Tools Review: Harbor Freight Portable Torch Kit with Video


Man Using Blue Light Harbor Freight Torch

Living in the heart of the salt belt, I cannot count how many times I’ve gone to repair our homestead equipment only to get stuck (literally) when removing a rusty bolt. I’ve had some success freeing rusted bolts by using the heat of a small propane torch, but those don’t always get hot enough. For this reason, I’ve had my eye on a small acetylene portable torch kit for a few years now.

I’ve seen these small acetylene kits at Tractor Supply, Home Depot and Harbor Freight. They usually run $300 to $500. Up until recently, I couldn’t justify the cost for the limited usage I require, but at the start of snow-plowing season, I finally had an urgent reason to make the purchase.

Farm Equipment Failure Prompts Torch Purchase

I had a catastrophic failure with our homestead plow. It was a user error: I didn’t fully seat the left plow pin and half the plow detached during usage. This ultimately caused the large steel plow bracket on our truck to bend and make it impossible to use our plow until fixed.

Rather than buy a new bracket or pay a mechanic to repair this, I decided to buy an acetylene torch kit for $330 and attempt to bend the metal myself. My hope was to fix the plow bracket and then also have the torch to cut steel, weld and bend metal in the future on our homestead. In the end, this all worked out and I did fix our plow bracket. I’ve since also cut metal with the torch and tried my hand at old-school welding.

Comparing Harbor Freight Kit to Others

After some research, I purchased the kit from Harbor Freight for $330. I cannot say for sure, but I found a few reviewers online that said the Harbor Freight kit is actually made by Victor (a reputable torch company). Also, if you look closely at the Harbor Freight kit and then look closely at the Tractor Supply Kit (for over $100 more), they look identical and I wouldn’t be surprised if they were made by the same company.

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