Author Topic: Yesss! Arc welder!  (Read 16679 times)

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Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #25 on: July 23, 2014, 04:18:53 pm »
Apparently the Chicago electric brand (what this is) is sort of the harbor freight of welders.
Actually, it is literally the Harbor Freight house brand.

Quote
The long weld on that image is where I arced a bunch to try and find the small one since it was bad anyways lol. I have pretty good hand-eye co-ordination, it's just a pain not being able to see the start position.
The head nod that arc welders always used to lower the helmet before starting was one of the hardest things for beginners to do well without losing their place.  An auto-darkening helmet will help a lot.  I have a pretty nice Optrel helmet that I use at work, but my Harbor Freight helmet at home works OK.

Oh, I'm just lowering it by hand lol.

During the day it's bright enough I can barely see the outline of the metal with the light through the window, a bit bright worklight would probably help. Auto darkening would still be way better though. The space that you can see out of seems kind of small, like the one linked earlier in the thread, but considering I can't see out of the big one anyways it's not really an issue  :P

Interesting that it's here in Canada, we don't have harbor freight here. Maybe princess auto carries this brand too.


Also a scrap yard here has lots of 1/4" steel plate and similar, $.25 a pound, and I think I have enough on me to get 12 pounds or so, that will probably be a decent bit to start practicing on  :-//

At some point I do want to get larger rods but this small ones are fine for now I guess. Just seems that it might be annoying to stop halfway through a weld to change them out.

Offline dfmischler

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #26 on: July 23, 2014, 04:29:06 pm »
Beware that you might not actually have enough current output to use larger rod effectively, especially at a useful duty cycle (Harbor Freight site says 70 A at 20% duty cycle for 115V input, and recommends 1/16 to 3/32 rod).  In, say, 6013 you should have around 115 A or more for 1/8" (3.2mm) rod (this varies some by manufacturer).  Good quality rod makes a big difference.  My main arc welder is a Miller Dialarc 250 AC/DC (got it for $100 US) and I don't push anything bigger than 1/8" 7018 rod.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 04:39:08 pm by dfmischler »
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #27 on: July 23, 2014, 04:42:01 pm »
Beware that you might not actually have enough current output to use larger rod effectively.  In, say, 6013 you should have around 115 A or more for 1/8" (3.2mm) rod (this varies some by manufacturer).  Good quality rod makes a big difference.  My main arc welder is a Miller Dialarc 250 AC/DC (got it for $100 US) and I don't push anything bigger than 1/8" 7018 rod.

ahh, dang. Yeah the tutorial I watched had the guy using 100+ amps for the whole thing, I probably won't be able to run 6013 then.

These rods I have are marked for 20-45 amps though, and I mean, they probably aren't too much, the welds might not be one constant pretty thing but they will still work if I have to use more than one.

Also how the hell did you get that for only $100? sheesh
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 04:43:40 pm by XOIIO »
 

Offline dfmischler

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #28 on: July 23, 2014, 04:52:53 pm »
ahh, dang. Yeah the tutorial I watched had the guy using 100+ amps for the whole thing, I probably won't be able to run 6013 then.
6013 is a pretty good rod for thin material.  It is easily available down to 1/16", and you can use that below 70 A.  It is much easier to avoid burning holes in thin material with thin rods (or wire feed MIG/flux core).

Quote
Also how the hell did you get that for only $100? sheesh
The guy who had it was ready to get rid of it, and brought it over for me to try out.  I had to promise I would weld his stuff for free when he shows up.  That's been twice in the last 3 years.
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #29 on: July 23, 2014, 05:10:32 pm »
ahh, dang. Yeah the tutorial I watched had the guy using 100+ amps for the whole thing, I probably won't be able to run 6013 then.
6013 is a pretty good rod for thin material.  It is easily available down to 1/16", and you can use that below 70 A.  It is much easier to avoid burning holes in thin material with thin rods (or wire feed MIG/flux core).

Quote
Also how the hell did you get that for only $100? sheesh
The guy who had it was ready to get rid of it, and brought it over for me to try out.  I had to promise I would weld his stuff for free when he shows up.  That's been twice in the last 3 years.

Please hold while I rip my own heart out and eat it due to jealousy.

I figured 6013 also meant the size, not just a type of material lol. still loads to learn   :P

Offline SeanB

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #30 on: July 23, 2014, 06:01:39 pm »
I bought 2 at Makro ( now Wallyworld) as shop demo models, and talked them down to $45 each.  Nice OHL inverter welders, and gave one away to a fellow HAM who can actually weld, but has limited income as he is on a fixed pension. He loves it. I have used it a little to weld, and it beats the buzzbox welder in every respect aside from the ability to run from really crappy power from a generator. Light, strikes easily and welds at a higher current with tight control. Welded galvanised steel and it was perfect aside from making a giant pool of zinc oxide. It was outdoors doing washing lines, so no fumes to worry about.
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #31 on: July 23, 2014, 06:52:57 pm »
Bleh. Well this stuff is 6013, just super thin, it flexes a lot, and barely puts out any materiel. If I try to go slowly it usually just sticks to the bit I'm trying to weld to. It also seems to have barely any penetration for stuff this thick (as you will see)

Anyways, got $15 of scrap metal from a nearby scrapyard.



Decent bit of stuff to try, I first decided to try and weld these bits together.



It seemed kind of good, looked not too terrible in some spots, however after letting it cool for a good 10 minutes, maybe 15, gave it a drop on the floor and it broke right apart. More passes would probably be good, but also something with more penetration and that puts out more material.

Back side of it sucked.



Decided to just try and do beads for a bit, it's a bit of a pain to get started, even with the metal wire brushed to be a bit cleaner, and the flex gets annoying, I don't have a jacket or anything, so I am using one hand, can't really brace myself and it moves a decent bit. Looking at it though it seems to have the right pattern to it, just smaller. I found that it sort of just floats along once you get it in a good position.





But yeah, basically I am pretty sure I need to get some bigger stuff than this 1/16th inch. A grinder would really be good too because as of right now I don't have a way to remove the old welds and try again
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 06:56:04 pm by XOIIO »
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #32 on: July 23, 2014, 07:02:02 pm »
Turn them over and use the other side. You need to move slower, and move the tip of the rod where the arc is in small circles, so that the puddle you make looks like a tipped stack of coins on the top of the metal. Needs practise and you will improve. You can also just try making a weld puddle in a small area and use that to practise holding the arc steady and learn how to feed the rod in with time.
 

Offline deth502

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #33 on: July 23, 2014, 07:40:27 pm »
cleanliness is your best friend. nothing ruins a weld faster than dirt or rust in the weld. make sure your base metals are clean. get yourself a chipping hammer and a wire brush, if you have to stop in the middle of a bead to change a rod, chiip off the slag with the chipping hammer and brush it clean before you continue your weld on top of it.

welding spped and rod speed are 2 different things. as was said, move along the bead slowly, but keep the rod tip moving at a good steady pace. make small circles. if you move the rod tip slow, you will stick the rod.

there are many, many, many different techniques to use depending on your situation. (like push or pull, as youve already found out) the angle you hold the rod to the joint also makes a big difference. if your making a 90 deg corner with a piece of 1/8" to a piece of 1/4" plate, you will want to angle the rod more to the side of the 1/4" material, to direct more of the heat to that piece. ect...ect...ect...

you are NOT putting a bead of weld down to hold pieces together, if thats the way you look at it you will fail. its not like laying down a bead of caulking. what you are doiung is melting the base metals on both sides together (along with the filler) to join them. turn the power down so you can see the arc really well, watch the puddle. watch your base metals melt and flow together. this is what you need to get a good weld. a fast weld bead ran over the surface that does not get good penetration (ie, not melting into the base metal) you will never get a good weld.

also, careful with the auto darkening helmet. dont go cheap, your vision is worth way more than a few hundred dollars. i bought an auto darkening helmet at work for $300, loved it so much i got myself a cheap $80 one. i can weld all day long at work, at home, if i weld more than about 2 hrs, i start to feel flash. the difference is the switching speed. on a cheaper helmet that few extra micro seconds that you get exposed is not even noticable at the time, but the effects are cumulitive.
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #34 on: July 23, 2014, 07:52:13 pm »
Well shit, the blue flame one that has a 1/5000th second reaction time is out of stock, there is a black one, not on sale, but for $50, that has a larger viewing area, but I think is slower? (.3ms) and it's $50. Blue flame one actually looks pretty neat which is the sad part, but the other one they have over 100 of in stock.

I won't be able to afford that for a while anyways, just such a damn pain to see where I am starting.  :-\

Offline dfmischler

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #35 on: July 23, 2014, 07:54:43 pm »
Your weld beads look cold to me.  I think you need more penetration.  If that is 6013 then you have the current set too low, or you are moving too fast, or your arc is too short.  IIRC 6013 is not really a contact electrode (like 6010); there should be a little space between the work and the electrode.  A longer arc is hotter, so to some extent you can control the welding temperature at a given current setting by varying the length of the arc.  And while 6010 or 6011 really doesn't care too much about rust you will get better welds with 6013 if the metal is cleaner.

Make sure you wear long sleeves and gloves to protect yourself from both spatter and radiation.  You can get a nasty arc burn.
 

Offline deth502

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #36 on: July 23, 2014, 08:11:47 pm »
Well shit, the blue flame one that has a 1/5000th second reaction time is out of stock, there is a black one, not on sale, but for $50, that has a larger viewing area, but I think is slower? (.3ms) and it's $50. Blue flame one actually looks pretty neat which is the sad part, but the other one they have over 100 of in stock.

I won't be able to afford that for a while anyways, just such a damn pain to see where I am starting.  :-\

yeah, the prices might be lower now, this was years ago when i bought them, but the message stays the same, make sure you get  quality one with good specs. dont skimp on it. there IS a difference, they are not all the same.
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #37 on: July 23, 2014, 08:59:11 pm »
Trued running some slower beads, think I am getting a bit better at that, but I really do need some bigger rods than these, you eat these ones up amazingly quickly, and something bigger would have a larger pool so that I could see it better without putting my face against it :p

I turned up the current a bit more (it won't run at full 70 for some reason) and the arcing is definitely noticeable now, I couldn't hold an arc at any distance when it was set for 40 amps or so.

There is also another crappy attempt I made, and it actually held together fairly well for a few good whacks lol.

At around half of the rods I got total I'd guess, maybe 20-30 left. Didn't bother counting. It's $6.99 for 5/64th welding rods, 1.12 pounds, and $11.99 for the 1/16th ones I have, 1.1 pounds.

I've never bothered to measure in that sort of way before, I know it's of an inch, but aside from that, clueless lol. Rated for higher current though but idk if they would be thicker or not, or what the diameter in mm would be.







(yes, that is instant snow, and no, don't know why I keep it around. It was a couple bucks a month or two after winter, so I grabbed it lol)
« Last Edit: July 23, 2014, 09:01:20 pm by XOIIO »
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #38 on: July 23, 2014, 09:37:19 pm »
hmm damn, there are 1/8th ones, but those are 80-120 amps and my welder won't get near that :-\ it sucks because those ones are cheaper than the pack of 1/16th ones. I'd either need a better welder or a 120v to 230v inverter to get more current out of it, if the inverter could handle it.

Guess I will just have to settle for thin stuff.

Offline tautech

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #39 on: July 23, 2014, 10:03:01 pm »
Quote
Guess I will just have to settle for thin stuff.
No you don't.
I've been welding for 40 years.
Experiment with prep and practice.
A good rule of thumb is to bevel joints to the thickness of your electrode.
That way weld penetration is complete. Even bevel from both sides.
The thickness of the jobs you can handle is only limited by time available and your skill.

There is much to learn re technique and steel types.
Resist welding too wider beads as the shrinkage after cooling can distort your work.

Get some "easy to weld with" electrodes until your skill improves.
They will leave smooth beads that will give you confidence.

Philips 68, Satincraft to name a couple from this part of the world.
Any good engineering shop should guide you, just explain you skill level.

Even with a small welder I would not hesitate welding up to 1" thick with the correct prep
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Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #40 on: July 23, 2014, 10:16:46 pm »
Quote
Guess I will just have to settle for thin stuff.
No you don't.
I've been welding for 40 years.
Experiment with prep and practice.
A good rule of thumb is to bevel joints to the thickness of your electrode.
That way weld penetration is complete. Even bevel from both sides.
The thickness of the jobs you can handle is only limited by time available and your skill.

There is much to learn re technique and steel types.
Resist welding too wider beads as the shrinkage after cooling can distort your work.

Get some "easy to weld with" electrodes until your skill improves.
They will leave smooth beads that will give you confidence.

Philips 68, Satincraft to name a couple from this part of the world.
Any good engineering shop should guide you, just explain you skill level.

Even with a small welder I would not hesitate welding up to 1" thick with the correct prep

I meant thin electrodes, but good advice nonetheless :p

Online Monkeh

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #41 on: July 24, 2014, 12:25:17 am »
saw something about an antenna tower or some such?? most of them i saw wer galvanized steel.

DO NOT WELD GALVANIZED STEEL!!

well, you can, but you have to grind all of the coating off, do it in a WELL ventilated area, and even then you are still at risk. the fumes given of when the galvanized coating is burning is DEADLY.

Pure zinc galvanising is not exactly deadly, it will suck though. Continual exposure to any welding fumes is unhealthy, however. Appropriate masks are cheap and widely available, and should be worn even when not welding plated metals.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2014, 12:28:07 am by Monkeh »
 

Offline Hex173t

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #42 on: July 24, 2014, 12:32:08 pm »
Right, welding on galvanized is not deadly.  I've done it and will do it again.  The thing about it though, and maybe it's just me reacting to the vapors, is the next day I usually feel like a have a bit of flu.  Lol, I know it will happen but that's tomorrow Bill's problem.  Today Bill is too lazy to grind.

I can't remember the mask number but there is a respiration mask with low profile filters that you can wear under the welding helmet. 
 

Online Monkeh

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #43 on: July 24, 2014, 01:13:19 pm »
Right, welding on galvanized is not deadly.  I've done it and will do it again.  The thing about it though, and maybe it's just me reacting to the vapors, is the next day I usually feel like a have a bit of flu.  Lol, I know it will happen but that's tomorrow Bill's problem.  Today Bill is too lazy to grind.

I can't remember the mask number but there is a respiration mask with low profile filters that you can wear under the welding helmet.

It's called metal fume fever. Pure zinc is, for limited exposure, not going to do anything but make you feel like shit. Other metals mixed in could however cause more harm.

Normal welding can and will have the same effect with continual exposure, masks and fume extraction are your friend..
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #44 on: July 24, 2014, 02:43:55 pm »
Hmm, the $50 helmet is 100% solar power whereas the $40 on sale one is solar with battery backup, it just makes me think is there a chance where solar will fail and that is where the battery backup can help protect your vision? They are both fully automatic on/off

Offline TerraHertz

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #45 on: July 24, 2014, 03:22:17 pm »
They charged you $15 for that scrap steel?   Hmmm. Try googling scrap steel prices. Or you can phone scrap metal yards and see what they'll give you per ton if they are buying. Tell them you have a trailer load of old structural steel. They'll quote something like 10c to 20c a pound, I think.

In any case, now you know you want bits of old steel, just keep your eyes open. Scrap steel is actually free, since it's so cheap it's often not worth people's time and petrol to haul to a recycler.
Another source is new steel sellers - they will have a scraps bin, that they send to recyclers and get that crummy price per pound. Plus it will be nice clean new scraps, not rusty old crap.

Your welds are improving fairly rapidly. I'd suggest finding a 2nd hand bookstore that does technical books, looking for some old welding texts. They have a lot more detail than youtube videos.

You made it a bit hard for yourself starting with a small welder and sticks, on thick steel. Yes, can be done, but you're having trouble getting a hot enough arc to form a decent molten pool. The thicker the base metal the faster it sucks heat away. Hence your beads are high and thin, mostly with little penetration.  You'd do a lot better on steel between 1 and 3 mm thick.

Also, live with the visor you have, and FIRST get yourself an angle grinder and these disks:
 * Face grinding disks. For making bumps flat.
 * Thin cutting disks. These are about 1 to 2 mm thick. Used to cut steel to pieces. Like butter.
 * A paint and dirt stripper wheel. Seriously, welding clean metal is a whole different experience to welding rusty/dirty/painted steel.

Don't get a small grinder, get at least a 127mm dia wheel size. It doesn't need to be new, try 2nd hand shops/ebay/etc.
Make sure you get disks for steel - there are different types for non-ferrous and masonry grinding.
Oh, and hey, you do have thick leather long sleeve welding gloves, right?
A chipping hammer will be cheap, and very useful too.

One bit of advice. Do not do welding/grinding in the same room as any electronics, or anything delicate at all really. Little metal filings get into everything, and are ruination to circuit boards. Hot spatters will melt into anything they hit. Including glass.  if you MUST do metalwork in a room with other stuff, get some big sheets of cardboard or thin MDF, that you can prop up as spark shields.
Also DO NOT:
 - Wear synthetic sneakers while welding. Wait till you get a big molten spatter melted through the upper, then you'll see why not.
 - Leave any bare skin exposed to the arc UV. Sunburn is just a word that you don't know the meaning of, till you get a welding sunburn.
 - Use an angle grinder without hearing protection and good eye protection.
 - Have any tins or plastic bottles of flammables around. Weld spatters can burn into them. Or piles of paper, shavings, etc - obviously.

Why do you have a full syringe of cat worming paste propping up a cable in one of your pics?

Here's my recent story of welding troubles:  http://everist.org/NobLog/20140717_poorly_laid_plans.htm
Collecting old scopes, logic analyzers, and unfinished projects. http://everist.org
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #46 on: July 24, 2014, 03:49:52 pm »
Yeah, all my electronics work is done in my room, the welder is in the garage.

It was $.25 a pound for that steel, it doesn't look like a whole lot but it does weight a decent bit. I did check on kijiji first but there wasn't much in the way of scrap.

There is an old book store in this area, I bought loads, loads of old archie comics a long time ago from there for really cheap, and some nice Isaac Asimov novels. They probably have some welding stuff.

Phoned a bunch of welding and fabrication shops and didn't really get much, a couple told me to phone the scrap yard that I went to later that day.

The 5/64th welding sticks are 1.98mm or so apparently, and these are 1.76 so I think that will help a bit, but that's pretty much as thick as I can go with this one.


There is an old (1 month) kijiji ad with a 100 or so mm angle grinder for $50, not sure if he has it still or not.

No welding gloves or anything, there is an add with some jackets for $50 or so and some sleeves for $25. I am just welding in a tshirt, cotton shirt and jeans for now. (did not think about the weld burn, but right now I just go out for a couple minutes to give it a try then take a break)

I am using partially synthetic sneakers that are steel toes but I do have some leather steel toe boots somewhere that I plan on using, but right now the sign sticks out enough from the table to keep sparks from dropping down.

Also, cat worming paste? Don't have any of that. There are a couple tubes of thermal compound but those are just laying around since I haven't put them away yet. No chipping hammer, just a brush with a metal bit, but I do have a couple old hammers around that I could sue the nail puller on if I need to.


All in all it comes down to still needing money for this stuff, as it is the next $100 I make or so will have to go to a family member since the helped me foot the bills this month. Sigh.

So tired of getting interviews then not hearing back. Went for an interview at future shop to install car audio, and sure I don't know much about that specifically but I do know about electronics. They said that my computer repair "business" on kijiji could be a problem though since they do stuff like that at the store, I said I know, and I would stop if I got the job, it's just to pay bills on the months where I make enough but they didn't seem to get it.

Like, how am I supposed to pay bills when I am looking for a job then, f**k.

Online Monkeh

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #47 on: July 24, 2014, 04:10:26 pm »
There is an old (1 month) kijiji ad with a 100 or so mm angle grinder for $50, not sure if he has it still or not.

Better be a really nice one for that. A cheap one can be had for $15. They suck, but they're better than no grinder.
 

Offline XOIIO

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #48 on: July 24, 2014, 04:17:13 pm »
There is an old (1 month) kijiji ad with a 100 or so mm angle grinder for $50, not sure if he has it still or not.

Better be a really nice one for that. A cheap one can be had for $15. They suck, but they're better than no grinder.

Huh, didn't know they could be that cheap.

http://www.kijiji.ca/v-power-tool/saskatoon/mastercraft-angle-grinder-with-stand/1000342045?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true

Online Monkeh

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Re: Yesss! Arc welder!
« Reply #49 on: July 24, 2014, 04:26:37 pm »
There is an old (1 month) kijiji ad with a 100 or so mm angle grinder for $50, not sure if he has it still or not.

Better be a really nice one for that. A cheap one can be had for $15. They suck, but they're better than no grinder.

Huh, didn't know they could be that cheap.

Finest produce of China.

Quote
http://www.kijiji.ca/v-power-tool/saskatoon/mastercraft-angle-grinder-with-stand/1000342045?enableSearchNavigationFlag=true

Also a finest product of China, except with a hiked price. For that money you can buy a branded tool (Milwaukee, Makita, even Bosch or Dewalt) with some careful shopping.
 


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