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Impact wrenches

Discussion in 'Tech Discussion' started by thecantaloupeman, Sep 22, 2019.

  1. thecantaloupeman

    thecantaloupeman Full Access Member

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    I'm looking into buying an impact wrench for my tool collection. I intend to mostly buy ryobi tools for their battery platform. The only thing they don't offer right now that I want is a high torque impact. The only one they have is a 300 ft/lb one. Is this amount of torque enough for most jobs? I want to have it around just to bust old rusted bolts for some of the bigger projects.

    I want a cordless one for the junkyard. I could just buy a milwaukee impact or dewalt, but then the charger and battery waste space.

    I could also consider getting the portable ryobi compressor and carry that with me and a pnuematic, but thats a lot less convenient.

    Is the 1400 ft/lbs really necessary for working on a 3/4 ton squarebody or most bigger cars for that matter? Is 300 a good amount or do I need more?

    Hoping this might be helpful to some others looking for a good impact as well. Right now I'm in love with ryobi because they don't change the batteries and they are really affordable.
     
  2. Doppleganger

    Doppleganger Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    The DeWalt cordless impact is pointless. Its more like a cordless ratchet. It wont break 80 ft lb lugs. I have their largest plug in model that works ok. Still wind up breaking alot loose with a cheater bar first. About as bad as a dishwasher where you have to clean all the plates off before using it.

    I also know the big one (cordless) that Harbor Freight peddles is advertised at ripping school bus lugs off (140 ft lbs) at will. My friend bought one and took it back - said it was way too much for his needs. lol
     
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  3. 77 K20

    77 K20 Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I have the Dewalt corded impact wrench and have had it now for probably 8 years. It is rated at 345 ft/lbs and I've primarily used it for swapping out summer/winter tires and tire rotations. Works great on the 8 lug wheels of both my 3/4 ton trucks. I've used it on some other parts- suspension and whatnot.
    Main drawback of it is the sheer size of it.
     
  4. hunters628

    hunters628 Full Access Member

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    I have the top of the line Milwaukee Fuel 1/2” impact gun and I gotta say it is a beast. I’ve never found a bolt it won’t break, even working on heavy equipment. It’s rated for 1400lbs nut busting and I think that is and understatement. Will you even use it’s full potential on a pickup? Probably not. But there is always the chance you will. It will save you insane amounts of time and anguish vs working with a smaller gun or ratchet. If you really don’t think you will need a big gun, look at one of Milwaukee’s 3/8” impact guns. They are tanks too. I had the dewalt equivalent to the 1/2 and 3/8 guns and they are no where near the build quality or power of the Milwaukee. The dewalts feel like toys and the Milwaukee’s real tools. My 1/2 Milwaukee weighs 9lbs with a 9ah battery installed. That’s nothing.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2019
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  5. hunters628

    hunters628 Full Access Member

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  6. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't know which model you have, but a DeWalt 20v XR 1/2" drive impact will take lugnuts off of 18 wheelers and full size tractors. To get much more powerful, you need a 1/2" air hose, 175 psi and a good 1" air gun.
     
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  7. bucket

    bucket Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Another thing, I don't know how they figure torque ratings, but they are ALL very optimistic. To get a real world figure, cut it in half and its usually still optimistic.
     
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  8. 75gmck25

    75gmck25 Full Access Member

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    I used my Ryobi cordless impact to disassemble the front end of my K25 when I changed ball joints, and it worked without any issues to take off the steering arm and ball joints. There were a few bolts where I had to let it pound on them for a bit before they broke loose, but they did come loose. I also used it to remove and reinstall lug nuts, which is a great time saver. The Ryobi is probably not as good when compared to the more expensive wrenches, but IIRC it was only about $100 with a battery and charger from HD. Try to find one with the meter button on the battery, since its really inconvenient to run out of power at the wrong time.

    As just another data point, I bought a Makita brushless sub-compact impact driver in June, and it only held up until this month before needing repairs. I love the size and weight for working on house framing, drilling, etc., but maybe it lost some durability when they downsized.

    Bruce
     
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  9. legopnuematic

    legopnuematic Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    The best bang for your buck (in my opinion) is a good 1/2 (or 3/4) drive breaker bar. Then a lighter 3/8 or 1/2 drive cordless impact to spin stuff off once busted loose. Then in the junkyard you don't have to worry about using up the battery on breaking a stubborn one loose, and if needed a the breaker can work as a pry bar.

    I have a harbor freight twin hammer composite air impact and it's rated at 400ft lbs, has been in service for 6 years and still works good. Worked to buzz all the stuff off of my 79s frame (bumper, suspension) and if you seen my thread on it, it's crusty. Only had a few bolts I had to hit with heat and a breaker bar first.

    So "400 ft lbs" is going to be adequate for most things imo.

    Sent from my Moto Z (2) using Tapatalk
     
  10. TubeTruck

    TubeTruck Full Access Member

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    I also use Milwaukee. Exclusively. I've had Dewalt, Bosch, Ryobi, Craftsman, and I'm sure others but imo nothing compares to Milwaukee and from my experience Milwaukee batteries last the longest, both in terms of usage and longevity. I'm a maintenance tech and I'm always wrenching on machinery. I have one of the "1400" ft/lb 1/2" impacts and I love that thing but only use it for larger bolts or lugs. My favorite tool is the Milwaukee 1/4" Hex Impact. I have the adapters to use 1/4", 3/8", and 1/2" sockets and that thing will take any bolt out other than a lug nut. If you're looking to pull motors, trannys, interior pieces I would use one of those. They also have the screwdriver bits and torx and everything you need. If you're pulling axles use the 1/2".

    The 1400 ft/lb was already linked but here's the one I use most often
    https://www.milwaukeetool.com/Products/Power-Tools/2853-20

    I'm not sure how the 12V tools are, I only use the 18V ones. I also have a car charger so I don't have to bring spare batteries.
     
  11. EvilGenius

    EvilGenius Full Access Member

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    I'm in a similar boat as the OP. I mostly use Ryobi because of their battery system and I already had some of their tools before I really started looking into specific tools.

    I actually have this cordless Ryobi impact and it works awesome. Out of all my tools this thing gets the most use. Granted I have a breaker bar for really stuck stuff, but this takes care of just about everything I throw at it. For the price, it's hard to beat imo. Swapping the adapters into the 1/4 drive is pretty slick too. The downside is that it adds some length to it so getting it into really confined spaces can be difficult. I also had one of the adapters snap off in the drive. Had to disassemble it to pull the stub out, but it wasn't that bad.
     
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  12. B.K. Cunningham

    B.K. Cunningham Full Access Member

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    gotta agree, I use my Ryobi impact on my 74 3/4 ton and every junkyard rig I pull parts from, hasn't hesitated in 3 years.
     

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