Haven't been to HF for years, simply because I don't need anything. My HF lathe was excellent, until I sold it. Two drill presses, the "new" one is at least five ears old, the other 20+, both work fine. Angle grinder, maybe 15 years, works fine. Metal cutting bandsaw, I think around 10 years, works fine. Power mitre saw, maybe 10 years, still working. At times they also sold factor refurbed tools from Delta, DeWalt.
I have had to replace loads of handtools over the years tho. Not because they broke, because they left with my younger son. Often.
And contractors DO shop there. A lot of them. They can buy a tool for a load less then a big name tool. It may last three weeks, versus four for the big name tool. But even if the don't take them back for a refund, the cost difference still puts them money ahead.
Personally, I've never had to take anything back. And even if I did, I'd still choose HF over Home Depot.
Oh yes, almost forgot, got my bench saw there in about '97. It was around $50 at the time. I had shopped around, a lot, and found some saws that were identical with the one I got, except for the color, and listed at right around $300. Best part, still use my saw. Forgot my power sander, maybe seven years, and works great; and my small bench sander, maybe ten+, still working; and then there is my ROS, newish, maybe 3-4 years old, well used, and works great.
Yay Harbor Freight. As long as my tools still work, they will not get replaced. May go to HF then, or not.
"It ain't what you're told, it's what you know." - Granny Weatherwax
Fawkahwe tribal police SWAT Team
Some days, the supply of available curse words is insufficient to meet my demands.
.....Call me a craftsman, artisan, or artistic, and I will accept that. Call me an artist and you will likely get a quite rude comment in return. I am not a @#$%ing artist.