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oldred 10-29-2007 11:42 AM

Really good HF tool
I had to weld up some cast iron exhaust manifolds this morning and as is often the case the weld intruded into the ports and bolt holes in order to accomplish a complete weld. I got out my Harbor Freight long nose grinder with a carbide burr and made short work of the excess weld and while doing this it occurred to me how much I have used this thing in the last year and a half since I bought it. I got mine on sale for $29.95 and figured (my usual excuse) that if it did only a couple of jobs it would pay for itself but like the 4 1/2" grinder it is based on it just keeps on kickin! It shares the same basic case as the grinder that has made a reputation for itself as being dependable but turns a burr or stone at 25000 RPM and does so very smoothly which is not usually the case for a cheap die grinder. Most cheap die grinders, air or electric, lack power and are almost always out of balance enough to ruin a stone or carbide($$$) burr in short order making them next to useless, not so with this thing! It runs as smoothly as any die grinder I have ever used and it has plenty of power. I have used mine a lot and I did not baby it I have had it in some very tight places and really abused it with excess side pressure on some jobs but so far it is holding up really well and has paid for itself many times over. If it seems like I am impressed with this tool it is because I am and I can definitely recommend it to anyone needing a die grinder, at least if you can get a sale price on it which is quite often. sorry for the long winded plug but after realizing how much I have used it and how good a job it has done I thought I would pass on what I have found. :)

Henry Highrise 10-29-2007 02:07 PM

Yeppers....sometimes some of those Harbor Freight tools are all right. I have a 4 inch angle grinder that I bought from them....I can't even remember how long rights it should have been worn out years ago, but its still going strong. But the other side of the story is...I have thrown a bunch of Harbor Freight tools in the garbage can when they were still very new.

sonicweb 10-29-2007 03:20 PM

Really good HF tool
Don't throw them away! :nono: Take them back. HF has a replacement guarantee! I have taken items back 2-3 times if I figure it's not worth the trouble I tell them that I bought a new one from another place and they give me in store credit to try something new! 99% of the time there's no hassle. Just tell them what's wrong and they replace it! :thumbup:

busterwivell 10-29-2007 03:45 PM

When I bought my compressor, I bought some HF air tools. I figured I'd replace them with good when the broke, but they haven't yet. I agree with Henry Highrise though, I've bought some of their stuff that got thrown away pretty quickly.

Rob Keller 10-30-2007 06:45 AM

I used a HF Electric Box Hole Know knock out tool last night that did not compleat the job, nope not one hole & it was brand new :rolleyes:

Their elecrtic & air tool are like a sore pee pee ......Can't beat it


oldred 10-30-2007 07:06 AM

That plug was not for Harbor Freight in general, they have some real junk too, it was about that one tool which is an exception. On a lot of the tools they have more than one grade and the very cheapest is far less likely to be any good, such as the 1/2" impact that is regular about $24 that is often on sale for $9.99. Only $9.99 for a 1/2" impact? The price alone should be a red flag but apparently they sell a bunch of them because they have had that model for a long time, I certainly would not even try one of those things and the one I do know of performed about like you would expect of a $10 impact wrench. However they have a much more expensive model called the "Earthquake" that seems to hold up well (mine has) and is a brute for power, at $79 sale price and $99 regular it is not cheap by HF standards but it is less than half the price of the IR "Thunder Gun" that is copied from. HF tools are a crap shoot for sure and looking back I would say about half the stuff I have bought is "ok" and of the remaining half most was bad or just outright junk with only a few items being really good, that die grinder, the 4 1/2" angle grinder and the horazontal band saw (sale $159) being very good quality for the price. Also we don't want to forget that the next one of any of those good items sold may not be so good because even though the design seems to be decent (usually stolen from somewhere else :rolleyes: ) the quality control is not always the best.

scrot 10-30-2007 04:57 PM
I have the same tool. I haven't used it much, but it looks like it's made well. I like the rubber grip.
On sale now for $15.99!! It's like a sore..............

oldred 10-30-2007 06:54 PM

Mine is the Chicago Electric long nose electric grinder, I have not tried that air powered one yet. How well is it balanced, does the stone run smoothly or vibrate?

Rob Keller 10-30-2007 08:43 PM

I really hate those Double dead man levers I either rip them out or melt a piece of shrink wrap on them ,but other than that that looks sweet I will think about that one too.

I try to use electric more & to not run my little compressor so much


oldred 10-30-2007 09:11 PM

Not to knock that air grinder, I have not used one I so I can't say anything good or bad about it but every cheap air die grinder I have seen runs rough (out of balance) and will cause the stone or burr to "bounce" which will cause poor cutting action and extremely short stone/burr life, again not saying that is the case with that one however. I like the electric grinders better because they seem to have more power and the air powered ones are usually quite air hungry for the work they do but often you can use an air grinder where the electric one simply will not fit plus it is easy to control the speed of the air grinder. For less than $20 I guess I will just find out for myself next time I get over there. :)

matt167 10-31-2007 05:52 PM

my HF air die grinder works fine. paid $10 for it. use it mostly for running the 3M rolllock discs

jimfulco 11-05-2007 12:40 AM

The 44141 grinder oldred mentioned in the original post is on sale for $30 right now, until November 12.

Rob Keller 11-05-2007 06:50 PM

I just got one had to snag it off the truck !

Spins fast !

25,000 RPM's :eek:

R :thumbup:

Irelands child 11-06-2007 03:08 PM

My little 1/4" right angle die grinder is HF. While it's a bit weak on power, it works just fine - now - but someday I expect to end up with a bunch of scrap parts in my hand (unless this is the one that got past the inspector and really is a good one) :rolleyes: . Paid ~$20 for it about 5 years ago.

I have a box of fractional, letter and number HF drill bits that are about 20 years old - the bits are Korean rather then Chinese and for the most part have been good tho the fractionals have mostly been replaced by US made thru normal attrition - broke, lost, dull and too lazy to get my Drill Doctor out.


oldred 11-06-2007 03:38 PM

I have a 115 piece set of the TiN coated bits that have been decent, nothing to brag about but they have been worth the 40 bucks I gave for them. I rarely if ever use them except in my drill press or lathe and I would imagine they would break pretty easy if used in a hand held drill, also they were not exactly the sharpest bit I have ever used.

(Mine are Chinese)

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