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hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


leica posted:



Best $35 I ever spent. Combined with a Snap-On torque stick, dealing with wheels is a breeze. Thank god I never have to go to a shop for tire rotation ever again.

HF is like heaven for the DIYer.

I got one of these last summer, and after spending 3 months working on my car, I never used it once. It was just too big for most stuff, Wheels would be a real good use, but whatelse have you used it for?

I ended up trading mine in(about the same cost), and getting the 1/4" cordless one, and a flexi-extension thing (to get it in odd places), and 3/8" adapter I've only used it a few times, but its worked great.
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ct...temnumber=94371
I looked, but I couldn't find the other items on their website.

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hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


oxbrain posted:

I bought one of these on impulse and loved it so much I stopped using my normal adjustable wrenches. The action was a bit sticky at first, but after being soaked in vehicle related fluids it smoothed right up.


I noticed some of those last summer, but didnt get them, I was wondering how well they work.

I just got back from HF a copule hours ago, and poof, there goes $80.

But, I got a bunch of stuff, I got a new airhorn, a set of 1/2 metric sockets, a 1/2" cordless impact(with a free 1 yr extended warrenty), a couple clamps that I have no idea what they are called, but they are like a C-clamp, only more like an E-Clamp, with 3 screws (2 oposing, 1 perpendicular.), some cheap-o ring clip plyers, and a 10-pack of cutoff wheels.

I didnt get the 1/2" electric (ac) drive as its now $70 (wish I kept the one I got for $35!)

I looked at, but didnt get the torque extensions. I've actually seen them before and thought, pretty... whatever. I couldnt tell by looking at them how they work though, it looks like one solid piece. How do those work?

VVV must feel kinda weird... I'll have to try one of those someday.

hippynerd fucked around with this message at 00:44 on Mar 8, 2008

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


oxbrain posted:

Just like a standard adjustable wrench, only faster. The only downside is it's too easy to bump the slider and lose the adjustment.

gee, thats the exact same problem I have with regular open-end adjustable wrenches. I even have some that kind of like a cross between cressent and pipewrench, they do the same thing too.
If it had some kind of locking mechanism (similar to the vicegrips/wrench posted above) I might like it.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Blooot posted:

Weller makes quality inexpensive irons. It is worth spending more that $50 on one though.

Another cheap option -- and particularly good for auto applications -- is a cordless butane powered iron. I've used one before at my old job, but I don't recall the brand. Perhaps someone could recommend one since I am currently in the market for a new iron to replace a 10 year old broken (my fault) Weller station.

Doh! I was going to mention something like that but forgot after reading more posts

I really miss my old archer (radio shack), It had a 60 watt element that got to over 1000 degrees, it burned up tips, but tips are cheap. now I have a couple really crappy $20 units. I saw a decent looking unit at HF today for $50, but decent looking doesnt mean decent working. I've seen usable weller units for as little as $100, one time there was a sweet deal for like $50, but I never checked it out. Nicer units go for over $500.

I've never used this brand, but it looks like a pretty decent deal.
http://www.circuitspecialists.com/prod.itml/icOid/7508
Even get a free digital multi-meter ($25 value!)

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Baby Hitler posted:

I have 2 Wellers at work, one that uses numbered tips for temperature control, and one with a fine-temperature control knob for SMD and stuff. I have a mindbogglingly hot Hakko at home, was only $20 at Frys.


edit: I use a butane pencil torch for battery terminals and other big wiring stuff, and have a 110 watt soldering gun for BIG poo poo that can't get hit with the butane torch.

OMG! You found a use for a soldering gun.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Baby Hitler posted:

Yeah, they really are only good for stained glass, and the torch ususally works better for anything that can take direct flame like battery terminals.

I helped someone do a bunch of stained glass (in exchange for them showing me how...) and it was pretty cool. He used a huge iron (about 1/2" tip), which was way bigger than we needed, but worked fine.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Taymar posted:

I doubt this will exist, but on the offchance - Anyone know of an inexpensive micro torque wrench?

I bought the smallest one Harbor Freight had (1/4") when it was on sale a while back, but it doesn't go low enough for some jobs I've needed it for.

Ideally I need something that can go to around 12 lb-in, but I'm guessing anything that low with any level of accuracy will be pricey?

I've seen torque screwdrivers before, they have much lower settings. I havnt seen them at HF, and they looked kind of expensive. Maybe an electric screwdriver is more your speed. they turn slower, and have a lot less power than hand-drill style drivers.

Somewhere I have an old one, its dead, I keep it because it has a nice big handle.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Anyone ever use the GraBit ?
http://www.official-tv-online.net/grab
I've seen it on tv, and thought, looks like it probably works.. $20 seems a little high for 3 little bits.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Delivery McGee posted:

More like "looks gimmicky as hell." I'd buy the Harbor Freight knockoff for $5, but I don't think it's worth $20.

If you've got a small screw with a stripped head, cut a slot in it with a Dremel and use a regular screwdriver. If it's a big bolt, drill + extractor.

This is one of the best uses of a dremel! that cut off wheel has saved my rear end from way too much work many times. Before I got a Dremel, I did that with a hacksaw, but hacksaw wont fit a lot of times.

I usually avoid the problem entirely by just not re-using screws or bolts if they show too much wear.

I'm all for simple tools that really solve problems.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Delivery McGee posted:

I only buy gimmicky useless as-seen-on-TV Craftsman tools. Speaking of which, didn't they have a similar thing at one point?

It's a good thing I haven't had cable for years, and have InediblePenguin to quickly drag me past the hardware department whenever we're in a Sears.




To be fair, the Handi-Cut or whatever it's called is decently useful, and that thing with the orange handle was a lifesaver until I broke down and bought a socket to fit the only bolt I ever used it on. The wrench-thing has already been reviewed (sucks), the Robo-Grip pliers get a resounding "meh" (get some real ChannelLocks, ya lazy bum), and the big chrome thing I forget the name of is but useless (I never could keep it spinning properly).



Edit because I took too long to take the picture:

I usually strip them the first time I try to take them out.

Also, I forgot to mention the worst-case scenario: Try to drill the head completely off, realize you don't have a big enough drill bit, chop it the rest of the way off with your three-pound hammer and big loving screwdriver cold chisel, then unscrew the stub with Vise-Grips. Or just skip straight to that solution because hammering on poo poo is therapeutic. I my hammer.

I've used similar cutters before, and they kicked rear end. I have some HF claw wrenches , they look totally usefull, but so far they have not delivered.
I've used nail pullers to pulls screws from wood... it works.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


c355n4: Thats disapointing, but kinda what I figured.


One of these solved my problem today

Rebuilding mitsubishi rear brake calipers was being a real bitch. The e-brake mechanism requires a special tool, and rebuilding the brakes requires taking the e-brake apart.
Its weird and complicated, but you need to compress some washer like disks on a screw spindle, and leave the area open to put the parts in. Mitsubishi part number MB990666 is simply not available (the dealership doesnt carry it, none found availalbe, but a company can make me one (for like $75, and it takes over a month.)) The part kinda looks like a socket with about 1/3 planed off on each side. Getting frustrated with this stupid tool I asked how much it would be to have them rebuild my brakes, only to be told, nope, we cant do it for you, we dont have the tool. GRRRRR!

I was albe to get it apart with a c-clamp, but that wasnt going to work to get it back on. The vice grips + C-clamp worked like a chmmp.
It took a couple days, but I finally have freshly rebuilt break calipers. and it would never have happened if I had to rely on the dealership.

hippynerd fucked around with this message at 01:47 on Mar 12, 2008

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Amir posted:

Do they have "generic" versions of these? I can't justify spending $120 for 7 wrenches.

I saw some like them the other day, and I think the guys said he payed about $30 for them, he also said he spent over $3,000 at harbor freight in the last few years.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Hypnolobster posted:

Blah, I just got a nice slightly used Snap-On compression tester off of eBay for 79 bucks (and it's 200 new!) and within 2 hours of it arriving at my door, I found my old one I was searching for.

I see your compression tester, and raise you 1 gauge.


my HF cordless 1/2" impact died today though I've barely used it, but it didnt like putting on some lugnuts. The motor turns, but like .01 foot lbs stops the socket. I have a year replacement plan for it I think, so hopefully I can get a new one tomorrow, and maybe that neet $10 IR thermometer(touchless).

I got some neet stuff today, I got some oil drainplug things for 50 cent each. I also found several handy items for $1 each, and a fresh pair of $2 gloves, and 4 brand new 3 ton jack stands. woo hoo! party time.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Delivery McGee posted:

"As tight as you can get it, plus a quarter turn" is my dad's go-to torque for . . . well, pretty much everything (adjusted by how the "as tight as you can get it" is achieved -- e.g. for valve cover bolts use a slippery screwdriver handle and 1/4"-drive socket, for spark plugs a short-handled ratchet, for lugnuts a three-foot 1/2" breaker bar). It's never failed us.
At first I was ??? as tight as you can get it + 1/4 turn? hows that possible.
But yeah, I do that too, I can get pretty anal about it too, I think its from wasting lots of time trying to remove whats left over when bolts break. I agree about the using a smaller wrench (the 1/4 turn part seems silly). I have an old distributor wrench that I like to use on questionable bolts.

Delivery McGee posted:

Of course, this is the guy who, when clearing LZs in Vietnam, looked at the formulas that tell you how much explosive to use, decided the variable "p" meant "plenty," and used twenty feet of Primacord to tie a pound of C4 to a tree he could've cut down with his pocketknife.
Uhm... doesnt that leave a hole like 5 wide by about a foot deep? seems like a pretty crappy LZ if you ask me.

Delivery McGee posted:

On a similar note, does anybody actually screw oil filters on as the instructions say? Something like gasket contact plus a fraction of a turn? That seems incredibly loose to me, and I always crank 'em down as tight as I can by hand, and have never had a leak. Of course, Wal*Mart apparently uses the tire-changing impact guns for oil filters, so I doubt it's all that important.

I've never had a problem (as long as I put on the right filter!) with oil filters, but last week a guy told me he followed the directions, and the oil filter seal blew out and was unusable, he had to replace it, so he put it on as tight as he could, and its been fine since.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


whiskas posted:

I just bought a 1/2" corded electric impact wrench. 7A 2000RPM 230ft/lbs
<snip>
When would it not be safe to use just a regular socket on an impact wrench?

If your working on cars, prettymuch always. You could get torq sticks, but its still some risk. Impacts are great for pulling bolts/nuts off, but you want low torque when putting on bolts (to avoid cross threading or other binding issues). Tighten/Torque by hand.
I have a little, and a big battery powered impacts, I use the little one to put bolts back on, and the big one to pull smaller bolts or loosened bolts. I still finish them with a wrench to be sure though.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Pissingintowind posted:

Can anyone recommend a good inexpensive jack and jack stands? I'm getting sick of using my Rhino Ramps and the unsafe OEM tire jack for everything.

HF has ok quality stuff real cheap. You can get a 2 ton floor jack for about $20, and 3 ton jack stands for under $20 (I got a few sets for $13 on sale)

HF==Harbor Freight

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Pissingintowind posted:

It seems that the HF jack goes up to only 14-15" and it more expensive than this jack that goes up to 19": here.

I did read the thread.. I'm just looking for more opinions.

I'd get the Aluminum HF one over that one any day. The HF one is light, has a long bar (makes it a lot easier to drag a car on the jack, and to jack up). and has a nice big flat rubber covered lift pad.

I got one of these Pocket Thermometers a couple weeks ago, and its great fun!
http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ct...temnumber=93983

Its also good for checking your brakes w/out burning your fingers.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


I dont know about decent, but certainly inexpensive. I got some 3 ton jacks for $13/pair. They had larger ones, and some other neet things for lifting heavy stuff.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


PBCrunch posted:

Pawn shops have stolen tools for cheap sometimes.

There, thats better.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


devnull420 posted:

I'm not sure if this is the best spot for this post (maybe DIY forum?), but what tool would you guys use to get a broken bolt out of a concrete wall? I have a wooden gate that is bolted to a concrete wall with 2 big rear end bolts, but it's a very narrow squeeze for my car + my wife's car. When I first moved in I managed to hit the gate with my wife's car, and apparently lovely old rusty bolts are no match for toyota's amazing 325 lb-ft of torque. The bolt sheared off with part of the bolt stuck in the wooden gate (which I removed easily) and the rest firmly stuck in the wall (and now bent at an angle).

I tried using a big screwdriver and a hammer to chisel it out but that was definitely not going to work (at least not in a reasonable amount of time). I bought a diamond point bit for the dremel

http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-7144-D...t/dp/B00068OUMU

but haven't tried it out yet. It looks like it's meant for fine engraving but I'll see tomorrow.

Also, is there a good way to get a new bolt to stick back in? My ghetto fabulous plan is to get the bolt out, stick a new bolt through the gate into the hole left in the concrete wall, and then fill it in with pieces of broken concrete (have a bunch of it lying around) and concrete cement. I don't really have a great selection of tools (just the minimum I need to work on my car and various assorted others) so I'm trying to make do with what I got, no way to stick a new bolt into concrete (that I know of at least).

ugh... sounds pretty sucky. I think you will have better luck drilling a new hole for a new bolt with a masonary bit, and cutting that bolt flush with a saw, or angle grinder.
You might be able to weld anoher bolt onto it, but I think may be too weak in your case. You could also straighten the bolt, thread it, and put a long nut thing half way on, and put some threaded rod on the long nut thing, but that may be too weak too.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


multiprotocol posted:

Got a 1-ton folding shop crane (read: engine hoist) from Harbor Freight today with a $68 off coupon - normally $164.99, on sale for $97. Will post some pics and thoughts after i get it assembled this afternoon.

I got that one, and found it was too small to lift my little 4 cylindar motor

The 2 ton was overkill, but it worked great.

Anyone wanna buy a used 2 ton engine hoist? I think im done with it.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


multiprotocol posted:

How was it too little? I'm about to yank out a 6-cyl/transmission from an E30 325. You have me paranoid now.

Its short... The boom fully extended was about 1/2 foot short to get to my motor (2.6L I4 (g54b)). with the 2 ton, I had plenty of room to get it all the way in, and lift the motor clear of the car.

My car is low, so I had to take off the front wheels to get the legs under the car.

EnergizerFellow: I havnt tried the ratchets, but I do have a couple of the HF cordless impact drivers, and they work pretty good in a lot of situations, they are pretty weak, and can tend to break (the first one I got, broke the fist time I used it. I have the extended warrenty... so they just replaced it.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Kynetx posted:

Water-cool that bitch.

Real nerds use Flourinert

Only registered members can see post attachments!

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


ease posted:

Well I bought it. It actually worked great for what I needed (fixing a plow for my quad).

But here's the lovely part. I didn't know there was a difference between brazing goggles and arc welding goggles.

e: It was a #5 lens, and I guess it did offer a good amount of protection, but not adequate for arc. And holy poo poo, sunburned nose.

DUDE! This is really a big mistake. I've met folks that have done that, and hours later they feel the effects (they usually wake up in the middle of the night screeming).

I hear it feels like getting hit in the face with a sand bag.

Gas welding goggles are great for gas welding, but you need like 11's for arc welding, and since you cant see anything with 11's, you dont want goggles for arc welding.

I use an old lincoln like that, its pretty old and funky, but it welds poo poo right up. If you want to weld thinner material, you just need to get thinner rods and lower the current.

If you want to weld cast iron, you will need special rods, and its a little harder to weld, but you can do it. I did some exhaust manifolds this year, and it was kinda cool.

If you havnt already, you should invest in a good set of thick leather welders gloves (they cover your whole arm), and maybe some knee pads.

Stick welding is a bit difficult to learn, but it does get the job done.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


I too check out woot, and considered purchasing the little socket sets for the car(s). The only socket that I would likely ever use is the 12mm, the 10mm and 8mm might get used once or twice.

for my car, a 12, 14 and 17 are about all you will need.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Jared592 posted:

I've never heard of jackstands failing, even lovely ones. I attribute this to their being pretty foolproof as long as they're not made of plastic or something. I'd pay a little more for one that didn't mar up the driveway without necessitating a wood board placed under them, though I'm not sure if such a jackstand design exists.

Jackstands do fail, and there are plenty of reasons why.

Places that cast metal and dont always clear the slag can get slag inside the cast part, weakening it. You can have a part with no visible signs of damage, and it may fail only under heavy load.

also, this is probably going to cause an flurry of busted jack pictures...

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


I've had a few heat guns. one was almost $100, another was $70, and my last one was $10 (HF). The only difference I've noticed is that that cheapo $10 unit only has 2 heat settings (not variable).

A lighter or soldering iron work in a pinch, but the heat gun always gets better results.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


box/combo wrench + hammer.

or socket drive with pipe slid over the handle for leverage.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


kaniff posted:

I can't quite visualize how this works. Can you elaborate?

You use the weight of the vehicle to compress the springs. Unbolt the springs at the top, jack the car up, take the wheels off, pull down on the shocks/springs to get them out , pull up on the springs to remove them.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


I dont have air tools, so I get by with electric, and its not so bad. batteries running down is a drag, but hand tools still work when batteries die.

The only reason I would really want air are for painting and leakdown testing.

hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


InitialDave posted:

Clean'N'Strip discs for grinders, which are a very open sponge mixed with abrasives, are very effective at removing paint without gumming up or trashing the metal underneath. Using these to do larger areas, and media blasting tricky nooks and crannies, might be faster than blasting the whole lot if you don't have a full-on industrial rig.

Also, wear good overalls with tight seals around the cuffs for your gloves. Aluminium oxide gets everywhere.

I got one of these, I think it was 35 grit (lavender colored), you still have to be real careful with it, and it will scratch the metal even if you are careful. but drat it works fast.

I found that paint stripper worked better, it stripped down to the metal with no scratches, but was real messy.

Doctor Zero posted:

Can you clear codes with the cheap ECU readers? I need to change the gasket on my fuel pump and it'll likely throw an CEL when I depressurize the fuel system. I'd like to be able to clear it myself.

It depends on the unit, some cheap ones will, others will just tell you a code. You have to read the package and see if it says it will reset codes too.

I had a CEL from the gas cap not being tighened all the way, it took a few fillups, ut it cleared itself.

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hippynerd
Nov 5, 2004

by Ozma


Rhyno posted:

I've been fighting the urge to buy a crane, for $100 I can't say no.

I've got a 2 ton folding crane on craigslist for $150, I'd sell it to you for $125.
I wont ship it though.
http://eugene.craigslist.org/tls/1433666397.html

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