The Ridgid R86011 is a mid-range 1/2” impact wrench that retails for around $200 and comes with Ridgid’s Lifetime Service Agreement Warranty. This model features a brushless motor, 4 speed settings and 3 LED lights that are activated by the tool trigger or the grip light switch. The impact wrench maxes out at 2600 rpm, and 3500 impacts per minute, is rated for up to 450 ft/lbs of torque output for tightening and 620 ft/lbs of torque in reverse. This is a Ridgid Octane tool and maximum torque output is obtained when using the Octane series of batteries which provide more power to the tool under heavy loads.
I have several other Ridgid tools and extra batteries, so I bought the impact wrench as a bare tool to help with some recent ATV repairs. I was struggling to remove a few rusted nuts and bolts on the Honda Fourtrax and got tired of tearing up my knuckles using standard ratchet sockets and wrenches. The Ridgid 1/2“ impact wrench worked great and had no problem removing any nut or bolt it tackled.
The impact wrench also made quick work of the 2 axle nuts (with a little help from Troy’s custom made 41mm deep socket) that are notorious for being a chore to remove. I have been using this tool with standard Ridgid 3 amp/hr batteries with no issues. I may upgrade to the newer Octane line of batteries at some point for better tool performance and higher torque output.
The 4 speed settings (A, 1, 2, 3) is a nice feature that’s standard on most battery operated impact wrenches. In A, or Auto Mode, the wrench will stop impacting when nuts or bolts come tight to prevent over tightening. I’ve found that using the number 1 setting will torque nuts or bolts to about 50 ft/lbs.
The Ridgid mid-range impact wrench is also a manageable size compared to the high torque model. It’s not that much bigger than the impact driver. Compact models are even smaller for hard to reach areas and offer similar torque ratings.
The brands I looked at (Dewalt, Milwaukee and Ridgid) had comparable specs and I don’t think you could go wrong with either one. The wrench size (3/8”, 1/2”) or toque rating (compact, medium or high) that is best suited for your use will largely depend on your application, budget and brand preference.
Overall, I am impressed with the Ridgid 1/2” mid-range torque impact wrench and after using it on my ATV repairs and I would definitely recommend an impact wrench for everyone’s tool kit.
Copyright © 2011 Michael Smith