Whether this is your first rodeo or not, you will need specialty tool balancers for your workflow. This is because your arms cannot sustain the continuous lifting and dropping of heavy tools without developing serious injuries or a musculoskeletal disorder over time. The latter is one of the most common workplace injuries resulting from repetitive motion.
Tool balancers are essential for any mechanic, from the heavy-duty automotive workshop to the nation's EV charging stations. They relate to workplace ergonomics and help save the body from repetitive stress. Nevertheless, you must find the perfect solution to fit the tools or tailor the workflow to the operator.
You might need a tool retractor on one occasion and zero-gravity tool balancers on other occasions. Let productivity be central to your decision as you select different tools. So, without further ado, let’s run down the best tool balancers for mechanics.
The Eight Best Tool Balancers for the Mechanic Shop
Frequent bending to lift tools and dropping them after use can result in back pain. The way out is by using a tool balancer.
The right tool balancer will do the job regardless of whether your equipment is heavy-duty or lightweight. So take a moment to look through these options and pick the best one to improve productivity and enhance your safety.
The best tool balancers include the following:
This ATEX-certified Zero Gravity spring tool balancer can handle loads weighing 80 to 90 kg. The stroke is up to 2100 mm (83 inches) with a stainless steel support cable. Furthermore, it has an aluminum body with a weight of 16.2 kg.
Besides its capacity to support heavy loads, the TECNA 9508AX suits a potentially explosive environment. Its features are as follows:
- Safety device to prevent spring snapping
- Device for adjusting the stroke limit
- Antifriction material as the cable travel guide
- Locking device for load blockage at any height.
The TECNA 9444 falls among the zero gravity tool balancers but retains a simple spring build. It has a capacity of up to 100 kg, lowering the risk of worker injury due to heavy loads.
You can get a stroke of up to 3,000 mm from the tool balancer, which weighs 28.5 kg. It features the tapered drum design but with additional features. There must be safety checks when carrying such a heavy load.
The TECNA 9444 uses a stainless steel frame and an aluminum body. Its cable drum has a few things attached to ensure optimal safety. Also, it has an exposed cable for a quick inspection.
You can grab this tool balancer if you need something handy to handle lightweight loads. The simple spring tool retractor can carry up to 1 kg with a stroke of 1600 mm. Notwithstanding, it still packs stainless-steel cables and an aluminum body.
The TECNA 9311 is ideal for a quick lift and release operation. Light tools, such as a torque wrench, can be hung from the balancer using its hook. However, you will contend with a bit of continuous pressure since it is a retractor.
Spring balancers offer simplicity. The TECNA 9323 is another spring retractor, but this time with a capacity of up to 8 kg. It has a stroke of 2,000 mm and an aluminum body.
The specifications are modest, but you still get a safety device against load-dropping. It will improve ergonomics and reduce the risk of musculoskeletal disorders. Nonetheless, you must be mindful of how much weight you place on it.
Other essential features include an anti-friction cable material, a rugged build, and a polyamide thimble.The upward tension from spring balancers in this class might not be ideal if the motion is very repetitive. Instead, you might opt for zero gravity balancers for more precision.
The upward tension from spring balancers in this class might not be ideal if the motion is repetitive. Instead, you might opt for zero gravity balancers for more precision.
Let's move on to tool balancers for pneumatic equipment. The TECNA 9203 is a simple retractor with a polyurethane air hose. Hence, it eliminates lifting air hoses off the waground for pneumatic applications.
Its other features are comparable to those of other simple spring balancers. These include an aluminum body, a load-bearing capacity of up to 5 kg, and a stroke of 900 mm.
This equipment creates a safe working environment for operators by eliminating ground air hoses. That reduces the risk of a slip-and-fall incident in the workshop. Notwithstanding, it still has constant pressure that may cause arm fatigue.
If you have some lightweight pneumatic tools, the TECNA 9201 air hose tool balancer fits the bill. It features an aluminum build with a polyurethane air hose. Furthermore, it can carry up to 1.5 kg even.
This instrument frees up your working arm during a repetitive movement. You can drag the tool down with only two fingers and a little force. Hence, you can stay focused on the work before you.
Schmalz Binar Neo 30
The spring balancers are indispensable, but you can only manually balance the tools. Although not fully automated, the Schmalz Binar Neo 30 adds an electrical dimension to the workflow. It can take on 30 kg of weight and is battery-operated. Fortunately, you don’t need constant electricity to do ergonomic lifting in the workshop. The instrument fits perfectly in many workstations and is designed for lifting heavy parts and objects as well as precision assembly
Zero gravity tool balancers offer the best precision and smooth cable travel. The TECNA 9367 belongs to that category and is ideal for the 50 kg segment. Precisely, it can carry loads of between 45 and 55 kg.
The instrument offers a centrifugal safety device and a rotary upper hook with a ball bearing. Its weight of 11.3 kg makes it ideal for easy installation and lifting operations.
The right tool balancer is not the one that looks cool but the one that gets the job done with the correct precision. Your arm will be thankful for having so much weight taken off of it. In addition, you have a few options to play around with and get the perfect lift.
Spring tool balancers are the most common, but the zero gravity types offer more precision. Notwithstanding, you can opt for the Schmalz Binar Neo 30, which offers battery-powered operation.
If you have any questions about which tool balancer would be best suited for your mechanical needs, contact our team today!