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      06-22-2013, 08:55 AM   #1
dmw16
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Cordless impact for the track?

I am thinking of getting a cordless impact wrench for the track. Sears has one for sale for $85, but I wasn't sure if 200 ft-lb was enough torque to break the lugs free (especially if the wheel is on jacks)?

I only torque my wheels to around 86-92 ft-lb, so I assume 200 should suffice, right?
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      06-22-2013, 09:17 AM   #2
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It should, but the 200 rating is only with a full charge. I use a DeWalt DW059B rated at 300 and it works awesome. Another thing to consider is battery life. Do some research on the specific wrench you're looking at. Mine lasts seemingly forever, and that is a big selling point for something you use at the track, where there may or may not be [free] electricity. I used it for many full wheels swaps on the M3 at Roebling, didn't charge it, used it again at Barber, didn't charge it, and it still worked.
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      06-22-2013, 10:07 AM   #3
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I have the Craftsman. I don't change wheels at the track, just use it at home though. It works fine in breaking lug bolts free (wheels torqued to 96 ft-lbs), but I would note that the battery is well charged. So I can't really say how long it might last with multiple sets of wheel changes as the battery discharges. I bought it because it was cheaper and already had other Craftsman C3 tools/batteries so it fit for my usage pattern. For track duty, I suspect a heavier duty one might be a better choice.
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      06-22-2013, 10:33 AM   #4
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Craftsman is the best bang for the buck at about $100, no doubt, but 200 lbs is on the low side and the cheapie version is nicad not lithium ion. It is not lifetime warranty, unlike hand tools.

Another good option is the Kobalt sold at Lowes. I think it is 300 lbs, may have a better warranty, and is lithium ion. But it is more like $275.

I use Milwaukee 18V lithium ion. It has 450 lbs torque, but is more like $375. I rarely use air anymore, it is so good.

With any of these, you can buy the tool only for other tools and use these batteries. Like a lightweight lower torque impact or drill or sawsall or circular saw or whatever.
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      06-22-2013, 11:30 AM   #5
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The one that comes with a lithium ion battery is pretty good, not sure if that's the one on sale
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      06-22-2013, 05:26 PM   #6
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Thanks.

I'm feeling guilty buying an expensive one because I have a compressor and a bunch of air tools. If I had it to do over again I'd have bought a nice impact gun instead of the compressor. I rarely use the compressor because my garage is small and I don't care for the noise.

I supposed I could change wheels by hand...
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      06-22-2013, 05:40 PM   #7
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Doing them by hand only takes about a minute more than having a gun per wheel.
Plus you still need to hand torque them at the end.
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      06-22-2013, 06:46 PM   #8
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I always break them by hand, them jack the car up and use my cordless to remove them. Much easier on your impact gun. It will last longer.
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      06-22-2013, 07:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdott View Post
I always break them by hand, them jack the car up and use my cordless to remove them. Much easier on your impact gun. It will last longer.
I do that too sometimes... especially if you don't want to hear so much impact noise too.
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      06-22-2013, 07:43 PM   #10
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i have a Ryobi 18-Volt Impact Wrench and it works like a charm
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      06-22-2013, 08:40 PM   #11
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I think I'd use it more to run them off after breaking them and run them down before torquing them. So power might not be as critical.
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      06-22-2013, 09:12 PM   #12
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i just break them loose by hand then got a 1/2 inch fitting for my cordless drill and run them on and off with that. dont even have an impact for track use. it was a 5 dollar solution.
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      06-22-2013, 11:07 PM   #13
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FTW, this thing is unstoppable

http://www.milwaukeetool.com/power-t...rdless/2663-22
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      06-23-2013, 01:33 AM   #14
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i have the milwakee corded version for at home.
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      06-23-2013, 09:09 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jml View Post
That is the one I have and it is really good. Been using it for a couple of years now and one of the high output lithium batteries lasts a while and as a charge indicator. You can buy reconditioned ones for $300. The convenience is nice.

As noted above, if you break them free by hand and do the final torque by hand, even a cordless drill with 1/2 socket adapter is helpful, although some of those little impacts with the hex fitting are even better and much lighter than the big square drive impacts.
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      06-23-2013, 09:17 AM   #16
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We use a Dewalt and it's great for the job. Long lasting batteries, very fast. Just zip bolts on with just a touch on the trigger and you're ready for the torque wrench.
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      06-23-2013, 09:36 AM   #17
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I have the Craftsman C3 cordless impact gun (along with the C3 air compressor which is GREAT for the track and the drill which is a decent drill, and I also have the little C3 shop vac.). The imapct gun works great at the track. I've done hundreds of wheel changes with it.

However, I REALLY really really recommend getting the High Capacity XCP lithium battery for it. ( http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00935702000P ) It's SO FAR superior to the either the Ni-Cad or standard lithium, it's not even funny.

The ni-cad battery and the standard lithium can ALMOST do two full sets of 4 tire changes on one charge. This includes breaking and removing bolts and putting them back on lightly for a final hand torque. Sometimes I used to have to break one or two bolts with a breaker bar at the end of the day if I didn't bring a second battery with me.

The XCP battery-----hehe----that thing goes FOREVER----and ever and ever and ever. You could probably do more than 10 full sets of wheel changes on a single charge with that battery. The reason I can't tell you for sure is because it never runs out. I use it at the track to switch to my track wheels in the morning. Then I'll rotate my wheels. Then someone else will borrow it. Then I move the battery to the air compressor and use it to pump air. Then I rotate again. Then someone else borrows it. Then I switch back to street wheels. Then once I get home, I pull the wheels to switch brake pads......and the thing just keeps going and going.....the only bummer is the battery itself is $85 online. Oh, and the XCP battery gives the tool more torque too because it puts out more power.

But as far as the impact gun itself, it's fine for track use at these torque levels (88 ft lbs). It also breaks the bolts on our X5 which are at 102 ft lbs.
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      06-23-2013, 03:42 PM   #18
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Slight thread jack, but maybe someone can answer this. I've asked this a few times on this forum with no response--what are race teams doing during wheel changes to get the wheels properly torqued down using an impact gun the whole time, with no torque wrench? Do they use torque sticks on the guns that vaguely approximate 90 lb-ft? Also, I've noticed that they often don't follow the commonly accepted star-pattern for tightening--they just go around in a circle sequentially. I've also noticed that they zip off the existing lug nuts, toss them to the side, slap on the new wheel and immediately start again with the impact gun. You don't see them place the new nuts on--are they already semi-adhered to the new wheel for quick application?

This has been driving me nuts!

Get it? Nuts...

Sorry for the sidetrack.
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      06-23-2013, 03:52 PM   #19
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i went with the Bosch cordless impacts. I already had some of their 18V products, so I can work with multiple batteries and chargers for all applications. I have the 3/8" model and the 1/2" model. I need the 1/2" in case I need to change a tire on the tow vehicle as they are torques to 135 ftlbs.
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      06-23-2013, 05:26 PM   #20
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another one with the sears c3 kit here. itll last a weekend for me and my friends, with a saturday wheel change. id guess 10 uses is about what youd get out of a battery. i use it on torqued wheels too. for the price it cant be beat.
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      06-23-2013, 09:51 PM   #21
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For all the guys suggesting the C3, I assume that's with the XPS battery? Is there another LiON battery? The Sears website is a pain, I'll just head to the store and scope out my options.


Quote:
Originally Posted by paradocs98 View Post
Slight thread jack, but maybe someone can answer this. I've asked this a few times on this forum with no response--what are race teams doing during wheel changes to get the wheels properly torqued down using an impact gun the whole time, with no torque wrench? Do they use torque sticks on the guns that vaguely approximate 90 lb-ft? Also, I've noticed that they often don't follow the commonly accepted star-pattern for tightening--they just go around in a circle sequentially. I've also noticed that they zip off the existing lug nuts, toss them to the side, slap on the new wheel and immediately start again with the impact gun. You don't see them place the new nuts on--are they already semi-adhered to the new wheel for quick application?

This has been driving me nuts!

Get it? Nuts...

Sorry for the sidetrack.
Impact wrenches can be calibrated to run down to a certain torque, they just aren't practical for us normal folks ($-wise). The race teams I would imagine are using calibrated guns.

The same approach is used for engine building. There was a NatGeo show about them building the Z06 and they showed these calibrated air-powered torque wrenches they use. Very cool.
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      06-23-2013, 10:00 PM   #22
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If you want something affordable yet has enough torque, this may be your best choice:

http://www.harborfreight.com/18-volt...nch-67845.html
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