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Tool Reviews Got a new tool? Gloats are fun, but reviews are better. Go ahead and brag about that new toy but tell us all about it and how you like it.

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HF 4-1/2" ANGLE GRINDER - ITEM 95578
HF 4-1/2" ANGLE GRINDER - ITEM 95578
Published by bigdaddyjohn
04-26-2008
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Thumbs up HF 4-1/2" ANGLE GRINDER - ITEM 95578

Not bad for under $9. Here's the bottom line. I need to cut "T-Posts" that are buried underground in three feet of concrete. (Can you say overkill?)

Out to local HF to see what I can come up with. Found it onsale. This version comes with no wheels does have the flange washers and a spanner wrench . All you have to do is add cutoff or grinder wheel. For a few dollars more, I found a ten pack of metal cutoff wheels. Two bucks for safety glasses. For $21 with tax, I was able to quickly cut the T-Posts. Less than a minute to eat through.

Say what you will about HF tools. I certainly got my money's worth and them some. Is it pretty and have the DeWalt name? Nope. It's a blue DrillMaster with a reversible handle. Spins the cutoff wheel at 11,000 rpm. Just let the wheel do the work and it will treat you right. No complaints with this one.

Here's the link: http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=95578
  #1  
By eccentrictinkerer on 04-26-2008, 07:03 PM
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I picked up three $9 angle grinders, from Menards (on sale), several years ago. One has a masonry blade, one has a metals blade and one has a diamond blade in it. They are always ready to go and don't take up much space. I'm a handyman so the tools get a lot of use.

My pretty yellow Dewalt angle grinder sits on the shelf, unused, because I don't want to get it messed up with brick dust, metal filings or tile shards.

Chosen wisely, the HF stuff can be a good buy for light to medium duty.

My cordless tools are Panasonic and Dewalt, my corded and air tools are Bosch, Hilti and Porter Cable, but they're in use every single day.
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  #2  
By JoeyGee on 04-26-2008, 09:42 PM
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I have the HF angle grinder. I don't remember what I originally bought it for, but I remember it was cheaper than renting one. Like you, I figured if I got one use out of it, it was worth it. I have since used it a ton, and it's still going strong.
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  #3  
By Pappy on 04-27-2008, 07:56 AM
I went through one of those when I built my race trailer. Tossed it and bought another one. After that one died, I stepped up one level to this one.

http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/cta...emnumber=91223

On sale, either is a good bargain and decent tool for occassional use. I use Norton cut off blades from HD. Cost more but they last longer.
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  #4  
By bigdaddyjohn on 04-27-2008, 05:15 PM
update

I broke it. Sort of. The key lock button that you press to engage to the shaft so you can loosen/tighten the nuts broke. However, SWMBO happened to be going out so she took it back for a replacement. Since I couldn't get the get disc off due to the broken lock, they replaced the disc also. Cut some more "T-Posts" with the new one. Cuts like Buttaaa.
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  #5  
By JeffG78 on 04-28-2008, 12:32 PM
Call me a snob, but I can't use junk tools. Even if they "work", they just don't feel like quality tools feel. I have bought a few small items at HF, but I always stick with a brand I know and trust for my tools. Even then, I do a lot of comparrison shopping, read reviews, ask friends, etc. before buying stuff. I take pride in my tools and plan on keeping every one of them for years if not decades. Even though I don't have a lot of money, I don't see the bargain of buying disposable tools.
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  #6  
By Mr__Bill on 04-28-2008, 06:11 PM
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HF often has a variety pack of cut off disks on sale when the grinder is on sale. My HF grinder is not a VS so it is limited somewhat for what I had in mind. When you drop it off of the roof it breaks just like the expensive ones but doesn't hurt as much in the pocket book. I think that if I were working with the tool everyday and not abusing it I would spring for the better tool, but I am not so I did not.

Bill, I'm sure it's sunny on the top side of the rain!
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  #7  
By Tom Slick on 04-29-2008, 01:22 AM
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I used a $19.99 HF grinder for quite a while. I have had to repair the gearbox and cooling fan in it. It works ok for occasional use. I finally bought a Bosch 4 1/2" and there is no comparison. It vibrates less, is less noisy when running unloaded, and has a ton more power. you don't realize the HF unit is underpowered until you use a professional unit. The bosch has literally twice the power 8 amps v. 4 amps.

I would rate the HF unit a decent value if you are only going to use it occasionally and not for any heavy or extended use.

I find that norton abrasives from HD last significantly longer, work faster, and give a better finish then the abrasives from HF. I prefer aluminum oxide flap wheels to solid carborundum. I once had an entire box of 14" cut off wheels from HF that were so out of balance they were unusable, the saw literally bounced up and down with them installed.
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  #8  
By Jim Bow on 08-05-2008, 12:19 AM
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A consideration: A friend of mine is a tool buyer for Boeing. In his studies he discovered that all the 9" dry diamond cement cutting blades available retail come from 2 different plants in China. They are re-labeled and sold by several large companies. If you compare an HF blade and a Bosch, they are identical.
The HF blades are about 1/4 the price.
He also heard that all the auto-darkening lenses in welding helmets come from the same plant in china. Therefore the HF is no worse than the Lincoln Electric.

Your thoughts?
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  #9  
By Parkingmeter on 08-08-2008, 07:36 PM
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Even if your buddy is correct in "what he heard", that doesn't mean every part and every tool coming out of those plants are the same. The specs and materials for a tool being made for one company can be far different than the specs and materials for the same type of tool being made for another company.
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