I have looked on ebay and have found a few places that are selling
non-brand tools from China. Does anyone know if these items are worth
buying. I have included a few ebay links for some of the items.
Run away and don't look back. Be afraid.
Asian import tools can be a good value, but only when sold by a real company
(like Delta) or sometimes by a semi-real outfit like HF. The eBay guys import
small lots of them direct from the factory and then turn them over. No one to
provide quality control.
I bought an "Aerotek" drill press off eBay a while back. It looked like it was
made by monkeys swinging axes. Total crap and unusable as a tool. I also bought
an HF grinder that couldn't file a fingernail.
Cutting tools are usually soft or brittle, heavt tools are poorly cast and
machined, lots of portable power tools are flimsy, have bad designs, poor
construction, short lifespans, etc.
Tools from ROC are typically inferior.
With that said I have plenty (small power tools & hand tools).
Why spend 10 times more on something you might use only occassionally?
I always consider usage. If it's something I require precision out of
or will use heavily (and expect to last a lifetime +/-), then I'll
spring the extra bucks.
I recently purchased a Yorkcraft 8" jointer and 15" planer from Wilke
Machinery. These are ROC. The machines are fairly well made and
accurate. The finish is where the sacrifice comes in. The castings are
rough compared to American brands which will mill the surfaces smoother
or simply have better casting techniques (?). I can live with that.
Wilke said I can return them if I didn't like them. They are gonna be
in the shop a long time!
I was given an old lathe once to get my feet wet. I didn't have tools.
HF had a basic set for $5. I'm glad I didn't spring for a more
expensive set (even $10!). The lathe went in short order - I still have
One last ancedote...I'm in mid-reroofing. I bought a roofing nailer
from HF for $130 just for this job. Check out eBay - I'll get my money
back and will have saved time and money.
Mark from Pasadena, MD
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