|Review by Purrmaster||posted 01-22-2013 11:40 PM||3543 views||0 times favorited||26 comments|
- Harbor Freight Adjustable Roller Stand (item#46086)
- Brand: Harbor Freight | Category: Supports and Bases
This review for the Harbor Freight adjustable roller stand. Item #46086. The one with the red roller.
I got this last week to use as outfeed support for my planer and jointer. I needed something cheap and easy to support the long beech boards I was planing.
This tool has mostly been an exercise in frustration.
The bad news: Adjusting it is very difficult and highly annoying. It’s adjusted by moving the rod that holds the roller up and down within the base. This is a common design and not one I’ve had trouble with on other tools. But on this thing…. the rod fits into the base extremely tightly. So tight that getting it into the hole in the first place is a chore. Once you do get it in you have to bear down on it with all your weight to move it.
But moving the rod up is the really fun part. The fit is so tight that I cant just pull up on the roller. The only way I have found so far to adjust the roller up is to turn it over and whack the bottom of the rod with a deadblow mallet. After a few blows you can move it a couple of inches.
Not only does this make adjusting it a huge pain, it almost makes it impossible to do fine adjustments on. If you need to set your roller to a certain height you are going to go through much trouble. If you need to adjust it frequently you are going to want to smash it to pieces.
I have tried wax, 3 in one oil, and WD-40. None of them helped much. My assumption is that the paint on the rod is too thick. I could, in theory, sand off the paint. But not only would that be time consuming and annoying it would also remove the rust protection the paint gives the steel.
Lastly, the assembly instructions suck.
Now the good news: The roller spins freely and the epoxy coating on it gives a pretty good grab. The tripod base doesn’t wiggle or wobble. It’s also pretty light weight so you can pick it up and move it around with ease.
It can be adjusted to be pretty tall if need be (just don’t forget your mallet). And most importantly, it costs less than 20 bucks.
The question may arise: Why not just give it one star? Because if you can get it to the height you want, it does work. And it is pretty sturdy. If you need a roller at a specific height and don’t need to adjust it much this tool may serve you well. The price of admission is certainly low.
I intend to take this thing back and to get a replacement. Perhaps this is a problem just with mine. But I doubt it. I have not tried their other, somewhat smaller one and can’t comment on that model.
If I get a replacement that works fine I’ll update the review to let you know.