Thursday, June 25, 2009

Harbor Freight Concrete Mixer

About 2 years ago we started building a retaining wall in our front yard. We have a walk out basement, and the hill form the front yard down to the walk out was excessively steep and difficult to mow. One of the many tools we realized we would need for this process was a mixer. We didn't want to spend thousands of dollars for a top of the line unit knowing the intent was for one project. We also know that buying from Harbor Freight, you are hit or miss with whether things last or not. One thing I have as a habit is to take care of my tools. I have had great luck wiht many of my HF tools to this point.
We store this unit inside at night. It helps keep the rain and elements off of it. We also make sure to clean it thoroughly during and after every use. It has minimal if any buildup on both the inside and outside. We have had no failures on it to this point. It has run solid for us for the 3 seasons we have been using it so far. We use a 3-1 mixture of sand to concrete mix, and it works excellent as a mortar to hold the walls stones together.
Details are as follows:

Motor: 1/3 HP; Drum opening: 15"; 1520 RPM; 110 VAC; Overall dimensions: 43" L x 25" W x 52" H

When using the mixer, we put no more than about 8 shovels full of material inside it. We do not overload it (again with taking care of equipment). It has a much higher capacity, but as we are not expert wall builders, and we take our time, we keep up a good pace between mixing and spreading the mortar.
The tilt feature is excellent for dumping mixed loads into wheel barrows for transport to the wall area so we don't have to have the mixer right on top of the work area. It is also nice that it can be rotated to dump on either side. Very handy. The roller wheels make it very portable. It seems a bit flimsy in the motor cover area, but in reality, more weight would just be a pain. All you really need is a sturdy motor and some good gearing. This unit has both.

I highly recommend this unit to anyone looking for a simple but functional tool that will help them get the job done. Ours has been flawless.

1 comment:

  1. First off I know this is an old blog/thread however it might be helpful seeing as how Harbor Freight still sells this exact item and furthermore not many reviews for the mixer!

    Thanks very much for the review! I feel better hearing that your machine has held up for 3 seasons. I purchased one today and that thing was very difficult to assemble. The gear mechanism seemed sturdy.