Milwaukee’s full-polish 90-tooth ratchets are now available for open stock purchase, meaning you can buy them individually and not just as part of a set.
Available in 1/4″ and 3/8″ drive sizes, the new ratchets have 90 teeth, for a 4° swing arc. A slim profile and flush directional lever helps with accessibility in tighter spaces.
Milwaukee says that their new ratchets allows users to access their work in tighter spaces whether is under the hood of a car or the middle of a remodel.
- 3/8″ ratchet is 8.5″ long, 0.9″ wide, 1.25″ tall, and weighs 0.78 lbs (model 48-22-9038)
- 1/4″ ratchet is 6″ long, 0.8″ wide, 1″ tall, and weighs 0.28 lbs (model 48-22-9014)
Price: $40 for 3/8″, $30 for $1/4″
Buy Now(3/8″ ratchet via Home Depot)
Buy Now(1/4″ ratchet via Home Depot)
Compare(Gearwrench 84T via Amazon)
Of course, if you want a new socket set, you have that option as well.
Buy Now(Milwaukee socket sets via Home Depot)
The general design appeals to me, but I haven’t been interested enough to request or purchase review samples yet. Still, I think that Milwaukee has done right to offer the ratchets individually. With their first swivel-head ratchet and socket set, featured here, that ratchet was only available as part of the kit.
No quick release button? That’s okay; some of my favorite ratchets lack quick release buttons. If you want a quick socket release function, there are plenty others to choose from.
Milwaukee’s sockets are the stars of their sets, but I think the ratchets look decent. If I were in the market for 90-tooth ratchets, these would likely be on my shortlist, but there’s a lot of competition.
Would you buy one of these ratchets?
Any idea if / when Milwaukee is planning to release 1/2″ drive socket sets?
Unfortunately, I haven’t heard anything about 1/2″ sockets or drive tools yet. It’s possible that if they plan on expanding the product category, this could come next.
I was just coming here to ask this. I would really, really like for Milwaukee to introduce a 1/2” drive socket set. I’ve come to quite like the 3/8” set and will purchase the 1/4” set in the near future when I can justify it.
That being said it would be nice to have a 1/2” drive set to keep my socket collection all Milwaukee as I love the square end design.
No. Cookie cutter design.
I have become so accustomed to the quick release button, unless it’s a specialty Ratchet I won’t purchase to replace my current quick release general purpose ratchets.
I have invested heavily in Dewalts wrenches (combo, ratcheting, flare nut) and although I am just a shade tree mechanic, I like the Dewalt Lineup. Thank goodness all my Sockets are Craftsman (USA made and thin walled) and I don’t expect to replace them in my lifetime. I have been using them for over 2 decades! Also want to mention I have impact socket sets also to make sure I don’t do something ignorant like using my regular sockets with my impact tools.
Any thoughts generally on ratchets without quick-release buttons? I’ve never owned one. Is it advantageous because of a slimmer profile? Is it disturbingly hard to remove the socket?
Pricing seems a bit high considering the other quality ratchets in that price range – but I realize it’s always unfair to compare MSRP of a new tool to retail-pricing of currently available competing products.
A slightly slimmer profile is part of it. I think the main benefit is extra strength. Ratchets usually break at the anvil. And a quick release ratchet has an extra hole drilled down the middle of the anvil so it can be a quick release.
As for removing sockets I’ve never had any problems. It’s probably a few pounds of pull. But that could change depending on which ratchet and sockets you have.
I picked up a 56pc. 3/8″ drive set and the quality was horrific. Sockets had double and even triple stamp attempts to get the text to form. The case is also super flimsy. I wouldn’t trust traveling with the sets and they are not at all worth the price in my opinion.
They must have changed there manufacturing process. I usually dont inspect my sockets , I usually just use them but after inspecting them the stamping is perfect . As for the case , its wonderful , its slim sturdy and the sockets dont fall out if their place if its set upside down and best off all you can pull out the socket tray and place it in your toolbox . I primarily use mine for my old harley. 100 dollars for the 3/8 56 piece i felt was a pretty good deal . Im hoping for a wintworth set soon
I generally don’t have problems with socket removal, except maybe for small 1/4″ sockets.
Today I paired a Wera Zyklop quick-release ratchet with a Proto ball hex driver socket. The Proto socket had recesses, but not in the right place for the quick release ball, and it kept pulling off after high torque fastening.
Other times, quick releases can lead to dropped socket mishaps. That was also with my Wera quick release Zyklop.
Non-quick release are lower profile, but there can be user-preferences. If I had a non-quick-release ratchet closer at-hand today, it would have been a little easier (or less frustrating) to use. The flat back of the non-quick release ratchets also allow for pressure, which I could have used with my tough fastener tasks.
One day try both and determine which you like better. It can be beneficial to have different styles available.
Depends on the setup. I find it hard to remove short sockets from 1/4” drive ratchets. I bought a snap on ratchet with a quick release just to make it easier to remove, especially with greasy hands. Deep sockets I don’t have a problem with.
Again it all depends. And I’ve heard quick release ratchets aren’t as strong as solid anvil ratchets, which makes sense, but you’re not putting a whole lot of torque on a fastener with a 1/4” drive ratchet.
The squared design of the sockets is really appealing to someone like me who primarily uses them on a gently sloped driveway. Since I’ve already got a drawer full of ratchets in various drive sizes I love, if they’d offer the socket sets separate I’d replace every 1/4″ and 3/8″ set I own.
I too have a sloped drive way – I got one of these silicone rubber mats and it’s awesome.
I didn’t pay that much for the medium one I think I paid 35. it’s awesome. saw a guy using one on an aircraft one day – played with it. HAD to have that.
ON this ratchet – nice glad to see more competition in the overseas sounce made renamed tools.
Which is my assumption here – like the dewalt ones which are still made in China I think. Who under the TTI umbrella makes these I wonder.
Not to say it’s a bad product – I think the dewalt ones are OK to. but for the price they ask at HD/etc. I’ll buy something else.
DEWALT full polish chrome comes out of Taiwan.
This is one of those things that I’d bet most everyone who visits this site already has, and has plenty of, too. If the review was pointed toward, “Here’s why you should upgrade,” then I’d focus harder. Or, if it was, “You’re a newbie? This one’s for you,” I’d focus but differently.
Without a reason to question what I’m already using, I have little reason to “read hard”.
I’d like to see such differentiation in reviews of things most of us likely have already, please.
When the first Milwaukee socket set came out, I heard “can I buy the ratchet separately?” a lot.
Specific examples or requests could help.
The first thing I thought was, why didn’t they package their sets in their Packout cases. That seems like a no brainer. If I owned Packout already that would make me want the wrenches. And if I bought the wrenches, that would make want to buy more Packout… Seems like a lost opportunity to cross market your own products.
I suspect that would make them un-competitively expensive. E.g. many consumers would price compare the Milwaukee xx-piece kit versus a competitor’s xx-piece kit and choose the cheaper version.
Sure, the Milwaukee version with a Packout case has more to offer, but bundling it in this manner also means someone who doesn’t need the Packout has to pay for something they don’t want.
Cost. Plus, the socket sets are packaged in trays designed to fit within steel ball bearing tool box drawers.
Another be patient situation.
Another Chinese ratchet. Better then the other Chinese ratchets,no,..still diy crap.
…I guess lots of diy guys buy this junk or they wouldn’t be selling them.
So many Great American companies making the best Ratchets in the world,why would anyone buy this Chinese junk and not support your country and American jobs.?
Ummm this isn’t a socioeconomic/political debate website, nice try.
Also, don’t know if you’ve actually used them, but they’re pretty decent. Sorry you feel so strongly against them.
Lastly, the computer or phone you are typing on is probably made in China, their technology and manufacturing has come a long ways. Chinese does not equate to “junk”, welcome to 2019.
Yeah while many american made tools are nice, some think they are superior to anything. Theres great tools made in Germany, other parts of Europe, Japan, etc. Some people label all tools made in China as HF junk quality, even some HF tools have come a long way.
He’s not typing on his phone because its a Motorola Startac that was manufactured in Texas 25 yrs ago because he wont buy a new one made outside the USA. Since no computers are made in the USA since the 70/80s and are internet capable, he posted this from the computer at the library since he wont buy a computer made outside of the USA.
Joe, Framer Joe or what ever you decide to call yourself when it suits you,
I am Australian, and very patriotic. I would prefer that all the tools that I buy were made in Australia , but its just not the case nor will it ever be again. Your tools of choice, as are mine, are made in China. Deal with it.
Apple is making computers right here in the good old USA. Be selective and pony up for one.
This is the second post stating that Apple is making computers in the USA, where are you seeing this information? I just bought a MacBook Pro, the box says “Assembled in China”. My previous MacBook Pro was as well.
Desktops. Not laptops. Not all in ones.
Why do guys buy them?
The guy that initially buys them is the tool buyer for Home Depot or other retailer. Then that’s what goes on the rack or shelf for the average Joe (not Joe Framer) to buy. If you don’t see a US-made ratchet on the rack where you buy tools – how likely is that you will do a special order? Home Depot’s website lists some Proto and Wright ratchets – but you never see them in-store.
This is why almost no Milwaukee tools make it into my hands.
MADE IN CHINA.
Sad. You cry about “made in China” but what about all the hard working American’s creating and developing these tools. Don’t ever think of that do you? Milwaukee tool is based here, developed here. Has thousands of American men and women employed and on top still has muiltipul manufacturing plants here in the US. They also manufacture for not just Americans. They are a global company and that’s not a bad thing. Don’t buy the tools, but think before you post lame middle schooler style posts.
Agreed. And I’m sure Milwaukee has really tight quality standards on their products. They absolutely would not just let some fly by night Chinese manufacturer make their tools.
Long story short, any company with good product standards will make very little difference in the product no matter where it’s made.
I don’t remember the name, but their wrenches closely resemble the unique offerings of a separate OEM. Assuming that company makes their wrenches, I wouldn’t be surprised if they made their ratchets and sockets too, even with their unique shape.
Made in Taiwan**** ratchets/sockets/wrenches.
I’m with Joe. No, it’s not possible to purchase all items (cell phone, computer) from US manufacturers, as those jobs were sent overseas years ago. But US hand tool manufacturers still exist, and I will spend my dollar to support those American workers.
Easier said than done.
I looked at 90-tooth USA-made ratchets before publishing the post. Proto’s 3/8″ ratchet (J5249HTC) is $105-$129.
Not everyone wants, needs, or can justify higher-priced USA-made tools. Lower tooth count ratchets cost less, but it’s hard to argue with the appeal of a good brand of 90-tooth ratchet for $40.
Well Stuart, that’s the problem. As long as people keep buying, manufacturers like Milwaukee will keep churning out hand tools made by kids for twenty cents a day.
you can get the new SK 90 line off of Harry Epstien right now for 58.
I think tool topia is something like 73. Yes ratchet only, but yes ANSI rated, lifetime warranty and smooth as silk on hot butter.
Or well mine is.
no surprise this post got ignored!
SK doesn’t invite Toolguyd to special events, nor are they a brand sold at Home Depot. Over the past few years, red brands & yellow brands have been getting the kid glove treatment. Anyone commenting regarding preference of US products is narrow minded.
Out of sight, out of mind.
SK emailed me via YouTube back in 2017, asking me to review their new ratchets on social media, but never responded to my reply.
Since then, I can’t remember a time when the SK ratchet caught my attention, and nobody emailed in asking about it.
Looking at my inbox, there was an SK newsletter from December 2018 that I opened and starred, mentioning their expansion with 1/4″ and 1/2″ sizes, but it links to a $149 listing. A new ratchet at $150 is not going to be a high priority to post about. I’m guessing I opened it, saw the price, and moved on.
With these Milwaukee tools, there were enough “where can I find/why can’t I buy Milwaukee ratchets separately” emails that when I came across these listings looking for something else, it caught my attention and made it to my post-about list.
If something doesn’t catch my attention naturally, bring it up. “Hey, what do you think about the new…” or “I’d like to recommend a post about…” I have a number of such emails I still need to reply to, but I always read them, and they regularly lead to immediate-priority posts.
I have never called anyone narrow-minded, but I would encourage EVERYONE to be open-minded.
I have a higher tool budget today, and fewer missing pieces in my figurative toolbox than 10 years ago, but I always remind myself that different users have different needs, wants, and budgets.
That SK will be added to my list, but unless there’s very strong demand, there are other requests I’ll likely budget for before then.
While I think that “DIY” or “DIYer” should be stricken from your comment vocabulary, it should be pointed out that you had the same to say about Dewalt’s ratchets – https://toolguyd.com/dewalt-ratchets-are-hitting-the-market-2018/ . At least you’re consistent.
The market is already saturated with Chinese made ratchets. This ratchet like most looks nice but most of us already have ratchet sets. Not sure what Milwaukee is thinking about their perceived share of the market. My old Craftsman and Armstrong ratchets work fine after decades of use. I suspect the newer chrome shiny ratchets are designed to entice buyers to make an impulse purchase at Home Depot. Side note: Milwaukee is making reciprocating saws again in the US after a long absence.
Chad g Wilkins
Wow. A lot of stupid in one single comment thread. People regularly say “taiwan/china is all the same” thats as true as it would be to say “usa and puerto rico, all the same”. Or “usa and guam, all the same”. Would any of the mouth breathers make this argument? No? Why not? Thats the same relationship prc and taiwan have. I’m sorry you don’t like the truth. The cold, simple truth is this- the usa cannot stand alone, and hasn’t in a LONG time. We, as a nation (yes, that includes you) have long demanded everything we have be available cheaper. Don’t be mad that the role got filled. We, again as a nation, did this while DEMANDING that the good ole american worker gets MORE PAY, BETTER BENEFITS, BETTER WORKING CONDITIONS. Because, By golly we’re AMERICANS AND WE DESERVE THIS! But, while you’re doing this, don’t you DARE raise prices to fund these things, as we scream that “THE COMPANIES CAN AFFORD THE LOSS, BECAUSE CEOS AND PEOPLE WHO BUILT THE COMPANY MAKE TOO MUCH MONEY” in our proudly capitalist country.
Indeed, support your country. Put more money into the hands of global snap on stock holders hands by taking advantage of snap ons predatory no problem credit programs, while they farm out more tools, and hire more immigrants at low wages in the us factories they do have!
“But, but, i do my part!” You stammer, so sure of yourself. No, you really don’t. You buy cars assembled from global components. You watch tvs and browse phones and computers made overseas, from foreign parts. You eat off silverware bought from walmart, made of foreign steels, in a far off land.
“But i have to do that!” You protest, “the usa doesn’t MAKE that stuff anymore!” So? You don’t HAVE to have any of that stuff. No phone, no computer, no tv. The cold, comfortless truth is you don’t WANT to be without that crap. What you’ve chosen to do instead, is make a meaningless stand about tools, of all things, on a thin plastic soap box and parrot the same inane pack of lies you’ve fell for for years, while wearing your made in china nike jacket. Get real.
Highly polished chrome indeed. Makes me wish I needed another ratchet…
If for some reason I went out of my mind and decided to buy an inferior ratchet that’s made overseas, I would hop on Zoro.com and purchase a nice looking made in Taiwan one with a 4.2° arc swing for $14 after the coupon code. As others have mentioned, why would I spend almost 3 times that for this Milwaukee that’s made in China?
Milwaukee is ALL China, other than corded Recips and cutting accessories, made somewhere in the south (MS, I think) Pick up any tool, and it’s “Professionally made by Milwaukee in PRC” or some such.
Milwaukee’s parent company (also owns Ryobi and manufactures Ridgid under license) is Chinese. Techtronic Industries.
I really want to buy one….but as mentioned, I really like a good quick release button. Price isn’t a big deal, it appears to be worth it. I’m a Milwaukee fanboy, but I think I’d be happier with a SK, Gearwrench, or eBay Snap-On. I have the GW 120xp line and have had zero complaints.
About the sockets….there might be something to that square design. I bet it limits rolling way back under the workbench, etc.
It may limit the “roll” when static, but once these “square” sockets start rolling they keep rolling on the basis of perpetual motion. Even on a flat surface, if you roll one my hand, it will continue to roll. I imaging on a sloped surface it would be even worse. Their “anti-roll” claim is loose as best.
So mechanics work in shops with aggressively sloped floors? The flats 100% work if they drop on the concrete in a shop setting, which is the target market.
Would you elaborate on this “…..basis of perpetual motion”?
Looks nice but I bet that thing would be incredibly hard to hold on to if a little oil or grease got on the handle.
Digging the squared off sockets though. Mine are constantly trying to roll to freedom.
Even the harbor freight ratchets are made in Taiwan, which is uniformally thought to be of a higher quality source than China, both for hand tools and larger cast iron machinery.
Other then red brand fanboys – what’s the point of these high price Chinese socket sets?
No doubt there are some very high quality hand tools coming out of the Asian countries, but why not go with the ones that are not priced as premium grade?
Lord knows, I’ve had so many absolute crap USA made Craftsman ratchets that I’ve given up on them completely.
Been turning made in USA (And one china) Craftsman ratchets for 20 years started when 10. I have a snap on and a couple others but always grab the craftsman. Just feels right after all this time. With that said the squared sockets look like they could have some use, if I didn’t have so many already.
I’ve had brand new replacement craftsmen ratchets that are wonky from the start. Just about every one I have still is the polar opposite of smooth operation. Do they work? Yes. But are they a pleasure and ease to use ? Heck no.
To each their own. The sears Chinese ones are junk no doubt. I’ll continue to use mine because it works good and feels good in my hand. The new SBD ones feel ok but no need to buy a new one at the moment and really do not like that I cannot service them.
I’ve had 4 craftsman ratchets bind and stop working. Tired of chasing around to warranty them. Next.
As an aside Apple actually makes their MacPro in the US. That’s about it though.
BMW has their largest plant worldwide here in the US and exports most of its output.
But most tools appear to be retail impulse purchase items which logically nearly always equates to “value” retail purchase.
This site is a specialist oriented one for obvious reasons and “we” aren’t the average retail buyer.
So while I appreciate Joe the Framer’s “enthusiasm” it just isn’t to me real world rational.
I really wish your comment about MacBook Pros was right, but unfortunately you are incorrect. They are assembled in China.
Here we have yet another ratchet made by a company that has never been known to have made wrenches, ratchets, or anything related to any type of trade that a ratchet or wrench is used for until this past year or two. It sucks pretty bad that Armstrong, who was a well known manufacturer of quality made in the USA wrenches goes out of business and a made in China pointless product like this from Milwaukee gets introduced to the market. The best part is that Milwaukee doesn’t even make socket extensions or u-joint extensions or crow’s feet or torx drive sockets or socket drive adapters or anything that is used with a ratchet. They don’t even make a ¼” drive or ½” drive ratchet. And again they don’t even make adapters to use with this ratchet. What a joke. What’s the point of making it? There’s something really wrong here. But then again it’s Milwaukee, so I’m not surprised.
I have started to believe that you don’t even read posts, and that you only look at the headlines before heading to the comments section to angrily rant and complain.
No 1/4″ ratchet? Read the post.
No socket extensions? Yes, in sets. Open stock? No (not yet?).
Milwaukee’s wrenches resemble those made by Infar, which also makes 90-tooth ratchets. If Infar is the OEM, it’s possible that they’re the maker of Milwaukee’s ratchets and sockets too.
Armstrong didn’t go out of business, at least not in the way the phrase suggests – they were shut down by their parent company.
Milwaukee wrenches are made in Taiwan, not China. Perhaps that’s true for these ratchets as well.
But only until mother China takes over Taiwan.
I own a lot of Milwaukee cordless tools..
That said I will not buy any cool hand tools,made by any any othermanufacturers, Huskey/DeWalt/Milwaukee/Kobalt/Harbour freight/Makita /craftsman/gear wrench .
Nor any brand that is not an established,owned by a parent company,or so cool they will change at the drop of a hat.
In 30 yrs,an estwing hammer,Knipex/channel lock pliers, Wera screwdriver, Snap on wrench, Montezuma toolbox,all will have some value.
And most importantly, someone to buy parts from.
I buy electronics as a disposable,they have a short ..finite lifespan.
Buy hand tools for 30 years,by cordless for 5.
I’m pretty sure those milwaukee socket sets and ratchets are made in Taiwan not in China, Peoples Republic of.
The last thing i need is another ratchet let alone square based sockets but, i would like to be able to hold, touch, and feel the crispness of the ratcheting action along with the other set contents before judging it.
Some of my favorite tools are made in Taiwan. To me it’s all about the tool and how it performs rather than where it’s made.
100%. Its a global market people.
Other Milwaukee-branded things that we’re in desperate need of: Milwaukee matches and Milwaukee salt! There are simply not enough companies making those, same as ratchets, Milwaukee, please, please step up to the plate and help us!
They should have made them black with red lettering to match all their other tool colors …….
I’ll have to wait and see – even with a 90 tooth design, it would have to be pretty special for me to pony up the extra cash for another ratchet.
Also: the Milwaukee 106 piece set is back in stock at Home Depot:
The 56 piece set with a six piece screwdriver set is on a great sale right now at HD. Just picked it up.