Okay, I've learned a few things as I've spend a boatload of cash at this place
over the years.
Some of their stuff is perfectly fine. Hand tools, sockets (not the ratchets
though, get those at Sears!), grinding discs, etc. all seem fine. They are
usually cheap enough to buy and test one time to see if add'l purchases are
worth it. As a general rule, most electric powered hand tools there are
garbage at best. I had a drill once that didn't make it through one hole! (I
took it back). Also their hand held spot welders are good for about 50 welds
then throw away (buy the extended warranty!) I had a bench top drill press
that was junked in a couple years, but also have a floor model that has been
fantastic. So as you can see it's hit and miss.
I find it hilarious that they had the guts to actually add customer reviews to
their website!! There aren't many items with a lot of 5 star reviews.
So with the winch....I have two friends here locally that bought the red 2000lb
hoist for their towers. One has been perfect. The other friend has been
through 3 or 4 of them before he found one that worked out of the box. That
one was actually bought at Northern Tool (looks identical, probably from the
My first tower winch was the $40 HF worm drive hand crank, and like Dave sez,
it didn't even crank the tower all the way up once and it was shot. Total and
complete crap! The second was from Mile Marker, a reputable brand, but the one
I chose was still a cheapie made in China. It last a year, and getting the
tower down when it pooped out on me was interesting to say the least.
The third (you can see a trend here that I sometimes don't learn...) was a HF
winch, 2000lb, but this time I put a pulley on the cable to double the pull
power, or rather, half the effort of the winch. This was a good idea. It's
been going strong ever since. I use a deep cycle battery to power it (I
already had the battery, otherwise I wouldn't have gone this route!) and a wall
wart type trickle charger to keep it going. It uses an RF remote control key
fob type controller, which is handy as I can walk away from the tower and watch
it go up and down. The controller has been a bit intermittent as of late; I
think the contacts on the relay are dirty. I need to get in there and clean
Having said all this, I also have a Warn xd9000i on my Jeep and that is like
the Timex watch that never stops. Fabulous piece of equipment.
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