Hand toolz.

WoodChuck'r

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Jan 8, 2012
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There's a ton of hand tools out there today, and there's a ton of different good brands to choose from - Craftsman, Kobalt, Stanley, Klein, Husky, Snap-On, Knipex, Crescent, Mac, S&K, Channel Lock, Irwin, Greenlee, Ideal, Performance Tool (just to name a few). But I hafta say, I've always been a big big fan of Klein Tools. Can't really go wrong with anything they sell IMO. Over the past 10 years I haven't owned any pliers or screwdrivers that aren't Klein.

But I also own quite a few "crescent" brand adjustable wrenches. And any of my 1/4", 3/8", and 1/2" socket sets are all Craftsman. I have a 3/4" socket set which I put together piece by piece and that's all Performance Tool stuff. Pretty comparable to Craftsman and it has a lifetime warranty as well. I don't really use 3/4" sockets all that often but it's nice having a decent set if/when ya need one.

Don't really own any Snap-On or Mac Toolz. But I'm not living with my tools like a diesel mechanic would, so that stands a reason. Used a lot of Snap-On and Mac stuff over the years and they make some badass tools no doubt about it - know quite a few mechanics and they swear by Snap-On and Mac.


My dad always went for the cheap end of Stanley and anything Chinese. Used to drive me nuts when I'd wanna work on something at his house and I'd have a bunch of cheap tools to pick from. He was from the old school though and always stated that yer paying for the name when it came to more expensive tools. I guess he had his point somewhat, but the name can't exist without quality....!!


So... What hand toolz do ya do yer wrenchin' with....??
 

TK

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Craftsman does everything I need. Got wrenches older than I am still going strong. I do like Klein too. Makita for my electric tools be it plug in or cordless. Swedish tools for killing trees.
 

PB

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Craftsman and Kobalt is all Chinese now too. So be careful in the future if you are concerned about quality. Craftsman ratchets are the absolute biggest waste of money I have ever seen. I went through 3, 1/4" ratchets last year and finally gave up on them. The only thing I use them for is fixing saws so not a lot of use there (maybe 5 saws last year). Sure they replace them for free but you still have to drive it back to the store. After they all went to made in China, the prices are all still the same! What a crock. My FIL witnessed some of this and got me a nice 1/4" ratchet and it is awesome. When you factor in $30 of gas to replace a $13 Craftsman ratchet, the Mac is much cheaper. My cousin is a diesel mechanic and he wore out is little Snap-On ratchet and he gave it to me. It is nice but it is not long enough to get torque on rusted muffler bolts.

I can rant all day about how bad Craftsman tools are getting. :deadhorse::angry:

After I replaced my craftsman T-handle hex wrenches I went with Klein. $5 more than the Craftsman but have lasted me much longer. I had to constantly grind down the Craftman because they would strip but the Klein's are bullet proof. When I replace my screwdrivers they will probably be Klein.

Wrenches are all going to Armstrong just because they are easy to buy here and are reasonably priced. I really like Stanley's Proto stuff though and also have several S&K tools.

Generally I will only buy a hand tool if it is made in the US.
 
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BloodOnTheIce

~Ice Gangsta~
Jan 10, 2012
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All of my wrenches, sockets and ratchets are all craftsman stuff.

Pliers and needle noses are from Harbor freight.

Screwdrivers all Craftsman

T handle Torx and and Hex head are Wiha brand

Hammers are all out of the garbage at Kodak when my dad worked there with new handles.

I've been doing this going on 6 years and haven't broken any of my cheap Harbor Freight stuff.

For auto/diesel I understand SK, Matco, Snap On, or Mac are a must but for lawn & garden stuff
it's just not needed.
 

mweba

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Jan 10, 2012
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I'm not brand loyal at all. Find the best per price for each tool.

Ratchets=Snap on
Sockets=Duracraft,craftsman and Allen. I've been known to hit socket with a hammer so no Snap On there.
T-handles= Bondhus and Snap On. From now on Bondhus due to every SO being replaced several times.
Battery powered= Millwaukee Everything from drills, sawzall, impact driver, impact wrench and skill saw.
Welding=Lincoln Weld Pak
Plasma=Miller 275 HD

I have some Blue point stuff and like it as well as Kobalt.

Snap On guy stops once a month but usually just to exchange broken stuff :ranting:

PS Klein makes great tools, have their wire stripper and a couple screw drivers.
 
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mdavlee

How the heck did this take so long?
Jan 10, 2012
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I've got a bunch of craftsman stuff from 10 tears ago. All of my metric ratchet wrenches are fear wrench and they've held up great. I have them up to 27 mm. The new ratchets are junk. I've broke 2 of 3 3/8" ratchets. I need to get some snap on or mac to replace them.
 

WoodChuck'r

HNIC
Staff member
Jan 8, 2012
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Upstate NY - Southern Tier
Craftsman and Kobalt is all Chinese now too. So be careful in the future if you are concerned about quality. Craftsman ratchets are the absolute biggest waste of money I have ever seen. I went through 3, 1/4" ratchets last year and finally gave up on them. The only thing I use them for is fixing saws so not a lot of use there (maybe 5 saws last year). Sure they replace them for free but you still have to drive it back to the store. After they all went to made in China, the prices are all still the same! What a crock. My FIL witnessed some of this and got me a nice 1/4" ratchet and it is awesome. When you factor in $30 of gas to replace a $13 Craftsman ratchet, the Mac is much cheaper. My cousin is a diesel mechanic and he wore out is little Snap-On ratchet and he gave it to me. It is nice but it is not long enough to get torque on rusted muffler bolts.

I can rant all day about how bad Craftsman tools are getting. :deadhorse::angry:

After I replaced my craftsman T-handle hex wrenches I went with Klein. $5 more than the Craftsman but have lasted me much longer. I had to constantly grind down the Craftman because they would strip but the Klein's are bullet proof. When I replace my screwdrivers they will probably be Klein.

Wrenches are all going to Armstrong just because they are easy to buy here and are reasonably priced. I really like Stanley's Proto stuff though and also have several S&K tools.

Generally I will only buy a hand tool if it is made in the US.



Yeah some of the Craftsman stuff is kinda cheezy these days. What ratchets did ya go through....?? Were they the standard ones or were they the chrome plated urgo handled ones. I have the chrome urgo's myself (1/4", 3/8", and 1/2"), have had them for many years and I haven't had an issue yet. They seem (at least to me) to be about as nice as a Snap-On or Mac ratchet. I'm actually impressed at how well they've held up - they still run real smooth and have never bound up on me once.
 

PB

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Nov 5, 2012
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Yeah some of the Craftsman stuff is kinda cheezy these days. What ratchets did ya go through....?? Were they the standard ones or were they the chrome plated urgo handled ones. I have the chrome urgo's myself (1/4", 3/8", and 1/2"), have had them for many years and I haven't had an issue yet. They seem (at least to me) to be about as nice as a Snap-On or Mac ratchet. I'm actually impressed at how well they've held up - they still run real smooth and have never bound up on me once.

I went through the standard tear drop 1/4" ratchets quite handily. They wouldn't bind up but rather spin freely in both directions. The last one i took in was the straw that broke the camel's back. I asked if I could pay the difference and get the better ratchet. They said no. So they went to grab yet another rebuilt one and found that they were out, so they go to the shelf and get me a thin profile ratchet, a step up ($10 more) for free. I get home and look at the back, made in China. :saywhat:

I have the same 3/8" that is holding together fine but it is about 10 years old, and also have my dad's 1/2" ratchet that is close to 20 years old. The old one with the triangle back is indestructible. Different manufacturers I would guess, but there is quite a bit of difference in quality over the years. I think the older the ratchets the better the quality. If you ever have to trade it in, don't expect the same quality in return. Grab the stuff at the back of the peg hook if you can, it is generally older stock that still says Made in USA.

I now have 2 Mac's, one is the cutest little ratchet you have ever seen, and a used Snap-On that my cousin gave me. Both are great but prefer the Mac over the Snap-On because the handle is a bit longer. Mac ratchets aren't all that expensive. I think the 1/4" ratchet I have is only about $30 and can be rebuilt if it ever fails.

I can understand selling tools made in China to save a buck, but at least lower the prices. Why should I pay for a 'premium' brand that is no longer premium? Here I go again......:deadhorse::derplol:
 
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TK

Hand Rubbed Pork
Jan 9, 2012
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I had a spat with a couple 1/4" ratchets from craftsman but this last couple have been fine for over a year now. May have been a bad run. Everything else is fine. Except those stupid sockets breaking in my impact gun :jerkoff: Probably should have got the impact sockets for that.
 

Tzed250

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Dec 12, 2012
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Sheesh. I've got enough in Snap-on tools to buy a small car. Been buying them for twenty years now. I like Klein also. I have some Craftsman, but it doesn't feel as good in the hand and doesn't contact the fastener as well.



Untitled by zweitakt250, on Flickr
 

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mweba

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As I said, not a die hard fan of any one brand but when it comes to ratchets....get these two and be done for life. 72 and 80 tooth respectively.


Untitled by mweba1, on Flickr




I was on the fence with the 3/8 handle at first but its grown on me.
 
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ECopsey

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Mostly Snap-on & Mac hand tools .............. Milwaukee electric tools have treated me well over the years.
 
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