The number of pros who burn out their rigs trying to mix with them is roughly equal to the number of pros who have ever mixed material. Until recently, there weren't many good options for wireless mixing, so we all settled down and thought "someday…" Milwaukee 2810-20 M18 Fuel Slurry Mixer, the wait is over. or is it?
Sure, the function of the mixer is simple, but can Milwaukee get enough power out of their M18 battery platform to make it work? That's the question we're currently answering, but let's first look at the overall design of the tool.
One of the reasons it's so hard to mix with a cordless drill is that the gearing is all wrong. At best, you can work in low-speed/high-torque mode. But even if you use a variable speed trigger to lower the RPM, the motor still struggles to keep up with a constant load. A brushless motor would help, but you'll still likely experience thermal shutdowns before you've finished your first bucket.
The Milwaukee 2810-20 M18 Fuel Mud Mixer utilizes a larger brushless motor so it has the electronic communication needed to protect itself and its muscles as a primary function.
Powering this motor is an M18 battery (5.0 AH if you purchased the kit). The orientation of the backpack allows you to place the mixer on it, even if you have the paddles installed.
The Milwaukee Cordless Mud Mixer has several ways to adjust or maintain the speed. There is a convenient variable dial with RPM markings instead of just speed 1 – 8. Its position allows you to adjust the speed on the fly with your thumb.
The trigger has a variable speed design and is large enough for two fingers to rest comfortably on it. Since agitators tend to stay under load much longer than other drills and drivers, it's an important feature to help keep finger fatigue low.
But in reality, most of us turn to the lock button when we're mixing. Again, this helps avoid the fatigue associated with controlling the console and depressing the trigger. It's a nice feature, but I'd like to see the buttons stand out more or be bigger. Rough on ungloved hands, difficult to activate with gloves on.
You might be a little disappointed to find out that this model doesn't have a keyless chuck. Now that keyless chucks are so common in the industry, it was a bit surprising to see Milwaukee adopt a keyed system. But again, the load on a blender is very different from the load on a cordless drill. It is possible – even likely – that Milwaukee discovered during testing that the paddles slipped too much for use with the keyless chuck.
At least it stows on board and doesn't interfere with the end of the left handle.
LED lights on a cordless mud mixer? I don't know how necessary this is. But even if you only need it 1% of the time, it's an easy addition. If it gets dark enough that I need a light on my tool, I'm probably already using Milwaukee's Redlithium USB headlight.
Milwaukee 2810-20 handle design
Probably the biggest talking point about the feature set of the Milwaukee M18 Fuel Slurry Mixer is the handle. This is for several different reasons. We've seen several other consoles use the D-handle design on both sides. One of these is from a brand known for its ergonomics, so we had to ask Milwaukee if the dual pistol grips would fit.
There's no good answer to this question – it will come down to preference. For me, the D-handle is a bit more comfortable, but I feel like the Milwaukee's pistol grip gives me more control. While I can't give you a definitive answer on style choices, I wish the handles were a little longer. When using a pistol grip, the closer your hands are to shoulder-width apart, the more natural the grip will be.
Another benefit of the pistol grip design is that Milwaukee can make it more versatile. The left handle has a lever lock and can be rotated 180°. You can adjust an angle that works for you, or simply adjust to the application at hand.
The maximum speed you can hit is 550 RPM, which is fine for mixing. You can also use A Milwaukee 2810-20 M18 Fuel Slurry Agitator for drilling in wood, metal, PVC or composites if you really need it. It's obviously not going to be a high speed drill, but you can use it as a Hole Hawg replacement when torque is more important than drilling speed. There is enough muscle in the motor to be very efficient at this.
Understandably, the blender's physical design isn't as optimal as the Hole Hawg's for this type of work, but the adjustable handle angle helps.
We haven't done a lot of mixing with the denser materials yet, but we like what we've seen so far. When it comes to lighter mixing, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel Mud Mixer is undeniably capable. But what we have to star it for now is that we still have to use it for heavier mixes to see how well it performs in medium to heavy mix applications.
What I can tell you is that, in addition to drilling in wood, metal, and composites, Milwaukee also grades drywall mud, stucco, sheeting, mortar, and epoxy. None of our tests so far have shown any of this to be a problem.
the bottom line
For a normally simple tool, the Milwaukee M18 Fuel Mud Mixer has added features that make the tool even easier to use. Probably the most heated discussion was about using a pistol grip handle on a D-handle. While I can tell you to consider the difference between mountain bike and road bike handlebars, it doesn't help much and really comes down to preference.
I'd like to see some adjustments in Gen 2. However, it's a solid tool with the advantage of a smart design that makes it more compact than existing competitors. While we like the performance we've seen so far, there's more testing to be done before we actually dial in material we believe you can handle wirelessly.
A kit with a pair of 5.0 Ah batteries costs $349, and the wireless convenience is higher than the wired model. But if you're using the M18 battery, it's $199 for the bare tool — closer to the corded Pro model.
- Ability to mix heavy compounds such as concrete and mortar
- Ultimate Speed Control: 3 different speed controls for clean and consistent mixes
- Uses 5.0 AH batteries (5 gallon barrels) up to 15 barrels per charge
- 180° adjustable handle with 16 adjustable settings for user to optimize for comfort and performance
- 1/2″ keyed chuck (in key tool storage)
- led light
Milwaukee 2810-20 M18 Fuel Oil Slurry Mixer Specifications
- Model: Milwaukee 2810-22 (2810-20 naked)
- Power source: Milwaukee 18V battery
- No-load speed: 0 – 550 RPM
- Length: 16.6″
- Height: 9.3″
- Width: 3.3″
- Weight: 7.7 lbs
- Warranty: 5 years
- Price: $199 (bare), $349 (kit)