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Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

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  • Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

    Hi all,

    I just bought the 12v right angle driver, model number R82233... with the max torque on this being "only" 700 in lb (on par with air ratchets, I know ), which is less than 60 ft lbs, do I really need to get true impact sockets for tooling around the house and car?
    I also bought a R6300 and know I'll need impact sockets for the jobs that require that big fella, but I'm hoping my current collection of Craftsman sockets will be ok with the portable driver.

    I've seen buddies actually use pneumatic impact tools with standard sockets, and they say it's fine for regular use so long as they're not "breaking" any real tight stuff... I don't really agree with that extreme mis-usage, but am wondering if with the portable being so much weaker do I really need to go with the impact sockets?? My concern is just that what damages the regular sockets is the impacting and not just the torque, or is it a combo of both that damages them, which means I'm fine with regular ones on this particular device...



  • #2
    Re: Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

    I've used impact guns, breaker bars and sockets for many years and while I may be wrong I believe it is the torque rather than the impacting action that causes a socket to fail. I have broken non impact and cheap impact sockets while using a breaker bar and applying slow steady force. There is a big difference between impact sockets as well. My brother in-law worked on NYC Transit cars and said the only brand that held up to the high torque needs was "Snap On". That was years ago and maybe now other brands are as strong or stronger? I would say unless you are using a cordless impact that is designed to remove automotive lug nuts and generates torque above two hundred ft lbs, a quality six point socket should be sufficient. I believe the extra money for a quality socket with a guarantee and easy return policy is worth while. Good luck.


    • #3
      Re: Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

      Thanks for the info!

      Yeah, the Craftsman warranty is tough to beat, especially considering Sears is 1.2 miles from my front door... though my intent is not to abuse the generous warranty, I just wanted to be sure the standard Craftsman sockets would be fine... I used the wrench yesterday to put together a sewing cabinet that used 10mm nuts and bolts throughout for its lift mechanism and this wrench sure was nice to have, a conventional drill-shaped tool would not have fit in the places this one did... very happy so far!


      • #4
        Re: Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

        I have used regular sockets for years with no issues on a light duty 1/2" air Impact. I have never had an issue, even doing lug nuts. I still would recommend safety glasses though. The main difference between impact and regular sockets is the heat treat. Standard sockets are much thinner wall and then heat treated to a high hardness to put some strength in them. However high hardness = brittleness = cracking/shattering. Impact sockets are thick wall for strength and not as hard, so that they will deform slightly before failing. So, wear your glasses and you should be OK as long as you aren't removing tractor tires!


        • #5
          Re: Do I really need impact sockets for the RA driver?

          i have a dewalt 18 v impact and have had a 3/4 reg socket and did a lot of work with it and never had a problem with impact or the socket

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