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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: November 7, 2008, 6:31 pm 
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Joined: July 17, 2008, 9:11 am
Posts: 5154
Location: West Chicago,IL
I'm a big fan of Harbor Freight. From a utility trailer, to pneumatic brad nailer; from framing nailer to auto darkening welder mask; and everything inbetween. After 3 years, I had to add a ground wire around the tilt mechanism of the trailer to ensure the lights worked all the time.


I am currently on my 2nd angle grinder from HF after many years of hobby use. I use it for just about everything including tube cutting and weld grinding. I have always bought the 1/16" cutoff disks in the 10-pack when they go on sale for less than $5. Recently I needed some cutoff disks and didn't take the time to run to HF and bought a few from Menard's, a Midwest version of Home Depot or Lowes. These were slightly over $1 per disk. Boy, do they last! I am still on my 1st disk. It does make the HF disks look like they are made out of dust glued together. I highly recommend trying someplace other than HF for the cutoff disks. Still buy the tools at HF.


P.S. I gotta get one of the digital angle gauges. It will be on my Xmas List.


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PostPosted: November 8, 2008, 10:25 am 
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Joined: September 16, 2008, 3:44 pm
Posts: 15
Location: Cedar Key
rust_bucket wrote:
My HF chop saw finally gave up the ghost last night. It just wouldn't fire back up after a cut. It wasn't a terribly difficult cut, just some 2" squre 14Ga. Sigh.

I knew I would be lucky if it lasted the duration of the build, but I did hope it would make it up to the last few cuts. I still have the rear structure behind the aft firewall, the roll bar, and numereous brackets and mounts.

I do have to admit I surely did get at least $50 worth of cuts out of it.

My backup is my trusty Dewalt 4.5" angle grinder. This is it's 5th vehicle worth of service. Amazing.


RIP HF chop saw. :(


I had the same problem and it was just the brushes. Took them out, flipped them over and the saw is back up to speed. Just bought a JET bandsaw on craigslist for $175. One size up from the HF cheapie and a little better built. It took a little adjusting to get it to cut perfectly square but was worth the time spent. I had to think in three dimensions and carefully follow the instructions for tolerances on the rollers...feeler gauge.

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PostPosted: November 21, 2008, 12:05 pm 
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Joined: August 15, 2005, 10:13 pm
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Location: Charleston, WV
Coupon attached.


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PostPosted: November 21, 2008, 2:59 pm 
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Joined: February 20, 2006, 11:18 am
Posts: 3164
Location: Lexington, KY
Cool! Can't recall the last time they sent a % off coupon.

Thanks,
-dave

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PostPosted: November 21, 2008, 3:03 pm 
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Joined: August 6, 2008, 9:40 am
Posts: 532
Location: Greenville/Charlotte NC
Because obviously their stuff isn't cheap enough :)

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PostPosted: November 21, 2008, 3:46 pm 
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Joined: September 25, 2008, 6:13 pm
Posts: 468
Location: Los Angeles, CA
That $1200 lathe just got a little sweeter.


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PostPosted: November 23, 2008, 6:08 pm 
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Joined: August 6, 2008, 9:40 am
Posts: 532
Location: Greenville/Charlotte NC
I used my coupon to buy a set of impact sockets, I also picked up some impact ball swivels and a digital caliper for measuring stuff. I only spent $50 on this stuff, so I feel like I got out like a bandit! :twisted:

I dont have an impact gun here in greenville to test out the sockets or swivels, but I did play around with the calipers and took some random measurements of random stuff. It seems to work pretty well actually! I wish they had a large micrometer that wasnt in a 3 piece set, but I'll make do with this caliper. I'll be back in charlotte at the shop on tuesday to take apart my SR20, so I'll let you guys know how the impacts perform when I get to that :)


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PostPosted: November 23, 2008, 11:42 pm 
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Joined: July 19, 2007, 4:09 pm
Posts: 550
Location: Austin, Tx
I used the digital mic for a while. Its nice and does a decent job but not as good as a well built dial faced one.

Im thinking about a sheet metal brake. Anyone had some experiences with the HF one? It would be the ~3 ft red one on its own stand.


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PostPosted: November 23, 2008, 11:57 pm 
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Joined: November 9, 2007, 3:40 pm
Posts: 3969
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
I've used that one before...I think its a pretty nice little brake for the home workshop. Doing thick material isn't its strong point (over 0.090"-0.125" steel) but its great for aluminum and steel sheet.

Its only short coming is its inability to do box and pan features easily. The solution is to start the bends using the brake and complete them by hand.

It used to go on sale for $160ish IIRC. They seem to have raised the price. :(

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PostPosted: December 9, 2008, 8:53 pm 
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Joined: August 15, 2005, 10:13 pm
Posts: 7046
Location: Charleston, WV
More HF bending tools heading your way! These gems looks perfect for bending your upper luggage rack area:
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/d ... mber=98613
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/d ... mber=95806

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PostPosted: December 29, 2008, 7:09 pm 
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Joined: October 27, 2006, 3:29 pm
Posts: 430
Location: Indiana
HF electric sheet metal shears. Worked for great for about 30 min cutting 16 ga steel in straight line cuts then snapped one of the fixed blades (no twists or curves). Worthless now unless they carry extra blades at the store to fix it. I'm lucky I have a HF retail store 15min from home. I will let you know what I find out about parts. Not sure I want to buy another whole shear (at least a HF unit).

Mark M.

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PostPosted: January 7, 2009, 11:39 am 
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Joined: October 10, 2006, 9:56 am
Posts: 195
Location: Maryland
I got an adjustable auto darkening helmet for Christmas. I'm wondering how I've gotten along without it. I have the darkness set to 11 and I can see the bead a lot better. I can also start the weld better because I can see when I pull the trigger. Big thumbs up on this one.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/d ... mber=46092

Mark


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PostPosted: January 27, 2009, 11:23 am 
My input...

Drill sets - Very pleased, sharp, accurately ground, hard enough A

Digi calipers - Accurate, decently made, but still use batteries even switched off...need to remove them if you store the calipers. B

Electric hand held belt sander - Works Ok, but screws work loose and belt life can be poor C

Many more but will add when I remember.

Alan


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PostPosted: January 29, 2009, 5:08 pm 
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Joined: January 14, 2006, 1:06 pm
Posts: 813
Location: Vista (north of San Diego CA)
One bit of advice on a BAD HF brand: Stay away from DrillMaster anything. I got two DM tools at different times, the first was an angle grinder. The internal fan grenaded and jammed the motor the very first time I went to use it. Another time I picked up a DM cordless drill. Got it home and charged it, and it was dead. It never so much as turned one revolution.

The prices are very attractive on DrillMaster, but if it doesn't work, it isn't worth it at any price.

On the other hand, I have a Chicago something or other (still all made in China) angle grinder that has been a work horse through my entire build and still works great.

John


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PostPosted: March 1, 2009, 4:10 am 
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Joined: March 7, 2006, 6:15 pm
Posts: 2394
Location: Northridge, CA
Tailpipe expanders - DO NOT waste your money.
The fingers broke on the first turn of the wrench, this is one worthless product..

Moti

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