Tool Review: AIRCAT Pneumatic Tools Vibrotherm Drive 1/2” Impact Wrench, No. 1178 VXL

June 11, 2019
Reduced vibration and tuned exhaust keep noise to a minimum.

The Product:

The AIRCAT Pneumatic Vibrotherm Drive Impact Wrench Series is designed for professional automotive technicians and service shop professionals. The impact wrenches offer high torque, low vibration, low noise, low weight, shorter length, longer working life, and operating comfort and convenience, the company says. AIRCAT includes a three-year warranty on the tool.

The Review:

Working in the shop can get noisy, but with the AIRCAT Pneumatic Tools Vibrotherm Drive 1/2” Impact Wrench, No. 1178 VXL, technicians can eliminate some of that noise, and they won’t have to sacrifice on the tool’s power, says reviewer Jeff Buckley.

Buckley, owner of My Father’s Shop in Midlothian, Texas, put the Vibrotherm Drive to the test. This model is designed to have a much quieter impact with a greater amount of power, so Buckley compared the noise level of the AIRCAT tool against the usual impact wrench used in his shop. With its new mechanism to reduce vibration and tuned exhaust to keep noise to a minimum, Buckley noticed a difference.

 “[The Vibrotherm Drive] actually does quiet down the noise quite a bit, so whether you have one of these going in the shop or several, it’s going to be a bit quieter,” Buckley said.

The testing didn’t stop there though. Buckley used the tool in a variety of jobs around the shop, including standard tire service, brakes, and suspension. Featuring 1300 ft-lbs of torque at 90psi, Buckley decided to test the power of the Vibrotherm Drive on a particularly stubborn crankshaft bolt, and the tool removed the bolt with ease.

When a tool isn’t tough enough to do a job, it can cost technicians valuable time when they have to go searching for a tool that can. According to Buckley, “[The Vibrotherm Drive] seems to have plenty of power to do the standard jobs that we need to do as mechanics.”

Buckley was impressed with the AIRCAT impact wrench from the moment he laid his eyes on it. Pulling the tool from its box and removing it from the black, cloth bag, he said, “The first thing [you] notice when you get this out is this is a really good-looking tool.”

The molded handle offers a comfortable grip that “fits right in the palm of your hand,” Buckley says. He adds, the switch for forward and reverse is simple enough to flip with just a flick of your thumb.

Additionally, Buckley found the Vibrotherm Drive easy to use, with little set-up required—the technician only had to install the connector to prepare for use. Though Buckley found it unnecessary for this very straightforward tool, the impact wrench does come with an instruction manual.

After finishing the reviewing process for the Vibrotherm Drive, Buckley had just one thing to say, “I know where this one’s going—into my toolbox!”

To see the Vibrotherm Drive 1/2” Impact Wrench in action, check out Jeff Buckley’s video review.   

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