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Well guys they say admitting you have a problem is the first step right. So today I went to the Horrible Freight company and actually contemplated buying one of their metal brakes. That is until I started to closely inspect it.....:sign0020: Its proof that everything looks better in pictures then it does in person. what a POS! my God my old shop teacher would have flunked me right out of welding class if I had ever done anything that bad...
So needless to say I didn't have to muster up a lot of willpower to keep myself from buying it.
After spending way too much time looking through craigslist and the like I was wondering if anyone has ever come across any plans for building one? I have some ideas in my head and plan on putting them down on paper this weekend. So if you got any ideas let hear em.

Thanks guys
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Well if their here Robert their doing a good job of hiding......lol I am doing what you suggested scanning CL and other sites which has a side benefit of finding all these other classified sites. Nothing in my price range yet. Even though it used and 30 years old in some case people still think what thye have is gold and they aren't too far off going by the quality of stuff like sold in HF
 

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OK I try not to buy from HF but a friend of mine gave me his HF break and yes it is a POS but it actually works. it has to be readjusted like evry other bend ot so but it does the job. I mounted it on a stand with locking casters and roll it outside when not using it . I was hoping the adjustments would rust in place and lock up .
 

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  • You can have it now.
  • You can have it cheap.
  • You can have good quality.
Pick any two, but you seldom can have all three. :anim_25:
 

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I actually bought a Chinese made brake that's a pretty good tool depending on what you want to do - but it's not like the current offerings at Harbor Freight. I don't remember for sure where I got it, perhaps Enco.
 

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I actually bought a Chinese made brake that's a pretty good tool depending on what you want to do - but it's not like the current offerings at Harbor Freight. I don't remember for sure where I got it, perhaps Enco.
I have bought some decent import stuff from Enco.
 

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That H F stuff does not used quality materials, nor good engineering. Look for good used if price is an issue. A friend bought a large one at a machine action here in Ohio. It's fifty years old and works real well.
 

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You live in NJ! There are more used machinery dealers around NJ/NYC than likely anywhere else in the US. Keep your eyes out on CL or ebay for good used quality built machines, they'll far outlast any of the HF stuff you looked at...
I would suggest the same. I know a guy who has bought a brake, mill, lathe, and drill press from used machinery dealers and liquidation sales. All are true industrial quality and USA made. Some of the stuff is probably 30-40 years old, but works better than ANYTHING new from HF.

Went to an HF store a couple weeks ago because a buddy forced me at gunpoint (well, not quite). Ended up buying a bottle of US-made hand cleaner. Last time I was there I bought a Goodyear air hose, also US-made. Those were probably the only two things in the store not made in Communist China. And neither one had porous castings or Grade 1 hardware.
 

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Well guys they say admitting you have a problem is the first step right. So today I went to the Horrible Freight company and actually contemplated buying one of their metal brakes. That is until I started to closely inspect it.....:sign0020: Its proof that everything looks better in pictures then it does in person. what a POS! my God my old shop teacher would have flunked me right out of welding class if I had ever done anything that bad...
So needless to say I didn't have to muster up a lot of willpower to keep myself from buying it.
After spending way too much time looking through craigslist and the like I was wondering if anyone has ever come across any plans for building one? I have some ideas in my head and plan on putting them down on paper this weekend. So if you got any ideas let hear em.

Thanks guys
Stupid me , bought a HF brake. Even after re-fabricating ,adjusting and tweaking this "thing" I found it to be junk. So, I got rid of it and continued my search for a USA made finger brake. Luck would have it. I found one on Craigslist ,of all places cause you have to be careful on that site.But haven't got burnt yet. But you ALWAYS have to keep your guard up. Called up about it and ask the brand and model and thats the last I heard from the woman for a month. Tried to call the number but no answer. Then, after 3-4 weeks she calls me back and asks me if I still wanted it. It was listed for $500 ,but she said she'd take less. Not bad for a Tennsmith (if its a Tennsmith) Went to look at it and it was in the back of a pick-up in pieces. I told her" not interested" but she said she had to get rid of it and would take anything for it.I said I would give you $100 for it and if it didn't work I would be able to get some of my money back by scrapping it. She said "great I'll help you load it up". Got it home pieced it together ,cleaned it, painted it and adjusted it and made a stand for it and very happy with it. It required a lot of work but turns out to be an older Tennsmith for heavier gauge metal that works pretty good. Fairly accurate after adjustment.I've searched for 2-3 yrs. for a good brake. Ebay-Craigslist-Tool sales-internet.I guess it pays off to be diligent.After having a HF straight brake you really are happy with a quality finger brake.Keep looking they're out there!!!

This is before

This is after
 

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Nothing wrong with buying a good used one. Mike
 

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Harbor Freight is a catch 22 for sure.

I've gotten wrenches, sockets, drills & etc that have held up fine for years. Since I'm no professional garage they don't get the heavy day to day use and work just fine.

Then I've gotten some tools that basically lasted long enough to do the job at hand and then they were trash. Since they are cheap no big deal.
 

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  • You can have it now.
  • You can have it cheap.
  • You can have good quality.
Pick any two, but you seldom can have all three. :anim_25:
Truer words never spoken!
 
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