My first order of business with this and every product review is a disclaimer: I am not a professional contractor. I am a farmer and a fine furniture maker. When it comes to construction and renovation projects, I’m a DIYer and weekend warrior. That said, I doubt many professional contractors will be reading my tool reviews. My goal in reviewing tools and products is to provide honest feedback based on my own use and experience with these tools to other regular folks like me- wanting to get their hands dirty, try new things, and get the best value for their hard earned dollars.
So Let’s Talk about the Milwaukee M12 Rocket LED Stand Work Light:
Earlier this year I sung the praises of the Milwaukee 18V Site Light which has been a regular staple around the farm. The M12 has proved to be even more useful. While I appreciate that Milwaukee has kept the price point of this light under $150, if they could figure out how to include a charging feature when the tool was plugged in and keep the price point low, my one complaint with this tool would disappear.
Here’s my honest truth about this light: if you are already on the M12 battery platform, this is an awesome light, and I can’t recommend it enough. I’m impressed in every way by this tool. That said, all my other Milwaukee tools are on the M18 battery system, so if I were purchasing this light for my own personal use, I’d spend the extra $50 and buy the M18 Tower light.
While I was initially concerned about the bulkiness of the folded light, I quickly realized in use that the heft of the base is necessary for stability on the jobsite- even as it is, I’d advise against using this light fully extended in windy conditions, as it’s liable to tip over. There are three detents in the stand, allowing the light to “click” into three different heights. From there, the directional head can be pointed right where it needs to go.
This light is shockingly bright considering the size. Working in a 10’x10’ space around the light, a single light amply illuminates the area for safe work in the dark. For less precise work, it can illuminate a much bigger space, for example, our entire lower pasture, which has come in quite handy multiple times moving big equipment and loading tractors on the trailer after dark (which, in Seattle winter, happens around 4pm). Milwaukee sent the M12 Compact 2.0 AH Battery and Charger kit(retail $69.99) with the light, which will give you about a 30 minute runtime for the light. I prefer to run a 4.0 AH battery in it for a longer run-time.