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I fixed alot of stuff with my old friend, The Craftsman Tool

I was in the garage tonight trying to organize my mess and I have ALOT of craftsman tools, I was a craftsman guy, hand tools, rotary tool, even a wheel cylinder hone. All craftsman. All made in the USA, from the sockets to the toolboxes themselves, all quality tools, purchased at a reasonable price.

Not anymore, craftsman tools are now made in china, and its sad. I actually got depressed looking at and cleaning my tools, knowing I will never again be able to go to the sears store and buy a Craftsman Made in the USA socket set. It feels like a old friend died, Even when times were tough I knew I could depend on my Craftsman tools.

I know craftsman tools were never snap-on quality, however they were a great value for your dollar, and many a man and woman have made their living thanks in part to our old friend the craftsman tool.

Pride, Jobs, and a once great American Tradition… Gone to China.

We wonder why the economy sucks. :frowning: I am really getting sick and tired of this crap.

How can I work on my car with Chinese Craftsman tools? Will I strip out bolts more frequently?

Remember when Japan meant garbage, then it moved to the top of the pile and meant quality, Now one of my greatest birthday presents was in 72, girlfiend bought me a Craftsman 1/2" ratchet wrench, $15 or so at that time,I have abused it and it is still fine, Yes I like you look at americans out of work and miss the made in usa, implying a quality made product.

Not if you have a Craftsman torque wrench… {:slight_smile:

If you had the finest horsehair brushes, would you be able to paint a picture? And yet, Michelangelo created one of histories greatest masterpieces by putting dyes made by hand from plants and minerals onto wet plaster… all while working on rickety scaffolding 70 feet above the chapel floor. It ain’t the tools… it’s the artist.

It is a poor craftsman that blames his tools, but I have broken a few tools, and mostly sockets or adapters, components were made in china, now that is my fault because I could have paid 3x the price, but did not. lifetime warrenty, have not tried a return, I should I guess.

About 45 years ago, I bought a 3/8" drive socket set with S & H Green Stamps. It was made in the U.S. and had the Husky name on the set. I still have that wrench set and it has served me well doing all kinds of repairs to the car, lawn mowers and various jobs around the house. I used it to do most of the auto repairs along with some open end wrenches and assorted screw drivers when we were first starting out and money was tight. I did add a couple of spark plug sockets which still come in handy with the rototiller, snow blower and gasoline lawnmower. It all fits in its original red steel box.

“It ain’t the tools… it’s the artist.” Well said mountainbike. It reminds me of a saying that my grandmother had many years ago…“It’s not the ingredients that matter so much…it’s the cook.” I knew the beginning of the end for Craftsman tools was upon us when a Sears clerk handed me a DIY parts bag with the needed components to fix my broken Craftsman ratchet.


If you had the finest horsehair brushes, would you be able to paint a picture? And yet, Michelangelo created one of histories greatest masterpieces by putting dyes made by hand from plants and minerals onto wet plaster...... all while working on rickety scaffolding 70 feet above the chapel floor. It ain't the tools... it's the artist.

I see your point, but take a cheap Chinese socket and a snap-on socket and use them side by side. Let me know how many bolts you round out with the cheap flimsy Chinese socket compared to snap-on.

If the chinese-made craftsman tools are made to the same standard as the USA-made tools, at least you’d know the tools are just as capable

But, I’d rather buy a USA-made tool, given a choice

Recently, I was in the market for a set of deep offset wrenches. I usually check out the prices (Snap-on, craftsman, etc.) and then look for a bargain. The craftsman set was cheap, looked spiffy, but was chinese-made. In the end, I paid considerably more for an old, used, usa-made snap on set, which I bought on ebay . . . for considerably more money

Financially, my decision was foolish. But I felt pretty good

I have my dads all metal Craftsmen drill and belt sander. He has had them as long as I can remember. And the sockets at one time were made by Danaher Tool Group which was the (I believe) parent company of Matco Tools.

Nowadays I would not even consider buying a Craftsmen anything.

If I’m going to use a tool frequently and want good results I buy a name brand. If I know I will use the tool one or twice a year I buy a cheapy. I bought a better recip saw from Harbor Freight than what Craftsmen had to offer.

A few years ago, I needed a reciprocating saw, so I headed to my local sears

They had several brands, and I looked at Dewalt, Milwaukee and Craftman professional

The Craftsman professional looked competent enough, but the Milwaukee made a much better impression

In the end, I went with the Milwaukee. I’ve used it several times over the years, and I think it was a wise long-term investment

There’s no question that poor tools have the ability to compromise the work, but current Craftsman tools are great for a home hobbyist. Granted, they might not hold up to the demands of a pro as well as, say, SnapOns, but homeowners (myself included) don’t subject them to those demands.

To me the most critical aspects of wrenches is how well they fit and hold the nuts and bolts and how well they enable proper leverage and hand comfort. In these aspects, craftsman tools are great. And they make many of the specialized tools, such as the wrenches with the 90-degree twist in the handles, that many of us like… especially those of us with arthritis… but that’s a different thread.

I also realize that Rick’s post probably has more commentary on the loss of our industries to China than on the tools themselves. That has a lot more to do with politics than tools. It was President Clinton that, in 2000, issued the executive order to normalize trade relations with China. Prior to that, trade relations with China were restricted to protect U.S. industry. The issue of international trade relations is a complex one. Policies affect relative monetary values as well as nations’ economies and foreign relations. And relationships with nations in parts of the world where we have vital interests. And they work two ways. While we might have lost industry to China, it’s very possible that Craftsman tools would be unaffordable to the average working man if we hadn’t normalized relations.

I’d be lying if I said I never struggled with the issues too. But if I have a good tool, I just enjoy it. I don’t ponder it’s place in world history. And I’m very happy with my Craftsman tools.

Triedaq I had a Husky 3/8s ratchet and sockets for years. No problems. Except losing a couple sockets.

I think Craftsman tools can still be returned if they don’t hold up.

Yup, I’ve lost sockets in all price ranges…
I wonder where they all go? There MUST be a parallel universe…

In the '70s, we did most of the repairs on our stingray bicycles using a pair of Craftsman vise grips.

A 1/2 inch Craftsman socket is a 1/2" inch Craftsman socket regardless off whether New Britain Tool Company made it in New Britain Connecticut or the Apex Tool Company made it in Taiwan or China…

Ndemb, that was true of the '50s and '60s too.
My dad was a retail businessman. His tool collection consisted of a pair of vicegrips, a crescent wrench, a few screwdrivers, and not much else. I’ve lost more tools than my dad ever owned.

When I was a kid, the only socket set we had was a Craftsman !/2" set with the breaker bar. I broke a few small engine head bolts off with that one. When dad died, I gave most of his tools to my son. The Craftsman set is still there but doesn’t really ever get used. Gotta be 60 or 70 years old though. I bought my first ratchet wrench in 1967 and thought I was in heaven after that breaker bar.

The last couple of sets I’ve bought have just been the Kobalt from Lowes. Seem to be fine for what I need. I did check the Craftsman hand tools at Ace too but man those prices are way high now compared to what they used to be. Maybe its just the local store.

TS Mountainbike, that is like what my dad had. The Craftsman vise grips were his, along with some screwdrivers and a crescent wrench, unless we somehow got the vise grips from Kevin down the street, which meant he brought them over to our house for some reason and forgot to take them back, in which case we must just have used them until he came to get them or something, which I guess he didn’t do. I’m ashamed of how my family found workarounds for ethics back in our young days.

One thing that I’m glad of now is that Stanley has a crescent wrench that has a locking mechanism like on visegrips, that increases the gripping force on the nut or bolt head. I hope to get one soon to replace the old slightly different version that I bought from Big Lots way back in the '80s. It seems to be showing signs of deterioration now since it has been such a used tool.

The difference in the same brand American made vs the Chinese made tool can quite likely lie in the pot where the metal is smelted down.
I’m of the opinion the Chinese are tossing everything into that pot be it animal, mineral, or vegetable.

About 6 months ago I was going to tap a series of metric thread holes in some aluminum (6 MM X 1.00 thread) and could not find my tap. So 25 miles to the mom and pop hardware store i frequent a lot for all of that hard to find stuff and which is open on Sundays.

They had no individual tap but did have a cheap 6 piece tap set with the tap handle; Hecho en China.
Back home I made half of a gentle turn with the tap on the first hole and both tap and handle broke in half simultaneously.
Both were made of solid pot metal.
They looked good in the package though…