I have bought a few items from Harbor Frieght, I came to the conculsion that If I want the tool to last a lifetime I don't buy it from them. However if I just need it to do a couple projects the stuff works for that. It beats the heck out of the paying for the premium stuff just to have it set on the mantel as a show piece and never using it again, plus you can buy four of those for the cost of the premium ones.... Just my thoughts for what its worth.
On the rivet spacing my plan was to place a rivet back in the orginal holes however many it took. there is a reason that the builder did it, if they could have did less they would have. I'm not an engineer and can't afford to sleep in a Holiday Inn