Internal Combustion Torque Monster Has Great Impact

Once the domain of automotive repair shops and serious hobbyists with air compressors, the impact driver so famously used to remove and install wheel lug nuts and other Big Fasteners with just a squeeze of the trigger is more accessible than ever. Thanks to Lithium Ion batteries and powerful and compact brushless motors, you can now buy a reasonably powerful and torquey impact driver for a relatively low price- no air compressor needed! But what if you relish the thought of a noisy, unwieldy and unnecessarily loud torque monster? Then the video below the break by [Torque Test Channel] is just what you need!

Now, this is Hackaday, so we don’t have to go into detail about why a person might want to rip out the electric motor and adapt a 60cc 2 stroke engine in its place. Of course that’s the obvious choice. But [Torque Test Channel] isn’t just mucking about for the fun of it. No, they’re having their fun, experimenting with internal combustion engines in odd places before they are banned by 2024 in California. Now, we’re not sure if the ban includes these exact types of engines- but who needs details when you have an impact driver that can change semi tires like a NASCAR pit crew.

Looking like an overpowered weapon from a first person shoot’em up game, [Torque Test Channel]’s modified Milwaukee tests well after some modifications. Be sure to watch the video to see how it performs against an electric tool that’s even larger than itself. There are graphs, charts, and an explanation of what can be done to make even more power in the future. We’re looking forward to it!

What’s that you say? You don’t have a two stroke engine sitting around waiting to be swapped into ridiculous gadgets? Look no further than your local fridge compressor and be ready to burn some hours getting it running.

26 thoughts on “Internal Combustion Torque Monster Has Great Impact

  1. I can see the logic of banning small gas engines, and I can see where they’re getting the idea to ban generators: if you ban small gas engines but *don’t* ban generators, all that happens is you get people running electric tools on generators, which doesn’t help anything.

    I have to ask, though: what is going to fill the role of the small gas generator in terms of providing electricity off-grid? The first thing that comes to my mind is BIG gas generators, i.e. people just stepping up to the smallest and cheapest generator that’s still legal. Will that actually be an improvement?

    The other obvious option is solar + batteries, but there are obvious limitations on that which make it unable to replace gas generators in all use cases.

    On the other hand, we may just have to accept that there are some things we’ll have to give up. Actions have consequences and the laws of physics sometimes won’t let you have your cake and eat it, too.

    1. Stepping up a generator size or two (within reason) can actually be an improvement – if your baby generator is being ragged to death vs the bigger one just barely ticking along, not only will the bigger one live longer but it probably consumes less fuel at that output level – obviously not the optimal improvement in many situations, but there is a place where ICE power units do make most sense still…

      Solar and Battery setups can make a great replacement, though I agree not everywhere, but if you have the house/roof and/or land area the average rural American seems to it should be more than up to handling your off grid needs, though unlike the gas generator a little power management when the ‘fuel’ runs low may end up being needed – as you can’t just top the battery up the way you can a fuel tank. For context a pretty small house even by European standards in the UK with south faceing roof here can just about get us off-grid if we wanted to, and we are rather heavy electric users – definitely need a bigger battery to make that work though, as it stands we would black out over night as the battery can only handle the idle load of the house for about 6 hours (It is a very small battery)…

      As for giving things up, I’d suggest probably not really, you can still do most everything I would think, just not always in such a disposable, destructive, cheap, or daftly inefficient but quick way as you do right now.

    2. To me, the problem isn’t small generators, but rather cheap ones that deteriorate fast and requires someone skilled to maintain them so they stay efficient, while not prohibiting bumblefucks from just cranking up the fueling to compensate for the fact it’s clapped out.

      I guess part of the motivation for enforcing larger generators would be that they have a size where it’s easier to implement the emissions systems found on relatively modern cars (EFI with full spark control + O2 sensor & catalytic converter)
      Generators CAN be both efficient and “clean” emissions wise, they’re just expensive then.

    3. I assume also the fact that small motors don’t come with any type of catalytic converters doesn’t help their cause. However, I don’t know if lawmakers will start requiring such features for small motors/generators.

        1. I would say you can as it should not – as a Catalytic Converter burns unburnt hydrocarbons (etc) some which will be oils purely as a catalyst, its not harmed in the process (at least in theory) – so as long as you don’t pour far too much oil through it too fast and thus choke it up I’d think it would be fine.

          (Not an expert on 2 stroke stuff at all though, but I’ve definitely seen two strokes with what look to be giant cat converter/muffler type units – no idea how effective they are, I would assume probably not very as with the very oil rich exhaust I’d think the cat would need to be even bigger than it looked on these things to have much hope of working that well)

    1. Cheap ones start at about 200Nm, more expensive ones get up to about 350+Nm, but a cheap corded one will give you about 450Nm.
      The ‘impact’ action means they work better for loosening stuck nuts than just putting the same torque through a breaker-bar by hand. Unfortunately they also do a better job of (over-)tightening nuts, making it tough for anyone trying to remove them later, without power tools.

    2. I believe this is a M18 1/2″ impact, it is rated at 1,000 ft./lbs. in forward and 1400 ft./lbs. reverse (1355Nm forward, 1898Nm reverse), although during testing on lab equipment we generally see actual output around 10% above rated.

      The limiting factor on these types of tools is typically not the motor/battery combo, it is failure of the socket drive square.

  2. This all seems shortsighted as small ICE based generators are used in a tremendous number of emergency situations from firefighters that need mobile command centers with communications in the middle of nowhere as well as radio operators working remote locations for either commercial or amateur activities. Most of the time, batteries are not a reasonable alternative. Talk to a few amateur radio operators about field day exercises. Talk to disaster assistance agencies about operating lights, refrigeration, heating, radios, other life-essential equipment using just batteries. And if one is using batteries, how do you charge the batteries when travel is not an option?

    1. Oh don’t be so daft! You’d just plug it into the wall, silly! Or… you can plug it into your electric car. Yeah. The solution is so simple, we just ban IC engines and magically overnight all the wrongs on the planet are suddenly righted! Rolling blackouts in the warmer months of the south-west will be a thing of the past! Oh, wait…. It’s simply amazing how few people have any idea where the magic pixies that power your home or stupid electric car come from.

  3. Impacts are wierd creatures. Their torque output isn’t something that’s easy to describe, and usually they vibrate far, far, far more than you’d like. And with that said, bolting on a huge mass to the tool is probably a good thing. Changing the speed/torque of what’s drivingthe anvil … that’s a bit less clear, but secondary for a project like this.

  4. how could our forefathers vehicle tinkerers and pros get along tha far, say close to a century, before the advent of powered nut-drivers within pricerange accessible to everybody?
    My opinion: use more of your own muscles (and long levers where needed) so you can skip boring jimn and barbell excercises… that’s where your very personal physical energy/power/force/torque literally gets wasted for no application.

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