Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set Review: Is There Any Hardware It Can’t Extract?

Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set Review: Is It Worth Buying?

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REVIEWED PRODUCT

Irwin Tools Hanson Master Extraction Set

A 48-piece set of bolt and screw extractors – as well as cobalt drill bits – that comes with a storage case.

In a hurry? With 48 pieces that include three different types of bolt and screw extractors as well as left-hand cobalt drill bits, you will rarely encounter a piece of hardware you can’t remove with the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set. Combined with the individual pieces’ good quality, it’s a must-have product if you frequently work with fasteners. If you have the budget to get it, that is.


Regardless of the type of fasteners you most often use, you will damage one every now and then. There are many ways to deal with that, with using bolt and screw extractors being one of them.

There are quite a few products – sold both separately and in sets – available in this category. However, only one of them, the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set was chosen as the Handyman’s World Top Pick in my article about the best bolt and screw extractor sets.

 

Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set: The Basics

The Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set is a 48-piece set of tools that you will find helpful in removing stripped screws, broken bolts, studs, and other hardware that you cannot loosen the normal way.

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Contents

The 48 pieces that are included in the set consist of three different types of bolt and screw extractors and of left-hand cobalt drill bits. Most of the common fractional and metric sizes are included, and all of the pieces come organized in a handy plastic carrying case.

6 Spiral Flute Extractors

The six spiral flute extractors included in this set are able to remove screws and bolts of the following sizes:

  • 3/32″ to 7/8″
  • No. 3 to No. 12
  • 2.5 mm to 22 mm
  • 1/8″, 1/4″, 3/8″ (both NPT and BSP)

They are designed to wedge into and grip the damaged screw when turned counter-clockwise. They are ideal for use with regular fasteners where low torque is beneficial.

These extractors can be used with fasteners stuck both flush with and below the surface of your workpiece. They are most commonly used with a tap wrench, and before their use, it’s necessary to drill a hole in the center of the fastener.

13 Multi-Spline Extractors

The thirteen multi-spline extractors included in this set cover bolt diameters between 1/4″ and 15/16″ as well as #12 bolts.

They work basically in the same way as spiral flute extractors. However, they are equipped with a hex instead of a square head and are much more compact.

That makes them ideal for applications where high torque is required. They can also come in handy when working in constrained spaces where using spiral flute extractors would be impractical due to their length.

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13 Bolt Extractors

The thirteen bolt extractors included in this set work with the following bolt sizes:

  • Fractional: 1/4″, 5/16″, 3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″, 9/16″, 5/8″, 11/16″, 3/4″
  • Metric: 8 mm, 10 mm, 11 mm, 12 mm, 13 mm, 14 mm, 16 mm, 17 mm, 19 mm

Unlike the previous two types of extractors, the bolt extractors only work with fasteners that have their head above the surface of the workpiece. That’s because they are essentially sockets, just with a much better grip.

All thirteen pieces are equipped with a 3/8″ socket drive. They can also be used with a wrench, a VISE-GRIP, or similar.

16 Left-Hand Cobalt Drill Bits

The sixteen left-hand cobalt drill bits include the following sizes: 5/64″, 7/64″, 1/8″, 5/32″, 3/16″, 7/32″, 1/4″, 9/32″, 19/64″, 5/16″, 11/32″, 3/8″, 13/32″, 7/16″, 15/32″, and 1/2″.

With these, you will be able to drill out the interior of the fastener you are trying to remove before using the spiral flute and multi-spline extractors included in this set.

Unlike regular drill bits, they drill when they rotate counter-clockwise. As such, in some cases, you might be able to remove the damaged hardware without even having to use one of the actual extractors.

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Quality

The set has received a lot of praise by its users not only for its comprehensiveness but also for the quality of the extractors and drills themselves.

That comes as no surprise considering that it’s made by Irwin Tools, one of the most reputable tool brands. Not only has the company been around for more than 100 years, but it’s also the creator of well-known VISE-GRIP.

While all of the extractors are made in the United States, the cobalt drill bits are made in Brazil.

Usability

Just like with any other set of bolt and screw extractors, you will struggle with using the extractors from time to time.

However, in most cases – as long as you use the correct type and size of the extractor (and drill bit if drilling is necessary) for your situation – you will be able to quickly remove the hardware and continue with actual productive work.

One thing to keep in mind before getting this set is that these are attachments only. As such, you will also need a separate tool (such as a wrench, a ratchet, a drill, or a VISE-GRIP) to rotate them with.

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Should You Buy the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set?

By this point, you likely already know that the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set is a very comprehensive and high-quality set of bolt and screw extractors. That does not, however, necessarily mean that you should buy it.

After all, if you don’t work with fasteners too often or if you only work with one or two sizes of screws or bolts, there’s no use in having tens of different extractors. Not to mention the fact that it’s quite an expensive product.

That said, if any of the below applies to you, you should get a good value out of buying this product:

  • You are a professional handyman: As a handyman, having this set handy will avoid you the embarrassment of getting stuck with your client’s project due to a broken bolt or a stripped screw – regardless of its size.
  • You want to have all bases covered: Even if you only use one or two sizes of hardware on a regular basis, you might want to have this set in your toolkit just in case. Extractors are tools you “don’t need until you really, really need them.”
  • You are the “go-to” guy for tools: If neighbors often borrow tools from you or consult you about various construction issues, you can impress them with this set if they ever come to you with “I damaged a screw, how can I remove it?”

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What Are the Alternatives?

If reading this made you realize that the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction set is not for you because it includes too many pieces that you wouldn’t use, then you can get one of its smaller sets or just the individual pieces you need.

I also recommend checking my article about the best bolt and screw extractors to get a better idea of what other products are available from different brands.

 

Summary

Regardless of how often you work with fasteners, it’s a good practice to have a set of tools that will help you with extracting broken bolts and stripped screws.

While there are many different products available, the Irwin Hanson Master Extraction Set is one of the best quality and most comprehensive extractor sets on the market.

The benefit of having an extractor for virtually any common piece of hardware comes at a fairly steep price, though.

REVIEWED PRODUCT

Irwin Tools Hanson Master Extraction Set

A 48-piece set of bolt and screw extractors – as well as cobalt drill bits – that comes with a storage case.

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