craftsman/kobalt air tools

Discussion in 'XDTalk Chatter Box' started by beitzel15, Sep 10, 2011.

  1. beitzel15

    beitzel15 XDTalk 3K Member

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    Are they worth the money?

    Just wondering, im familiar with matco/snap-on tool prices and looking at the craftsman and kobalt air tools... it's crazy what you can get for the money (which usually isnt a good thing) kobalt 50 pc. air tool set, impact gun, air ratchet and something else plus sockets and some other small stuff for.........$100!

    For just light use on car stuff, changing tires, working on mod's (adding different bumpers, removing seats) stuff like that... are these cheaper air tools going to hold up for years or is it better to splurge more $$$ on a tool that I KNOW will be worth it?

    Craftsman all the way as far as handtools, wrenches... but as for cordless power, always been a fan of dewalt and makita.

    Same goes for air tanks... they dont seem to get GREAT reviews but what can you expect for the money, I guess.
     
  2. xdmp22

    xdmp22 XDTalk 5K Member

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    If you rotate your tires once or twice a year, then the cheap are fine.

    I look at it like drill bits, buy the cheap set and then when they break, replace with good quality. That way you hve good stuff for the items you use the most of.

    That said, only one out of all 28 of my airtools are now is from harbor freight. The rest are Sioux, IR and CP.

    Sioux is the one that makes the airtools for Snap On, so that may save you money depending on what line you go with.

    Florida Pneumatic is also decent stuff for the money...better than the Kobalt/Harbor Freigt crap, but not as good as the IR, CP, Snap On, etc, but well worth the money for mid range stuff.
     
  3. Falcon31

    Falcon31 XDTalk 500 Member

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    I am a mechanic and i own the big ones. snap on, matco, mac. craftsman. nothing wrong with craftsman at all. air tool wise I will go with IR or Snap on. little something i have found out and you wont beleave it. a co-worker of mine busted his Matco ratchet. the gears inside it broke. He had an older style matco ratchet. I took all the parts out of my craftsman ratchet and placed it in his matco handle. so just because some tool as a fancy name on it and is way over priced. does not mean it is any better.
     
  4. xdmp22

    xdmp22 XDTalk 5K Member

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    True, The Danaher Tool group, now renamed to Apex Tool Group, builds the tools for Matco, Craftsman, Cooper (Crescent and others), Armstrong, KD, and a slew of others.

    Another example is the ratchet wrenches from Ace Hardware, they are actually made my Gearwrench, but not polished to save on cost.

    There is a lot of it going around lately.
     
  5. RodsnRides

    RodsnRides XDTalk 500 Member

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    Go with stuff that has a Lifetime Guarantee. Craftsman does, I don't know about Kobalt. Really depends on frequency of use.

    Another alternative is Pawn Shops. I have gotten Snap-On, Mac and Matco at half price at the Pawn Shops. But, do your research-sometimes the Pawn Shops are not really a bargain after all.
     
  6. Falcon31

    Falcon31 XDTalk 500 Member

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    from personal experience id say away from husky just because its a pain trying to exchange a broken tool. i dont know about kobalt
     
  7. MrBoxx

    MrBoxx XDTalk 100 Member

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    I work in an auto service/tire shop that gets weekly visits from the Matco, Snap-On, and Mac tool trucks. I'm not a mechanic, but I still buy tools from them. I've never bought anything from Matco. But Snap-On and Mac tools are definitely worth the money. Most of my air tools are Mac, mostly because the Mac dealer gives me such good deals, I can't pass them up. My impact gun is branded Mac, but made by Ingersoll-Rand. All my good sockets are Mac-Edge sockets. The only Snap-On tools I have are ratchets. Snap-On dual-80 technology with comfort-grip handles, even my 25" ratcheting breaker bar. The extra teeth really cut down on the amount of ratcheting you have to do. Most mechanics I've seen pick one brand and stick with it.

    Regarding Kobalt, we had a technician just starting out that had a brand new Kobalt set of air tools (impact gun, air hammer, air ratchet, etc.) The air hammer simply blew air out of itself without hammering, the impact gun struggled to loosen lug nuts. I don't think he ever really used the air ratchet because it made so much noise. Craftsman, I'm sure, is much more durable and reliable. I've noticed some IR air tools in the Craftsman aisles at Sears. If I were in the market for a "cheap" set of air tools, I'd stick with Craftsman-branded IR. Granted, any air tool won't last if you don't oil it when you need to, keep grease in the places that need grease, and try not to drop it. :)
     
  8. ThumperIII

    ThumperIII XDTalk 1K Member Founding Member

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    One other consideration is the cf/m required to drive the air tools. Because of the looser fit tolerances of the cheap stuff, it can often take nearly twice the air volume or a higher pressure to do the same work as the quality tool. So larger capacity requirement and faster wearout from constant running of your compressor is added to the lesser cost of a cheap tool.
    I did body/fender for a few years back in 72-77 and bought quality tools. Now only an occasional user (do all my own work on three road vehicles & 2 tractors, plus finding a lot of home devices I can construct or weld together) and tool provider to neighborhood projects, everything is still in good working condition except one 1/2 impact that I bought used.
    If there is an option, I never buy a tool that does not have a reputation for maintaining re-build kits for the wearable parts.
    The only time I have found it a cost advantage to buy cheap air tools is when in an environment where you expect the tool to be stolen in less than a year or so (individual tool thefts, not worth turning in for insurance as under deductable amount).

    For other tools, it only takes cheap one tool bend or break that craps on your workpiece to know there were no savings
     
  9. Bonehead

    Bonehead XDTalk 15K Member

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    ill never buy craftsman anything again. they burnt me pretty savagely on a floor jack and I'll never go back.

    matter of fact... I hate sears over that too because trying to get it serviced turned into automated calls on their service line and the person I did finally talk to denied my warranty claim and gave me a run around about even paying to get it fixed.
     
  10. beitzel15

    beitzel15 XDTalk 3K Member

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    I dont think I'll switch from craftsman on my handtools... from $40-70 sets Ive bought to $300-500 sets and the numerous extra tools ive picked up from my dad that he's had for the last 30+ years that still work like a charm.... Ive had good luck with them, light work and working on cars with them. Only broke the gears on a 3/8 CM ratchet after using it as a breaker bar lol.

    Ive found some awesome deals on ebay on like new snap on and ingersol air guns, like this one:
    SNAP-ON AIR MG725 1/2" DRIVE IMPACT WRENCH MG 725 SNAP | eBay
     
  11. Captain Jack

    Captain Jack XDTalk 5K Member

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    When my mom was having her kitchen redone, the guys doing the job had DeWalt power tools. Three of them were drills. They were pretty proud of them and had a lot of good things to say about them. One day they came in and all of them failed to work. Broke out my Craftsman drill and they finished the job with it. Made me feel good. :D

    I'm not saying Craftsman is better, I was just pleased that they liked it as much as their DeWalts. I have been using that drill quite a bit for various jobs around the house. I never had a problem with anything that was made by Craftsman.
     
  12. KyleS

    KyleS XDTalk Member

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    For air tools for putzing around, Craftsman will be more than fine. I tend to stay away from the big box store house brands no matter what, though.

    I do firmly believe though that anything craftsman sells with moving parts (save their ratchets and air tools) are 100% certified crap. I have never had a good experience so I stopped buying them and save the extra $50-$100 to get something I know will work then next time I pick it up. Just something to keep in mind for future purchases.

    and +1 on Sears being run by the devil. That place sucks.
     
  13. Deer Slayer

    Deer Slayer XDTalk 4K Member Founding Member

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    I'm NOT saying they're anywhere near the quality of ingersol/mac/snap-on stuff, but they can work. As long as you oil them when you use them, they work OK. The exception being a disc sander, it died after about 20 minutes of use. It was only $15 though. Bottom line is good air tools perform better. If you get used to air tools you'll want a good impact though. The ingersoll 2135ti is a good one, and reasonably priced. It's astounding what kind of torque that beast can make!
     
  14. Planedr

    Planedr XDTalk 1K Member

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    If you are a professional mechanic, get the best. Snap on wrenches and sockets, Mac ratchets. Keep the craftsman if you are a weekender or just once in a while tinkerer. after you use quality tools you will throw craftsman away. Air tools are the same, go quality and don't worry about them breaking every 3 months. CP, IR, Sioux are the best air tools out.
     
  15. AZXD

    AZXD XDTalk 35K Member

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    Buying cheap tools, and wondering why they breaks when you need them, is like buying an old Jennings pistol.
     

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