Did I make a smart tool buy or a dumb mistake?

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Im looking around for air tool sets & I saw that Coscto had a 62pc Mastergrip set for $124.99 (Air hammer, impact wrench, air rachet, cut off tool,..etc). A local distributor was having a sale & I droped in & saw him blowing out a Campbell Hausfeld TL1070 72pc set for $89.99 (air hammer TL1103, impact wrench 1102,air rachet 1101, NO cut off tool included). So I bought the CH, and now Im starting to wonder if i made the right choice.
The mastergrip set didnt list the torque power ratings on its box so I couldnt judge how powertful it was, and it seemed to have little extra do dads. On the CH box I bought it says the impact wrench mod:TL1102 is 260Lb torque/ same as its says on the CH website, but when I look around the net at other distributors on the net they list the same model TL1102 torgue @ 130Lb. By the way the TL1101 air rachet is 25lb torque. Now Im confused did I buy a good quality set? Who do I believe, what are the true torque ratings? is my 25Lb rachet to weak? Should i return this CH set (which the clerk told me is regular $150) and go for the Costco mastergrip?

Im not a professional mechanic I just fix my car in the back yard, any opinions or help is appreciated?

Thank you

posted by  Rhino1616

IMHO you did not buy a good quality set. But then you also stated that you are not a professional technician so you really don't need a good quality set. Remember, you get what you paid for.

CH is definately a bargain brand for the DIYer and will make most of the work you do easier. There will be some fasteners that you will not be able to remove with your CH gun though. But do you want to spend the extra money to get a gun that will remove those stubborn fasteners the few times you run into them?

I am not intimately familiar with the specs on both brands so I cannot say which one is better. Most likely, either one will be fine for the usage you are going to put it through. One of the best things you can do to get the most for your money out of what you bought is to take care of them. Keep the air tools oiled regularly.

As far as your air ratchet is concerned, is it 1/4" dr or 3/8" dr? To give you an idea, a Snap-on 1/4" air ratchet is putting out about 25 ft-lbs of torque. 3/8" drive is putting out about 70 ft-lbs of torque. But remember, this tool is going to be tripple what you paid for your whole set. But for a professional technician, it is worth it.

Be happy with what you bought, take care of it, and it should hold up for you. :2cents:

posted by  theman352001

Thanks for the response. The air rachet is 3/8 25Lb torgue, & if i understand you correctly I shouldnt really worry, for the DIY'er this set should work just fine. Now that you mentioned the stubborn bolts thing, im wondering if 260LB impact wrench has enough power for most bolts or if more Torque is needed.

posted by  Rhino1616

260 ft-lbs is good enough for most bolts. You may have toruble with some rusted fasteners like suspension bolts etc..... You should not have any trouble with lugnuts though. (removing, not installing - use your torque wrench for installation)

If you run into any troubles, break them loose with a breaker bar and then your impact gun should be able to handle them.

As a DIYer, you get air tools to help speed up your work and make it a bit easier. As a professional, time is money so you need to have the more powerful gun so you don't have to mess around with breaking them loose and them spinning them off.

posted by  theman352001

Good God. 260 ft-lbs is more than enough. It's not like you could even hold an air wrench if it got up to that much torque on a bolt.

posted by  DodgeRida67

1/2" drive impact guns are putting out over 600 ft-lbs. Remember, this is an impact gun. It is not putting out constant torque, it's putting out multiple impacts per second. The user does not feel the overall torque, except for the vibration that the gun puts out.

posted by  theman352001

I find it funny you believe it would pull 600ft-lbs on a nut or bolt. It would come loose way before that, on average 100ft-lb lets say. So it would hardly eevr go over 100. 600lb-lbs on 1/2 drive? it would snap around 300.

posted by  DodgeRida67

The key word here is "IMPACT", not "PULL". An impact has the ability to put a lot of force on an object over a very short period of time. Couple that with about 1200 impacts per minute and you have the ability to put a lot of torque onto a fastener.

Take, for example, a nail. Go ahead, grab one and use your finger (put a quarter between you finger and the nail so you don't hurt yourself) to put that nail into a 2X4. Having a difficult time??

Ok, now take a hammer (manual impact device) and hit the nail on the head into the 2X4. Goes in a bit easier huh?

Same thing with an impact gun except now the mass (hammer) is spinning around, gaining momentum until the anvil gets in the way. Then BAM, the mass impacts the anvil and the anvil transmitts that impact to the fastener. After the impact is delivered, the mechanism disengages so the mass can start spinning again for the next blow.

The impact gun does not "PULL" torque like a regular wrench or even an air ratchet.

Hope this clarifies things.

posted by  theman352001

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