I have to admit my snap-ons have done extremely well , i have craftsman also but they dont hold up as good, they are also about half the price though,
I bought my snap-ons back when i was 17 and im 46 now, for the most part made a living with them and had to replace a 17 mill deep well, a 14 mill deep, a 12 mill deep, a 14 shallow, a ratchet drive mechanizm three times (two different ratchets) a philips screwdriver, and maybe a few other little things, not bad since i beat the living crap out of my tools, and every one was replaced for free even though they are antiques now, snap-on is outrages in price but they do have some of the best materials and idea's, they boast one of the thinnest wall sockets but also the strongest, flank- drive is a radius inside the corners of the hex of all thier sockets, it puts less stress on the socket and the fastener...
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Your grandfather's screwdriver was almost certainly made by Bridgeport Hardware Manufacturing of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Crescent-Niagara (of Crescent wrench fame) bought Bridgeport Hardware Manufacturing in the mid 1960s -- I suspect mainly for Bridgeport Hardware's screwdriver expertise -- to broaden their line. After a couple of years, though, Crescent-Niagara shuttered the Bridgeport plant and moved at least some of Bridgeport's manufacturing machinery to C-N's Jamestown, New York plant, where they produced screwdrivers under the blended brandname Crescent-Bridgeport.
Only a couple of years later, the Jamestown plant was shuttered and all production moved to the greenfield plant Cooper Industries built in Apex, North Carolina that would eventually become the home of all of Cooper's hand tool lines.
Unfortunately, the Bridgeport know-how wasn't portable. The Crescent-made Bridgeport screwdrivers weren't nearly as durable as the genuine made-in-Bridgeport screwdrivers, and Crescent / Cooper dropped the Bridgeport name, buying another well-reputed screwdriver maker (Xcelite).
Eventually Cooper tried to re-introduce the Bridgeport name with a "new" Crescent-Bridgeport line of screwdrivers that were obviously of Xcelite heritage.
More recently, Cooper has slapped the Bridgeport brand and BHM's original typewriter-type-look logo for a far-east-import home-or-apartment tool set that Costco sells for about US$ 50.
For what it's worth, Bridgeport Hardware Manufacturing held Phillips license #7, and that license number is stamped on all of their Phillips blades even if the handle is stamped with some other name. My best #2 Phillips screwdriver was made by Bridgeport for Williams. That screwdriver is 40 years old but shows less wear-and-tear than most of today's US-made Phillips screwdrivers show after a day's use.
Bahco, Swedish, I've never had better screwdrivers, they are even better than my Snap-On drivers.
The little family owned tool shop where I bough stuff has closed as the people running it retired & I've not seen Bahco drivers on a shop shelf since :-(
I use Craftsman because the handles feel good in my hand. I try to use the right size and make sure it's forced down into the head for the first turns.
This might interest you gun nuts. When I was doing engraving and had to work on a gun with buggered up screw heads I would always fix them like so. Clamp the screw between two pieces of hardwood in the vise. Then lightly peen the head with a light hammer until the metal started to flow back into the slot. Then lightly file the head and sand and then a use a small slotting file to recut the slot. You can make a really ugly screw look pretty damn good this way.
For gunsmithing type stuff I use a old set of Chapmans with interchangeable tips I got from Brownells.
Last edited by Your Old Dog; 09-27-2006 at 04:26 AM.
Originally Posted by Nicolas
I would be interested in checking into the Bahco screwdrivers, I had no idea they made them, I redid my entire house and totally built a workshop and massive room in my basement with a bahco handsaw (a few of them because i hit a nail now and then), I dont own a skill saw because i like the zen of a handsaw, when a bahco handsaw is brand new it can go through a solid 2by4 in about three swipes, cut extremely straight and stay sharp a very long time as long as you stay away from nails, very good metal, by far the best handsaw iv ever had the pleasure of using.
I've found Robertson is the easiest to use and I always get them where possible. There's always the imported US stuff so I have to keep a set of drivers for it and replace them periodically but for original work I use Robertson as it is possible to stick the tip of the driver into the square socket on the screw then let go of it (usually) and manoever it into position using only the driver handle---much more convenient. Can't go too cheap on either the driver or the screw as the fit may not be dead on.
Unfotunately they are difficult to find in the States so I've often been called on by relatives to bring some in when visiting.
Yeah, it's too bad Robertson had a falling out with Henry Ford. Otherwise, I et we'd have square drive screws everwhere instead of Phillips. . .
I thought the phillips was specifically designed to cam out of the fastener to prevent overtightening of carriage body components. Where Robertson is a high torque capacity socket that should break before it cams out if the driver fits.
Correct me if I am wrong.
Has anyone used Klein screwdrivers? I just ordered 3. Used their electrical hand tools yrs. ago, but haven't bought any till now.
Not reading through 3 pages of posts, but in my experience, Whitte screwdrivers have NEVER let me down. I have used and abused them to no end, with yet a dull, worn, or chipped end. Even in daily use the blackening on the tip has yet to show appreciable wear.
They are sold under the manufactureres name (Whitte) by MSC and several others, or you can spend twice as much for the same items from a Matco dealer.