concrete masonry awards lg

Brushless motors, cordless fastening, 4-stroke engines, and lower vibrations are changing the concrete and masonry landscape. Tools are becoming more powerful, efficient, and safer to use. With improvements taking place across several major tool classes, here are the 2016 Pro Tool Innovation Concrete & Masonry Awards for some of the toughest tools on the planet.

Winner – Breaker Hammers

Hilti TE 800-AVR BreakerHilti TE 800-AVR Breaker

What they said: The Hilti Breaker TE 800-AVR featuring Hi Drive technology delivers an exceptional 15 ft-lbs. of impact energy to break through barriers of demolition performance. With best-in-class power and comfort, the breaker’s D-handle design offers versatility for optimal horizontal and vertical breaking for wall demolition, floor slab correctional work, and breaking out opening for doors and windows.

Hilti equipped the TE-800-AVR with its triple chamber sealing and active cooling system with an intelligent air flow design. The triple chamber design isolates the hammering mechanism, the piston area and chuck to help prevent dust and other harmful external elements from entering the gearing, which reduces repair frequency and extends the life of the tool. The active cooling system allows airflow over electronics, motor, gear and hammering mechanism towards the tool chuck, resulting in much lower operating temperatures while also increasing the life of the seals and lubrication oil.

The TE-800-AVR has the lowest vibration values in its class thanks to Hilti’s innovative Active Vibration Reduction (AVR) sub-chassis system that cuts vibration up to two-thirds when compared to conventional tools.

What we say: You don’t come to a concrete party and expect to keep your hands clean. The same goes for the tools designed to work in such tough conditions. Hilti’s innovation starts with a design that keeps the TE 800-AVR running cooler and with less debris making it inside. This results in longer life for the tool. That’s great, but Hilti also addresses the needs of users in aggressive tasks like breaking, by significantly reducing the vibration that reaches your arms. This allows the user to be productive for longer periods of time. 

Price: $999.00

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  • Makita HM1812 70 lb. Advanced AVT Breaker Hammer

Winner – Demo Hammers

Makita HM1214C 27 lb. AVT Demo HammerMakita HM1214C 27 lb. AVT Demo Hammer

What they said: The Makita HM1214C with AVT is engineered to be the most efficient breaker hammer In its class with a 14 AMP motor that provides 950-1,900 BPM and 25.7 joules of impact energy with less vibration. In addition, it has an automatic brush cut-off system that protects the commutator, and a warning indicator lamp for longer tool life.

The HM1214C is equipped with AVT, Makita’s exclusive counterbalance system that reduces vibration for more efficient hitting power. The breaker hammer also has lower noise at just 102dB. The HM1214C weighs 27.1 lbs., and has a large side handle with an easy-to-operate switch control for better control and comfort. For added convenience, the HM1214C has a 16.4 ft. cord, and accepts the popular SDS-MAX shank for a wide variety of breaker hammer accessories.

The HM1214C with AVT is a hard-hitting breaker hammer for digging, chipping and breaking. Its superior efficiency, versatility and comfort make the HM1214C an ideal breaker hammer for landscapers, pool installers, electricians, plumbers, masons, remodelers, and general contractors seeking a best-in-class industrial quality 27 lb. breaker hammer.

What we say: Makita’s HM12114C 27 lb. Breaker Hammer features excellent performance characteristics, but what really sets it apart is the AVT vibration control system. This counterbalance mechanism significantly reduces vibration from both the tool’s action and the impact of tearing up concrete. The less vibration that reaches your arms, the longer you can work effectively, and that’s a win in our book. 

Price: $868.72

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Winner – Rotary Hammers

Hitachi DH40MEYHitachi DH40MEY Rotary Hammer

What they said: Hitachi’s new DH40MEY 1-9/16” AC Brushless rotary hammer is the world’s first AC Brushless rotary hammer on the market to date. This allows the tool to be free from costly and time consuming repairs such as carbon brush replacements and worn or burnt armatures. The AC Brushless motor allows the DH40MEY to operate using long extension cords and the tool does not suffer the effects of voltage drop.

he DH40MEY is equipped with Hitachi’s User Vibration Protection (UVP) technology to reduce recoil via an internal counter weight and spring, as well as vibration reducing handles. Not only is the tool more comfortable to use, but it is also safer by extending the exposure period to vibration and limiting vibration related injuries.

What we say: There are a lot of features on Hitachi’s DH40MEY Rotary Hammer that bring vibration reduction, durability, ergonomics, and electronic protection to the table. The really big deal is that Hitachi is first to the market with an AC brushless motor on their SDS-Max rotary hammer. Before you wonder why they’d put a motor most notably used in cordless tools in a corded rotary hammer, there are greater benefits than just longer run time. Greater efficiency leads to less heat build up and stress on the motor, extending the life of the tool. There is also less maintenance to worry about with no carbon brushes to replace. 

Price: $599.00

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Winner – Cordless Rotary Hammers

Milwaukee M18 FUEL SDS Max Rotary HammerMilwaukee M18 FUEL SDS Max Rotary Hammer

What they said: We’re excited to not only deliver the world’s first cordless SDS Max rotary hammer, but also the world’s first SDS Max rotary hammer solution powered by an 18V battery. For the first time, users won’t be limited to an extension cord or generator when they need to use a larger hammer. By utilizing proprietary M18 and FUEL technologies, Milwaukee has developed a rotary hammer with a 1-9/16” drilling capacity and the power to chip continuously for up to 20 minutes. The ability for our users to power this SDS Max off the same M18 REDLITHIUM battery system they’ve been using with their SDS Plus solutions will provide unrivaled productivity.

What we say: With battery technology advancing as quickly as it has, it was only a matter of time before someone developed a cordless SDS-Max rotary hammer. With their focus on other cordless rotary hammers, we’re not at all surprised Milwaukee claims the crown as the first. As you’d expect from a Pro level tool, Milwaukee’s M18 Fuel SDS Max Rotary Hammer does more than just hold an SDS-Max bit. It’s a truly effective cordless model. With drilling capacity up to 1-9/16” and the run time available with the new 9.0 amp hour High Demand battery, concrete drilling applications are looking more and more cordless. 

Price: $799.00

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Winner – Concrete/Masonry Mixing Paddles

OX Tools MixM8OX Tools MixM8

What they said: The truly revolutionary new mixing paddle, MixM8 is so dissimilar to any existing mixing paddle it is an entirely new breed. Because of its unique ‘rabbit ear’ design, it produces smoother mixes, faster and clean-up is easier, even with the stickiest solutions. MixM8 is ideal for mixing small batches of thin sets, mortars, cement, plaster and similar materials.

Unlike traditional steel paddles, MixM8 is a highly flexible and durable plastic whose whirling motion cuts through materials creating a smooth mix that minimizes foam, bubbles, and air entrapment.

What we say: We’ve seen powerful cordless drills work to get to a place where they can take care of mixing duties without burning up. For some reason, however, no one seemed to be looking at the other end of the problem—the mixing paddle. With a flexible design, Ox Tools’ MixM8 essentially creates a soft start as the drill (or other mixing power tool) spins up. Its flexibility also means you can mix along the edges of your bucket without punching a crack in it along the way. Since you can continue mixing into the edges and corners, you’ll no longer have to stop to stir those areas by hand. It’s even durable enough to knock material off if it stays on too long and dries. 

Price: $53.76

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Winner – Power Cutter Saws

Makita EK7651H 14" 75.6 cc MM4 Power CutterMakita EK7651H 14″ 75.6 cc MM4 Power Cutter

What they said:  The 14” MM4 4-Stroke Power Cutter is the world’s first 4-stroke power cutter. The 4-stroke EK7651H delivers several advantages over 2-stroke. No oil mixing is required, so contractors get simplified operation and no more engine failure due to improper mix. The MM4 4-stroke engine eliminates the need for separate mixed oil/fuel can.

For easier starts, the automatic engine decompression valve is engineered into the cam gear to reduce pull-start force by 40%. The EK7651H also has lower noise at 92.7dB(A), smoother idle for continuous operation, and lower fuel consumption at only .45 gallons per hour.

Additional advantages include a three-ring piston engineered for improved commercial engine durability, and reduced exhaust and intake carbon build-up for longer cylinder life. In addition, the EK7651H has a five-stage foam-paper-nylon filtration system with Advance Direction Air Flow to provide cleaner air for improved engine durability.

What we say: When Pro Tool Reviews looked at the Makita MM4 4-Stroke Power Cutter, they wondered if it was possible to put a 4-stroke motor on this class of tool without too much power drop. The benefits of 4-stroke engines are well-documented as are the downsides. Makita has managed to bring the benefits while limiting the negatives with their MM4 engine—particularly in the power department. Beyond that, additional features offer easy starting and enhanced durability. With Makita’s success across multiple tool classes with their MM4 engine, 4-stroke is coming to a jobsite near you and sooner than you may think!

Price: $1,199

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  • Hilti DSH 900-X Hand-held Gas Saw

Winner – Gas (Fuel Cell) Concrete/Masonry Specialty Tools

Hilti GX 2 Gas-Actuated Fastening ToolHilti GX 2 Gas-Actuated Fastening Tool

What they said: The Hilti Gas-actuated fastening tool GX 2 is the right choice for labor-intensive and serial applications such as fastening drywall track to concrete, concrete block or steel, or fastening reveal strips to walls. With its short stroke of ¾-inch before the trigger is engaged and low recoil that reduces fatigue, it is ideal for making fast, continuous fastenings.

The Hilti GX 2 comes with a Hilti 12-volt lithium-ion battery that recharges in 30 minutes and is capable of up to 8,000 fastenings with one charge. The 12-volt battery is fully compatible with other Hilti 12 volt tools such as the impact driver, drill driver and screw driver. The tool also features a convenient gas gauge, battery indicator, an easy disconnect to remove nail jams, adjustable belt hook and quick release magazine, which are not typically found on competitive gas-actuated tools. These features all add up to increased productivity on the job.

The tool is offered with two magazines, a 40 nail magazine which allows for significantly better access in deeper track and uses pins up to ¾ inch, and a 30 nail magazine for fastening up to 19/16-inch nails.

What we say: It used to be concrete fastening tools were primarily power-actuated, but Hilti developed a fuel cell system to cover materials like drywall track, reveal strips, and other light duty applications when powder is just too much force. Hilti addressed one of the major complaints of using gas-actuated systems by reducing the recoil and in turn, the amount of fatigue you feel over the course of a work day. Using the same 12-volt battery found in Hilti drills and drivers, you can drive up to 8,000 fasteners on a charge and each fuel cell will last for up to 1,100 shots. 

Price: $979.00

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Winner – Cordless Concrete/Masonry Specialty Tools

Hilti BX 3 IF Battery-Actuated Fasting ToolHilti BX 3 IF Battery-Actuated Fasting Tool

What they said: The Hilti BX 3 is the first combustion-free direct fastening tool for construction and electrical applications. The Hilti Battery-actuated fastening tool BX 3 combines the speed and productivity of a powder-or gas-actuated tool with the ease and comfort of a cordless tool and is the world’s first battery powered direct fastening tool for concrete and steel. 

At its core, the BX 3 uses “spring-belt” technology to store and transmit energy without having to rely on combustible propellants. A brushless motor powered by a high-quality Hilti 18V battery compresses two heavy duty helical springs with around 800 lbs. of forced-compression for each spring. These springs store energy and deliver it to the piston via fiber belt when the trigger is pulled. The piston then drives the fasteners into concrete or steel, resulting in high productivity with the comfort of lower contact pressure and substantially lower noise compared to powder-or gas-actuated tools.

What we say: If you are excited about Hilti’s fuel cell GX 2 concrete fastening tool, the Hilti BX 3 might just kick off an all out happy dance. Specifically engineered in two models—one for drywall track and the other for electrical applications—the Hilti BX 3 is a lithium-ion powered solution for light-duty concrete fastening. Recoil is reduced compared to powder and fuel cell options, and the noise level comes was down as well. This makes the tool an excellent option when noise control is an issue. The BX 3 uses the same 18V battery as other Hilti 18V cordless tools, so there’s no need to buy into an additional platform to reap the benefits.

Price: $1,179.00

For more information, click here.