Re: Hand Tools Redux

Rick NK7I

It used to be a simple choice, based on availability; Craftsman (Sears, now defunct) or Snap-On (a little more spendy but they deliver to shops).  The warranty was simple, you break it, they replace it; no questions asked (raised eyebrows however sometimes happened).

Craftsman ain't what it used to be by FAR (the line was sold a couple times).  No Snap-On in North Idaho that I've seen since moving here.

So, as Jim said, do your homework.  BUT I'll suggest that for Philips format, that JIS design (FROM Japan, WITH some quality) appears to be THE preferred choice by many hams groups.  They fit better and do less damage when full torque is needed.  Again, FROM Japan, not some other Asian country where quality, um, wanders into the variable.

I just got a set (3 pieces, $30) and in the little I've used them, already know that I'll add more to that set.

Rick NK7I

"The nice thing about standards, is that there are so many to choose from!"

On 6/20/2021 1:46 PM, Jim Brown wrote:
On 6/20/2021 12:44 PM, Ian Kahn wrote:
I just don't do enough of this type of work to know what manufacturers make good quality tools. Can anyone on this group make recommendations?
My advice is to VERY carefully study buyer ratings of anything that you think about buying, sorting those ratings both by "newest first" and again choosing the most negative.

Over the last few years, I've done this with a wide variety of products, and user reviews for most products (tools for the kitchen and the shop, for example) report that current versions of older tools they're replacing are cheap junk that fall apart, or don't work as well, or both. This sort of study is best done on very large merchant sites like amazon, whether you intend to purchase there or not.

It's important to do this with a good BS filter firmly in place. Has the reviewer used the product long enough to find it's shortcomings, or is patting his/herself on the back after first opening the box? That's where the 1-star reviews show their value. Over the last day or two, I've been shopping for tongs to use with a newly purchased Kamado grill, and all I've found so far is junk. Searching for the same brand I've used in the kitchen for ten years, I find reviews saying that the product changed several years ago, and that the current version, with the same product name, description, and even the photo in the listing has a different shape and is cheap junk that broke after few uses, or rusted after a few washes.

Several years ago, I went shopping for some hand tools, among them a vise grip wrench. Among the dozen brands listed, including old line mfrs, it was the only tool of ANY type that was made in North America or Europe. I bought one, and it's excellent quality. A search today didn't find it.

73, Jim K9YC

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