Cheap tools

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Normally I buy quality tools but with some the cheap s*** is just as good. I am getting ready to make a some walnut columns 12" by 96" and need a bunch of 6" bar clamps. Checked Ebay and there were several sellers of the clamps. I picked the guy in AK as I figured the freight would be less and bought 16 clamps. Price was about $40 including freight. Nice surprise when they came. Bar is chrome plated, over all finish good and they work as well as the $20 name brand clamps. Contacted the seller and I can get another 100 for $210 including freight. Also bought a 40 piece set of 1/2" carbide router bits as the set had some that I wanted but never needed enough to buy. I was hoping that they would last long enough for small special projects and then I would throw them away as they were cheaper to buy than have sharpened. The first one I used was a 1/2" straight bit to rough out a 390 lb finial of fresh cut oak. ( You can see it on my site.) Milled the 14.5" square by 38" piece into an octagon removing about 100 lbs. At the end the bit was still sharp! WWW.Homier.com has large deep throat bar clamp sets. 6 for $20! I bought 2 sets when their traveling sale was here. They have worked great except for one which I had to weld the head on. I was at Wal Mart and they had 25' tape measures for $2.28 each. Marked in inches and metric. Bought 10 and still have problems finding one in the shop. They work as well as the $20 Stanley.
--
Art Ransom
Lancaster , Texas
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Do you work for Homier? I can't think of any other reason to recommend their products (have once been stupid enough to have gone to one of their sales, and having every single item break the first time I used it.).
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I have found some of the same thoughts. While I never thought I would be mixing Harbor Freight with my Delta, Porter Cable and Powermatic tastes. I needed a crown stapler for some light work, $20 at Harbor Freight and the dang thing works as well as my $140 PC brad nailer. 6" Pittsburgh clamps from Harbor Freight, sit right next to my Jorgensons, interchangable. I'm not about to replace my Powermatic tablesaw with a Harbor Freight or Homier don't get me wrong, but there are some pretty helpfull cheap items from those guys when you don't have enough usage to warrent the expense. Specifically the $7 dial indicator (great for TS alignement and joiner blade alignments), $20 digital caliper, pittsburg clamps, cheap bits (spade and forstner) when you want to grind an odd size. But have had some dissapointments also, T-Handle hex were pretty soft.
Phil
Art Ransom wrote:

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In Houston, we have a very interesting shop called empire tools. They have a huge, enormous, gargantuan stock of import tools. I've bought many utility F clamps from them and I am very satisfied. This particular dealer is no fly-by-night junk dealer. They also carry most name brands in hand tools and they are the regional repair center for Dewalt tools.
There is still no cheap import substitute for Bessey K-body clamps that I can find <sigh>.
Bob
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Hi,
For all of those newbies in the UK, I recommed "The 99p Store" - they have sooo many good deals, like fibreglass handled rubber mallets, tennon saws & mirtre box sets etc... Some things aren't so good though... stay away from their "budget block plane" it's cr*p it just scratches the piece making a mess for the sander.
Cheers,
SB
-----------

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Mon, Nov 15, 2004, 4:22pm (EST+5) snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (SB) says: <snip> "budget block plane" it's cr*p it just scratches the piece makinga mess for the sander.
You sure it didn't need sharpening?
JOAT Any plan is bad which is incapable of modification. - Publilius Syrus
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On Mon, 15 Nov 2004 19:14:05 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

No, it needed a good beating with the 99p brickie's lump hammer.
My parents gave my son one of these. I managed to dispose of it safely, after first demonstrating to him why it was rubbish, and why he should be grateful for his ancient 60 1/2
Years ago they gave me a Stanley 102 block plane, as part of my first toolkit. It took me _thirty_years_ to make that thing work right. Planing is easy. Setting up a plane is hard. Setting up something with such a crude adjustment mechanism makes it even harder. Kids need, even more than experts, a plane that's easily and reliably adjustable.
If I had the cash to spare, I'd have bought him another LV low-angle. The plane that goes dull annually, and can be adjusted by turning the knob to the depth you want.
--
Smert' spamionam

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wrote:

You can never have too many clamps. Look out for the 2" and 3" clamps - a pair on a cardboard backing for about a quid.
--
Smert' spamionam

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wrote:
I use a lot of harbor freight stuff, especially clamps.. Last sale, I bought a lot of 6" bar clamps for $2 each and 12" for $2.50.. They're better than the one's I bought on ebay, and seem as good as the old jorgies that I've been using.. and the HF ones even came with soft "non-marring" covers like the ones that I bought for the jorgies..
I'll even admit that I buy saw blades there... *blush* I bought five 10", 80 point carbide blades for $10 each, thinking that I'd use them until they needed sharpening and them just throw them in the recycle bin and throw a new one on, instead of having my better (but still not "good") get dulled by cutting mdf, etc... Damned if the first one that I put on the CMS over a month ago isn't still cutting splinter free and seems as sharp as new... I know that the blades are cheap and not "finish" quality, but they do what I need them to do in the CMS and I never seem to get good blades into the sharpening shop until the y REALLY need sharpening.. nice to have a disposable blade to change like razors... lol

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Mon, Nov 15, 2004, 4:53pm (EST+5) snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (macdavis) says: I use a lot of harbor freight stuff, especially clamps.. Last sale, I bought a lot of 6" bar clamps for $2 each <snip>
For 6" clamps, I check Big Lots. They have what I call "quick clamps" (tighten with one hand) 6 inchers at around $2 each. Also got some 12" bar clamps there that work great, for around $2, and a few 24" bar clamps for just a bit more.
But, if you want inexpensive clamps, make some wood cam clamps. Once you make your first one, all the mystery is gone, and they go together fast after that. Most of mine are about 99.99% plywood (usually scrap, rather than new), and one short piece of store-bought dowel, for a pivot. They're almost free, except for time spent, and work. Work good. If you want plans, I've posted several, at different times, so just check the archives.
JOAT Any plan is bad which is incapable of modification. - Publilius Syrus
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On Mon, 15 Nov 2004 13:01:29 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (J T) wrote:

I made several cam clamps a few months ago.. from the shopsmith site, I think.. they're good for some applications, bit I love having tons of bar clamps around in different sizes.. I just got four 24" clamps on ebay.. I think I paid $22 including shipping.. I never thought I'd say this, but the HF ones were better.. lol
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Don't let Toller bother you. There are lots of times and lots of areas where cheap tools are called for. Foe example, those $5 sets of open end wrenches with the little metal clip around them. While these are not the tools that I would have in my garage tool chest (I don't do mechanical work for a living so I don't need Snap-On either), they are perfect for the truck toolbox that only comes out for the unexpected and usually small task. They are also what is in the toolbox that I keep in my jetski that I hope I never have to use. In other words, they are adequate for the task assigned.
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snipped-for-privacy@nhsd.k2.pa.us says...

quality than what came with the bike :-).
--
Homo sapiens is a goal, not a description

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First attempt to use a channel lock pliers resulted in it breaking into more pieces than designed. It was THEN that I spotted the China logo on the side! I don't have time for cheap tools!
On Mon, 15 Nov 2004 16:36:43 -0800, Larry Blanchard

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On Tue, 16 Nov 2004 08:46:52 -0500, " snipped-for-privacy@vcoms.net"

you have to watch what you buy and expect to get what you pay for..
on my 1st trip to HF, I got a "great" deal on a 3 piece set of "locking pliers".. the 1st time I used one, the threads pulled right out of the handle! I took them back and thought that I'd never buy from HF again..
funny how things change, though.. my shop is full of HF clamps, bench pegs, sanding belts & disks, even a belt/disk sander... I wouldn't buy pliers, wrenches, sockets, etc. from them, but on some things inexpensive is just as good as name brand.. BTW, have you seen any tools lately that aren't Chi-wan-ese??
My wife spent $160 last month for my biscuit jointer... it's a Craftsman, made by Dewalt, in China... go figure..lol

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Not everything in China is cheaply made. They have come a long way and produce good quality when specified. As long as people keep buying cheap junk, they will make that also.
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wrote:

My mail order bride sure wasn't cheap!
Seriously, I have a $3000 bicycle with a frame that was made in China. There is a huge difference between this bike and a $40 made in China Wal-Mart bike.
Barry
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Guys, I'm getting that deja vu thing. These same discussions were held about Japan and Korea back in the '70s and 80s.
People only laughed at Japan for a little while, China is going to make the rest of the world's economies look feeble within most of our lifetimes.
IMHO anyway.
--

Greg



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On Wed, 17 Nov 2004 23:08:33 +1100, "Greg Millen"

I'm with you on that!
Once upon a time Toyota, Honda, Subaru, and Datsun were "off" brands. <G>
Now Subaru's building Saabs, Toyota and Nissan have serious big trucks, and Honda leads the world in quality and forward thinking technology.
Barry
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On Wed, 17 Nov 2004 12:28:22 GMT, Ba r r y

No, they're building crappy GM cars with Saab badges on them. Even Saab haven't built a Saab in years.
My Saab-nut friend over the road is driving a 900 Turbo these days that's even older (20 years?) than my Volvo. This is in preference to his more recent Saabs, because "the 900 was the last Real One".
In comparison to Japan, there's a big difference with Korea. Japan got the quality of their manufacturing industry right, Korea failed to. Would _you_ want to drive a Daewoo ? They looked shiny at first, all the extra gadgets and features, and plenty of people thought they'd be another low-end Datsun. The reality turned out to be reliability that's more like a Lada.
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