Harbor Freight Launched a Blinged Out 24K Gold Ratchet—Would You Use It?
This may be the perfect gag gift for the handyman in your life.
If you’re a handyman on a budget, you’ve likely heard of Harbor Freight Tools (HFT). While there are plenty of brands that create incredible tools every DIYer should know about, HFT has made a business out of offering ultra-affordable versions so that every DIYer can get in on the action. Motortrend has even gone so far as to call them the “Dollar Tree of tool stores.”
Now, in a surprising move from the budget brand, HFT has released a particularly luxe item: a 24-karat gold ratchet. Completely useable and undeniably snazzy, this coveted trophy item arrives just in time for Father’s Day. Here’s what you need to know about the gold ratchet, including its appearance and effectiveness.
What Is the Harbor Freight Gold Ratchet?
HFT’s gold ratchet is part of its professional ICON line of tools. It is available in both 3/8-inch and 1/4-inch sizes and features a 90-tooth gear mechanism. Its low head offers solid clearance, while its gear mechanism allows for a tight 4-degree arch swing. And yes—it is coated in 24-karat gold. That gold finish makes it especially resistant to corrosion and makes its sleek ergonomic handle particularly easy to clean. Here’s how to do a ratchet rebuild to keep it running smoothly.
How Well Does the Harbor Freight Gold Ratchet Work?
Courtesy Harbor Freight
As of writing, the 3/8-inch version of the gold ratchet has received 249 reviews on HFT’s website. Two hundred twenty-nine of those reviews are for 5 stars, with a whopping 98% of buyers saying they would recommend the product. Positive reviews call out its “great price and precision,” ease of use and great value. Of course, the gold plating is a major plus; one reviewer summed it up nicely: “I mean, IT’S GOLD!!!”
The two 1-star reviews cited issues with breakage. One wrote, “Had it for a week and… the teeth in the inside broke,” and the other called it a “fad” that was “not worth the money.” Still, the second reviewer noted that it made a “good prize or trophy for a mechanic.”
Is the Harbor Freight Gold Ratchet Worth It?
The 3/8-inch gold ratchet rings in at $59.99 and the 1/4-inch version at $49.99. While this may seem like a lot of cash for an HFT ratchet, it is quite comparable to chrome and titanium counterparts from other brands.
When determining if the gold ratchet is worth it for you, think about your budget and how fancy of a gift you’d like to purchase. Yes, you can get a better, more usable ratchet for more money (suggestions below). However, ratcheting wrenches typically run from $50 to $200, so if you have a lower budget and a handyman with a sense of humor, this super-snazzy ratchet can add some serious flair to a more expected gift.
What Other Ratchets Make for Good Gifts?
If you’d like to buy a more expensive but durable version, check out our 7 favorite cordless ratchets. You can also opt for the super-smooth and adaptable MetMo driver for $130, or the best socket sets for intermediate DIYers, which range from $40 to $80.