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Posted: 7/21/2008 3:06:13 PM EST
I really hate buying Chinese made stuff, but I realize there are low end products that it's just not worth producing in the US. What really gets my goat are products that should be made from either USA made materials and/or made in the USA.

I work at the best SBQ (Special Bar Quality) steel maker in North America and arguably the world. I really get ticked when a product that should be made from our steel is made in China or Taiwan or any other 3rd world country.

Case in point. I needed a 1/16" punch to knock the front sight pin out of an old (as opposed to new) 30/40 Krag. I went to Sears Hardware and they had them for $1. I bought it and on the way home I took off the sticky tag and sure enough "China".

The 1/16" part of the punch was about 1" long to start. Well, I started to work on getting the pin out and on about the 3rd or 4th good strike, the 1/16" part broke in half. That still left me enough to try and get the pin out. I took a couple more good wacks and the pin started to move. I got it about halfway out and the punch broke again in the sight. AAAAAAAAAAGH!!

So, I literally got one pin removed and installed another right behind it.

I am taking my $1 piece of crap back to Sears tomorrow. We'll see what they say.

I would gladly pay 2 to 5 times as much for something that was made with US melted steel, but I guess I'm too small of a market share for retail companies to insist on "Made in the USA" steel products.

I'll stop by a specialty tool store tomorrow and see what kind of punches they have.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:08:44 PM EST
You should have gone to Harbor Freight. I hear they sell good stuff there.

Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:09:20 PM EST
Two words: "Snap On".

You can still buy quality tools, it will just cost you. The american consumer wants CHEAP and companies will provide the hell out of that.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:11:01 PM EST
Next time try Vermont American....gives you that warm fuzzy feeling to see a "Made in USA" label on a package.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:11:34 PM EST
Good luck on having Sears take it back, they have either refused to take back items, or wanted to change a restock fee for items in unopened packages. Around there thier return people adjust the policy when they see fit.

Also if its on Clearence then and it doesnt scan they told me "well we cant sell it"
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:14:48 PM EST
Starrett is the only word you need to know.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:15:55 PM EST
Who would buy a punch for a $1 and expect a quality tool
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:17:38 PM EST
The professor that taught a Strength of Materials class I took had a great story.

He was the expert witness at a trial where some guy was suing Sears for a POS splitting maul.

It seems the guy was using the back side of the maul (which certainly appears to be a sledge hammer head) to drive a steel splitting wedge into a piece of firewood.

It was a winter day and quite cold and the crap steel the maul was made with shattered, sending a chunk though his rather thick belly and into his liver.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:19:21 PM EST
[Last Edit: 7/21/2008 3:20:01 PM EST by Ahiodsohi]
I broke my 1/16" punch on an AR just the other day. I hadn't even used it much at that point. Mine says "Made in U.S.A." on it, though.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:19:52 PM EST
Even many of the tool trucks are selling foriegn made stuff now. Even though its priced just as high as American made stuff.

Snap-On generally makes very high quality tools though. I would not hesitate to purchase them provided money was not an issue.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:21:12 PM EST

Originally Posted By angus6:
Who would buy a punch for a $1 and expect a quality tool

Makes me wonder about the techs who shop at Harbor Freight when they make their living with those tools.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:22:35 PM EST

Originally Posted By angus6:
Who would buy a punch for a $1 and expect a quality tool

Yeah I guess I don't understand why you bought that one for 1 buck instead of going somewhere else and paying more for better. Surely somewhere in your town there is a better place for tools than SEARS.

Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:22:41 PM EST

Originally Posted By angus6:
Who would buy a punch for a $1 and expect a quality tool

You're right, I should have known better.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:22:48 PM EST

Originally Posted By DonKey153:
Starrett is the only word you need to know.

Oh heck yeah.

The Crapsman Punches used to be made here in Colo Spgs at Western Forge, WF marked. Now they are outsourced to China. Junk, 100%.
Link Posted: 7/21/2008 3:34:23 PM EST
Ahh for the days of the great helmsman (butcher), Chairman Mao. Back when Chinese products were first imported in the early '70s, they were very good and made with 1950s technology. Drop forged and sound metallurgy. Today, Chinese junk is like the Japanese imported products of the '50-'60s. Junk. I stay away from Chinese and spend extra for American made products that will last.

BTW, I bought a headlamp and tail lamp for my bicycle. It lasted six months before it went bad. Poor quality switch. That cost me $20 for six months. So, I spent $120 for an American lamp and that sucker is over five years old. I've only replaced the bulb once. I'm glad I bought American this time.
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