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Reader Sizod submitted this planishing hammer today, writing: “How can you not get into metal work with prices this cheap?”  By cheap he means $130.

So we couldn’t help but mash-up a couple of categories and ask all you Toolmongers out there: Would it be worth $130 to get a little hammer time in on this cheap-ass tool?  Or shan’t we touch it?

Let us know in comments.

Pneumatic Planishing Hammer [Harbor Freight]


22 Responses to Hot or Not? Cheap-Ass Pneumatic Planishing Hammer

  1. Billy says:

    Wow! Provided that the chinese arent smuggling anthrax or some other WMD aimed at wiping out the entire American population inside it, that looks like a great buy!

  2. Eli says:

    If you live in the middle of nowhere, or don’t mind your neighbors running you out of town on a rail. Whose wife is going to let them use a planishing hammer for more than ten minutes? Turn your garage into an auto-smithy? Silence is worth saving 130 bucks. My two cents only. Not hating on anybody.

  3. Eli says:

    I’m sure it’s plenty good for the three times you use it though…….

  4. weldo says:

    My neighbors have pit-bulls that bark ALL THE TIME. I think I’ll get this. Not that there’s a connection or anything…

  5. Greg! says:

    Ouch! I think I smashed my thumb just looking at that thing!
    But seriously, it does seem like a good deal, if, as others have said, you have a shop where the noise wouldn’t be a concern.

    Oh, and Weldo; I don’t think you could get a Pit-bull in there.

  6. Paul says:

    A $10 pneumatic hammer, some metal scrap, and a welder and you could be in about the same place. And what good would a planisher be without a welder anyways? Now a loose belt power hammer that’d be something.

  7. bob says:

    Please try it out! I just noticed this thing in the latest HF catalog and was wondering if it was worth a d@mn.

    You can build your own as Paul says above, but for a guy like me the time and $ I’d spend finding the scrap steel, cutting, welding, painting, building the collar to hold the muffler gun, etc … it’s well worth $130. For that price I’d rather spend the time hammering on some panels. I get 1 day a week to play w/ my hobbies if I’m lucky. I don’t want to spend it building a tool if I can go out and buy it for a decent price…..

  8. olderty says:

    Get it! But you might want to get some ear protection unlike the tough guy in the pic.

  9. Big"D" says:

    I jst bought one of these today – you know for the $$$ it is totally worth it. The 3 dies are pretty good, a 1,2 and 3 incher. the frame is pretty good quality, as good as I could do with some mild steel from the local steel shop but without the headache. The frame also has a fill hole if you want to fill with sand, supposedly keeps som eof the “tinny” sound down, and absorbs some vibration.
    As for the sound – invest in the ear muffs!!! Seriously.
    Luckily I have a shop separate from the house, and live on a couple acres so the noise shouldn’t be too obnoxious. I am no fabing a Ferrari body or anything with this, but it is great for some of my sheet metal projects on my race car.
    On a side note, I will probably follow this up with the recently released English Wheel from HF also. These guys are good for the one off tools I don’t use everyday – all the main tools are top of the line 🙂

  10. john van oeveren says:

    comes with 3 anvils and a hamer head a foot valve
    lets see you find those things for about 100.00 bucks
    the frame is hollow with a provision so it can be
    filled with sand it really needs a stand but lets see
    metal fabricator welding shaping bet if someone really
    worked at it the might be able to build a stand just
    my opinion

  11. bob says:

    For a stand try to locate a broken old stand mounted industrial fan at a scrapyard. That big heavy duty base and pole makes a perfect stand for one of these hammers. So did PhD of Metal Bending Fay Butler (www.faybutler.com).

  12. Regis says:

    I’ve got one and it works great. There is no way I’m going to waste a whole day tracking down the material and parts, then another day cutting and welding and then hope that it will work. Just turning the anvils on my lathe would take a few hours.

    Do an online search for HF discount coupons. You can easily save another 15 to 20%, even off the sale price. I think I paid $110 for mine with a coupon and the sale price combined.

    HT sells a small, 4 legged bench grinder stand with an 8″x8″ top for around $20. It works great as a stand for this machine. Perfect height too.

    By the way, I also have one of the $259 HF English Wheels and I love it!

  13. Jordan AkA polishbeer says:

    I bought one today. The sale price as of July 18 2007 is $150 but I got a 15% off coupon from another customer in the store so I got it for about $123.00. I plan on fabricating one-off parts for a cafe-racer motorcycle project with it. I rent shop space upstairs at a 55,000 sq. ft. screw machine shop so noise is not an issue, and there is plenty of air. I will let you know how it goes and maybe post some photos. I would like to ask you all if it is necessary to also have the english wheel as well for sheet metal shaping? If so, what does it do that can’t be done on a planishing hammer?


    Jordan AkA polishbeer

  14. Kevin says:

    Harbor Freight $87.99. How’s that for CHEAP ASS

  15. Jon in Ak says:

    Bought it in November 2007.
    My wife used it for making copper artwork.
    the pneumatic hammer quit after about 40hrs use.
    Hammer die mushroomed inside hammer & could not be removed.
    HF replaced the hammer on warranty.(about 6weeks turnaround)
    2nd hammer quit after similar usage. (Yes I have water filtration & oilers).
    I’ve only had two pneumatic tools quit on me since 1989. First was CH and 2nd was this, CP.
    HF took the whole unit back & refunded all plus shipping.
    Frame & foot controller looked as though they’d last at least several years.

  16. drew says:

    As of 11-23-08 price with a printable (in store) coupon: $79.

  17. Phil says:

    I bought one. Used it about three times before the hammer went on me, in the middle of a panel. The frame is probably worth what I paid for the tool, so I will try to replace the hammer with one of better quality. But, it’s time to pay for a real tool. I never expect any cheap tools to last, and I’m always delighted when they do. I do however expect to at least be able to limp through a job with them when I do. However, this one crashed and burned during take off. Looking back, the $99 bucks would have been better used with a few more $99 towards a more professional model.

  18. John says:

    Are shrinking dies available that would fit this power hammer?

  19. Gene says:

    Just bought one yesterday, and I love it. Have been metal working for many years using tools like an english wheel etc. This was a natural complement to my other tools. Was actually surprized how quick I was able to get various shapes into a sheet. I will be adding additional dies later to enhance performance.

  20. Tommy says:

    I bought one on a lark when i had to make the roof corner on a third gen Charger. No one makes one. It worked awesome! Also made firewalls and patch panels. I turned a flatening die on my lathe . And it smoothes flat panels like a charm. Never a problem! I used a coupon and got it for like$80.00! Very much recommend it! I know some guys want to bad mouth HF but the US ones are over 350.00!

  21. Tony Lio says:

    What is the lowest price for this hammer,905 738 2472,thanbk or your time and help,Tony Lio.

  22. Gregory Smith says:

    Well, I know this is an old post, but I just got the stand for $16 and the planishing hammer itself for $51. So, I’m all in for $67. Both items were on clearance and they applied a 20% off coupon on any one item…so I bought them over two days.

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