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Old 04-11-2007, 08:02 PM   #1
Pete Holt
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Default Harbor Freight Cordless Impact- only $39!?!

For anyone who does track days or just switches wheels a lot, this is a pretty sweet deal. I went in yesterday because I remember an old thread about them being around $70 or so and being decent for the price.

I was surprised to find 1/2" drive for $39 and spare batteries for $9. I figured it was a piece of junk so I got a 2yr. warranty for $9 just in case. Tried it out last night (to unfortunately switch back to snow tires due to todays weather) and it worked awesome. I think this is my new favorite tool until the battery dies. It will come in awful handy for track days.
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Old 04-12-2007, 04:32 PM   #2
waktasz
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I bought one from there as well and it sucks ass. It won't even take my lugs off unless I start them first with a torque wrench.

Which one exactly did you get? I'll check the name brand on mine tomorrow. It claims up to 150 ft lbs...yea right.
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Old 04-12-2007, 04:35 PM   #3
InfamousDX
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For $39 that is AWESOME. I wouldn't buy the spare battery because once the motor stops outputting the little torque they have, they become disposable. I used mine for lugs and easy suspension bits and it was awesome. Can't beat it since it lasted me a year or 2.
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Old 04-12-2007, 06:23 PM   #4
sajohnson
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I have a different perspective. It seems to me that if a tool is worth buying, it's worth paying extra for one that will get the job done (i.e. not require loosening nuts first with a breaker bar or torque wrench) and is well-made.

In many cases a person will pay more in the long run when they end up throwing away 3 or 4 (or more) cheap tools over the course of a few years. Not to mention the hassle and aggravation of trying to get a job done with a lame tool that isn't up to the task. Cheap tools also tend to be more dangerous.

If a tool will only be needed occasionally, then it may not make sense to buy but you can always rent or borrow.

I know that _sometimes_ it's possible to get a good deal -- buy a tool that is a no-name brand but is made in the same factory. But it is usually true that you get what you pay for.

I change tires quite often but I have a compressor (and I don't autocross or race) so I don't have a need for a cordless impact wrench but if I did, I'd bite the bullet and get a good one. Even a used Milwaukee (for example) would be way better than a new Harbor Freight unit.
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Old 04-12-2007, 06:53 PM   #5
Crawdads
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajohnson View Post
I have a different perspective. It seems to me that if a tool is worth buying, it's worth paying extra for one that will get the job done (i.e. not require loosening nuts first with a breaker bar or torque wrench) and is well-made.

In many cases a person will pay more in the long run when they end up throwing away 3 or 4 (or more) cheap tools over the course of a few years. Not to mention the hassle and aggravation of trying to get a job done with a lame tool that isn't up to the task. Cheap tools also tend to be more dangerous.

If a tool will only be needed occasionally, then it may not make sense to buy but you can always rent or borrow.

I know that _sometimes_ it's possible to get a good deal -- buy a tool that is a no-name brand but is made in the same factory. But it is usually true that you get what you pay for.

I change tires quite often but I have a compressor (and I don't autocross or race) so I don't have a need for a cordless impact wrench but if I did, I'd bite the bullet and get a good one. Even a used Milwaukee (for example) would be way better than a new Harbor Freight unit.
I have a buddy who works at HF...my impact cost me $20, is only used for changing race tires...breaks the lugs loose just fine and if it breaks, I will get another one for free. Sounds fine to me.
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Old 04-12-2007, 09:31 PM   #6
sajohnson
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Originally Posted by Crawdads View Post
I have a buddy who works at HF...my impact cost me $20, is only used for changing race tires...breaks the lugs loose just fine and if it breaks, I will get another one for free. Sounds fine to me.
Cool -- whatever works. When 'waktasz' said that he had to break the lug nuts loose before the impact wrench would remove them that sounded pretty lame.

How is it you can get a free replacement -- because your friend works there? Just curious -- I'd figure the warranty on something like that would be no more than about 90 days.

I suppose if you're only using it to change tires then it's not a big deal -- worst case if it breaks you just do them by hand. But generally speaking, if a person is buying a tool that they need to rely on -- something they really need to get the job done -- I think it's worth the extra money to get something decent. You don't have to buy all Snap-On tools -- Craftsman (or comparable) are generally OK, but there is some really crappy stuff out there -- buyer beware.
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Old 04-13-2007, 11:15 AM   #7
Pete Holt
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Don't worry, I'm not saying this is the best tool by a long shot and I usually only end up with very high end tools and parts because if I buy something, I want it to last. I just thought I would give it a try because it was so cheap and I will not be using it that much. If I was a technician, I wouldn't go near the thing.

It took all four of my wheels off that were torqued to 72 just fine and bolted up my other wheels without any issue. The only time I used a wrench was when I torqued the other wheels on to 65. Much easier than doing it by hand like I was previously and much cheaper than the Craftsman unit I had been trying to convince myself to spring for. A win/win until it breaks and that is what the 2yr. warranty is for.
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