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jdunmyer
03-31-2019, 01:58 PM
Anyone who shops H.F. stores, using their sale flyers probably has several of those "Free With Any Purchase" flashlights. I started carrying one in my pocket at all times, due to being an Old Fart with O.F. eyes. Got tired of it getting turned on accidentally so did a bit of machining: Turn a piece of aluminum about 1.100 OD X 1/2" long, bore to 7/8, then make a counterbore 1/4" deep and about the same size as the rear of the flashlight. Note that they vary a bit, so measure yours. Round all edges, inside and out, then press/push together. Now, the switch is recessed and won't be turned on inadvertently, and you'll orient it properly by feel. If you carry it in a pocket with change, a quarter (25-cent piece) will JUST fit in the front; chuck it up and roll the edge a bit to prevent that.

H.F.'s batteries aren't all that great, but the AAA size for the flashlights is "good enough", especially when you get them for "Free With Any Purchase".

H.F.'s drill bits can be OK or not, but at $10.00 (on sale) for the set, they're cheap. Buy a set and dub the cutting edges, then mark them "Brass Only". Do an Internet search if you don't know what I mean.

If you do much electrical work, you probably lust for a Greenlee knockout punch set. H.F. has a hydraulic outfit that does 3/4" -> 2" (conduit size) for only $100.00 or $80.00 with a 20% coupon. I picked one up the other day, tried it, and it works well and seems to be good quality. Rated at up to 11 Gauge steel, a bit less for SS.

They also have a hydraulic electrical crimper that works great. When I was making new cables for an old golf cart, I used copper tubing to make the eyes and crimped them with this gadget.

You have to watch H.F's sale flyers over time to figure out whether it's REALLY a "sale price", they vary all over the place. I've found Menard's to be cheaper than H.F. for some items.

A.K. Boomer
03-31-2019, 02:12 PM
Nice fix, the only thing worse than shopping at HF is not doing it and paying a higher price for the same chineeeese stuff lol
I'll tell you what - they got about the best nitrile gloves in the bidness,,, buy them an extra size larger though so you don't lose your circulation,,, just one pair can last several jobs instead of several pairs lasting only one...

Paul Alciatore
03-31-2019, 03:23 PM
HF is not and will probably never be a top notch supplier. But they do have useful tools and they are improving.

A few days ago I was looking for a specific router bit for a wood project (a shelf/bracket for my cable box and router). I wanted a round nose cutter that could cut at least a 7/8" deep slot. I started at the local ACE Hardware and made the rounds of home supply and other tool places, more or less in the order that I came to them. At HF I found a set of 15 carbide router cutters that had the exact cutter that I wanted except it only cuts a bit over 3/4" deep. I planned to make incremental cuts anyway so that was OK. The set cost $37.99 and I had one of their 20% discount coupons. That's about the price of a single name brand router bit. Even if I only get a single project out of this round nose bit, it is worth it. And I would still have the other dozen or more bits.

But it did cut a nice slot and is still sharp enough for further use. I think I got a good deal and a good tool set.

Oh, bonus: the router bits came in a nice, hinged wood box with tilt up holders inside it. That's the nicest storage box that I ever purchased router bits in. They will be the best organized router bits in the drawer.

On the larger tool side, some years ago I purchased their Central Machinery, 20" floor stand drill press. I was somewhat hesitant at the time. It is one of the most used machines in my shop and I am delighted with it. I have made some improvements to it and plan to make some more. Here you can see better lighting, a column mounted tool shelf, and the smaller chuck that I added. The original chuck is stored in the left side of the tool shelf along with the various tools that came with the DP. I also added a pair of screws on the left end of that tool shelf where I hang my drill press vise when it is not in use: it is always at hand for instant use - no searching for it.

http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/attachment.php?attachmentid=4128&d=1544665548

The next two items on my list are balancing the motor and pulleys for less vibration and adding a better, quick adjust depth stop. And I have been toying around with adding a three phase motor with a VFD to get around some of the gaps in the speed chart. It seems like there is always one or more big gaps when multiple step pulleys are used for speed selection. I have played with the math there and there is no clear solution where the speed steps are always evenly spaced in a logarithmic scale. Another idea is to have a way to move the table up and down while standing in FRONT of the DP, not going around to the side and back: aiming device, motorized lock screw, and motorizing the hand crank. That one is definitely on the back burner.

Another HF tool that was perfect at the time is a hammer drill. I was mounting a heavy AC unit in the shop window and needed to drill into the concrete foundation to secure the wood frame. I purchased a HF hammer drill for the project and it made the needed holes with ease. I may never use it again (who knows) but it was certainly worth the price at the time.

Now, do I want a HF lathe or milling machine. Well, not yet.

I do believe that HF is trying to improve while holding their low prices.

Glug
03-31-2019, 03:36 PM
I started carrying one in my pocket at all times, due to being an Old Fart with O.F. eyes. Got tired of it getting turned on accidentally so did a bit of machining

You might treat yourself to a small Fenix. The lights that take a single AAA are great for carrying.

https://www.fenixlighting.com/product-category/flashlights/?filter_size=compact-4-long

lynnl
03-31-2019, 03:41 PM
Yeah, I too have a sackful of those "Free With Any Purchase" flashlights. Handy little things to have scattered all around the house to be there when you need one.
In fact, I've been known to actually buy them, when I didn't see anything else to buy, just to get one "free with any purchase."

But I don't have trouble so much with them turning on inadvertently, as being a bit inconvenient to turn on one-handed, with that button on the back end. But hey..., gift horses and mouths, etc.

lynnl
03-31-2019, 03:47 PM
You might treat yourself to a small Fenix. The lights that take a single AAA are great for carrying.

https://www.fenixlighting.com/product-category/flashlights/?filter_size=compact-4-long

Holy Cow!

Now explain just why it is that I might want to pay anywhere from $29.95 to $119.95 as an alternative to that free HF flashlight! :D ...maybe to be the envy of my neighborhood?

MattiJ
03-31-2019, 04:00 PM
On the larger tool side, some years ago I purchased their Central Machinery, 20" floor stand drill press. I was somewhat hesitant at the time.

And I have been toying around with adding a three phase motor with a VFD to get around some of the gaps in the speed chart. It seems like there is always one or more big gaps when multiple step pulleys are used for speed selection. .

Just skip the belt changes altogether. 4-pole 1.5kW motor and VFD will cover the entire range pretty well.

danlb
03-31-2019, 04:32 PM
Holy Cow!

Now explain just why it is that I might want to pay anywhere from $29.95 to $119.95 as an alternative to that free HF flashlight! :D ...maybe to be the envy of my neighborhood?

I have some of those HF lights too. The color of the "9 led" light is often too blue, and the 3 AAA battery holders tend to have a fairly short run time. But for glancing in the pantry cupboard it's just fine. They are cheap enough to leave them scattered around the house for when you are not yet dressed.

Having said that, my "kitchen counter light" is a $100 Nitecore Defender Infinity. The lights on my end table are 1000 lumen, 700 lumen and 300 lumen hand held Li-Ion powered lights. I use one of the Fenix lights as my EDC (every day carry) light.

What you don't get from the HF lights are...

A fairly neutral tint with good color rendition.

A regulated output so that you get a constant light level until the battery starts to fade.

Switches that are rated for the current that they are switching.

But I'll still take one if it's free. :)

Dan

PStechPaul
03-31-2019, 05:18 PM
I have several of the HF free flashlights, but IMHO they are not worth the bother, and most of their other freebies are much better deals. The multimeter is probably the best deal, especially since it includes a 9V alkaline battery which costs at least $1, even from HF. Other freebies that are good deals are the 25 foot tape measure, 4 pack microfiber cleaning cloths, and the 5' x 7' tarp. If you want a cheap flashlight, I recommend getting one of the many varieties that use a single AA cell. They will work with cells from my camera that are "exhausted" down to about 1.3 volts, and will run for maybe an hour or so until the voltage drops below about 0.8 volts. I got some from Banggood for only a couple dollars or so. Aliexpress might be even cheaper:

https://www.aliexpress.com/item/3-Modes-Adjustable-Mini-LED-Flashlight-6-Colors-2000lm-LED-Torch-Zoom-Focus-Torch-Lamp-Penlight/32950905405.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.216.14fc62d 98yQJzt&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_1_10065_10 130_10068_10890_10547_319_10546_317_10548_10545_10 696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_10307_537_536_10902_ 10059_10884_10887_321_322_10103,searchweb201603_6, ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=dd07b9e7-cea3-4aa5-9ac1-13ee9b0c9088-29&algo_pvid=dd07b9e7-cea3-4aa5-9ac1-13ee9b0c9088&transAbTest=ae803_4 ($1.94 with free delivery. Has high/low/strobe function, and variable zoom)

https://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1GETfQXXXXXciXpXXq6xXFXXXV/220991917/HTB1GETfQXXXXXciXpXXq6xXFXXXV.jpg?size=1316224&height=4500&width=800&hash=d89624134e714ab89c8a5038e92d7daf
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1PC-New-Hot-Mini-Useful-Super-Bright-Tactical-Flashlight-Waterproof-Medical-LED-Bulb-Small-Torch-Light/32841441871.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.96.14fc62d9 8yQJzt&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_1_10065_10 130_10068_10890_10547_319_10546_317_10548_10545_10 696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_10307_537_536_10902_ 10059_10884_10887_321_322_10103,searchweb201603_6, ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=dd07b9e7-cea3-4aa5-9ac1-13ee9b0c9088-13&algo_pvid=dd07b9e7-cea3-4aa5-9ac1-13ee9b0c9088&transAbTest=ae803_4 ($1 including shipping)

https://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1p6rvQFXXXXavaXXXq6xXFXXXz/230492967/HTB1p6rvQFXXXXavaXXXq6xXFXXXz.jpg?size=222739&height=1000&width=1000&hash=2d98d0a2ff439271e0d66893e7eb4d35
And here is a combo UV flashlight and a pen with UV ink, for about 50 cents including batteries and free shipping!
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Mini-Flashlight-2-In-1-UV-Black-Light-Invisible-Ink-Pen-Combo-Magic-Creative-Stationery-Waterproof/32910037272.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.59.2a1d1a82 zSMTjM&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_1_10065_10 130_10068_10890_10547_319_10546_317_10548_10545_10 696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_10307_537_536_10902_ 10059_10884_10887_321_322_10103,searchweb201603_6, ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=d479038d-111f-4d74-8b79-ee1c2dd31362-11&algo_pvid=d479038d-111f-4d74-8b79-ee1c2dd31362&transAbTest=ae803_4
http://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1wfEYJ1GSBuNjSspbq6AiipXak.jpg

Glug
03-31-2019, 05:28 PM
Holy Cow!

Now explain just why it is that I might want to pay anywhere from $29.95 to $119.95 as an alternative to that free HF flashlight! :D

Oh, you may not want to. Those HF junkers have almost nothing in common with even middling cheap import lights. The Fenix single AAA lights are incredibly tiny, reliable, constant brightness even as the battery drains to nothing, focusing beam, bright, good color, don't turn on by accident, waterproof, etc. A lithium battery makes them quite a bit lighter weight, and shelf stable for many years.

The biggest negative on the tiny ones is the potential for misplacing them for years.. A bright lanyard helps, if not affixed to keys, or a place where it is always kept.

The difference between a flashlight with a good regular vs. non-regulated is huge.

In recent years a lot of good cheap lights have come on the market. But when you're in your backyard and being stalked by animals, or stalking animals - whether or not they are drinking your beer - it's good to be able to reliably put some light on the situation.

vpt
03-31-2019, 06:56 PM
I buy those 10 packs of led lights for $7-15. They get lost stolen or damaged before the first set of batteries normally die. I forget how many packs I have bought and only know where 2 of them are right now.

We normally pick up a pack just before camping for the year and give the kids each one and have the rest around the camper/truck, and whatnot.

J Tiers
03-31-2019, 07:25 PM
Most of the "good" flashlights have a very serious problem.... I do not have them with me. The crappy flashlights I also would not have with me, and they are crappy.

So I carry a Maglite "Solitaire" LED that runs on one AAA cell. Bright as heck, and small enough that I sometimes almost do not find it in my pocket.

I know some folks have a serious hate on for those, but I have been using them for 25+ years in standard and LED, and have never had a problem other than the odd dead battery. I don't think I have ever even had a bad bulb, and now with the LED, the bulb should not be an issue.

I replace them when the case gets too worn down from the change etc in the same pocket.

Wheels17
03-31-2019, 07:55 PM
I always carry a MAG Solitaire. It is a single AAA cell flashlight with a voltage regulator. It is quite bright, and holds constant brightness until the battery is too low, at which point it turns off. it fits nicely in the change pocket of my jeans. I think it was under $10.

Wheels17
03-31-2019, 08:00 PM
J Tiers, I think we were channeling each other.

PStechPaul
03-31-2019, 08:01 PM
The Maglite is fairly expensive - about $15:

http://www.maglite.com/shop/pub/media/catalog/product/cache/ecd051e9670bd57df35c8f0b122d8aea/p/r/product_solitaire_led_keys_1014a_4.jpg

You can get a key fob flashlight for less than $1, including batteries:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1pc-Outdoor-Camping-Emergency-Key-Ring-Light-Plastic-ABS-Mini-Keychain-Squeeze-Light-Micro-LED-Flashlight/32928131805.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.213.20ef35a coXhsXk&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_1_10065_10 130_10068_10890_10547_319_10546_317_10548_10545_10 696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_10307_537_536_10902_ 10059_10884_10887_321_322_10103,searchweb201603_6, ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=c665fa38-b0a2-406c-88c5-93fb30b9911c-33&algo_pvid=c665fa38-b0a2-406c-88c5-93fb30b9911c&transAbTest=ae803_4
http://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1dXyDXijrK1RjSsplq6xHmVXaC.jpg

Or this AAA unit fort $1.37:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/HGHomeart-Mini-LED-stainless-flashlights-Waterproof-Lanterna-mini-aluminum-led-waterproof-flashlight-small-torch-laser/32659864996.html?spm=2114.search0104.3.29.20ef35ac oXhsXk&ws_ab_test=searchweb0_0,searchweb201602_1_10065_10 130_10068_10890_10547_319_10546_317_10548_10545_10 696_453_10084_454_10083_10618_10307_537_536_10902_ 10059_10884_10887_321_322_10103,searchweb201603_6, ppcSwitch_0&algo_expid=c665fa38-b0a2-406c-88c5-93fb30b9911c-7&algo_pvid=c665fa38-b0a2-406c-88c5-93fb30b9911c&transAbTest=ae803_4
https://ae01.alicdn.com/kf/HTB1fhTnNXXXXXalXFXXq6xXFXXXg/205720302/HTB1fhTnNXXXXXalXFXXq6xXFXXXg.jpg?size=371011&height=5000&width=1000&hash=4c3f97718b8dc1e5ca535336e61572af

J Tiers
03-31-2019, 09:17 PM
Yeah, Magkite was under $10 for me also. Not worth chasing the cheapest, the Maglite just works, even the ones I do not use anymore still work, they are just worn down to where they are bare aluminum. I think I may have gone through 3 over time, and am on #4,

Ohio Mike
03-31-2019, 09:57 PM
If you do much electrical work, you probably lust for a Greenlee knockout punch set. H.F. has a hydraulic outfit that does 3/4" -> 2" (conduit size) for only $100.00 or $80.00 with a 20% coupon. I picked one up the other day, tried it, and it works well and seems to be good quality. Rated at up to 11 Gauge steel, a bit less for SS.


That is awesome. I'll have to keep that in mind. Maybe we'll see a 25% off on Easter again this year. It would be $75.


Nice fix, the only thing worse than shopping at HF is not doing it and paying a higher price for the same chineeeese stuff lol
I'll tell you what - they got about the best nitrile gloves in the bidness,,, buy them an extra size larger though so you don't lose your circulation,,, just one pair can last several jobs instead of several pairs lasting only one...

I agree, I don't understand when someone says I will never buy from there. Same crappy products as <insert store of choice> but more than often it cost less. Some of their products are fantastic. I love their 9mil black gloves which reminds me I need to get some more. My free item of choice is that little flashlight. I have them scattered everywhere. And I've absolutely abused my HF gear pullers. When I finally do break one I'll go buy another set...

reggie_obe
03-31-2019, 10:05 PM
The Maglite is fairly expensive - about $15:

You can get a key fob flashlight for less than $1, including batteries:

Or this AAA unit fort $1.37:

Does everything you buy have be the cheapest piece of crap from china?
In the case of the key fob lite, it's a direct copy of this: https://www.amazon.com/LRI-PWK-Photon-Keychain-Micro-Light/dp/B00006I4Y2/ref=sr_1_2?crid=15BH1E6S5HSKS&keywords=micro+photon+light&qid=1554084046&s=gateway&sprefix=micro+photon%2Caps%2C204&sr=8-2

Patented and carries a lifetime warranty and made in the USA.

J Tiers
03-31-2019, 11:18 PM
Does everything ... have be the cheapest piece of crap from china?
I...

That is a question that should be asked more often.

If we didn't buy it the stuff would not be made. If we preferred the better stuff, then that is what would be made. Much of that cheap stuff is not even made to have the battery replaced, use and toss. Makes little sense.

All the those cheap pieces of crap usually work for a while, then they do not (some never work), and most end up in the landfill, because you just cannot strip them down for recycling, and the chinese do not want it back for recycling. So basically you "rent them" for a while, and then you have to decide how to get rid of them.

At least for old pieces of crap made elsewhere there is an antiques and collectibles market (even an old tin kazoo is apparently collectible, wish I had known that.....), but there is so much of the chinese cheap crap..... people will probably still be finding lots of it in a hundred years.

Paul Alciatore
04-01-2019, 03:14 AM
OK, we are going to talk about pocket flashlights.

I also have a bunch of those HF freebees. Total trash. It is a toss-up as to what fails first; the switch of the cheap Chinese batteries. I use them for fun projects that need light. I made wire stands for two of them and use them with a cheap USB microscope. Another is on my electronic bench. I tried carrying them in my pocket but they never lasted.

As for what I do carry; I purchased one of these at Wal-Mart several years ago.

https://www.amazon.com/Carson-MiniBrite-Slide-Out-Magnifier-Protective/dp/B00524H8MC/ref=sr_1_6?hvadid=77996658852498&hvbmt=bb&hvdev=c&hvqmt=b&keywords=carson+magnifier&qid=1554102151&s=gateway&sr=8-6

It is actually an illuminated magnifier, but the LED light is bright enough for me to see my way on a dark night so it is a pocket flashlight too. Two for the price of one and both work fairly well. I think I will buy two or three more for when the first one finally fails.

The main problem with it is the cover does not stay closed in my pocket. It slides open in my pocket but not far enough to turn the light on so the batteries don't drain. But the lens is getting scratched from my keys and pocket knives and other things.

I really like it.

DennisCA
04-01-2019, 04:04 AM
The biggest negative on the tiny ones is the potential for misplacing them for years.. A bright lanyard helps, if not affixed to keys, or a place where it is always kept.

I haven't seen mine for over two years.

beechur johnson
04-01-2019, 07:55 AM
When I am at HF the freebie i cant resist is the magnetic tray. Got several sitting around. I havent found a way to make it better.

Doozer
04-01-2019, 09:14 AM
I always carry a MAG Solitaire. It is a single AAA cell flashlight with a voltage regulator. It is quite bright, and holds constant brightness until the battery is too low, at which point it turns off. it fits nicely in the change pocket of my jeans. I think it was under $10.

The battery life on the MAG Solitaire is total bullshlt.
It runs for an incredibly short amount of time,
even with premium Energizer or Duracell batteries.
It is very frustrating.
I gave up on it and bought a Coast 2 AAA cell lamp
that has the cells side by side, more compact than
inline cell configuration. Batteries last 4 times as long
as the MAG flashlight. I don't think the MAG has a
voltage regulator, just the LED has a minimum
turn on voltage, which is total crap.

-Doozer

jdunmyer
04-01-2019, 09:33 AM
But I don't have trouble so much with them turning on inadvertently, as being a bit inconvenient to turn on one-handed, with that button on the back end. But hey..., gift horses and mouths, etc.

My little sleeve makes it easy to operate one-handed.

Of course, I never claimed that the HF flashlight was the best or even "good", just that it's free and usable.

Another HF item that I'm fond of is their 'baker scaffold"; mine is this SKU https://www.harborfreight.com/heavy-duty-portable-scaffold-69055.html, I have 2 copies (they stack). My improvement to it consisted of using a router and corner-rounding bit to smooth the hand holes in the plywood platform. When I bought mine, they were "on sale" for around $230.00, IIRC. Saw the same item later at Menard's for about $200.00, and I think I have a HF flyer with a $169.00 price. Whatever you pay, it's worth every penny if you need to work overhead; it's far safer than a ladder. The thing seems to be high quality, down to the casters.

HF carries this ladder, https://www.harborfreight.com/17-ft-type-ia-multi-task-ladder-63419.html I've seen it "on sale" for $119.00, but again, Menard's had it for $100.00. Other than being a bit heavy, it's a very nice item and is quite stable.

These last 2 items are important if you need to get 'off the ground' to paint, clean gutters, do overhead electrical work, etc. Falls are about the #1 thing that injures "elderly" folks. (Saw an article in the paper describing "an elderly couple, he was 69, she was 68. Makes me feel "Old")

I might note: I have no stock or other interest in Harbor Freight, am just a [pretty much] satisfied customer.

J Tiers
04-01-2019, 11:14 AM
The battery life on the MAG Solitaire is total bullshlt.
It runs for an incredibly short amount of time,
even with premium Energizer or Duracell batteries.
It is very frustrating.
I gave up on it and bought a Coast 2 AAA cell lamp
that has the cells side by side, more compact than
inline cell configuration. Batteries last 4 times as long
as the MAG flashlight. I don't think the MAG has a
voltage regulator, just the LED has a minimum
turn on voltage, which is total crap.

-Doozer

Wow.... what do you really think?

The things have to have a "regulator" because the battery is too low in voltage to light that type LED, so they have a simple boost type SMPS in them, that runs the thing until the battery is pretty low under load.

I have not seen the short battery life.... I use mine all the time, and it is bright enough that shorter life would not surprise me, but I'd accept it for the brightness. That thing will light up a good size room, and lights up a big area outside at night.

I like it because the bigger fatter types I would not have with me. This thing is only about 10 x 80 mm. A perfect flashlight is no blasted good if it is sitting at home, or in the truck down the block.

The only problem with it is the same problem most of the LED flashlights have.... you cannot tell how much battery is left, they all just work the same until they shut down. With the old incandescent type, there was a long time when they would still light up, just a bit dimmer, so you could easily tell where the battery was as far as life.

chipmaker4130
04-01-2019, 11:19 AM
. . .If you do much electrical work, you probably lust for a Greenlee knockout punch set. H.F. has a hydraulic outfit that does 3/4" -> 2" (conduit size) for only $100.00 or $80.00 with a 20% coupon. I picked one up the other day, tried it, and it works well and seems to be good quality. Rated at up to 11 Gauge steel, a bit less for SS. . .

Man, I'm glad you mentioned this one! I've wanted a Greenlee for decades but couldn't justify the price so I've been making holes the hard way. Went out this morning and bought this set, too bad I couldn't find my 20% coupon though :(

jdunmyer
04-01-2019, 05:29 PM
too bad I couldn't find my 20% coupon though

You should have let me know, I'd have mailed one to you. I save nearly all HF flyers, except those in the VP magazines. (If I use those, I take the entire mag with me to the store) Flyers are in many other publications, including the Sunday papers. I cut them out, put them on a clipboard on the garage wall next to my car, and grab one when I head to the store. Also have a magnifier nearby to be able to check the expiration date.

I usually choose the flyer based on the "free with purchase" item, but it's getting to the point where I simply don't need another tape measure, DVM, cleaning cloth, flashlight, or even batteries. :-)

Commander_Chaos
04-01-2019, 10:11 PM
When I buy something from Harbor Freight it's usually something I hardly use. If it's something I end up using a lot, I use the H.F. one till it breaks then go get a good one.

Ohio Mike
04-01-2019, 10:20 PM
Another favorite item from HF is the hydraulic lift table. I love this thing. In the up position its almost a perfect match to the bed of my truck.
https://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lbs-capacity-hydraulic-table-cart-60438.html

RB211
04-01-2019, 10:33 PM
Another favorite item from HF is the hydraulic lift table. I love this thing. In the up position its almost a perfect match to the bed of my truck.
https://www.harborfreight.com/1000-lbs-capacity-hydraulic-table-cart-60438.htmlI had one of those briefly until it puked its guts all over me

PStechPaul
04-01-2019, 11:38 PM
Those HF white rims and pneumatic tires are pretty crappy. Look how badly it rusted, and the rubber is cracked and rotten:
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Cart_Rusty_Wheel_5116.jpg

They were on a cart I made about 15-20 years ago, and it has been sitting outside under a pile of leaves. The pickup truck crane I had mounted on it is also in pretty bad shape:
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Cart_5117.jpg

http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Cart_5123.jpg

I took the crane apart. Maybe I can fix it?
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Cart_Crane_5122.jpg

I really can't complain, though.

J Tiers
04-02-2019, 12:09 AM
Those HF white rims and pneumatic tires are pretty crappy. Look how badly it rusted, and the rubber is cracked and rotten:
....

They were on a cart I made about 15-20 years ago, and it has been sitting outside under a pile of leaves. The pickup truck crane I had mounted on it is also in pretty bad shape:
.....

I really can't complain, though.

I hope not.... "under a pile of leaves"..... Since I have been waiting all winter for a "pile of leaves" to dry out, I am not at all surprised at the wheel.....

Must be April 1 today.

PStechPaul
04-02-2019, 01:17 AM
Yup. April Fools :)

I'm just finally able to do some major yard cleanup after many years of limitations due to orthopedic issues as well as many other projects and situations. I was surprised at how badly the rim rusted, but wet leaves can produce tannic acid (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tannic_acid) and there are likely other chemicals and microbes that adversely affect steel and rubber. The wheels actually still turn fairly smoothly on the bearings.

My HF 8 pound sledge hammer does a good job at busting up chunks of concrete and "cinder" blocks.
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Yard_Cleanup_5121.jpg

There are other things in the back of the house (and around the yard) that have deteriorated due to lots of moisture and contact with the earth. Looking better now:
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Yard_Cleanup_5125.jpg

Mr Tibbs likes it:
http://enginuitysystems.com/pix/house/Yard_Cleanup_Tibbs_5127.jpg

reggie_obe
04-02-2019, 08:13 AM
Those HF white rims and pneumatic tires are pretty crappy. Look how badly it rusted, and the rubber is cracked and rotten:

They were on a cart I made about 15-20 years ago, and it has been sitting outside under a pile of leaves. The pickup truck crane I had mounted on it is also in pretty bad shape:

I really can't complain, though.

$6.99 Horrible Utility cart tire, another fail.
The rims and bearing last on those cheap cart tires, but the tires themselves can crack and be useless in just a year outside. Not much good for a garden or utility cart.

jdunmyer
04-02-2019, 09:00 AM
Another favorite item from HF is the hydraulic lift table. I love this thing. In the up position its almost a perfect match to the bed of my truck.

I have one also, but it doesn't go quite high enough to match my truck. Been going to build a box to sit on top to raise it about 6" or so.

Arcane
04-02-2019, 09:15 AM
I don't know if you;ve ever seen these things but I found them at Princess Auto which seems to be Canada's version of Harbor Freight. They're about 20"/side on the base, 14 1/2" high and about 15"/side on the top with a rated load capacity of 330 lbs. I bought one and it was so handy I bought three more for friends. It's the perfect height for changing light bulbs in the house (I'm 5'10") and a heck of a lot better than a chair or a two foot step ladder since it's so very stable. It makes a good seat too for working on something low, especially outdoors. Here's a website for one company that sells them.

https://www.tradetools.com/product-range/ladders/gorilla-150kg-safety-step

https://www.tradetools.com/images/ProductImages/500/GOR-STEP.jpg

chipmaker4130
04-02-2019, 09:37 AM
When I buy something from Harbor Freight it's usually something I hardly use. If it's something I end up using a lot, I use the H.F. one till it breaks then go get a good one.


Me too. But this punch set looks pretty good. I tested it on some .125 cold-rolled and it came through great which surprised me because the punches and dies aren't very hard. No edge distortion or dulling at all and of course I'll probably not ever use it beyond 16ga sheet in the future. Another bonus is the seal kit for the ram that came with it. It has a set of O-rings and backup rings for a complete re-seal. That could be a good sign or a sign that they expect it to leak soon! In any case, I'm really glad to have it.

3 Phase Lightbulb
04-02-2019, 10:10 AM
When I first started my machine shop hobby back in ~2004, I bought lots of stuff from Harbor Freight. I had plenty of disposable cash so it wasn't really a financial decision, but more of a value decision. I then realized that some items I bought from HF were just not suitable for my general needs at all regardless of value, like the little 120v (90A?) flux core MIG welder. But items like my HF 2T shop crane, 12T press, 50lb blast cabinet, lots and lots of polished chrome vanadium wrench sets and socket sets (amazing value IMO), screw drivers, air nailers, air staplers, air shop tools, specialty hand tools, specialty pliers, etc.

mklotz
04-02-2019, 10:15 AM
You should have let me know, I'd have mailed one to you. I save nearly all HF flyers, except those in the VP magazines. (If I use those, I take the entire mag with me to the store) Flyers are in many other publications, including the Sunday papers. I cut them out, put them on a clipboard on the garage wall next to my car, and grab one when I head to the store. Also have a magnifier nearby to be able to check the expiration date.

I usually choose the flyer based on the "free with purchase" item, but it's getting to the point where I simply don't need another tape measure, DVM, cleaning cloth, flashlight, or even batteries. :-)

You can get nearly any HF coupon you desire here...

https://couponshy.com/harbor-freight-coupons-promo-codes/

chipmaker4130
04-02-2019, 11:41 AM
Thanks for the coupon info, gents. The local HF has stacks of the next sale, but they're not effective for a couple of weeks and once active they go fast from the cashiers' stations.

gellfex
04-02-2019, 04:49 PM
When I buy something from Harbor Freight it's usually something I hardly use. If it's something I end up using a lot, I use the H.F. one till it breaks then go get a good one.

Same here. But sometimes the HF never breaks!

I'm surprised at all the talk of pocket flashlights. Except for camping and kayaking with a headlamp, that ended for me with a smartphone upgrade to one with a "flash" that doubles as a strong flashlight. Usually in my pocket anyway, rechargeable, and turns on with a shake of the phone, what's not to like? And when you find something horrifying in the deep dark behind the appliance, you can photograph it.

enginuity
04-02-2019, 04:54 PM
Wait a minute. Stuff is on sale at Harbor Freight?

J Tiers
04-02-2019, 05:09 PM
The typical smartphone is too big for my pocket, and I am waiting for gen II of the foldable ones.

If they were smart, they would have simply made the screen in two parts unfolding edge to edge and "joined" them in software. That would have been less expensive, and would have worked about as well.

The flashlight is better for seeing into things, and anyway there are rechargeable batteries.

gellfex
04-02-2019, 05:34 PM
The typical smartphone is too big for my pocket.

I believe this is the first time I've heard that complaint from a male. My big ass phone fits fine in a jeans front pocket. It's the women who suffer with ridiculously tiny pockets on their pants. My daughter believes this is conspiracy, research proves she's right!

J Tiers
04-02-2019, 06:01 PM
I believe this is the first time I've heard that complaint from a male. My big ass phone fits fine in a jeans front pocket. It's the women who suffer with ridiculously tiny pockets on their pants. My daughter believes this is conspiracy, research proves she's right!

They have purses.

The phones "fit" in the pocket, as long as you stay standing up, or maybe sitting.

My pocket already has stuff in it. Even if it did not, if I bend down to see something, or work on something in a tight space, I would just fold those silly phones in half. That would be fine, but they aren't supposed to and would not work after......

CCWKen
04-02-2019, 07:13 PM
Are you guys using those brick phones from the 80s or something? My "old" Galaxy S8+ fits in my T-shirt pocket. And that's with a cover. :cool: I'm thinking of getting the S10 Fold though. I like more screen space for Apps. :D

J Tiers
04-02-2019, 07:58 PM
CCWKen has the plan..... more screen space.

I have a 7" win 8.1 tablet. The screen is actually too small. I probably ought to have gotten the 8" version, but I'd bet on finding that too small also. It's not seeing things, it is hitting the right spot with the finger on the touch screen.

I'd want a phone with a decent size screen so the touch screen works well. The smallest phones would fit OK, and might even survive, but they are too small. Anything bigger would get folded in my pocket. If not folded, it would be smashed. And if I get an Otter Box, that adds a good deal more bulk. My wife has a Iphone with an OtterBox, and it is huge.

The shirt pocket idea I hate, can't stand having stuff in that pocket that is anything past some folded paper.

Sparky_NY
04-02-2019, 07:59 PM
Are you guys using those brick phones from the 80s or something? My "old" Galaxy S8+ fits in my T-shirt pocket. And that's with a cover. :cool: I'm thinking of getting the S10 Fold though. I like more screen space for Apps. :D

Jerry has a fondness for "old" stuff. A smartphone would be out of character.

gellfex
04-02-2019, 08:10 PM
Are you guys using those brick phones from the 80s or something? My "old" Galaxy S8+ fits in my T-shirt pocket. And that's with a cover. :cool: I'm thinking of getting the S10 Fold though. I like more screen space for Apps. :D

Puzzled here too. My Moto G6 is 6.5" diagonal, and I've been crawling around laying flooring with it in my jeans pocket no problem.

Damn devices have been replacing everything I used to have around, calculator, flashlight, mp3 player, camera. When are they going to build in a tape measure and caliper???

danlb
04-02-2019, 09:35 PM
Puzzled here too. My Moto G6 is 6.5" diagonal, and I've been crawling around laying flooring with it in my jeans pocket no problem.

Damn devices have been replacing everything I used to have around, calculator, flashlight, mp3 player, camera. When are they going to build in a tape measure and caliper???

Mine has a tape measure app and a level too.

Glug
04-02-2019, 09:41 PM
Jerry has a fondness for "old" stuff. A smartphone would be out of character.

Not to worry. I am developing a smart phone shaper attachment.

Arcane
04-02-2019, 10:36 PM
Me too. But this punch set looks pretty good. I tested it on some .125 cold-rolled and it came through great which surprised me because the punches and dies aren't very hard. No edge distortion or dulling at all and of course I'll probably not ever use it beyond 16ga sheet in the future. Another bonus is the seal kit for the ram that came with it. It has a set of O-rings and backup rings for a complete re-seal. That could be a good sign or a sign that they expect it to leak soon! In any case, I'm really glad to have it.


Back when I was still working as a Lineman, we had hand pump hydraulic crimpers for the larger size conductor terminals and sleeves and the seals often needed replacement if we hadn't used them for awhile. We were told by the people who repaired them to store them head down rather than laying them flat because laying them flat allowed the seals to dry out. It definitely seemed to make a difference when we followed their advice. I see Burndy wants $2,186.90 for one of them.

https://www.specialized.net/media/catalog/product/cache/926507dc7f93631a094422215b778fe0/1/0/109x962_pli-burndy-y35.jpg

J Tiers
04-02-2019, 11:17 PM
Puzzled here too. My Moto G6 is 6.5" diagonal, and I've been crawling around laying flooring with it in my jeans pocket no problem.

Damn devices have been replacing everything I used to have around, calculator, flashlight, mp3 player, camera. When are they going to build in a tape measure and caliper???

I have already broken other stuff in my pocket, I know my limits.

I could use a smartphone, and would get one in a flash, but I'd either break it inside a week, or not have it with me. The Otterbox would be too huge. Checked that out with the iphone. Wristwatches are also a no-no for me.... they last two weeks, maybe.

The flip phone has a carbon fiber case, the old one had damage to the case, but so far this one is holding up OK. it's a smaller target than a smartphone by a factor of about 3.5:1.

jdunmyer
04-03-2019, 08:30 AM
Arcane,
This is the HF version: https://www.harborfreight.com/hydraulic-wire-crimping-tool-66150.html

I've only used mine once or twice, for making cables for my golf cart. IIRC, I was using #4 cable and terminal ends made from copper tubing. Purchased terminal ends are rather expensive, in my experience.

Back to the flashlights: I always put some kind of anti-oxidant on the battery ends and the contacts on the holder, usually a dab of Corrosion-X. Also, I was able to get a bit into the switch by pushing it past the little rubber button. Made a big difference.

vpt
04-03-2019, 08:40 AM
Are you guys using those brick phones from the 80s or something? My "old" Galaxy S8+ fits in my T-shirt pocket. And that's with a cover. :cool: I'm thinking of getting the S10 Fold though. I like more screen space for Apps. :D


Personally I have no want what so ever for a smart phone. To much junk on them, WAY to big, and fragile as a flower. They are more a ladies device than a phone.

I've had the same phone for the last 10 years. It does what I need out of a phone, makes phone calls. I waste enough time on electronics in the mornings and evenings on my computer, I don't need a phone to distract me for the rest of the day.

This is the phone I still use to this day.

https://i.imgur.com/o9Ftj4p.jpg

Tungsten dipper
04-03-2019, 09:21 AM
Does it slice meat?

3 Phase Lightbulb
04-03-2019, 09:48 AM
I've had iPhones since the 2nd generation and absolutely love them. I keep waiting for my iPhone 6S to die but it still functions perfectly and I've had it since the 6S came out which seems like ages ago.

J Tiers
04-03-2019, 10:22 AM
Don't knock it... the smart phone is a good tool. Just because many folks waste a lot of time with theirs does not make it less so.

I just don't want to tote one around as they are made now. The screen would not last for me.... that part is indeed fragile. I have seen several folks drop them, but the only one that did not break is my wife's, she has the protective cover. The others did not. I think I have seen her drop hers or it get knocked off table, etc, 5 or 6 times, and it is good as new. The cover works, but more than doubles the overall thickness.

chipmaker4130
04-03-2019, 10:38 AM
The typical smartphone is too big for my pocket, and I am waiting for gen II of the foldable ones. . .

I can't stand the typical smart-phone either. Too big, too easily damaged in a machine shop, and the batteries are difficult to change. I bought this one a few months ago: https://kyoex.com/kyocera-kyf33-torque-x01-xtreme-tough-android-flip-phone-unlocked/

I paid the near $600 price too! This phone is intended for the Japanese market and isn't quite 'standard' in some ways, but I love it. The seller has first-rate service too. He is tight with the AU people and the phone 'unlock' is factory and permanent (it doesn't go away with a hard-reset). He got me a spare OEM battery for $30 as well. The phone runs on a modified lollipop OS. It can run some apps, but its best if you have the seller install what you want.

J Tiers
04-03-2019, 11:46 AM
If it runs Android, that screen looks tiny. Do they give a discount on the magnifier attachment? ;)

It's in the right direction, not sure I want to pay anywhere near that, it's more than the carrier charged my wife for the iphone.

chipmaker4130
04-03-2019, 03:07 PM
With no touch screen, it is limited (there is a mouse-pointer that comes up on some apps). I use mine for phone calls and texting. The compass and altimeter are also useful. My old flip phone, which Verizon stops supporting this year, would go a week between charges. This one goes 2 1/2 days.

3 Phase Lightbulb
04-03-2019, 03:58 PM
Some stuff from harbor freight is partly trash... For instance this item :p

https://www.harborfreight.com/3-in-212cc-Gasoline-Engine-Semi-Trash-Water-Pump-290-GPM-63406.html

http://www.bbssystem.com/pictures/trash_pump.jpg

J Tiers
04-03-2019, 05:33 PM
With no touch screen, it is limited (there is a mouse-pointer that comes up on some apps). I use mine for phone calls and texting. The compass and altimeter are also useful. My old flip phone, which Verizon stops supporting this year, would go a week between charges. This one goes 2 1/2 days.

As far as I know, they are still supporting mine, ot's only maybe 3 years old. Goes a good week plus on a charge, and I was so late replacing the one before, that they pretty much gave it to me. Makes call, takes calls, texts, good enough for what it is. Smartphone would give me mobile web access, which would be very handy, but is not essential and I do not need it that often,

ulav8r
04-04-2019, 11:19 PM
Don't knock it... the smart phone is a good tool. Just because many folks waste a lot of time with theirs does not make it less so.

I just don't want to tote one around as they are made now. The screen would not last for me.... that part is indeed fragile. I have seen several folks drop them, but the only one that did not break is my wife's, she has the protective cover. The others did not. I think I have seen her drop hers or it get knocked off table, etc, 5 or 6 times, and it is good as new. The cover works, but more than doubles the overall thickness.

Have a Galaxy Luna that I carry in my shirt pocket. Has a cheap cover that covers the back, sides and just barely overlaps the front edges. Added a hardened glass screen protector. Two known drops just a month or so apart. The first was onto concrete from about 4 feet, the second was about 11 feet onto advantech subfloor. Some time later I noticed a crack in the screen protector that was only visible from certain angles, a few days after that I noticed a second crack. Six months later the phone still works fine, the cracks in the screen protactor do not detract from the use of the phone.

Glug
04-05-2019, 08:49 AM
Have a Galaxy Luna that I carry in my shirt pocket. Has a cheap cover that covers the back, sides and just barely overlaps the front edges. Added a hardened glass screen protector. Two known drops just a month or so apart.

There are also the really cheap phones. You can get a smart phone for $20 and use it wifi only without mobile service, or add a prepaid no contract pmobile service. Can also use it as a phone with google voice.

I paid $50 for a nice used unlocked iPhone 6s. As 3phase pointed out, they are really great phones. I haven't moved over to it yet, but I could use it as a wifi only phone or do a prepaid no contact.

I have read in Europe most folks own their devices, and many are not locked into absurd phone contracts.


Back to the topic of harbor freight -

https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2018-collateralized-loan-obligations/?srnd=premium

3 Phase Lightbulb
04-05-2019, 09:03 AM
Back to the topic of harbor freight -

https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2018-collateralized-loan-obligations/?srnd=premium

Damn 3 comma guys...


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzMUrB-Um1Y