Harbor Freight Drills Down on Drill Bits

All drill bits are not created equal—there are many different types of bits and a variety of materials used to make them. In some cases, the same drill bit can be used on different materials, but is it necessarily the best choice? It’s important to know a bit about bits to optimize the results of your respective task or project …

 

Twist Bits
These are some of the most common bits to find in the handyman’s toolbox. Used with either a hand or electric drill, the front edges cut the material and the spirals remove the debris along the length of the bit. However, there is a lot of variation with these bits. HSS (High Speed Steel) bits are generally characterized by their black color but more expensive and durable ones may contain cobalt or titanium coating (identified by the gold color). Titanium increases the hardness of the bit and facilitates a lubricating quality which is effective when drilling metals but has little impact on other materials.

Harbor Freight has several Twist Bit sets from which to choose, including the Titanium Drill Bit Set 29 Pc. These titanium drill bits run cooler, drill smoother and last up to three times longer than standard drill bits. The bits range in size from 1/16 in. to ½ in. in 64ths.

Harbor Freight also carries the 115 Pc Cobalt Drill Bit Set. These cobalt drill bits retain their hardness up to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit making them ideal for drilling cast iron, heat-treated steel, stainless steel and other hard materials. With 135 degree tips, the cobalt drill bits not only last longer but also cut faster than standard high speed steel bits.

 

Brad Point Bits (a.k.a. wood or dowel bits)
These bits are best used on wood (some plastics) and are characterized by a small point at the tip of the bit. Spurs on either side cut clean, straight holes. They’re ideal for drilling holes for dowels, which is why they’re also called dowel bits. These drill bits are a staple for wood workers.

Harbor Freight offers the Brad Point Wood Drill Bit Set 7 Pc with 3/8 inch cutdown shanks. These outstanding bits resist skating and feature extra sharp flutes designed to smooth hole sides while ejecting chips faster to prevent overheating your drill. For projects utilizing either hard or soft woods, this set of brad point bits gets the job done quickly and accurately.

 

Auger Drill Bits
These bits are designed to cut large, deep and accurate flat-bottomed holes. The spiraling shaft comes to a fine, threaded point while the single spur cuts and defines the hole’s edge. The threaded center bites into the wood, pulling the bit into the timber. This pulling action makes it unsuitable for use in power drills.

Harbor Freight has several sets of auger drill bits available, starting with the Auger Bit Set 7 Pc. These 7-1/2 in. long auger bits make fast, clean holes in both soft and hard woods. The bits are made of heat-treated alloy steel that resists damage from nails. Other features include quick-change 3/8 in. dia. hex shanks and a ¼ in. bit with a ¼ in. hex shank.

Other Harbor Freight auger bits set include the 18 in. Ship Auger Bit Set 3 Pc and Stubby Auger Bit Set 6 Pc.

 

Wood Spade Bits (a.k.a. Paddle Bits, Flat Wood Bits)
The pointed tip centers the hole as the paddle-shaped blade bores large, wide holes. Sizes are clearly marked on the face of each bit. These larger bits require a fairly powerful drill and lend themselves to drilling fairly large flat-bottomed holes with a center point—works especially well when the head of a screw or bolt needs to be recessed in the lumber. The bits can cause a lot of splintering as they breakthrough the work piece but a sacrificial backing board will reduce this. These bits are not recommended for enlarging an existing hole.

Harbor Freight offers a variety of wood spade bit sets, including the Steel Spade Drill Bit Set 13 Pc. The extended spurs effortlessly cut crisp, clean holes in thick stock. Each bit is forged and heat-treated to withstand rigorous use. The ¼ inch quick-change shank works with drills and impact drivers.

Other Harbor Freight offerings include the Steel Spade Bit Set 6 Pc, Steel Large Diameter Spade Bit Set 4 Pc, and the Steel Stubby Spade Bit Set 3 Pc.

 

Masonry Bits
As the name implies, these drill bits are designed to be used on masonry material, including brick, block, stone, quarry tiles and concrete. The cutting tip is often made of tungsten carbide bonded to a spiral steel shaft. Generally, masonry bits are used in a hand drill but can also be used in a hand brace or hammer action power drill (though cheaper bits can shatter due to the action). Long masonry bits can be used for drilling through masonry walls.

Harbor Freight provides several masonry bit options, including the Masonry Drill Bit Set 5 Pc featuring M2 high-speed steel shanks and C2 carbide tips with 6% cobalt. The 8 in. SDS Masonry Bit Set 6 Pc features a superior hardening process and an enhanced flute design that helps the bits run cooler.

 

Tile and Glass Bits
The tips of these bits are designed to penetrate tile or glass, then enlarge the hole as the bit penetrates the material. The tips are usually made with tungsten carbide. The bits can be used in a hand drill but are best used with a variable speed power drill on a slow speed. Lubricants should be used to keep the tip cool when drilling.

Harbor Freight offers the Carbide Tip Glass and Tile Cutting Drill Bit Set 6 Pc featuring C-3 tungsten carbide tips and a steel shaft for drilling glass, ceramics, plastics and Formica tiles. The wide base angle provides precise, stable drilling.

 

Countersink Bits
Using a power or hand drill, these bits penetrate material and form a conical recess to accommodate the heads of countersunk screws. Countersink bits are generally designed for use on softer materials.

Harbor Freight carries the Carbon Steel Tapered Drill Bit and Countersink Set, 22 Pc. The bits are made from heat-treated steel and designed with a unique single-twist design to remove material more efficiently, resulting in cleaner holes. The set includes seven drills, seven countersinks, seven stop-collars and an individually organized wooden storage box for easy transport and organization.

 

Forstner Bits
These bits are used to form holes with flat bottoms, such as with kitchen cupboard hinges. It’s best to use a power drill with a drill stand for optimal accuracy.

Harbor Freight offers two Forstner bit sets, the 1/4 in. – 1 in. Forstner Drill Bit Set With 3/8 in. Shanks 7 Pc featuring high carbon steel construction and 3/8 in. reinforced shanks, and the 1/4 in. – 2-1/8 in. Forstner Drill Bit Set With 3/8 in. Shanks 16 Pc which includes more bits and a wood carrying case for storage.

 

That’s just the basics when it comes to drill bits. There are many other types of specialized drill bits as well, such as screwdriver bits, plug cutters and nut drivers.

For the full selection of drills bits and accessories, visit your local Harbor Freight Tools store or the Harbor Freight website.

 

 

Source Material:
DIY – different drill bits
DIY data

Spring Tree Pruning

With a Little Help from the Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw

Tree pruning can be a real hassle. Sure, you could hire a professional—but that could run thousands of dollars, which is why most people like to do it themselves. With the Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw, you can make quick work of tree pruning—saving time and money while facilitating good health for your trees. Before you go firing up the pole saw though, there are a few things you should know that could make the difference between beneficial trimming and a detrimental crew cut!

Experts agree that the best time to trim most trees is when they’re leafless in winter. However, if you can prune before they start growing, that still counts as dormant pruning and ideal due to the benefits.

But spring is in full swing, so is it too late? Not by a long shot. Here are a few general guidelines to follow if you’re pruning in spring.

  • Don’t remove more than 10% of the tree’s branches
  • Remove dead, dying or decaying branches
  • Prune enough for aesthetics without going over board—shape the tree, don’t butcher it!

Note that overpruning in spring could limit a tree’s bloom potential for the year as well as make it more vulnerable to insect infestation and disease. However, there are several trees that could especially benefit from trimming in late spring or summer—maple, walnut and birch trees. Pruning in winter tends to cause these species to ooze more sap!

There are other trees for which pruning is recommended once they’re done with their spring blooming: apricot, chokecherry, crabapple, dogwood, flowering cherry, flowering plum, juneberry, lilac and magnolia.

Caution: There are trees you should never prune in spring—or summer and fall for that matter, including oaks (to reduce the chance of oak wilt), elms (to reduce the chance of Dutch elm disease), sycamores (to reduce the chance of anthracnose) and honey locust trees (to reduce the chance of stem cankers).

Now that we’ve covered the basics, it’s time to get pruning! The Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw is ideal to meet your pruning needs. The power tool features a 9-1/2 bar with 3/8 in. pitch Oregon® chain, automatic chain oiler, easy chain adjustment and safety features including hand guard and reduced-kickback design. And no need for a ladder—the saw features a telescoping fiberglass pole that extends from 6 ft. to 8 ft, 10 in. In addition to assembly, care, operation and safety instructions, the user manual also provides helpful pruning tips.

Cutting tip from the Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw user manual

 

With over 1200 reviews submitted to date, this electric pole saw has earned an average rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars. Here are some of the actual customer reviews:

Used this saw one afternoon. Did everything I needed it to do. Every homeowner should own this saw. – Matt, Cape Code, MA

Tree damage from wind storm, did not want to use my chain saw off of ladder. I bought the pole saw and it handled the ten-inch section of the tree with no problems. If I never have need for it again, it has paid for itself. Very satisfied!! – Hugh L., Chattanooga, TN

Was easy to assemble. Instructions were easy to follow. Saw works great. Used it to trim the palm tree and fruit tree. Easy to handle. The safety feature required it to start at a horizontal level then raise it to cut what you intend to do. Great saw. – Suzi, Mesa, AZ

Plenty of power. Reaches very high, no ladder needed. Did all my trees in a single morning, golf in the afternoon. Easy adjust, easy to use and very lightweight. – Pat the Pruner, Orem, Utah

Assembly is easy and operating the Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw is even easier—check out this video from TheLightHouseLady on YouTube—please note her husband toward the end of the video is not utilizing the prescribed safety gear as outlined in the product manual when operating the electric pole saw—ANSI-approved safety goggles, hard hat and heavy-duty rubber work gloves.

Make quick and easy work of pruning with the Portland 7 Amp Electric Pole Saw, available exclusively at your local Harbor Freight Tools store.

7 Amp Electric Pole Saw
item#62896

 

Source material:
The Davey Tree Expert Company
Treeremoval.com

10 in., 15 Amp Benchtop Table Saw

10-in-15-amp-benchtop-table-saw10-in-15-amp-benchtop-table-saw-63118-second-pic

The powerful motor on this benchtop table saw delivers up to 4800 RPM for smooth cutting. Features include an extra-wide die cast aluminum table to support a large range of ripping applications, adjustable miter gauge (45° left and right) for accurate cross cutting, 3 inch rear dust chute for a cleaner working atmosphere and overload protection. A 10 inch, 36 tooth carbide tipped circular saw blade is also included.

This table saw has become a solid go-to power tool for customers:

I needed this for a laminate floor install. Didn’t want to pay much because I will use it rarely. Compared to other saws in this price range at big box stores, this seems to be a little better quality. Worked great ripping laminate flooring … – Stevek, MI

It cuts wood very smoothly. This item is as good as a Makita table saw I used a long time ago. – frequent HF shopper, Orange County, CA

This is a great portable saw that you can take with you and set up effortlessly on any job site, or home project. – Krebs, San Antonio

Used to cut planks during a DIY hard wood floor installation. No complaints, it worked perfectly for what I needed it for. And for the price, it just can’t be beat. Thanks Harbor Freight! – Airborne7, Harrisonburg, VA

You can pick up the 10 in., 15 Amp Benchtop Table Saw at your local Harbor Freight Tools store.

Stand sold separately.

10 in., 15 Amp Benchtop Table Saw
item#63118

10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit

band saw 3band saw 2

The 10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit is ideal for cutting tubing, pipes, re-bar, wood, metal and plastic. The band saw cuts at no-load speeds between 0 to 420 FPM and only weighs 16 lbs. for easy handling and less fatigue.

Features include a needle-bearing-mounted spindle and three wheel-bearing blade guides for even, accurate cuts. The band saw also features a 5 in. x 5 in. deep cut capacity, superior ergonomic design and balance for accurate cuts, storage case and 14 TPI blade.

Customer reviews have been extremely favorable:

Great buy. I don’t see how they make a profit selling it soooo cheap … – Sal, Greensboro, NC

I have used this saw several times with no issues. Runs very smooth, cuts very clean. I bought the bi metal blades with it and made several cuts in steel with no problem. This is the tool I use now instead of the chop saw. Excellent product for the price. – Don, Kankakee, IL

Used this Saw to cut 1/4″ tubing and it cuts through it like butter. Use this saw a lot. I have used the Milwaukee Band Saw and this Band Saw cuts the same. – Mac, El Paso, TX

Great price … this unit operates just like my $320 that was stolen. – Land of promise chessies, Chesapeake, VA

The Harbor Freight 62800 band saw not only performed any task I gave it, but saved me money over the more expensive competitors saws … Saw was smooth cutting and had plenty of power to cut the 1/8 thick steel bars. I would indeed recommend this to anyone. – Nearpar, Port Huron, MI

I have cut 2″x2″ 3/16″ wall tubing, 1/4″ plate, clamped three pieces of 1/8″ plate together, and 1.25″ solid round bar. It cut through all of them like butter! Very easy to control while cutting. Feels solid. I did buy a 24 tpi blade for all of my metal cutting. My first time using a band saw and I have found it easy to operate. Speed controls have handled all of my needs. – MHWSA, Wichita Falls, TX

You can pick up the 10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit at your local Harbor Freight Tools store.

10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit
item#62800

10 In. Sliding Compound Miter Saw

10-inch-compound-miter-saw

The Chicago Electric 10 In. Sliding Compound Miter Saw makes clean cross, bevel and miter cuts. Features included a powerful 15 amp motor, 45-degree cutting blade, dual linear slide rails for smooth, stable and precise cuts, easy access brushes and clamp assembly with extension wings included.

Customers love this workhorse of a power tool:

I am a novice wood worker. I was tired of getting uneven cuts using hand saws and circular saws. This does everything I need and more. It has also motivated me to do more projects that I would never have attempted with hand saws. – Novice wood worker, Albuquerque, NM

This product is well worth the money. The sliding action is always the way to go especially when cutting wider boards. I’ve been searching for a miter saw for a while ‘til I walked into HF and found the right one for the right price. – Tejay the fix-it man, Riverton, WY

I am very pleased with the many functions and the ease of use. I recommend this for anyone who needs a good compound miter saw. –  Bill, Pennsylvania

Only had it for about two weeks and have cut approximately 150 2X4s and 75 1X4s and I haven’t had any issues. I would recommend it to any one and put it up against the name brands. – Aaron, Lincolnton, NC

Love the fact that it’s portable and the power is great. –  Joe, El Paso, TX

You can pick up the 10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw at your local Harbor Freight Tools store! Please note the blade is sold separately.

10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw
item#61971

12 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw

12-miter-saw 12-inch-saw-pic

WINNER – Best Value Award, The Family Handyman

The Chicago Electric 12 in. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System handles large work pieces up to 12 inches in width. This workhorse features a powerful 15 amp motor, trigger-activated laser guide that lines up accurate cuts including 45 degree left and right bevel cuts—and dual linear slide rails for stability.

This saw is a favorite among customers:

Product is well built and performs great. I owed a more expensive miter saw that I sold a few years back. I was pleasantly surprised after a few uses—the Chicago 12″ Miter is an excellent purchase for a fraction of the money I had spent before. – PL hobbit, Paterson, NJ

Impressive product and great deal. Thank you! –  Bob G, Northern KY

Couldn’t ask for a better saw for remolding my son’s house. – Pep, Conway, AR

I picked this up for the occasional job where I need something that my 12″ Dewalt Compound (non-sliding) saw couldn’t quite get thru in a single pass. I was surprised at the torque and generally pleased overall with the construction of this saw. As a break-in project, I used this with an Admiral 60T blade from HF to cut tongue & groove knotty pine paneling … amazingly the cuts were near perfect with no jagged edges or splintering … – Crab, Louisville, KY

You can pick up the 12 in. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System at your local Harbor Freight Tools store! Blade sold separately.

12 in. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System
item#61969

 

10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit

band saw 3band saw 1band saw 2

The 10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit is designed to cut tubing, pipes, re-bar, wood, metal and plastic. The band saw cuts at no-load speeds between 0 to 420 FPM and only weighs 16 lbs. for easy handling and less fatigue.

Features include a needle-bearing-mounted spindle and three wheel-bearing blade guides for even, accurate cuts. The band saw also features a 5 in. x 5 in. deep cut capacity, superior ergonomic design and balance for accurate cuts, storage case and 14 TPI blade.

Here’s what customers are saying about this must-have power tool:

The Harbor Freight 62800 band saw not only performed any task I gave it, but saved me money over the more expensive competitors’ saws … Saw was smooth cutting and had plenty of power to cut the 1/8 thick steel bars. I would indeed recommend this to anyone. – Nearpar, Port Huron, MI

I have cut 2″x2″ 3/16″ wall tubing, 1/4″ plate, clamped three pieces of 1/8″ plate together, and 1.25″ solid round bar. It cut through all of them like butter! Very easy to control while cutting. Feels solid … My first time using a band saw and I have found it easy to operate. Speed controls have handled all of my needs. – MHSAW, Wichita Falls, TX

This saw has a nice blade change feature that the older model did not have and that is you do not have to remove the cover, just turn the blade tension lever and change the blade. The drive and tension wheels both have a softer rubber on them. I have 2 of the older saws and both are going strong. The only reason I bought the new model was because I gave my son one. This new model has a lot of power, cut 2″ heavy wall pipe,1/2×3 steel and 3/8x4x4 angle iron with no problem. This is another great buy. – Royknpp, Carmel, NY

You can pick up the 10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit at your local Harbor Freight store.

10 Amp Deep Cut Variable Speed Band Saw Kit
item#62800

 

4 in. x 36 in. Belt/6 in. Disc Sander

combo sanderHarbor Freight’s 4 in. x 36 in. Belt/6 in. Disc Sander is a must-have power tool for your garage or shop. The adjustable belt sands inside and outside curves with ease and accuracy for smooth finishes.

Additional features including a powerful ¾ HP motor, reinforced steel motor housing, cast aluminum table that tilts up to 60° for use with belt or disc and a miter gauge for sanding angles on workpieces.

Check out these customer reviews:

We have given it to front and center place of honor on our workbench. I just can’t believe I didn’t get one sooner. Thank you Harbor Freight. Planter, Santa Barbara

I am installing lots of molding around the house. I have used the sander to fine tune the joints. My finished work looks great. – LTHARLEY, Anaheim, CA

Took it out of the box and spent about 15 minutes putting it together, turned it on, adjusted the belt and away we went. I love it. Works great. – Eddie, Sylvania, OH

The product is very useful for many jobs. It’s easy to use and keep clean. – Lance, Georgia

Pick up the 4 in. x 36 in. Belt/6 in. Disc Sander at your local Harbor Freight Tools store.

4 in. x 36 in. Belt/6 in. Disc Sander
item#97181

1.5 HP Electric Pole Saw

7 Amp Electric Pole Saw

The long-reach 1.5 HP Electric Pole Saw from Harbor Freight Tools provides a quick and safe way for trimming high tree branches. The telescoping fiberglass pole extends from 6 ft. to 8 ft. 10 in. And with the easy chain adjustment for convenience, you’ll prune trees like a pro! Safety features include a reduced kickback design and hand guard.

The 1.5 HP Electric Pole Saw has received high praise from customers, averaging 4.5 out of 5 starts after 400+ reviews:

I used this immediately after easy assembly trimming about six ash tree limbs approximately the size of my forearms. It cut flawlessly like a hot knife through butter. – Ken, Hamel, MN

This pole saw is a great tool for small high up jobs. Pretty light weight and very powerful. – Sam, Olympia, WA

Trim one tree yourself and you’ve saved more than the cost of the saw. Plenty of reserve power. Easily cut off branches up to 5-6 inches thick. – Kevin, Newport, PA

This little saw has already paid for itself by allowing me to trim without a ladder. Very sharp blade & self-oiling. – Harry O, Hilliard, OH

You can pick up the 1.5 HP Electric Pole Saw at your local Harbor Freight Tools store.

1.5 HP Electric Pole Saw
Item #: 62896

12” Sliding Compound Miter Saw

12” Sliding Compound Miter Saw

Harbor Freight’s 12 In. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System makes smooth cuts in large work pieces up to 12 inches in width. The trigger-activated laser guide makes it easy to line up and cut wood accurately, including 45 degree left or right bevel cuts. Additional features include a powerful 15 amp motor and dual linear slide rails for stability.

Check out these customer reviews:

This is a great saw for home projects, etc. The sliding arms allow you to cut 2×12’s with ease. The 12 inch blade cuts better than smaller blades and will last longer. Cutting miters and bevels is much easier with a sliding saw too. – Don Ho, Western Colorado

Great value, Easy to use, set up and works hard. – Mark the Handyman, Kansas City, MO

Put down over 500 square feet of laminate flooring using this saw. The cuts were excellent, and this was set up and ready out of the box, 90 degree angle and all. Will use for molding, and other related projects. Seems well built, and you can’t beat the price … 3railgreg, Vermont

Pick up the 12 In. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System at your local Harbor Freight Tools store!

12 in. Double-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw With Laser Guide System
item#61969

Blade sold separately.