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American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/12/2014 11:06 PM

I have just had it with imported hand tools. I don't care about money back guarantee or Life Time warrantee. I want to start a job knowing that I can finish it without breaking a dang hand tool.

I ventured on the internet and found all sorts of stuff.... BUT I like referrals. Referrals from CR4 folks. No BS, just the facts. I can Google too, BUT ....I want testimonials!!!

Where do YOU ALL buy your quality tools for solid wear and tear and NOT just cost. The heck with cost, I live 30-45 minutes from town and I have had it with stripping, breaking , bending and twisting these 'brand' name tools made in China....and then having to stop and go to town to get a replacement.

piers, wrenches, sockets ( small and smaller), interchangeable allen, star and square drives that don't strip, vice grips , etc

No, I am not hard on these tools. I have serious carpal tunnel and I couldn't apply massive hand power if I wanted to. Some of this crap breaks right out of the box with the first use.

So, where do you all buy Top of the Line , hand tools when cost is NOT an issue?

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#1

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/12/2014 11:20 PM

For me, Milwaukee is top-notch. That is an endorsement, whether or not we are supposed to give them. Depending on your specialty, Ridgid, Greenlee, and Klein are good, too.

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#2

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/12/2014 11:28 PM

I use Craftsman, and still have some that I got from my dad, made in the '50s. The new set I bought 10 years ago seems thinner, but still has the same replacement policy.

When I worked as a mechanical assembler of cranes and cherry pickers 45 years ago, it was Snap-on, or Craftsman.

This should not be considered an endorsement, but an evaluation.

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#5
In reply to #2

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 7:13 AM

Their wArrantys are great, hopefully sears will survive, but it is interesting how sears came about obtaining the Sears brand, and the relationship both have with Home Depot and husky brand tools,

I have craftsman at home, but craftsman tools are medium quality, you can tell the difference when you have Snap-on, Mac or S-K in your hands

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#7
In reply to #5

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 7:39 AM

Correction:

but it is interesting how sears came about obtaining the Sears Craftsman brand,

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#3

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/12/2014 11:48 PM

Go take a look at Klein Tools at your local electrical distributor. The best hand tools ever made if you ask me.

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#4

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 5:01 AM

Snap-on are reliable quality and I think with the exception of blue tip line, still made in the US. Craftsman quality has really gone downhill recently.

.

You might also consider some German made tools. Like US made tools, they are of higher quality than tools made in Asia. I have some Knipex pliers that have withstood heavy abuse without as much as a complaint. Wera also has some quality tools.

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#6
In reply to #4

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 7:25 AM

GA I second Snap-On tools as well as some of the European tool manufactures.

Ask the pros what they use for the line of work you are doing.

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#20
In reply to #4

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 10:19 AM

All of my scissors and knives are either German or Japan made. My Hot Gun for cutting rope and heavy HDPE and UHDPE is also German made. Paid 3x' what the cheaper version sold for and it has cut several hundred miles of netting in 20 years without a hitch....ever.

My wife used to question why I paid $80 for a 3" pocket knife or a $125 for a pair of scissors when she could find them on the internet for $9.99.. I don't even see the brand name on the blades any longer...they just last and last.

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#41
In reply to #4

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/14/2014 7:01 AM

I second on the German tools. I have a set of Wiha screwdrivers that I have beat the ever living snot out of and they laugh at me.

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#47
In reply to #41

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/14/2014 9:22 AM

When I find inanimate objects laughing at me I first check for a sound chip, and if there is none, schedule an apointment wit my shrink, asuming the phone doesn't laugh at me for misdialing.

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#59
In reply to #41

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/14/2014 5:57 PM

I love Wiha. There stuff is just reliable. I also like Bondhaus for hex keys, Channell Lock, ViseGrip, Estwing(hammers), Klein, SK, Hexcelite, Cresent. For power tools I like Milwaukee, Porter Cable, Bosch, Festool.

I usually pay a bit more for the tools but they last. I have been know to be pretty hard on tools and I do not replace many of these brands.

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#63
In reply to #59

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/14/2014 6:55 PM

Bad news. Another one bites the dust. I was in a NAPA auto parts store today, and they had a display of tool kits. One of the sets was from Crescent. It proudly claimed to be manufacturing quality tools from some early 1900 year. There were nice full polished combination wrenches, along with the sockets, ratchet, and the mandatory loose allen wrenches. But, the back of the box said it all "Made in Taiwan"

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#64
In reply to #63

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/14/2014 9:18 PM

Yeah, they've been selling those sets in Sam's Club for some time. It's the new American corporate thing - buy a company with a good reputation and name recognition, make it cheap and sell the heck out of it until people figure out it's not the same any more. Some people never figure it out.

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#8

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 7:41 AM

Seems like most towns still have a genuine hardware store - one that has been in business for 40 years or more. Find a store like that near you, then go ask one of their long-time employees for recommendations on whatever tools you want to buy. Chances are you'll get some old geezer who knows which ones are the best (and they probably don't carry cheap imports anyway). Pay the extra couple bucks to buy it there, rather than going home and buying it from Amazon.

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#9

Re: American made or equal TOOLS!

02/13/2014 8:52 AM

What kind of tools have you been breaking? Tool and brand. (I have mostly Craftsman for home use. Recently had to have the 3/8 ratchet handle replaced. They gave me the choice of a new, non-US, one or a refurbished USA-made. I took the rebuilt one.) This brings up an interesting point - surely China, et al, make better tools for their own use. I can't imagine them building and maintaining their machinery with these junk tools.

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#10

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 9:35 AM

I will second everyone on here that says Klein for pliers & screwdrivers, allen keys & nut drivers, but they do focus more on the electrical side of things. Greenlee and Ideal are 2 more of that sort, and you should be able to walk into any electrical supplier to get them. I have always found Klein to be well made, solid tools with well constructed cutting and gripping mechanisms and well balanced. They are also probably cheaper than Snap On.

IMHO:

Channelock also make good quality, more readily available pliers. I don't like Sears pliers.

I still like real Vice Grips!

Ridgid is best for pipe wrenches- the jaws last, and the mechanisms stay smooth after years of use. Here in Canada you can get the pipe wrenches at Home Depot, for the more exotic part of the line you may have to go to a plumbing supplier. Reed and Jet are 2 more but I prefer Ridgid.

Panasonic, Metabo, Fein or Hilti for the best small power tools. Milwaukee is actually my favorite for value but they don't seem as well made in the past 5 years.

Here in Ontario we have the Mastercraft brand from Canadian Tire- I like their wrenches & sockets better than Craftsman but Mac, Snap-on and SK are still the best for fit, ratcheting action etc. Just you pay for it.

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#13
In reply to #10

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 9:40 AM

ChannelLock® as well as ViseGrip® they're under or a subsidy of the Irwin® name now??????,

When mergers happen that's usually a sign of the beginning of the end for quality.

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 9:49 AM

All ITW- and so are Milwaukee, Ridgid (the consumer tools!!) etc.

What happens is they sort the brands according to market strategy. So if the market demands enough quality (exactly what Netmaker is doing), they can actually even drive it uphill as long as it's profitable. Unfortunately the consumers generally dictate otherwise!!

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:03 AM

That's good,.....

I believe Hobart Welders are a subsidy of Miller...... I love Miller welders. MIG and TIG.

Their tigrunners are great and the portable maxstar series are handy. In Appleton, Wisconsin where Miller is based, they are hiring quite often. I have a few friends that work there and they really invest a lot into R&D.

I have a Lincoln Tig welder, it's is also quality, but it just seems to be a blue collar welder, but compared to Miller, it seems Lincoln plays catch up to miller. And Miller seems to be very user friendly.

btw, I believe Miller is own by another company, Illinois Tool Works or something.

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#16
In reply to #15

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:13 AM

Interesting you mention that.

I have a Mac Tools130 mig that I got about 20 years ago- it's actually a rebranded Miller. Excellent little welder for a 110 V unit.

I also have a Dynasty DX 200 that I've done everything from TIG 316L chemical feeds upside down in a 20' high ceiling (with a mirror for the backsides- 5" away from the insulation) to using it for a power source for hot wire cutting Styrofoam. Excellent machines!!

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#19
In reply to #16

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:19 AM

I heard nothing but good about those......

When I had my shop I purchased (2) Syncrowave® 250 DX, they were loaded with pulse and one with foot operated the other remote hand. (I though hand operated was better.)

Only thing that happen was the coolant pump went out, but it was still under warranty

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#45
In reply to #19

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 8:53 AM

The Dynasty's are fantastic.

Like carrying around a suitcase, and you can weld ANYTHING you want to! They would be a little underpowered for a lot of aluminum, but then you're going to need a cooler etc. anyways. They still have a great duty cycle though and I love the Weldcraft torch that came with it (i only use air cooled). And they give a sweet arc for stick welding.

They also run on anything from 120 to 460 volts, one or 3 phase, AC or DC- I mostly use 600 V 3 phase and have the cord set up to use 2 phases giving me 347 V. No switching on any of this, just plug it in and weld.

The only problem is that there just isn't room on the control panel for all the features so all the buttons have multiple uses. Oh well...

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#49
In reply to #45

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:02 AM

The maxstars are small,,,...... like carrying around a ............. note book. . and with both having non-contact HF and Lift Arc™ TIG arc starting,

the only thing is, are the bottles of gas. but with a little imagination......that's like a very large and heavy thermos..... .

But serious, you can get the small gas bottles, and set up is very manageable, also like the automatic dual voltages...... Multi-Voltage Plug (MVP) allows you to connect to common 115 or 230 volt power receptacles without the use of any tools.

Had to get on miller website........

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#67
In reply to #49

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 12:38 PM

Miller Maxstars are, by far, the best widely available TIG machines for very fine precision work. The fact that you can hold a stable arc less than an amp is a thing of beauty. Most top of the line TIG machines can't hold a stable arc below 5 amp, many can't even below 10 amps. If you are fabricating something critical out off something like thin wall tubing of say aermet or 3/2.5 ti, using a maxstar 90 or 150 with the pulser and a giant gas lens, is a thing of beauty.

There are some much more limited production machine that may match of exceed low amp stability of the Maxstars. Profusion Dualarc microtig and plasma is one of those machines, but that is really a very different animal.

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#42
In reply to #15

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 7:07 AM

Indeed they are. In the case of my Hobart Handler 180 Mig, the Gun has Miller stamped tight on the side in big letters. Great welder, just wish they had installed a longer ground cable on it.

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#11

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 9:37 AM

What industry? Carpentry, electronics, mechanic, suirgeon etc. Regardless, many tools are disposable. Screwdrivers get the ends and points worn down, sockets crack etc. Even surgery and dental tools wear out and break.

As my EMO (electronics material officer) remarked; "An ET (Electronics Technician) went down to the tool locker to borrow a wrench. When asked what size? The ET responded a "large one". The mechanic then asked what type, pipe, socket etc? The ET responded it doesn't make any difference, I'm going to use it as a hammer anyway"

For electronics, I have found Klein to be about the best, SnapOn and MAC also have good selections. I like Snap On for sockets as they don't grip the points, but the sides of nuts and bolts. I use Craftsman for general run of the mill items. I would like to hear what some of the others have to say.

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#52
In reply to #11

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:18 AM

Electronics are repaired using Xcelite tools by pros. Klein is a high voltage tool company-Electrician.

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#12

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 9:39 AM

I now remember that I have wanted to go to my local Sears/Craftsman store, take a picture and post it here. About a year ago I was in my Sears store and under the cash register they had three slots built into the register base. One had a "ratchet" label, and the other two had labels similar to "screwdrivers" and "wrenches". It struck me as odd that they have so many returns that the register base has built into it storage areas for sorting the returns.

I was there to return a ratchet for the second time and get my third.

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#17
In reply to #12

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:14 AM

I have a set of BlackHawk sockets and open end wrenches from my Paw, Circa 1950.

Simple, solid steel, done had the Poop beat out of them for 60 years....no warranty necessary...MADE in the USA.

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#21
In reply to #12

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:29 AM

I quit using those when I saw a "plastic" lever on the Forward and Reverse.

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#18

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:18 AM

if it says CHINA ITS TOTAL CRAP all American manufactures use high grade steel and back there stuff up, for hand tools I really like feel of Snap on. in my bag almost all my stuff is Craftsman, I have a lot of speciality refrigeration-AC tools from whoever makes the best stuff. you only find them in refrigeration supply houses, all American made. Im sure good stuff can be found in Europe but I don't live there for meters I like Beckman and Fluke (screaming endorsement). my leak detectors are GE

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#22

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:57 AM

I generally just use the strategy of buying American made, and paying at or near top dollar....sometimes you have to search for a suitable tool for specific application, such as cryogenically treated phillips head bits....channel-locks are the best at what they do....I currently have 2 hitachi drills and hammer drill 18v.....High quality tools can be bought at a/c wholesale suppliers....Since brand quality changes over time, the age and the brand is key....Some tools just don't last long, so I buy them cheap and just dispose of them when they fail....like circular saws, basic chop saw, table saw....Porter-Cable makes one of the best routers, but there are many models, I have two different ones for specific uses....buying tools for me has always been a sort of find what works and stick with it, it's taken 40 years of effort, and God only knows how much money, there is never a one-size fits all approach that works....and what's a good brand today may not be tomorrow....You have to learn how to recognize quality when you see it....

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#23

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 11:12 AM

I have to admit, I purchased China tools, for a number of reasons...... on of the biggest, is that it was a specialty tool, and that I would only need it once on a project.

I looked at it as a consumable...........

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#24

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 12:28 PM

I use Craftsman, and agree that the quality has dropped.

I have pretty much triple of what I need, but another idea is to check any local flea markets, yard sales, and search "tools" on craigslist.

There's nothing better than finding some old, high quality tools that somebody wants to get rid of cheap, and doesn't know or care what they have.

I've scored some nice stuff over the years.

I've also got tools that go back to my grandfather's muffler shop...late 40s early 50s. Sockets, wrenches, etc.

On a sidenote: I think the US should get back into the business of making the best stuff on earth. It won't matter if it's expensive; people will buy it. Especially tools.

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#25

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 12:32 PM

When I want to buy a tool that I can depend on, I go immediately to my McMaster-Carr catalog (www.mcmaster.com) Everything that they sell is the best quality. They service industries, not the general consumer.

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#26

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 3:01 PM

Snap-on, older Craftsman, Klien are all in my tool box along with a bunch of cheap stuff to use when I need to "make do" and maybe weld it to something in an emergency.

My utility knife that I always have with me is a classic Buck. I've lost count of how many Buck knives I've worn out!

Small welder is a Hobart.

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#27

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 3:13 PM

I like Rigid Brand tools.

I have never had one fail, and sometimes I really abuse them.

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#29
In reply to #27

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 5:29 PM

I used to have a 48" aluminum Ridgid pipe wrench.

It was used with a pipe and bent the handle. Then as a sledge hammer and blew out the back where the hook goes in (I didn't do either!!).

End of story, Ridgid gave me a new handle (okay, they did owe me something anyways due to another problem) and I have a great wrench again. That's customer service.

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#30
In reply to #29

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 5:50 PM

had it been a China wrench they would have told you to pound sand, thats the difference buy AMERICAN

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#28

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 4:50 PM

I have a full set of Craftsman that is OK, but for the few items I use a lot I have Snap-On.

If is something I need to use frequently I think the quality of Snap-On is worth the extra money.

Vise Grip® brand are the only locking pliers I have found that are worth a crap. I prefer Wiss® tin snips, Rigid® pipe wrenches and, Dewalt cordless drills.

This last Christmas I just bought two complete sets of tools for my 14 and 16 year old boys. I got them each a set of Craftsman combination wrenches metric and standard, a 3/8" drive Craftsman ratchet and socket set (metric and standard), a 7" curved jaw Vise-Grip, a side cutter (I don't remember the brand), a full set of Craftsman screwdrivers, a full set of Allan wrenches, a hammer and, a box to put it all in. I spent a total of $580 or about $290 each. When I got home from work on Monday the oldest boy was putting new motor mounts in his snowmobile. I noticed he had my Snap-On ratchet out. When I asked him why he said "it just works better".

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#31

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 10:41 PM

I live in Australia and we have very similar issues here. I have also had enough of Chinese tools for all the above mentioned reasons.

These days, cost is not so much a problem for me anymore, so I just look for "Made in USA" first, alternatively Germany or here in Australia, more or less in that order.

These tools will cost 8-10 times as much but will last a lifetime and won't frustrate the hell out of you while using them.

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#32

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/13/2014 11:50 PM

I have a couple of sets of Craftsman™ spanners and ratchets that I bought brand new at an LA flea market when I was over there for a short holiday back in 1997 (I forget the name of the flea market now but it was right in the city). They may be - as Phoenix911 said, medium quality but I know from personal experience that they're still way better than any of the Chinese or Taiwanese brands that flood the market here. Looking forward to another visit to the US to maybe shop for Snap-on™ and/or Klein™ tools....

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#33

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 12:05 AM

. I think foreign tools are a crapshoot. Ive had a cordless drill that had a meltdown the first time I used it as well as a brad nailer that has lasted me for years of moderate use. I generally try to buy American (slim pickins and getting worse), although, for one offs or when I need multiples i dont mind using imports. Angle grinders come to mind... I dont care for changing wheels or discs out much when there is a lot of grinding to do. Its a shame that one can't change out the brushes on most new power tools. I either get my tools from Sears, the local farm store or make what I can. As luck would have it I have some older American made machine tools to make them with....

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#34

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 12:12 AM

I agree with your call on the old Blackhawk tools. Unfortunately it seems the name has been sold. I have sets of Blackhawk ratcheting combinations wrenches sold through Grainger. Made in China, or Japan. Not a bad set of tools, but not your father's Blackhawk.

On that same note, anyone who had a good bench mounted vice had a Columbian vice. I picked up a set of sockets to carry in a service truck. They did not have to withstand brutal punishment, I just needed a through set of allens, torxs metrics and SAE sockets. When I saw Columbian, I was curious, so I bought the set. It has the same design of the Columbian markings as the vices have, but again not your father's Columbian.

To the names mentioned above, I would like to through a few other names out for comments. Matco, Cromwell, Williams, Proto, Stanley, and Crescent are ones that come to mind.

Here is another name for your inspection; Wright. Years ago I worked in a service station that provided a set of tools for the workers to use for small simple things. They would always disappear. The traveling tool man (E. Leven his real name) carried Wright tools at bargain prices. They were ugly, poorly finished, un polished, and un-chromed. But they were tough as nails. I still have a 10 inch long 3/8 extension that will not die. Anyone else ever heard of Wright?

If you have a business, you might try contacting Snap On Tool Corporation to see if you can buy from their industrial division. Less service from the Snap On tool truck, but less profit for the Snap On tool truck

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#53
In reply to #34

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:20 AM

As far I am concerned, Made Under License or Partially Assembled in are considered to be MADE IN THAT COUNTRY.

What would it take to bring back the USA tool manufacturing industry our fathers and grandfathers knew??????

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#66
In reply to #53

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 3:05 AM

I agree. I bought a De Walt sliding compound saw that was assembled in Mexico. The stops were set at the wrong angles and Square wasn't square. As I am a fitter and turner I disassembled my new saw and refitted everything. In the process I discovered that the threaded holes for the stop mechanisms were way oversize. I had to fill them with threadlock ( made in Ireland ). I had to fit a washer on adjustment bolt for the angle scale. The bolt head had chewed a counterbore in the plastic and so I couldn't set it correctly. It kept going back to the old, wrong, spot. Another De Walt tool that disappointed was their big "D" handle drill. My old Black and Decker industrial "D" handle drill is still going but the newer DeWalt ( same drill different colour ) died twice in 2 years. The last death was permanent due to lack of parts.

I'm beginning to think we are spoilt for tools in OZ. Good hand tools here are Repco, JBS, Stanley, Sidchrome, Teng, Kinchrome, Finkal, Bahco, Bessey, Snap On, Metrinch.

Lesser tools are Crescent, Dowidat, Irwin, and anything from Taiwan.

Worst are the ones you already know about. Some from USA, UK, China, Japan and Taiwan but mostly from China.

Power tools are another whole category. I've killed Hitachi, Makita, Bosch but this could just be a reflection of the only ( almost only ) brands I will buy. I have bought Ozito biscuit cutters to put down a deck with secret fasteners but that was because I wanted several to get the job done faster. They went O.K. and I still have them. They were cheap. Interestingly they were of 2 different designs, both difficult to adjust and to keep at that setting.

My favourite brand is Makita as they keep parts. Battery operated tools that have lasted the best are by Atlas Copco, they became Milwaukee, but their batteries didn't last very long. I killed a couple of Bosch 36v drills. My Makitas are still going but they are only light tools.

Jim

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#35

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 12:14 AM

My personal set of sockets, combinations, open end and box for my use only at my workshop is a set of snap-on that my father-in-law gave me that is now about at least 50 years old. Lots of TLC with them but are the best I have. After them are my Williams but they are no longer made. Then are the S-K's and the Protos. Craftsman is crap and they are the ones I loan out.

Channel-locks are the best general type of pliers except for specialty pliers. Wire cutters with the stripping notches for #12 and #14 are my favorite. Also have many Klein's, and others. I don't purchase any pliers that are not the better or best. Time vs. cost is low on time for cheap ones

Many pipe fitting tools and all except a few specialties are all Rigid. Still use the 60" wrench and down to 6". Although I have both types I use aluminum whenever I can. Those have a bigger selection of pipe wrenches and are easier on an old guy like me. I have found that Rigid pipe tools last the longest despite some of the extreme abuse others have given their tools.

Power tools are either craftsman because they were given to me or Rockwell, the old one. Hand powers are mostly Porter-Cable, Milwaukee, Makita, among others. Don't have any DeWalt, Craftsman, Rigid (Home Depot Rigid), Black & Decker and some others because they have short lives or fall apart early.

Machinist hand tools are Starret and Brown & Sharp. Have never given my any problems. Metal lathes are South Bend and Clausing (sp). Milling machine is Bridgeport. Metal band saw is Do-All. Power hack saw is Dayton because it was given to me. It has held up ok.

Electrical hand tools are mostly Klein and others.

All of these brands have done me well and lasted through some rough handling. I take care of them and they take care of me. I would recommend any and all of them. Many can be found at the big box store but the better ones have to be bought at supply houses or dealers. I have also found that for the big machines you can find some well kept ones at auctions.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#36
In reply to #35

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 12:42 AM

After your reply, I went looking for the Williams brand. Look what I found.

A division of Snap-On.

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#50
In reply to #36

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:04 AM

bob c-

Thank you for taking the time to look them up. I will follow up on them.

My favoritism for the Williams wrenches, at least the old ones, are: they have lasted over 40 years; they are longer than most so they get more torque to the nut/bolt; The surfaces are not smooth so they are easier to keep in your hands when they are oily or greasy; and I have never been able to break any of them.

Some people don't realize that the fancy smooth tools are hard to hold under many conditions. I have a full set of Snap-On combination wrenches, 1/4"-->1-1/4" that I don't use because of that.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#40
In reply to #35

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 6:23 AM

I don't know what you mean by TLC on your tools, ........... Have. You ever used a screw driver for a pry to get a lid off.. not supposed to do that you know. ;)

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#54
In reply to #40

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:40 AM

phoenix911-

At least for me and many others there are: tools you loan out and don't care if they come back; tools you like and use; your favorite tools; the tools that you cherish for what they do or have done for you; and then there are the tools that have done so much for someone else before you and you continue to use. The latter several being the ones you treat with Tender Loving Care.

Examples of them are: the planes (circa 1915) that my grandfather used to use; the Leeds and Northrup Testing Set in its wooden case(galvanometer and resistor bank), (circa 1940's) that was my father's and I continue to use; the table saw my father-in-law gave me as a wedding present; the General Radio V-O-M (circa 1937), still in its wooden case, that I occasionally use with TLC since it can be damaged easily; my AIRCO welding machine (stick and TIG) circa 1975 that has done so well for me; and some of my first tools. These are by no means all of them.

What differentiates these, and others like them, from the rest are that they are like good friends. They have treated me good and/or have treated others good. Some have helped me in good times and bad times.

I have met many others who share this appreciation for good or "sentimental" tools. They have been good to me, just like good friends. Besides all that, they are the reason why I am proud of it when friends call me "Wrench Head". I have the tools and the knowledge to "Git-'er-dun" like so many other members of CR4!

Few things give me the enjoyment that my tools do, at least at this time of my life.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#55
In reply to #54

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:55 AM

On the farm in the 60's we had a Blackhawk 1/2 single speed Drill, it was old then and that was abused. Arbor was slightly bend..... I think that came from drilling through steel we usually have a cheater bar on it so it wouldn't break your jaw when it punched through on the steel it would catch.

Yes we use it to drill, but we also used it as a portable winch motor to lift a silo unloader up 60 + feet.

Unfortunately, went through a barn fire in the 80's, the chuck and arbor was still clamped on to the silo unloader winch when we raised it 3 weeks prior.........

btw, we had some of the open end and box end wrenches (my dads wrenches he bought from the 40's) that went through that same barn fire........ but the temper and the hardness was removed. No longer good wrenches.

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#56
In reply to #54

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 11:01 AM

your comments sparked a memory I started taking my nephew to work with me before he was even a teen. I started him out by carrying my bag and removing AC panels with my cordless.

after a while I bought a new bag and gave him my old one along with my "second line" of tools. one day I went to pick him up and I gave him my old cordless to add to his bag. my sister later told me my nephew had hugged it before he charged it after working with me one day. she found it hilarious. I told her it was a "guy thing" to love your tools

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#62
In reply to #54

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 6:44 PM

There are many, make that way too many hand tools that I own, and use every day for the last the last 47 years.But, there are some special tools that become favorites. The 3/8 ratchet that doesn't quit when I put a pipe on the end of it. The combination wrench that does not complain when I hook a box wrench on the open end. I still have 10 fingers, and no broken bones because of some of the fine tools that I have. These tools have earned my respect, and gratitude for years of service.

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#37

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 1:07 AM

I agree with most, but Klein straight blade screwdrivers are overpriced junk. The tips are too hard. I have snapped the tip off a large one opening a can of paint. No warranty, you are not supposed to pry with them. I also snapped the tip of a smaller one trying to get the pilot bit holding screw loose in a hole saw. I applied enough torque to snap the tip off, and this was just by hand. The old ones were great, I still have one from my apprenticeship, over 40 years ago, but the quality went down when they went to the black tips. I now use Harbor Freight straight blades, you can do anything to them, pound, pry or twist and they will hold up. Only $2 for the HF vs $13 for the Klien.

The new Irwin vice grips made in China are junk, if I wanted Chinese made I would buy Chinese made at a lot better price. I prowl the pawn shops looking for the old Vice Grips.

My new Channelock linesman pliers are not high quality, the serated jaws are too soft. Their water pump pliers are the best though.

Now everything is built to a price, no matter where it is made, not to a quality.

We used to laugh at the Japanese junk in the 50's, now look at their quality. I think China will catch up much quicker.

Search out flea marks and pawn shops for old tools. there are still some good buys on quality tools.

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#38

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 5:47 AM

Not American made but Canadian made, I'm the 3rd generation using Gray hand tools. My Grandfather(Industrial mechanic) and Step-Father(Master mechanic) used them.I still have and heavily use most of my granfathers tools(pre-WWII).

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#39

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 5:57 AM

This past discussion may help also

http://cr4.globalspec.com/thread/83323

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#43

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 7:59 AM

If you ever visit an industrial maintenance facility, like a refinery, power plant, gas pipeline station; you'll likely find Proto tools. Sadly, I've found the quality of some of their tools (diagonal cutters) aren't as good as they used to be. My 50 year old cutters will still cut hair, the 5 year old ones won't.

Other excellent brands include Snap-On, S-K, Mac, Matco, Allen, etc. You might find used Bonney & Plomb tools that are also excellent. Tools that are sold by a guy traveling around in a truck are usually good quality, but way over-priced.

As previously stated, I really like my German tools. Wiha screwdrivers and Knipex pliers & cutters are fabulous!

For handheld power tools, NOTHING beats a Panasonic drill or impact driver. I have a Rigid portable belt sander that is absolutely awesome. Milwaukee makes good power tools, but they've been made in China for the last 5 years or so...

I'd suggest you look on Ebay for some of these brands, as they may not be readily available in your area.

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#44

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 8:10 AM

The professional mechanics that I know use either Snap On or Mac tools.They get heavy use every day, and have a lifetime warranty,which is rarely needed.

IMHO,the old Craftsman tools are good, but the new ones are very poor quality, made for light duty,weekend mechanic duty.Sure, they have a lifetime warranty,but that is no comfort when you have removed 7 spark plugs and the ratchet strips out on number 8.(Which has happened to me). The replacement ratchet did the same thing,and it did not require much force to do it.Of course,they replaced it, but I keep it in my tool box,unused,afraid to use it for anything except Christmas toy assembly.

Remember, the best warranty is the one you never have to use.

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#46

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 9:03 AM

I hear you loud and clear.

I have some tools that were passed on to me that are over 50 years old and I have purchased many over the years.

I restore cars for a hobby and I work on my family, friends, and neighbors "stuff" so I use my tools often.

I now need to replace some of my tools that have worn out.

Most are Craftsman, with Snap-On and PROTO mixed in.

I went to the local Sears store and every ratchet, extension, socket, and breaker bar as well as most of their combination and ratchet wrenches that Craftsman now manufactures is made in China.

The price has not decreased any and the quality is not at all equal to my older tools.

I told them to keep their replacement ratchet and breaker bar and that I will not be buying any more Craftsman tools in the future.

I will be replacing the worn out tools with Made in USA PROTO or Snap-On units.

I have found that pretty much all hand tools made in the USA are far superior to most others and they last a lifetime if taken care of.

However it is getting harder to find any new tools made in USA.

Swap meets , yard sales, and estate sales are excellent places to pick up high quality tools at very reasonable prices. (Sometimes for pennies on the dollar.)

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#58
In reply to #46

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 3:25 PM

Most of the Craftsman tools of yesterday were made right here in Co. Springs at Western Forge... they usually had WF forged into the steel near the Craftsman. Haven't been up there for about 15 years...not sure if they're still producing.

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#48

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 9:44 AM
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#51
In reply to #48

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 10:04 AM

That is an excellent website.

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#57
In reply to #48

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 11:03 AM

Nice find. GA from me.

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#61
In reply to #48

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 6:28 PM

Thanks for the great link. I had forgot Bonney. They were good wrenches.

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#60

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 6:10 PM

Unfortunately, I lose a lot of my tools, so I have a lot of cheaper tools. The ones I plan to keep forever and will not lose (they stay in my garage) are Klein (make the best lineman pliers), Ideal (clamp meter), Bosch (laser level and laser measurement), old Vise Grip, old Channel Lock (new ones aren't as good), old Craftsman (new ones are definitely not very good), Graco airless sprayer and Park (my bike tools).

The stuff I take to the rentals are cheaper tools like Irwin, new Channel Lock, new Vise Grip, new Craftsman, Harbor Freight (lifetime warranty, so I have 2-3 of each screwdriver on hand), a great set of big round handle Husky screwdrivers (get tons of torque and they're pretty good), Ryobi jig saw, tile saw, shop vac and chop saw, old B&D table saw, Dewalt cordless drill, Milwaukee cordless hammer drill (very nice quality), Bosch cordless drill (I thought it was good until I bought the Milwaukee), Rigid circular saw (actually pretty nice), cheap HF pipe wrenches, cheap HF grinder, Bosch oscillating tool (very nice quality), Bosch screwdriver bits (better than Ryobi and Dewalt), Bosch and Dewalt drill bits, cheap HF tape measures, cheap HF drywall t-square, and many other miscellaneous tools of varying quality.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I buy better quality tools if I plan to use them quite a bit and I want to own them for a long time (they stay home). On the road, I buy the quality that suits both the job and how many times I will need the tool. I also lose quite a few tools, so I don't want to spend too much money on them. That's one of the reasons I have trouble shelling out the money for a set of Snap On sockets, even though they are very nice quality.

If you're worried about buying cheap China junk, you can avoid many of those kinds of tools. Don't buy the swap meet junk - it's the lowest of the low. Be careful at HF - some are pretty junky, but there are decent tools there - ones that don't break on the first use. Home Depot and Lowes have decent tools to excellent tools. Some of their in house stuff is pretty cheap HSX or something like that.

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#65

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/14/2014 11:46 PM

For most of my day to day hand tools I use Gear-wrench ratchet wrenches, Kline, Fluke, Makita battery powered tools impact 3/8", 1/2" 1/4"hex drive, impact hammer drill, power saw, angle drill, power ratchet, sawzall, sheet metal shear, die grinder, 1/2" drill, all are 18V Lithium Ion. Only had one problem with a trigger switch repair shop had in stock and repaired in 10 min while I waited. At home I have mostly Snap-On,Mac,Matco,Proto, old Sears/Craftsman for hand tools. Pecto Sheet metal shear and box pan break hard to find now. Welders are Lincoln buzz box, Airco Tig P&H Tig, Miller wire feed I usually try to find older service people getting ready to retire and buy them out, that is where I find the best deals. Plus it helps them out as well. And every now and again you find some really good custom designed tools that were build for specialty jobs that were never mass produced or made for the standard markets. Those one offs made to do that job you hated to do, until you found that really special custom tool dad or granddad made just for that job. Always on the hunt for the next tool I just have to have. My daughter will love me when I go to the great workshop in the sky as she is a general contractor and her husband is a jack of all trades just like myself and dad as well as granddad pass it on to the next generation. Duke

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#68

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 1:17 PM

Panasonic cordless drills…Switched over to them when they came out several years ago--Best cordless for the money….For a ChannelLock replacement, look at KNIPEX tools, from Germany--Best adjustable pliers i have used, and in many sizes…Porter Cable has been bought, I believe, by Black and Decker--Their best stuff is no longer made, like their older production trim routers, and their long shoe, spiral -blade head, door planer. There was a site that listed all of the tool manufacturer consolidations, and it was an eye opener. I will try to find it..

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#69
In reply to #68

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 1:35 PM

You know what I really need;

1. A needle nose pliers that has "0" tolerance at the tip, closes 100% tight, no gap and does not twist when you put the pressure to it.

2. Small, tough screwdrivers flat, star and Phillips ( sewing machine work)

3. straight socket type tools for an assortment of allen, square, star, and all the other bits that open those recessed (hole in the middle) screws that they put in machinery.( sewing machine work, US and Metric)

4. Ignition type open end wrenches ...TOUGH stuff that can hold onto a tiny nut and NOT strip it like some of this crap I have from Krafts*** a big store in town. * I hear there is a wrench that grabs the whole nut and not just the edges of the nut???

I do about 70% of my work with my hands sewing big, knotted nets. The other 30% is done with micro mesh ( Rachel, Pee-cap and Nitex) sewn on a commercial Serger. The Serger needs adjustments every so many hours of running.

Suggestions??

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#70
In reply to #69

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 6:48 PM

..Suggestions??..."

.

I have a suggestion that may provide a two-fold benefit; not only will the offending tool sets receive just punishment for their gross inadequacies, if done properly, a good percentage may be rehabilitated, perhaps even redeemed.

.

The suggestion is case hardening via carburizing (or maybe nitrocarburizing, though just carburizing is safer, more accessible to diy, cheaper, and can be very effective), quenching and tempering. The idea is to create a very hard outer shell surrounding a tough center, i.e. make up for the original manufacturers devotion to cheapness.

.

The good news is that this is not a difficult process and can be done with very basic equipment. The downsides are that you don't know exactly what type of steel you are working with, and without specialized equipment, your temperatures won't be exact.

.

That said, it would be a good idea to work on sets of deficient tools that came together, or are from the same original manufacturer and seem similar, and monitor progress of your technique to pieces in that specific group/type. You don't have to worry about that, just work in similar groups, it may later prove useful.

.

I should also mention that this is just for tools that have failed by plastic deformation, or tools that came with tools that have failed in that manner. There are other steps you can take for over hardened tools, but I'm guessing that isn't your most common problem....

.

The first step is to do your best to correct the deformation. Also, look around and gather all the tools from the same set, or you otherwise suspect are the same material.

.

Next is cleaning the surface. Sandblasting, or light sanding works well. If you use a chemical to clean the part, make sure it is rinsed clean

.

Coat the clean surface in nano-carbon. Yes, you do have access to this application. Bic lighters work really well for small pieces like screwdrivers and small blades. You just need to put the piece into the top of the flame so that the workpiece gets coated in soot.

.

Once you have it covered in soot, heat it up with a propane, mapp gas (or the imitation, that is now the only thing available, blah), acetylene, or other flame you can make slightly reducing (starved of oxygen a little, so it is more orange and burns higher, possibly with a little soot. You want the flame reducing, so that you avoid just oxidizing the soot away too rapidly.

.

Heat it up until you start to see a dull red. Move the flame under the peice (or the piece over the flame) in a smooth steady motion covering the whole area to be heated....once you've reached dull red, let it cool a little, and coat it again with soot. Do this three times at a minimum. It takes much less time than it sounds like. What you have done is increased the carbon content of the shell.

.

Next up is phase transformation. You need a magnet, and solid container full of oil with as high a flash point as you can find, peanut is reasonable, synthetic motor oil might work well. The oil needs to be deep enough to fully immerse the piece with some room to slice it through the oil a little. It is also best if the oil is not cold. Above bearable room temp, less than boiling water, is a good range. You definitely need protection for your hands face and upper body....just go ahead and assume the oil is going to burst into flame. Coat the piece in soot a final time and heat it with the same smooth steady motion. Try to still utilize a slightly reducing flame. Depending on the gas you are using the torch size and the work piece, you may need to adjust the flame closer to oxidizing if you are having trouble getting it to heat to the right colors....

.

As it heats, after dull red, you need to look closely, but there is a definite pronounced sudden color shift to red. This means phase transformation has begun (Pearlite->Austenite). There is a similar leap from red to decidedly orange. This indicates the transformation is complete. Check with your magnet.... Austenite is not ferromagnetic, i.e. the temperature is above critical. (Don't ruin your magnet by allowing contact and overheating.)

.

Time to quench. This is really something to practice at least once before doing it heated. You must assume you are going to be confronted by a burst of flame. Be ready for it, so that you don't react in away that splashes oil. Do not have your body, face, hands, loved ones, or un-hated flammables above the quench oil. In a smooth stead motion, immerse the piece in oil and move it back and forth in the oil in the direction it is easiest to move, i.e. for a knife or file, this would be slicing.

.

Since your oil is above room temp, time isn't super critical, just make sure it is less than say boiling water temp.

.

Okay, the next step is tempering, and you can't put this off. It has to happen right after quenching.

.

You need to clean a side of the work piece, and finish with fine sand paper. Have the oven preheated to 300F. Put the tool in the oven.... you may need a distraction or flowers later to make this possible. Observe the color,, hopefully the glass is good enough to allow this easily, otherwise you'll have to devise something to deal with drafts of door opening....

.

300F is too low for color to change, but home baking ovens are notoriously inaccurate. You are looking for the first beginning change of color... it will be a light yellow, flax goldish tint. slowlyy increas the overn temperature say 5F at a time and then wait for the oven to settle before adjusting again, As soon as it turns you can open to door. (Mark that temp in the dial....) Don't worry about thermal shock at this low temp. In fact if you overdo the temp slightly you can water quench at this point to stop any further colors from spreading.

.

You can also temper with a flame, just make sure you start away from the critical surface, and as the color change moves towards the critical surface, water quench when it starts to change right at the critical surface.

\.

.

I have had great success improving a number of tools that were not hard enough... screw drivers, allen wenches, crescent wrenches, knives, axes, shears, oh drill bits by far the most success. A few sets thaat were crappy to begin with (one of my on and a few from friends) and a number of drill bits that were heat damaged in use. Sharpen then use the method above.

.

.

Some tools are water quenching steel, and it is difficult to distinguish if you lack very sophisticated equipment or forehand knowledge. Oil quenching a carburized tool made of a water quenching alloy is safe, it may not be to its optimum strength and hardness (actually the outside might still be due to extra carbon) but it will be tough iin the center still. On the other hand, water quenching a tool made of an oil quenching alloy can cause a myriad of problems, distortion, shattering and other descriptions of catastrophic failure.

.

.

If you want you can also venture into adding nitrogen as well as carbon, but the chemicals and processes can be more complicated and dangerous. This is a gross over simplification of the potential complications... but note what carbon bonded to nitrogen is C≡N.

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#71
In reply to #70

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 7:15 PM

Thank you for such a detailed description and step by step instructions. Had my son the welder and pipe fitter still be practicing his trade....he would have done this without hesitation ( unfortunately, a 17yr. old girl , texting a boyfriend, ran a red light and ended his welding career).

I just can not put all of that together. Rather, I would need a company that sells these tools, already tempered and up to high end standards.

Thank you so very much and I have saved this to my HOW TO FILE for future scrutiny. Right now I just can not muster up to do that sequence.

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#72
In reply to #71

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 7:30 PM

I understand. The process is actually pretty quick. I does take a fair amount of detail to explain, and it is much easier to learn if someone shows you. It is really useful for drill bits and can be done on tiny drill bits with just a bic lighter, sand paper and cap off oil.

.

I'm glad you appreciate the information, when I got done, I was a little shocked at how long it was and how long I'd been typing....had no idea. Anyway, glad it wasn't a waste, and hope you get to enjoy some success doing it when you find the time.

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#73
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/15/2014 7:53 PM

Absolutely. I always enjoy learning new things and I will attempt this later in the season when we are not so busy. Right now its just me and the wife and we are way behind on work in the shop. we have only a few months to make the money we live off of the rest of the year. Fishing season even for scientists is limited to Spring , Summer and touch of Fall.

thank you again and I will definitely try this at a late time.

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#74
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/16/2014 1:06 AM

#3...I picked up a 'security bit' set at Harbor Freight, covers everything I've run across in the last 4 years...they fit a standard 1/4 hex driver and seem to be decent quality

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#75
In reply to #74

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/16/2014 9:44 AM

I always felt, if you buy a major item, you buy the best, on washer/dryers, and you didn't have the money, you waited until you did.

I had felt the same with tools. But that changed. If you're doing work and need a specialty tool that you may only use it a few times. I'll go to harbor freight and if it looks like it'll do the job. I'll buy it.

Last night for dinner We went out for Japanese and had some time to kill before it opened, there was a pawn shop near the resturant so I checked it out........ Never was in a pawn shop before, now, I think I'll go there before harbor freight. The only problem is that the price leaves little to account for risk of buying a used tool. But it is a good option.

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#76
In reply to #75

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/16/2014 12:59 PM

I always thought(growing up)stuff made by the orientals was CRAP, found out in 1969 that they made some quality stuff...America just didn't import it. While on my way to Fairbanks on my bike, I stopped in BC to buy a fly reel, and found a Japanese reel that was as good as any, and still have it. I guess you need to test and judge each item.

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#77
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/16/2014 1:50 PM

SLR cameras fall into that category too.

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#78
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/16/2014 2:50 PM

Many good fishing reels are/were made in Japan. Shimano's used to be made in Japan but now it is only the high=end ones. Rest will be made in Malaysia. Like them because most of my fishing is ultra lite and they make good small ones.

Also like Penn for salt water. Last longer.

Now if the Kunan rods were brought back, life would be good!

Good Luck Old Salt

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#81
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/17/2014 12:34 PM

Penn's high end stuff is still Philly made, the rest is overseas...

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#83
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/17/2014 12:58 PM

A bad day fishing is still better than a good day at work!

A real good week = 7*(Eat, fish, sleep)

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#82
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/17/2014 12:56 PM
  • the best monofilament netting is Japanese made.
  • the best HDPE netting is Indian and Portuguese made
  • the best UHDPE netting is Dutch made
  • the best nylon netting ( polyamide) is still USA (DuPont)
  • ....oops! you guys are talking about hook and line fishing....my mistake........
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#84
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/18/2014 7:41 PM

Found it: Wright Tools, Barberton, Ohio, all American made--Good catalog, and excellent tools.. www.wrighttools.com

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#85
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/18/2014 10:11 PM

OK, you've got me hooked. Very impressive catalog and variety of tools. Now I have another "dream" catalog like the Sears Christmas Toy Catalog when I was a kid!

I notice though that the largest combination wrench they sell is a 4". It measures in at 39" long. It isn't large enough though. I have a 3" hex nut with a 4-1/2" flat to flat measurement. I also have another one that is a 5" hex nut with a 9" flat to flat dimension. Sorry I can't give you the pitches on them because they are beyond the capacity of my Starrett thread gauge.

Where do you think an appropriate source for a 5" combination wrench and a 9" combination would be? Sears, Home Depot, Lowes, Harbor Freight, Northern Tool, Auto Zone or maybe Advance Auto Parts?

These two hex nuts do exist and are in my workshop. The smaller one is used as a paper weight and the bigger one just sits there until I finish sand blasting it.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#86
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/18/2014 10:25 PM

Do what my old GURU and shipwright did--Start looking for bar clamps, and Cheater bars--You cannot believe what we installed and removed--The leverage is incredible, and if necessary, a little help from a small butane torch, but only after soaking the joint with a 50%-50% mixture of light oil and brake fluid over night--Wipe clean , and by all means, apply the heat , just slowly enough, to evaporate the volatiles first, so you don't set the job on fire… Good luck--

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#87
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/18/2014 11:17 PM

C-Mac

I don't know what the 3" hex nut was for or where I got it. I've had it for a long time. The 6" hex nut came from a bean press used to crush Castor Beans so that solvents could be used to extract the castor oil from the beans. Solvent was then heated off and the castor oil remained. Now all the work is done in India where the beans grow. Shipped in tankers and offloaded onto barges which deliver the oil.

There are a lot of ingenious way to get things loose or tightened. When I get to the big ones such as these we would often soak it good with "Blaster" several times periodically and hit it with a heavy hammer (drilling or sledge). Meanwhile trace the nut with paper and pencil and mark a piece of 1" steel for an open end wrench or a box end wrench. Cut the steel carefully with a cutting torch while making the handle as long as you want/need and you have a large wrench for the purpose. Largest we made was about 6" if I recall right and we used a chain fall to turn it. Handle was about 6 ft long. It worked and got the job done, the most important thing.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#89
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 5:47 AM

as previously noted, although not USA made these are some of the best in the market with the sizes you need.

http://www.graytools.com/toolcatalogue/

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#91
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 9:54 AM

That name rings a bell. I have used this company's lifting equipment forever.

http://www.grayusa.com

Apparently not connected to the Gray of the north, but also excellent equipment.

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#90
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 7:57 AM

I have a pair of similar size with 1/4" chains about 10" long welded to them...they're hanging under the rear of my 3/4 ton diesel pickup.

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#92
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 9:56 AM

Riding behind that truck of yours, stating at them for any length of time must drive people ......NUTS.

OK, I know it was bad.

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#88
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 5:13 AM

Hey! you threw me a curved ball there.

That's http://www.wrighttool.com NOT http://www.wrighttoolS.com

They do look good, but, I have an instinctive mistrust for companies which want to quote for something instead of telling me up front how much they are going to cost.

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#93
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 3:07 PM

Sorry about the spelling. If I could type, I'd be dangerous….!

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#94
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 3:33 PM

Jeez, and that rebuke coming from a country where they squander the letter "U" and jumble the spelling of words, just to trick us Yanks??

centrecenter
fibrefiber
litreliter
theatretheater

or theatre

colourcolor
flavourflavor
humourhumor
labourlabor
neighbourneighbor
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#95
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/19/2014 4:50 PM

Aluminium ....Aluminum

.

Thousand million .... Billion

.

Billion .... Trillion (though they seem to have made the necessary correction on this one)

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#96
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/20/2014 4:35 AM

It wasn't a rebuke... there was no spelling mistake. Just that I was sent to the wrong web site, and, being dumb it took me a long time to figure out that I was reading about the wrong sort of tools.

As for the divergence of American and English spelling: I think we can hold Noah Webster wholly responsible:-

Slowly, edition by edition, Webster changed the spelling of words, making them "Americanized". He chose s over c in words like defense, he changed the re to er in words like center, and he dropped one of the Ls in traveler. At first he kept the u in words like colour or favour but dropped it in later editions. He also changed "tongue" to "tung"-an innovation that never caught on.

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#97
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/20/2014 4:44 AM

Two countries separated by a common language. GB Shaw.

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#98
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/20/2014 6:09 AM

What on earth are you doing at this time in the morning! Are you late going to bed or early getting up?

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#99
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/20/2014 9:06 AM

Insomnia.

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#100
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Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/20/2014 11:15 AM

Be careful with that. It only take a hint of agnosticism along with some dyslexia and before long you'll be up all night wondering if there is a dog.

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#79

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/17/2014 9:42 AM

These comments brought back fond memories of my 8th grade shop teacher, Mr. Castor. He was a wonderful teacher. He was real strict about caring for tools and using them correctly. Teachers weren't afraid to use a paddle in those days. It has been nearly 50 years, but whenever I use a screwdriver as a chisel or pry bar, I still think about Mr. Castor! My brother once told me he does the same thing! LOL!

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#80
In reply to #79

Re: American Made Or Equal Tools!

02/17/2014 10:02 AM

We had to write out the safety rules on the tool that we were going to use before we could use then........ and our shop teacher was a Golden Glove fighter.

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