I've got 20 years in a couple careers using 1/2 and 3/8 (real) CP
impact guns and am well aware of their size, advantages, and
disadvantages. Never did like air ratchets... too damn noisy for my
Never have been able to loosen much of anything with those two CPs and
the toy (pick-up-able) compressor in my garage.
Tried a Harbor Freight electric impact for less than $40 out the door
and it did the job I needed. Must have got a Wednesday one as it has
proved reliable and competent. From what I read, there are lots of
Monday and Friday products at Harbor Freight and it is a crap shoot
but the fact is that nothing one can buy at Harbor Freight is
"tradesman" quality and you do get what you pay for... and sometimes
BTW, Chicago is a Harbor Freight house brand but CP (Chicago
Pneumatic) is NOT. CP and IR are old time, long-lived and well
respected... when made in the USA.
Stormin Mormon wrote:
But quality is not a consideration sometimes. I was at HD recently and
noticed a chap with about ten sponge brushes in his basket (at $1.25 each).
You can get a ten-pack at Harbor Freight for 88¢!
Where quality IS a consideration, HF can sometimes surpass others. Every
builder's square I've ever seen has the measurements stamped into the steel.
After some relatively short time, these numbers become hard to read as the
tool gets slightly oxidized or banged around. I got a replacement ($4.99)
that has the measurements in brown on a yellow enameled background and
couldn't be more pleased.
I have a lot of my fathers old tools, one of them being a square with
the measurements. It had seen water a few times so in addition to the
dirt there was also rust and it was very hard to read the rulers. I
cleaned off various paint drips and what not then put on a strong mix of
muriatic acid. (Outdoors!!!) It cleaned up like new and I gave it a
coat of car wax.
Somehow a crappy job can go easier when I think of all the times my
father (diseased) used the same tools I have in my hand.
After acid cleaning, and before waxing, paint the square witha bright
coloured paint. When dry, sand it off and the numbers are very
visible, being filled with bright paint.
wax or varnish when finished.
On Sat, 8 Aug 2009 10:21:20 -0700 (PDT), "justalurker ."
Which CP has NOT been for over 30 years. My first CP was American
built - made in the early sixties. I bought it used (was originally
owned/used by a NASCAR team) in 1968.
My second CP was made ine Ireland in the seventies.. I suspect most
are now made somewhere in the far east.
Both my 1/2" CP734 and my 3/8" CP725 are made in the USA
Professionals buy quality tools and only have to buy them ONCE... 30
years is just a tick of the clock.
I've got a pair of Klein pliers made in 1952 that still easily snap
I got by with a so so compressor for years, and did serious work, like
engine, & transmission changes, Even had an air jack I picked up at a
swap meet. You have to wait for the volume/ pressure to build up, and
a stubborn nut may require a shot of oil in the impact for a little
better seal, but you can do it, though a little slower than you might
like. Mine fortunately had a pretty big tank, but the compressor
wouldn't handle sustained impacting for long. You hammer, you wait,
you hammer some more. We even ran a disc orbital sander, but again 3
minutes would be along run. I have and had an air grinder, that was
out of the question, it was like an open hose. I have a nice dual
stage vertical now, and starting at 160 psi is a lot better than
starting at 120 psi, the air grinder still gets ahead of it though, &
the DA will run a bit longer, maybe 5-7 minutes, but it still will get
ahead of the compressor. I have a big industrial 3 cylinder 2 stage in
the back of my shop waiting on a $300 motor, hopefully that should be
I'm fully expecting to do wrenching in short spurts.
As to your air grinder, I'd suggest you look into an
electric motor powered grinder. Eliminate the air compressor
altogether. Of course, such a grinder might be heavier, or
larger than you want.
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