Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver


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Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by WingAdmin » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:07 pm



If you do any work at all on Honda motorcycles, you really need a set of JIS screwdrivers.

JIS - or Japanese Industry Standard - is a Pacific Rim standard used for "Philips" (cross) type screwdrivers. Most people, professional mechanics included, don't even know that such a thing exists. But every "Philips" screw on a Japanese vehicle is not a Philips screw at all, but a JIS screw. They can be identified with a small dot on the top of the screw:

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Philips screwdrivers don't fit JIS screws, at least not properly. Because they don't fit all the way into the screw, you tend to mangle the screw when attempting to tighten it, or loosen a tight one. If you have any "Philips" screws on your Goldwing that are stripped or mangled, this is what has happened. The solution? A set of JIS screwdrivers.

The first time you use a JIS screwdriver, you'll realize what you've been missing. It fits solidly into the screw, and turns it securely, without "camming out" like a Philips driver does. No mangling of the screw, no difficulty loosening or tightening fasteners. Philips screwdrivers were actually designed to cam out of the screw, to prevent over tightening. On soft JIS screws, this just destroys the screw head.

I reviewed my set of Vessel JIS Screwdrivers some time ago. I still love these quality screwdrivers, use them all the time. However, occasionally you will come across a screw that is jammed so tightly, or whose head has been damaged so badly (by a previous owner, of course) by a non-JIS screwdriver, that you can't get it to come out. The screws on the clutch and brake reservoirs are famous for this - they corrode in place because of the hydraulic fluid and dissimilar metals (steel screw/aluminum case), and the heads are fine and easily damaged:

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The solution to this is an impact driver. Vessel makes an excellent JIS impact driver, the ominous and fearsome sounding Vessel Megadora 980 Impacta Driver, available on Amazon for $15.

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I don't know what all the Japanese is saying on this packaging, but the picture says it all: an impact driver has a cam inside of it. You place the tip of the screwdriver into the fastener, then strike the end of the screwdriver with a hammer. When you strike it, the shaft of the screwdriver moves up inside the handle. As it does, it twists to the left, applying both shock force and a loosening force to the fastener at the same time, breaking it free. Very often, when you have a screw that is jammed tight, you would destroy the head of it by trying to wrench it out with a screwdriver - but an impact driver will break it free easily, with no damage at all. Impact drivers like this have saved me many times.

Interestingly, they also decided that the fact that the handle grip is non-slip, is important to non-Japanese readers!

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Again I'm not sure what the Japanese is saying here, but I'm fairly sure it's explaining that even when you have a screw that is almost totally mangled, like the one in the picture, where a regular screwdriver will just spin in place, it will often be quickly and easily broken free with an impact driver. As the force pushes the driver into the screw, holding it fast, the driver rotates the screw, breaking it free and making it easy to remove.

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The handle is typical Vessel, fat and easy to hold, with rubberized non-slip portions embedded into it.

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The tip is a standard JIS tip, will in itself will grab the JIS screws found on our Goldwings much better than standard Philips screwdrivers, and will not "cam out" when twisted.

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The impact end is chromed steel, to prevent it from being damaged when struck. That said, I find that impact drivers work much better when struck with a soft hammer (wood, neoprene dead blow, etc.) than with a regular steel framing hammer.

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As expected, this Vessel tool is a quality item, and while not something you will need or use every day, when the time comes and you DO need it, it is indispensable, and will save you time, money and prevent the needless destruction of innocent fasteners on your motorcycle.



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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by redial » Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:44 pm

If you really want to know what the Japanese characters say, you can take a photo and invoke Google to translate for you. But I think a picture is worth a million characters!
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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by Rednaxs60 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 11:30 pm

Very nice product. Looked it up on Amazon.ca, price is $16.97 plus tax and an Extra $10.00 shipping. Like your price better.
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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by themainviking » Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:39 am

Rednaxs60 wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 11:30 pm
Very nice product. Looked it up on Amazon.ca, price is $16.97 plus tax and an Extra $10.00 shipping. Like your price better.
I agree, but Amazon.com will not ship it to Canada.
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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by Mh434 » Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:26 pm

According to the Amazon.com ad, they do ship to Canada. However, by the time you figure in the exchange, duty, taxes, etc., it may be just as cheap (or cheaper) to get it through Amazon.ca. It's available with free shipping in Canada for $25.13CDN here: https://www.amazon.ca/Vessel-Megadora-I ... crewdriver

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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by Rednaxs60 » Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:28 pm

There's a set of three on ebay.ca: https://www.ebay.ca/itm/Vessel-Megadora ... Swdx1aCAsg

This might be a good deal if you don't have any yet.
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Re: Vessel JIS Impact Screwdriver

Post by thboyd29 » Thu Feb 01, 2018 6:32 pm

I concur with your review, and would like to add a couple of points...
* This particular item is strictly a JIS +2 driver, which should handle most motorcycle maintenance chores. If you need a JIS +3, Vessel sells one, both via Amazon and Vessel's US distributor, JDV Products (vesseltools.com).
* If you don't already own JIS screwdrivers, Vessel sells a set that includes the +2 impact driver for about $75 plus shipping. Amazon may have this set too, but I haven't searched. Note that this set includes 3 flat-blade drivers, so if you don't need/want them, you might save money by buying the ones you want separately, like I did.
* If you already have an impact driver that takes 5/16" hex bits like my ancient Sears unit, Vessel sells a JIS bit set that includes +1, +2, +3 and one flat-blade for $10.16 plus shipping. I haven't searched for these on Amazon, either.


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