The Solar Toolman

I found Larry “The Solar Toolman” Taylor’s video recently on the Do-It-Yourself Solar Energy Forum site. In a quiet, confident tone—no script, no teleprompter– Larry gives “workshops,” demonstrating how someone can run multiple power tools, juiced by a solar panel kit and a cleverly assembled solar system, using hardware from Harbor Freight.

Click on the video’s YouTube link on the lower right, and it will take you to three more Solar Toolman videos, explaining how, with some low-cost modifications, a modest home solar system can power a swamp cooler, a refrigerator-freezer, a 5000 BTU air conditioner, TV, DVD, VCR, and more. For those who are looking to live more “green,” prepare for emergencies or just want to “get off the grid,” there are a lot of valuable tips to be gleaned from these few instructional videos.

When I showed this first video to a friend who’s really into DIY projects, he said, “If I decided to use solar power on my pool filter, these are the videos I’d watch to help me figure out what I needed to do it.”

While you’re at it, browse the rest of the Do-It-Yourself Solar Energy Forum and check out other interesting solar panel project videos and articles– contributed by innovative alternative-energy users! You’ll find a lot of them using the Harbor Freight 45 Watt Solar Panel Kit, 15 Watt Solar Panels, as well as the 100 Watt Solar Charge Regulator, the 30 Amp Charge Controller, power inverters and other Thunderbolt and Chicago Electric solar system hardware.

Great job, Larry! Keep those solar panel videos coming!

Solar-Powered Kiddie Car Mod


I keep stumbling on wicked mods created with something from the wide-ranging Harbor Freight catalog– everything from the outrageous to the sublime. This time I’m just going to call it “cool!”

Ben Nelson’s little girl is just about old enough to start driving her tyke-sized electric jeep. There’s only two problems: there’s no battery and no charger. A lesser man would have hauled the carcass to the curb, but not Ben. With a couple of spare 15 Watt 12 Volt Solar Panels and a 30 Amp Solar Charge Controller that he happened to have– along with some conduit and a 12-volt battery– the kid’s now free-wheelin’ it with clean, free energy.

Check it out!

 

Here Comes the Sun – Do, Do, Do, Do-It-Yourself

If you’ve been thinking about adding solar energy to your place—be it for emergency preparedness, getting power to areas where electricity isn’t available, a zombie apocalypse, or just looking to save some dinero with clean energy—the Thunderbolt Magnum 45 Watt Solar Panel Kit, along with a good Power Inverter and 12V storage battery  is an excellent, affordable place to start.

But how to go about it? What exactly do you need for the project you have in mind? This is where an informed support group really comes in handy.

Who would have thought a whole community website could be built around one Harbor Freight product? But that’s exactly what Ray Dias and his fellow enthusiasts have done with their Do-It-Yourself Solar Energy Forum. Chock full of information, the site includes a chat forum where you can ask questions and field ideas, a Tips & Tricks page, project videos, a photo gallery, a DIY Projects blog , and multiple pages covering everything from wire gauges to renewable energy news. It’s also a great place to learn how to expand your solar power with multiple kits, adding  Solar Panels and Conversion Connectors, upgrading Charge Controllers, and more. This information not only helps you set up your solar power project, but totally supe it up!

Cool site, guys!

Harbor Freight Gets Prepper Props

In this country’s growing Survivalist Nation there’s a tribe known as the “Urbivalists”– or “urban survivalists”—preppers who live in towns and cities, and have adapted their survivalist skills to more metro environments. One such urbivalist is Dan, a ”self-proclaimed tenderfoot and city kid” who runs a survival-themed blog called The Daily Prep. Recently, Dan posted a video of a shopping trip he made to Harbor Freight–

–which included a tour of some of his favorite products.  “It’s a man mall!” he proclaimed.

It’s no wonder HFT is popular with those who take survival preparation seriously. A renowned purveyor of hard-to-find and odd hardware– plus, a huge selection of essential tools and supplies at extremely low prices– it’s a no-brainer. (Brains? Zombies? Apocalypse? Harbor Freight!)

So, what were some of the products Dan thought fellow preppers should look into? The video does a good job showcasing generators, welders, tarps, car battery jump starters, jerry cans, rope, axes & hatchets, duct tape (“of every kind!”), magnesium fire starters, solar panel kits, knives, slingshots, safes, winches, flashlights and batteries– and Harbor Freight’s low prices make preparation a lot more doable.

FYI, for those looking to prep their home for the garden variety emergency, HFT also carries towing supplies, trailer hitches, alarms & security products, jack stands, engines, head lamps, cast iron frying pans, face masks, space saver vacuum bags, air compressors… you get the point. Harbor Freight is the “go-to store” for your doomsday prepper needs.

The Daily Prep isn’t alone when it comes to survivalist forums swapping favorite HFT products that they keep in their arsenals. Surf the ‘net and you’ll find tons of great ideas. And while you’re at it, why don’t you share yours with us?

 

New Product Alert: Chicago Electric Cut-Off Saw

It’s a given Harbor Freight’s got a huge catalog of affordable hand & power tools– that’s why so many out there love the store and keep going back. Not only do they find the tools they need a lot cheaper than other places, they even find stuff they just can’t get anywhere else. And that catalog keeps on getting bigger!

Introducing the Chicago Electric  Electric 3″ High Speed Cut-Off Tool, offered exclusively at Harbor Freight.

Electric Cutoff Saw

This amazing cut-off tool delivers the power to cut through metal like butter, and includes features such as:

  • High speed (22,000 RPMs) to cut through pipe, tubing, sheet metal, exhaust systems, and fasteners with ease
  • Perfect size, power, and comfort for auto body work
  • Comfortable molded grip
  • Safety trigger to prevent accidental start-up
  • Lightweight– only 3.2 lbs
  • Uses standard 3″ cutting discs
  • Doesn’t need an air compressor

But, don’t listen to me– check out the video and watch this baby in action!

Video: Harbor Freight Electric Badland Winches

New video up!

Check out our full line of Bandland Winches.

Retrieve a vehicle, haul timber or load a boat with one of these babies.

Voted “The Best Deal In Winching”
by Off-Road Magazine

  • 6.0 HP series-wound motor which stays cooler during long pulls
  • 3-stage planetary geartrain with a 265:1 gear ratio for powerful torque
  • Automatic load-holding brakes for maximum safety
  • Sealed solenoid packs for tough environmental conditions
  • 3ga 12 ft heavy duty battery cables
  • 3/8 x 100 ft galvanized steel aircraft cable
  • 16.4 FPM line pull (no load speed) 1.5 FPM line pull (at full 12,000 lb)
  • 12 ft remote control

Watch the video and see for yourself!

Super Duty Air Hammer with Chisels

This super duty air hammer and chisel kit will help you get the job done quickly whether you’re removing a tile floor or splitting welds or rivets. This professional quality pneumatic air hammer is 6-7/8″ long, for more power and easy grip. It comes with nine high carbon steel chisels that can deliver up to 3,000 blows per minute. Learn how to properly operate an air hammer in this great how to video.

3 Inch Variable Speed Air Cutter Basics

Central Pnuematics 3″ die grinder/air cutter (#47077) tool is a fantastic addition to any toolbox. With variable speed control, rear exhaust and speeds up to 18,000 RPM, this air cutter tool helps cut through metal quickly and safely. The Harbor Freight die grinder tool requires 90 PSI, and at least 5.5 CFM.  Don’t forget to order your selection of metal cutting wheels.  You should also check out our great selection of air compressors as well.