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battery vs. air impact wrench

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Old 10-26-2013, 04:33 AM   #1
VeeSix [OP] VeeSix is offline
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battery vs. air impact wrench

I'm going to start gearing up so that me and my daughter can work on our own trucks. I'm debating whether or not to just get a battery powered impact wrench and not worry about a big air compressor for now. The Milwaukee one seems to be an incredible tool - people love it. I have a "pancake" air compressor that I'm using for carpentry, but I see that it's not enough to run a wrench.

Has anybody else just relied on high quality battery tools and not messed with a compressor? We're talking weekend hobby stuff, putting in a lift kit, brakes, etc. for our own trucks.
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:19 AM   #2
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I use the Rigid impact and drill combo from home depot. They are the only brand that offers lifetime battery replacement as long as you go online and register. It works fairly good but doesnt quite compare to air impacts. But for your needs will probaly work fine. Guy at work just got the milaukee set and i dont see alot of difference but both are nice. Free batterys sold me on the Rigid though. Makita is probaly some of the best of all of them on the market. We use alot of Dewalt at work with good results but batterys dont last.
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:19 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VeeSix View Post
I'm going to start gearing up so that me and my daughter can work on our own trucks. I'm debating whether or not to just get a battery powered impact wrench and not worry about a big air compressor for now. The Milwaukee one seems to be an incredible tool - people love it. I have a "pancake" air compressor that I'm using for carpentry, but I see that it's not enough to run a wrench.

Has anybody else just relied on high quality battery tools and not messed with a compressor? We're talking weekend hobby stuff, putting in a lift kit, brakes, etc. for our own trucks.
I use this and have never run into a problem.

its a beast........ my buddy did some work on my girls car the other day (im nursing a bad back/neck) and brought his air tools just because he figured I may have a cheap cordless.

He loved this impact......it buzzed off lugnuts, and motor mounts with ease.
Since I have all dewalt 18v xrp stuff, this purchase made sense since the battery packs work in all my stuff.

Ive had it about 3 or years now

http://www.dewalt.com/tools/cordless...-dw059k-2.aspx


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Product Features
300 ft-lbs of maximum torque to perform a wide range of heavy-duty fastening applications
1,650 rpm/2,600 ipm for faster application speed
Rocker switch design for fast and easy forward and reverse
Comfort grip provides maximum comfort
Durable magnesium gear case and all-metal transmission for extended durability
Heavy-duty impact mechanism directs torque to fastener without kickback
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:24 AM   #4
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Makita FTW. You won't get nearly as much torque with a battery powered impact. I end up using a breaker bar then my makita impact.
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:33 AM   #5
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If you can afford it.... Get a bigger compressor and the appropriate tools.

It just can't be beat!!

Our compressor is in the basement. PVC piping up to the garage with quick disconnects. Love it.
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Old 10-26-2013, 05:35 AM   #6
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I have the Dewalt battery impact and an air impact gun.

The Dewalt works well but it doesn't have nearly the torque of the air impact. Still will remove lug nuts though.
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Old 11-25-2013, 05:44 AM   #7
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The Dewalt drill and impact driver are a great set. Recommend going with the new 20V system. Stay away from the old. They will become obsolete soon. If you don't care about energy then air is good but the biggest waste of energy. Why not have both!? you can never have too many tools!
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Old 11-25-2013, 09:57 AM   #8
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If you haven't gotten one yet here's my recommendation..

I have that cordless Milwaukee 2663, the 1/2" with friction ring. I bought the kit off Amazon for like $380 shipped a little over a year ago. Lucked out and got one that had a blemish on the case so it was marked down.

Anyways, it has to be one of the best purchases I've ever made. The thing has bee a complete dream for me, turning lengthy bolt wrenching projects into simple, non struggling projects. I use it whenever I can when working on my truck. I think the most common job I use it for is removing lug nuts. Makes tire rotations so easy. The batteries for this thing are awesome as well. It's a big beefy tool built to last and sounds badass lol.

FWIW, my buddy has a couple year old Dewalt and whenever I'm at his house wrenching I usually find him using mine over his.

No matter what you get I highly suggest buying an impact socket set. I've gone through a few non impact craftsman sockets lol.
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:14 AM   #9
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I have both. I hardly use my air one. The tank takes a while to fill up. Then I have to pull out the hose. My electric one is just easier unless I have a big job. I end up using the electric one 90% of the time.
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Old 11-25-2013, 10:23 AM   #10
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Been turning wrenches 20+ years. You can't beat an air gun. But the battery power impacts are good. Just don't buy some junk from Home Depot or lowes. Get a snap on impact. They hold up and are made to be used.
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Old 11-25-2013, 02:01 PM   #11
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i have a Milwaukee. love the thing. it is a big 18V. it can do all my lugs on my porsche 911 easy. maybe my buddies car as well. all on one charge.

i have 4 batteries for it.

having said that, i never use it anymore. why? 3 out of the 4 batteries failed. they throw an error code on the charger. eff it to hell. i cannot afford new batteries. i have to buy replacement Dewalt ones for my drill too!! the Milwaukee batteries i have found on the web are so expensive.

fuck it. i rather spend the money for a cool hose reel. the biggest pain for me and using my AC is to roll up the hose. it is cheaper for me to buy a hose reel, and plumb my garage for air than to start buying new batteries.
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Old 01-08-2014, 12:14 PM   #12
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I feel the need to bump this thread in order to throw electric impact drivers into the discussion. I am in the same boat as the OP. I'm leaning toward plug in electric right now. It seems to me that would provide a nice compromise. More torque than battery but no compressor needed. I really don't know which direction to take but my budget will keep my choices somewhat limited unfortunately.
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