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Thread: Junk Tools

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    Registered User proppastie's Avatar
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    Junk Tools

    Wasted a whole day back and forth to Harbor freight. I should have know better. Avoid this air shear or any from Central Pneumatic.

    Inline Air Shears I took it apart and it would have worked well if it had 3 planetary gears instead of only one.

    I decided to order a different one from Amazon as they will pay return shipping if it is bad. Many of these style tools have several bad reviews along with the good reviews, so your experience may vary. My guess is many of the heads or nibbler parts could be from the same factory. Might want to keep the thread alive for other tools. Maybe tomorrow I will tell you about the junk Central Machine pan brake I just got.

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    Registered User FritzW's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Quote Originally Posted by proppastie View Post
    ...Might want to keep the thread alive for other tools.
    Great idea!

    Their 60" 4 drawer workbench is listed under two different SKU's. One is absolute junk, the other ...maybe not as bad. (search this forum for details).

    Their tubing roller is pretty good for the price, especially if you add this guy's roller dies.
    Iēsous Christos, Theou Yios, Sōtēr

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    Re: Junk Tools

    Frizw- let us do some arithmetics: the tool retail price is $27. The retailer operate at 50% markup-that tool cost him $17.
    Now- the manufacture sells it to the retailer at 50% markup (at best- its usually 60-70%).
    The manufacture total cost of producing it is $11.
    Now- labor is 30% and material 30%. so..your shears cost of material is around $3.5
    Since the shears raw material is purchase ready made from a subcontractor who also operate at 50% -we come out that your shears cost of material is $2.3.
    Do you realy believe that you can cut steel with $2.3 raw bill material?
    Get a German tool- they crushed Poland in 2 weeks you know...

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    Registered User FritzW's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Quote Originally Posted by Abraham Leket View Post
    Frizw- let us do some arithmetics: ...so..your shears cost of material is around... Do you realy believe that you can cut steel with $2.3 raw bill material?
    Get a German tool- they crushed Poland in 2 weeks you know...
    Abraham,
    I never said s#!t about shears. I said HF workbenches suck and their tube rollers are okay. ...And that I like proppasti's idea of a thread devoted to reviewing HF tools.

    P.S. The Nazi's crushed Poland in two weeks because they were unscrupulous Godless bastards, not because they were good tool makers.
    Iēsous Christos, Theou Yios, Sōtēr

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    Registered User Manticore's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    German tools tend to be like their cars - grossly overpriced & overrated.
    Surprisingly, some of the best quality tools used to be those actually manufactured in the United States.
    I donít know enough to know how much I donít know.

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    Re: Junk Tools

    I've found over the years that you get the quality that you pay for. There have been occasions that it didn't go that way, but they are few and far between. As an example, I will be replacing my two long air hoses that I bought in 1987. They live outside for most of the year. I paid something like 21$ each for them instead of the cheap HF hoses like a friend bought at the same time. He had replaced those hoses several times within the first six months after buying them. His response was that they were the better deal, as he kept getting free replacements when they failed. He wasn't too happy when I pointed out that his "free" replacements cost him a 5 hour trip and 20 gallons of fuel every time he had to go exchange them.

    My feelings....Buy the best quality tools that will perform the job and be ready for the task.

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    Moderator Dana's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Horror Freight has its place. While I go for top quality with most tools, I have some HF stuff too, for infrequently used stuff where a good one would be much more expensive. Got their pneumatic nibbler for one job (metal roof on my house). For under $30 it made it through the roof and a few more years of occasional use, and when it broke they replaced it for free (the nearest HF is an hour away but I'm in the area occasionally anyway). But for the everyday stuff, only the best will do.

    Dana

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    Re: Junk Tools

    Harbor Freight sells some great tool "projects" -- you simply take what you buy from there and use that as the starting point to build something useable that actually works!

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    Re: Junk Tools

    The best buy at HF are the free items each month. They will last about long enough to get another free one next month.

    They keep me in tape measuring tools.

    Dan
    Pops

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    Registered User proppastie's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Quote Originally Posted by Turd Ferguson View Post
    Harbor Freight sells some great tool "projects" -- you simply take what you buy from there and use that as the starting point to build something useable that actually works!
    Now about the pan break, its a Central Machine 48" rated for 22 GA. It was built in 1994 and never been used. The eccentrics that positioned the clamp and the level of the clamp were very poorly designed (bad design). I designed new eccentrics, and added shims to where the clamp pivoted. At $60 bucks it was still perhaps worth it. I kind of admire it as it was ark welded together, so they only had 2 bad mistakes. It is made of 5/8 steel for the clamping area, and should bend thicker material in small pieces. Where it only had 1/8 setback now it has 1/2 set back. Another homebuilder machined the new eccentrics he spent 5 hr. if I had to pay for that it would not have been worth it.

    It appears that there was very poor quality control back then, and perhaps even now. However that could change, it used to be that way with Japan after the war. Time will tell. There is no magic about quality control.


    I never used a pan break, my job was the theory and the guys in the shop had to make it. I learned the material bridges to the clamp so no matter what the setback is unless you add a larger radius to the clamp you will get a smaller bend radius that what you calculated.

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    Re: Junk Tools

    They have their place and have changed the way you have to buy tools. Every time I go to Sears now, what I want is catalog only. Most store visits are not planned. The clunkier the original tool, the better copy you will get. Some of the other stuff is too cheap not to try. At some point everything will be made to those standards anyway; disposable. I will say the tool boxes are not bad; actually better than what Sears is selling now. Electric tools are noisy and some of the wrenches are a joke, but $300 english wheel and meat grinders are hard to beat.

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    Registered User PTAirco's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Yes, they sell crap. They also sell stuff that works, at great prices. My HF pneumatic shears have lasted me years and work just fine. We all would like top quality tools, but I would rather buy a tool to get the job done and get my airplane in the air than play with my fancy tool collection. And brand names are no guarantee anymore; I had DeWalt, Ryobi and others break down on me too. Had two cordless HF drills I used almost every day for 8 years. They still work except I can't get replacement batteries anymore. HF heat guns? A life of a few hours. I still find HF has been a huge help to me and my projects.
    "Aeronautical engineering is highly educated guessing, worked out to five decimal places. Fred Lindsley, Airspeed."

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    Re: Junk Tools

    A problem for one is not always a problem for all. How it broke or did not perform is important.

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    Re: Junk Tools

    Actually, the old "you get what you pay for" rule just isn't really true. What I have found is that just about every manufacturer has either some
    items that don't live up to the reputation or price being charged, and many of the harbor freight cheapies often perform quite well.......but some don't. I keep going back for more, but I'm more selective.

    I have a large ($500) drill press that I use all the time. I replaced the on/off switch with a light switch and it works great for me. I have several engine tilters,crane trolleys,a dolly, caster wheels,chains,sockets, and flange pliers that all work great.
    The cheapo automatic welding helmet works about as well as my more expensive Lincoln helmet. BUT........I have never bought one of their welders or air compressors and probably never will.

    Sears.........Usually you get good quality but they don't have the reputation they used to have. You can get some good buys on wrenches and sockets. I wouldn't ever buy one of their battery powered drills again. They do have decent tool boxes for
    a reasonable price, but I got tired of driving over for their weekly sales events only to find they didn't have any of the things supposedly on sale. That said, I have a ton of Craftsman wrenches and sockets and like them. Quarter inch drive ratchets
    however are often junk and don't work from the day you buy them.

    Mac and Snap on......Way over priced on most everything but they do have some good quality items......they also have stuff like all other suppliers that isn't worth the money. Does anyone believe that their tool boxes are even remotely
    worth the megabucks they sell for. Craigs List is full of people trying to unload these overpriced monoliths. Snap On simply rebrands "Century" welders and claims them as their own. Century is a second or third tier product in the welding and
    Plasma world. My son was in the Air Guard and had to buy tools for his base. He told me many stories of how they couldn't get the arrogant Snap On dealer to replace broken tools even though they spent over a million dollars on tools.
    It got so bad that he looked up the "actual" manufacturers of some of the tools being sold under the Snap On label and could purchase them for about a third of Snap Ons markup.

    So, to me the honest answer is that you can get junk from any of the tool suppliers, but at least Harbor Freight charges you a reasonable price for it............

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    Registered User proppastie's Avatar
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    Re: Junk Tools

    Quote Originally Posted by TFF View Post
    Every time I go to Sears now, what I want is catalog only.
    I was not able to figure out if you can return all bad catalog tools at the store from Sears. Amazon.com sales (careful here must be Amazon.com not third party) has free return shipping. (I think)

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