Backed by a Warranty
What It Is: PerformaBuilt Transmissions offers warranties to racers.
Why You Care: We respect a company that stands by its products no matter how its buyers use (or abuse) them. PerformaBuilt now offers a one-year warranty on all its transmissions. Even better, if you buy one of its torque converters with the trans, the company will raise you up to a two-year warranty. Racing does not void these warranties, either. According to its website, the company encourages you to "race all you want." PerformaBuilt offers performance builds of all the popular GM and Ford automatic transmissions.
How Much: It depends on which trans you buy.
We Say: Don't be stupid-the company won't warranty the trans if you run it dry.
Learn More: PerformaBuilt Transmissions; Sugarloaf, PA; 888/744-6542; performabuilt.com
Better than a cubicle
What It Is: Miller's ArcStation, a welding workbench
Why You Care: If you do even a little welding on a regular basis, you'll appreciate the convenience of Miller's new ArcStation. It was designed by guys who weld for a living, so there's a place for everything you'll need when welding up your next project. It is available in two sizes: either a 3/16- or 3/8-inch tabletop with sturdy legs, leveling feet, and plenty of storage for tools. You can even custom-build your own at Miller's website.
How Much: Prices start at $352.
We Say: Wouldn't it be cool if the welders came with it for $352?
Learn More: Miller Electric; Appleton, WI; 800/426-4553; millerwelds.com
Cribs-Not just for Babies
What It Is: Wheel Cribs from Race Ramps
Why You Care: Think of them as lighter, more portable versions of jackstands. They are great for working underneath your car and doing stuff that does not require the wheels to hang. They support 1,500 pounds each and only weigh 5 pounds. What's even cooler is that they are stackable. You can pile them on top of one another to get the car to the height you need.
How Much: Sold in pairs, pricing starts at $95.
We Say: They make ramps, too. You can drive up onto your cribs.
Learn More: Race Ramps; Escanaba, MI; 866/464-2788; raceramps.com
What It Is: Hobart's new EZ-TIG 165i welder
Why You Care: Usually, the words (or initials) TIG and affordable don't appear in the same sentence. Hobart is changing that with its new welder. While a retail price of more than $1,600 sounds expensive, that's actually a really good price for a TIG welder. Other advantages are portability and ease of use: The welder weighs 50 pounds, plugs in to a standard three-prong 220-volt outlet, and only needs 25 amps to operate. In other words, you don't need to rewire your shop to run this thing.
How Much: The retail price is $1,617. You may be able to find it through your local distributor for less.
Learn More: Hobart Welding Products; Appleton, WI; 800/626-9420; hobartwelders.com
Coppertop for your Car
What It Is: A new line of automotive batteries from Duracell
Why You Care: Start your car with a brand you've know all your life. Duracell offers batteries for cars and trucks in two flavors: AGM and EHP. AGM stands for absorbed glass mat technology and refers to a proprietary design of fiberglass matting inside the cells that traps and holds the acid, making it resistant to spilling and damage from vibration. EHP is the company's top-of-the-line battery that has been reinforced to withstand excessive heat and vibration from off-road or competition use.
How Much: They're sold through local distributors; prices will vary.
Learn More: East Penn Manufacturing Co.; Lyon Station, PA; 610/682-4231; driveduracell.com