One of the messages that Milwaukee Tool wanted to send at their New Product Symposium was that it’s not enough just to innovate with new products, but that it is also important to listen to user feedback and update existing products.
To exemplify this philosophy, not only did they introduce a brand new M12 Rocket tower light, they updated the classic M18 Rocket tower light with brighter LEDs and the ability to run on AC power.
In this spirit, let’s look at the updated M18 Rocket first and then talk about the new M12 Rocket.
Updated M18 Rocket
On low power, the updated M18 Rocket dual power tower light can be powered for up to 12 hours on a single M18 5.0Ah battery, or all day when plugged into an extension cord. In high output mode, the light delivers 2500 lumens, a 25% increase over the original M18 Rocket, and will last for 4 hours on the same battery.
The light can be set up and extended from 4′ to 7′ in under 5 seconds, and collapses down to 40″ for transportation and storage. The light head can rotate up to 230° vertically and 240° horizontally.
The updated M18 Rocket will start replacing the old M18 Rocket in Q3 of 2018. It’ll retail for the same $199.
Available: Q3 2018
The M12 Rocket dual power tower light can be powered by a single M12 6.0Ah battery for up to 8 hours on low mode, or an extension cord all day. Crank it up to high mode for 1400 lumens and get up to 4 hours of illumination.
Like it’s M18 cousins, the light can be set up or taken down in less than 5 seconds. It collapses into a package slightly more than 30″ long and when set up it can extend from 3′ to 5′ 8″ tall. The head rotates up to 210° vertically and 270° horizontally.
The M12 Rocket dual power tower should launch in October 2018 for $149.
Available: Oct 2018
Here’s the full Milwaukee M12 and M18 Rocket LED tripod worklight product family.
In case you needed it, here’s a selectively-colored version, to help give you a sense of the size difference between M12 and M18 models.
I received a sample of the M18 Rocket tower light with charger when it first came out, and it is the first light I grab when I need to light up an area, take photos for ToolGuyd, or just get more light on a task. But, I’ve never really used the independently swiveling heads or the charging functionality.
When I’ve been donating tool samples to my mechanic and contractor friends, I hide the M18 Rocket in the corner and say I’m not ready to part with it yet. That really speaks to how much I like it.
Before NPS18, if I was going to buy a Rocket light, I probably would have purchased the original M18 Rocket. It does all that I need, and it’s around $125 on clearance at several Home Depots near me.
Now that Milwaukee has updated the original rocket with the brighter light and power inlet, and introduced the smaller lighter M12 Rocket, I’ll definitely have to re-evaluate which tower light I’d buy in the future.