 around the holidays. $100 is probably the biggest drop I should expect, but I guess I’m a hopeful value shopper (don’t call me cheap! :)) I prefer to spend my tool budget on tools themselves rather than a box, and should probably just buy a HF box, but I’m going to hold out and see what happens.
Has anyone raised the height of the workbench itself by removing the board top, adding spacers, and longer screws/bolts, and tightening everything up?
This would give more room for the upper drawers and let me get exactly the height I need without having to lift it off the casters.