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Why does everyone seem to hate on Craftsman?

Old 12-19-2017, 09:33 PM
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Default Why does everyone seem to hate on Craftsman?

I get it, youíre a professional mechanic and the tool trucks come around and thatís what nearly everyone in the game has. It would be like having all Harbor Freight tools in my job. But it seems like everyone on the internet hates craftsman out of Husky, Kobalt and whatever middle line tools are out there. The only thing I didnít like about my 1/2Ē teardrop black ratchet is that it s a little loose after three years of using it. It came in a 1/2Ē set. It was my first set of real tools when I first started working on my blazer and I BEAT on it. I didnít have a breaker bar and sometimes I didnít have it with me at the junkyard. It never broke on me after putting a cheater bar on it and ghetto stomping it. Just a little wear from abuse. Now it doesnít matter since I called in the warranty.
Iíve got essentially all craftsman, tons of ratchets sockets and wrenches. Never slipped because of it camming out or rounding a bolt (Iíve slipped because of my own doing, Iím not very coordinated). I like that they have a thick handle and the sides are virtually indestructible, never had a problem with the universal sockets and wrenches (not the one size fits all type). The only complaint is that the 3/8Ē and 1/4Ē need 72 teeth, not 40. What are your guysí thoughts? Is it because of there crappy history since moving to China? It seems like theyíre doing quite well now, I just donít like their polished chrome tools. Never liked chrome.
Old 12-19-2017, 09:56 PM
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I'll start by saying craftsman is a good brand for a DIYer or a second set of tools for home.

But there is definitely a large quality gap when stepping up to snap on, Mac, or matco

I've snapped craftsman wrenches...but never a snap on. I've had tips of Philips screwdrivers wear out on craftsman, but never had a snap on dull and wear out.(I've snapped flathead snap on though-but not wear out)
Craftsman ratchets- had a bunch of them with stripped teeth, as opposed to one snapon rebuild- that accidentally sat in water for a week, and still technically functioned.

Now I'm not saying I haven't broken my fair share of snappy/mac/Matco tools...but I use them pretty much all day everyday for the last 10 opposed to using craftsman or other brands once in a long while at home, or at a buddys.

With that being said, snapons quality definitely isn't what it used to be either. But it seems like all the companies across the board are in that same boat.
Old 12-20-2017, 01:07 AM
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I like my craftsman tools. They break, i go to sears for a new one
Old 12-20-2017, 01:56 AM
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Many people view snapon as the best and use it almost as a status symbol. They are definitely better quality tools compared to other brands but they carry a much higher price tag vs the competition. So the question becomes does the quality justify the cost when craftsman, matco, mac and snapon all offer a lifetime warranty?

My suggestion would be to just pick one with a lifetime warranty and dont worry about the name on the side.

I have broken tools from every brand i have owned and i own everything from Snapon and Matco to Harbor freight and this weird brand called "China". My snapon guy years ago gave me a fine tooth 3/8 drive ratchet for free because he was tired of replacing gear kits on a weekly basis in my current ratchets. I also gave away my snapon impact universals because i kept bending the pins in them and they would bind. Matco has the best impact universals in my opinion due to their ball and socket design. I will never buy another snapon air tool because i had 3 1/2in impacts fail in a 6 month period while my Ingersol Rand impact has been working great for about 15 years now.

I love craftsman tools because they seem to be the happy medium between cost and quality.

Last edited by ChuckNTruck; 12-20-2017 at 01:59 AM.
Old 12-20-2017, 07:08 AM
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In 1969 I started my first job as a mechanic (that's what we were called in the day) at a Pontiac dealership and was quickly introduced to the Snap On man and his truck. I also drove by the Sears store 2 blocks away on test drives. So I'd occasionally stop and compare prices. I bought a lot of tools that year and most are Craftsman. Simple decision. Sears was always there, not one day a week and they were cheaper. Both were guaranteed forever.
I still have 90% of the originals and just last year replaced the 3/8 long handled flex ratchet. 47 years. The few other replacements were cracked sockets or broken screwdrivers.
Don't regret my decision to go Craftsman. Never was one who thought much of the status associated with certain brands. I bought my Carhartt coat because of the fit and quality, not the name.

Do have a set of J H Williams combination wrenches that I inherited from my Dad. From 1/4" to 1-3/4" and have never been able to hurt them in any way. Quality is remarkable. They are made by Snap On, but only sold to industry. They appear to be much higher quality than the Snap On stuff on the trucks. Can't imagine what they must have cost or how my Dad came by them.
Old 12-21-2017, 06:24 PM
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I've like my Craftsman tools. Of course I'm at most a shade-tree mechanic. If I do have a problem with one, I know I can get a replacement. I think I'm about to get my second 3/8" drive socket ratchet replacement in over 25 years.
Old 12-21-2017, 10:05 PM
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I will say though , I really donít like craftsmanís chrome stuff. Iíve used their tools from a decade or two ago and they feel absolutely awful. I donít know about their current line up except the black oxide. The thickness is something I like. They donít dig into my hand at all like some others. I can always tell too what tools are mine. No one else has them.
One complaint I have is that theyíre not thin enough to get into tight places when Iím working on the machines at work. Iíve actually been collecting ancient tools recently and it seems some seem to be much thinner than current tools. The playing is gone on them, but a little clean up and theyíre good to go.
Another thing, when Iím looking through the crap boxes at pawn shops, the craftsman are so numerous (think EE mfr) and plain that itís just really associated with common plain sockets. I guess thatís why the black craftsman caught my eye.
Old 12-26-2017, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by richphotos View Post
I like my craftsman tools. They break, i go to sears for a new one
i used to do the same thing as sears hardware was only like 5 blocks away.

craftsman tools just seemed to turn into crap lately. it got to the point where literally every time i used my ratchets they pretty much broke if i had to put any kinda pressure on them, always went to my back up harbor freight ones which always worked and held up so i just gave up on craftsman.
Old 12-26-2017, 04:04 PM
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I've got a mixed pile of tools ranging from Craftsman to Harbor Freight , Kobalt as well as Campbell Hausfeld among others. I am not really loyal to any one brand. But if one brand fails me, I will likely blacklist it for a quite while. No Black and Decker or Yellow Black and Decker(Dewalt) was allowed in or near my house for 10+ years because I had 3 of their tools break within 6 months on me (One being a router that actually caught on fire.. )
Old 12-28-2017, 12:04 PM
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I use both , but there is an advantage to using a tool like Snap-on. Ive been an Aircraft Structure Mechanic for almost 30 years and when I first started I used alot of Craftsman. We use alot of punches size 3/32 , 1/8, 5/32, 3/16 real common, craftsman make a decent punch but i would warranty them 3 to 1 over snap-on. On the structure side i use 1/4" drive ratchets and sockets the most and the new guys would always borrow my snap-on kit because it would fit in tighter places that the craftsman would not...snap-on can make a thinner walled socket because their metal is stronger.....I have a good mix for my garage and feel alot better if I have to grind a tool other than snap-on or now in Canada Sears are closing so warranty will become an issue.

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