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Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools...
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Deebs
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:25 pm    Post subject: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Long story short - I'm beginning mechanics and trying to get quality tools that are affordable.

My local Sears was having a going out of business sale and all tools were marked 40% off. Craftsman had a 1/2" drive ratchet marked down to $23.97.

Unfortunately, all their tools are now made in China.

I go to school and work part time at a local ACE Hardware (great place to work while restoring a VW Very Happy ), and it kills me when someone walks in to swap their Craftsman ratchet they've owned for 20+ years that was USA made at the time for a *new* Chinese brand.

How do you guys feel about Craftsman quality today compared to past decades? I ask because I am 26 and didn't grow up in those times. I've been restoring my father in law's old locked up Craftsman ratchets because I feel they can go further years of use.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:15 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Nowadays, most everybody has "lifetime warranty" for their hand tools. I kinda like Lowes lately and their line that they carry. If any of my Craftsman fail now, I still exchange it for new Craftsman. Might as well, it can't be any worse than a broken one sitting in the drawer. I have yet to break any Craftsman ratchet...
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Deebs wrote:
My local Sears was having a going out of business sale ...

Unfortunately, all their tools are now made in China.


To me - just one of many reasons for the Sears demise.

I bought a Sears Craftsman lawn tractor in 2005 for $900, feel that's been OK (actually made by AYP).

I bought a Sears Craftsman $100 wet tile saw about 15 years ago, felt the plastic "fence" was cheap and would break easily, and it did within a few fastenings. I returned this to Sears store 2 miles away, replaced with the only other one in stock, and even lubed that one and it also broke readily. So I returned that same day and got my money back, I was "seduced" and lured by the Sears Craftsman name, horrible tool. The next day I bought a $100 wet tile saw at Home Depot, have used that for three tile jobs, still fine today, and easier to check/add water than on the Sears unit.

I have a 1/2 inch Craftsman breaker bar, broke that 3 times in 40 years by abusing it, all replaced readily (and back when made in USA), and a few Craftsman sockets. Because of price, I never think of Sears as the Go To place for ANYTHING, even though it's two miles away.

My 19.2 volt Sears NiCad cordless drills have crappy non-Jacobs checks, like Sears wouldn't pay for Jacobs and designed crappy chucks to save money; one of those I did replace with real Jacobs chuck from Harbor Freight. I have two batteries left, have to keep them on the charger 24/7 or they're useless; I keep that system mainly because of the stubby drill that fits those batteries, and the drills are not good enough for me to upgrade to 19,2 volt lithium batteries, because of cost and charger cost for those.

I won't miss Sears leaving, except big space at the mall will be empty.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

This is an example of how Sears management committed corporate brand suicide. Also ask Schwinn about the lost sales value of an American Made product.

I have my tools (and my dad's) which are the "old Craftsman" with a warranty. But with Sears going under, who will replace the broken tools? Will Stanley do this? And with what quality? I haven't broken one in many years, so for me it's kinds hypothetical. But not for many!

I agree with the folks that go to swap meets, garage and estate sales, and buy/refurb the good ol' tools.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Mark Evans wrote:
Nowadays, most everybody has "lifetime warranty" for their hand tools. I kinda like Lowes lately and their line that they carry. If any of my Craftsman fail now, I still exchange it for new Craftsman. Might as well, it can't be any worse than a broken one sitting in the drawer. I have yet to break any Craftsman ratchet...


I actually watched a video today where Kobalt (Lowes) screwdrivers out-torqued Snap-On screwdrivers through a piece of oak. Thought it was very interesting given the price difference.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

As a starting out mechanic that Craftsman wrench will work for you. I like many have old, last century made Craftsman tools. I now go to pawn shops for tools. If you take the time you can find quality stuff, sockets wrenches etc just takes time, you can deal with them on price. Pawn shops are handy for the travel tool kit in the car.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Over the years I bet I've amassed $800-worth of hand tools from Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Many really good tools get donated there in support of HfH home building efforts- thus lots of retired tradesman, electricians, plumbers, etc ONLY donate to them.

Admittedly, I worked for HfH for a few years so I am biased. Smile
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

KTPhil wrote:
But with Sears going under, who will replace the broken tools? Will Stanley do this? And with what quality?

Craftsman isn't going under. You'll still be able to buy and swap out the same name brand and quality (or lack thereof) at Lowe's, Ace Hardware, Blain's Farm and Fleet, and Atwoods Ranch and Home.

https://www.craftsman.com/
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Craftsman Tools are no longer owned by Sears.. Stanley (Black and Decker) tools bought them from Sears years ago.. .. The quality had been going down hill even before that though..

I've been in the vehicle repair business my entire life... made it my career... d'oh! Brick wall
There is a HUGE gap growing between the young and old techs these days..
The young come in.. shiny new tools.. and realize its not easy money.. and bail ..the old are in it too long and dont want to make a leap to something unfamiliar..
If you got the touch.. its a good lucrative path .. albeit stressful at times.


Advice.. buy quality and slowly.. Last thing you want is a crap load of tools.. and hate the job.. and quit..
DO NOT BUY A HUGE TOOL BOX EVER.. If you cant move it by pick up truck..or small trailer.. dont buy it.. believe me on that one..


My initial base tools were all Craftsman and I still use my first Craftsman wrench set that was given to me when I was 8 years old..
As I began the pro tech path .. I figured out pretty fast what broke and was inferior ... what tools were much better.. and slowly built a stupid collection of time saving and quality tools..
Trust me.. the last thing you need as a flat rate tech is to be in the middle of a job.. and break THE tool you need to complete the job..
When Sears was a stones throw away.. no problem.. go get swapped and back on the job before the manager finished his smoke break..
NOW.. cant find a Sears.. and the other places that sell Craftsman are simply too far away to do that.


I have just about every brand of tool in my arsenal... and have not bought hardly any tools in 10 years.. I learned what I can depend on.. and what the other seasoned techs before me used..
I even use some cheap shit tools that have pulled me out of some jams.


Go slow.. choose wisely.. shop FeEbay and swap meets..
There are still great QUALITY used tools out there..
Those gypsy tool truck vultures have some good stuff.. just dont get sucked into them at first..
I see it all the time.

.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Craftsman was and is a great tool. Iíve been wrenching on stuff for over 40 years and never had a problem with warranty on that brand other than having to drive there to complete the transaction. I like buying tools from garage sales, flea market etc. generally speaking the quality of all the tools is getting better if you are buying new but I still feel better buying American made, thatís just my opinion. 😀 hereís some stuff I bought a few weeks back
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Left to right thatís an antique with swivel head patent date of 1921
The rest is all newer stuff one Plomb ratchet from before 1946, we know this because they lost a lawsuit and had to change name to Proto. Luckily Proto has rebuild kits to fit this. The rest is SK and Craftsman, I got all this stuff for less than 15 bucks. The one bent wrench is 13mm it is Mac I think. You want to waste time looking at tools? Google alloy artifacts.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

I can move my toolbox by truck... A rollback.

I have 95% Snap-On because it rarely ever broke & I saw the difference in the ability to not cam out (strip)a fastener.

Craftsman, Kobalt, Stanley, & the like are great tools for the hobbyist, if you make your living with tool, buy the best, & if it's from the roaming rapists, buy multiples of the tools that tend to fail the most (6mm allen sockets, 1/2"-3/8" adapters, 17mm, 19mm, 13mm, 10mm).
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

I am not a mechanic, I pretend to be one on weekends. The last replacement was about ratchet was 4 years back, an upgrade to a fully polished one, and it skips like hell.
A buddy is slowly ridding himself of his dad's tools when there are multiple copies and gives me first refusal. I take em every time, and the older tools simply work, sometimes need a clean and lube job.
Over promise, ride on you reputation, and underperform is where Sears and many US makers went to shit.
Now, the Kenmore Washer/Dryer combo in the basement with mechanical dials...came with the house, age unknown, the electrical diagrams are in the back of the machine, and except for a broken dryer belt (14 yr old thought a packed dryer full of jeans and towels was ok) have been stellar performers. Who is picking up the slack for replacement parts for Kenmore?
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:43 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

hitest wrote:
Over the years I bet I've amassed $800-worth of hand tools from Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Many really good tools get donated there in support of HfH home building efforts- thus lots of retired tradesman, electricians, plumbers, etc ONLY donate to them.

Admittedly, I worked for HfH for a few years so I am biased. Smile

You can go buy new tools & supplies from retailers cheaper than you can buy shit from the local HfH. Evil or Very Mad
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Sometimes helping a charity or volunteer organization is worthwhile. I like Salvation Army, mission of hope, goodwill etc. I saw a Ethan Allen moon phase grandfather clock that probably retailed for 3 to 4 grand new, asking price at Salvation Army 249.00 no I passed, but thatís a smokin deal.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Zundfolge1432 wrote:
Sometimes helping a charity or volunteer organization is worthwhile. I like Salvation Army, mission of hope, goodwill etc. I saw a Ethan Allen moon phase grandfather clock that probably retailed for 3 to 4 grand new, asking price at Salvation Army 249.00 no I passed, but thatís a smokin deal.

Then you see what the CEOs, owners, & upper management of the non-profits or "charities" makes & you'll realize just who's getting all the benefits.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Zundfolge1432 wrote:
Craftsman was and is a great tool. Iíve been wrenching on stuff for over 40 years and never had a problem with warranty on that brand other than having to drive there to complete the transaction. I like buying tools from garage sales, flea market etc. generally speaking the quality of all the tools is getting better if you are buying new but I still feel better buying American made, thatís just my opinion. 😀 hereís some stuff I bought a few weeks back
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Left to right thatís an antique with swivel head patent date of 1921
The rest is all newer stuff one Plomb ratchet from before 1946, we know this because they lost a lawsuit and had to change name to Proto. Luckily Proto has rebuild kits to fit this. The rest is SK and Craftsman, I got all this stuff for less than 15 bucks. The one bent wrench is 13mm it is Mac I think. You want to waste time looking at tools? Google alloy artifacts.


Awesome little haul there! I've been interested in S-K tools as well, dug out an old 1/2" ratchet in the garage and clean/lubed it works like a champ.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

my59 wrote:
Who is picking up the slack for replacement parts for Kenmore?

Less than ten seconds searching would have given you that answer.
https://www.kenmore.com/customer-care/
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Tile / Masonry wet saw; One of the very best on the market is MK. 40+ years ago I bought mine and besides changing blades I've only changed the belt once. At $900.00 bucks back then, but you get what yo pay for. Parts are not a problem.

Tools; was in the automotive business all my life. I started with Craftsman tools until I was in my first year of college. My college had a deal with Snap On and Proto so I bought most of my tools from them. I even bought the duplicates of the Craftsman Tools so I could keep a rollaway and a top box at home and not have to shuttle tools.


Of the Craftsman tools I have: My Grandfather worked as a machinist, die maker, pattern maker and a tool maker for Southern Pacific Railroad from when he came to America from Germany in 1906 until he retired in 1950.
I inherited most of his hand tools, some of them were Craftsman, some from England ( most American steam Locos were on English standard) and are quite good. My Mother worked for North American Aviation ( B-25's) during WW2 and I inherited all of her tools many were Craftsman. I also Inherited tools from my Grandmother, she also worked at North American building P51 Mustangs. When I started buying Craftsman ( Early 60's) they were acceptable tools but things have changed and you can't compare the new tools to the old ones I have.

Tool boxes; I have Craftsman bottom boxes and top boxes ( three sets) from the 40's to the 60's and also Snap On bottom boxes and top boxes ( two sets ) from the 70's plus three service carts and I still need room.


When buying a bottom box remember to buy one with drawers big enough to get a 2-1/2 foot long screwdriver into it.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2019 6:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

Gonna hafta stop by my sears store tomorrow to see if there are any consumable parts left for my lawn mowers. Might as well save a couple of bucks if I can.
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 12, 2019 8:17 am    Post subject: Re: Went to Sears for closeout Craftsman tools... Reply with quote

cdennisg wrote:
Gonna hafta stop by my sears store tomorrow to see if there are any consumable parts left for my lawn mowers. Might as well save a couple of bucks if I can.

I buy parts for my Sears lawn mower and Sears lawn tractor online, way less expensive.

In the 1970s I couldn't afford Craftsman hand tools, bought JC Penney Penncraft lifetime guaranteed metric combination wrenches, still great today !!!
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