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Tool Chest: Impact Gun

A quick look at why the impact gun might be your next tool.

Alright I’ve done a couple more builds for you guys. Time to talk about tools for a second.

My impact gun(s) have probably collectively saved me weeks of my life. I use these tools so often I burn out 1 or 2 a year and I’m not even mad. They get so much use and take so much abuse I just consider it a cost of doing business.

Impact Gun (7 of 7)

Now if you’re just a DIY hobbiest the impact gun might not be the first tool you should run out and buy. You can get by just using a cordless drill for a lot of jobs but the impact gun is superior when it comes to fastening screws for a few reasons.

1. Impact guns are FAST. Remember how I said my impact guns had saved weeks of my life? I wasn’t lying. I’d chance a guess that impact guns are twice as fast as drills when it comes to sinking large and medium sized fasteners. When you’re using screws by the case load building a house the amount of time it takes to sink each individual screw really adds up.  As we all know, time is money, especially when you’re doing things professionally.

But I get it, not everyone reading this is going to be a professional. (In fact, that isn’t even my target audience, get out of here pros!) That doesn’t mean your time isn’t valuable and you should still appreciate a tool that gets the job done quick. But this next point is much more important to you DIYers.

Impact Gun (2 of 7)

2. Impact guns are compact. Have you ever worked in a crawl space, attic, under a sink, under a deck, or any other tight space? Probably right? We don’t always get to choose our working conditions, some jobs have to be done in tough spots. Sometimes having a tool that can fit into tight spaces is so critical. Nothing is worse than contorting your body into a pretzel just so you can reach a screw in a joist cavity only to realize that your giant drill wont fit between the joists.

The first time I bought an impact gun I was install siding on a house in the core of the city. Lots are tight in downtown Toronto. There was only a 10″ gap between the house I was working on and the neighbors house. There wasn’t enough physical room for me to use a normal drill. Now any time I need work in a tight space I leave the cordless drill in my tool bag and grab the impact gun.

Let’s say you still aren’t convinced because you do most of your work in a comfortable work space and size isn’t a concern for you.

Impact Gun (6 of 7)

3. The ergonomics of an impact gun is so much more user friendly than a cordless drill.  Using a drill requires constant pressure in the direction you’re sinking your fasteners. I can’t count the number of times I handed a drill to someone only to have it sputter and skip in the head of the fastener they’re trying to sink, only to have them look back at me and ask “what am I doing wrong”. It took me years to get truly comfortable using a cordless drill, it sounds ridiculous but it’s true, there’s a bit of an art to it.

Impact guns on the other hand require far less directional force. You don’t have to lean with all of your weight on top of the drill just to keep it from skipping. This means that virtually anyone can pick one up and be sinking screws in seconds like a pro. It also allows you to do things like operate the impact gun at weird angles, one handed, and behind your back if the situation calls for it.

Impact Gun (1 of 7)

Alternate titles for this post included “3 reasons why you need to ditch your drill ASAP” and “you wont believe which tool Kim Kardashian prefers over a cordless drill”.

Hopefully you enjoyed my impact gun porn photos and hopefully if you’re thinking about what tool to buy next for your collection this helped you. Leave me any questions you might have in the comments and check out my other posts. Subscribe too if it strikes your fancy.

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