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Mac or Snap on

 
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Old 01-06-2015, 02:31 PM
Keep_it_stock
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Mac or Snap on

I know that this kind of thread has appeared quite a bit already but I felt like I offer a new enough twist that it makes sense for me to post this. I am going to a tech school for diesel mechanics and of course I am going to need tools for my career. I've done a ton of research and have worked with tools my whole life (my dad farms and we try to fix all of our own stuff). It seems clear that Snap on and Mac are the best so wherever possible I will go with them but which one is better and by how much. I don't want to hear about cost since as long as I am in school I get 50% off both Mac and Snap on (Craftsman too for that matter). My dad and me will work something out money-wise so let's not consider money for this thread. I really want to cover all my bases before I spend around ten grand though and don't want to regret anything. I also should mention that I am not talking about workstations (tool boxes) because they are unjustifiably expensive even half-off. I'll try to go used for that type of stuff. Thanks in advance and if there is anything wrong with this post don't forget it is my first one.
 
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Old 01-06-2015, 04:17 PM
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I started off as an ASE certified master tech so I do have a lot of experience with tools. I prefer Mac wrenches, they are stiffer and stronger than Snap-on wrenches. I prefer Facom ratchets over both Mac and Snap-on, but if you can buy those at 1/2 off I would go with Snap-on. I never found any difference in the sockets, Mac invented the flank drive but gave up the patent years ago because it didn't have any advantage, Snap-on just uses it as a marketing tool.


Don't worry about having all the tool name brands match.


As for tool boxes I like the Snap-on ones because the drawers are usually a little deeper. Always buy a bigger box than you think you'll need...it will still get full.
 
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Old 01-06-2015, 06:27 PM
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A fatter wrench will be more comfortable to use, but make sure they have a minimal amount of material around the box end. Cheap wrenches have really chunky box ends that are hard to fit in tight spaces, while the better ones have less material that's a higher quality.
If you're able to get half off Craftsman I'd start there, and a couple sets of Husky and Kobalt as well. All have lifetime warranty, and a lot of cheap tools is better than few expensive ones. You'll have the opportunity to upgrade as time goes on and you have an income, don't overload on the debt out the door.
 
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Old 01-06-2015, 06:33 PM
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welcome to FTE.
while you get 50% tools while you are in school, don't forget you can usually get snap on and mac tools on craigs list for more than 50% off the truck price.
i have had fully stocked boxes for close to 40 years now, but still find tools i need every now and then.
i buy just about everything i need off craigs list these days.
last year i picked up 2 4 year old snap on battery impact guns for $150.
and last month i picked up a 1 year old Lincoln battery grease gun for $75, with 3 batteries and a case of caterpillar grease from a retired operator. .
 
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Old 01-08-2015, 07:20 AM
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I agree eBay or "fleabay" as its aka is a great source for nearly new brand name tools. Being a bit of a tool snob and buying only USA-made regardless cost I've found a ton of bargains too good to pass---and I didn't.

I avoid Mac Tools because they're using more and more Chinese as a source----sad because there was time they were neck-and-neck with Snap On. (I know, I know--Snap On has Chinese stuff too---just not more than their USA tools.)

The USA-Made Craftsman box and open end wrenches are very comfortable to the hand, often times more so than Snap On, the fatter hand grip area being the biggest reason.

Another brand I'd put right up there is Wright Tools, Barberton, Ohio. I have a lot of their impact sockets so know first hand they're equal to the Snap On quality and far superior to any imported stuff. Prices---when you shop wisely---are shockingly affordable for such great tools.

Tool collections tend to build as we learn our trade and for the most part any tool purchase isn't a bad idea. Because they don't wear out when not used leaving them in the box for years and years might not seem wise until that time arises you need it and its not there---that's regret!

Buy smart, spend for the best and you'll never second-guess yourself there.
 
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Old 01-27-2015, 12:24 AM
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Get to know your local tool truck owners as they sometimes repo loaded tool boxes from deadbeats and may sell them cheap since they take up space and don't make any money sitting around.

Craigslist, trade papers, Facebook groups and estate or liquidation sales have been very good to me. I've gotten many welding gas cylinders dirt cheap (they don't depreciate so I exchange for a full one immediately after purchase-beats paying expensive lease fees), welders, air compressors, job boxes, torches, and much more.
 
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Old 04-11-2015, 06:49 PM
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My shop went from 4 tool trucks a week to 1 every week. So when I was able to step up to the Big Boy tool box Club I went with the guy who shows up regularly. Bought my box used with 3 boxes toward a trade. He also threw in a cover, and 1/2 price on drawer liners, a matching lock (so I only need 1 key) and some other small stuff. As for hand tools and air tools I own a plethora of different brands but I just recently made the decision to never buy another craftsman tool. If I'm going to get Chinese made tools then I'm going to pay chinese tool prices not Craftsman prices, Sears just needs to go the way of Montgomery WARDS and close up and go back to just a catalog and mail order.
 
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Old 04-12-2015, 12:13 AM
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They aren't far from that, pretty soon Craftsman will only be at Ace.
 
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Old 04-12-2015, 02:56 PM
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Good riddance to "Kmartsman", though I do scoop them up cheap at yard sales and flea markets. Lots of deals to be had there for less than Horror Fright prices.
 
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Old 09-05-2015, 01:13 AM
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whatever tool brand you go with make sure the truck comes by your place of business or employer. i started out using crapsman and when i broke a ratchet it had to be sent out for repair as all we had was a catalog store. snap on came by the shop made sense to use them. make sure you handle a tool before you buy it. if it isnt comfy in the hand dont buy it.
 
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Old 09-19-2015, 06:08 PM
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The hell with mac and snap on......most tools come with lifetime warranties at a fraction of mac n snap......I abuse my tools as much as the next guy, and they hold up well... all I avoid are the really cheap POS "most of the time"
 
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Old 09-19-2015, 09:19 PM
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One cheap item I have been surprised by is the bent handle flex head ratchet from O'Reillys. It is the same one formerly offered by Husky, and is extremely strong. I have put an 18" pipe on mine to break lug nuts loose with no ill effects, and the bent flex handle gives good clearance. As an added bonus you can flip it up and use it as a speed handle after breaking the bolt loose.
 
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Old 09-20-2015, 08:21 AM
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<p>i have been buying sets of impact sockets from harbor freight to put in the trucks with the battery impacts.</p><p>lifetime warranty, and to tell the truth, in the past 2 years i have been beating the crap out of them and not broke one yet. i cant say the same for the snap on sockets.i have had to fight with the local snapon guy 3 times over broken 19 and 21 mm impact sockets.</p><p>plus a set of HF impacts is $24 . about the same price as one snapon socket.</p>
 
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Old 09-21-2015, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by tjc transport View Post
plus a set of HF impacts is $24 . about the same price as one snapon socket.</p>
True, very true!

For my money and self-respect I'm using Wright Tools---a great compromise between HF and Snap-On. USA made, offers nearly everything everyone else does including the same lifetime warranty. Well worth looking into, IMHO anyway.

Also keep in mind impact sockets won't break but chrome plated will----two very different types and uses intended. Impact sockets wear out because they're "softer".
 
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Old 09-21-2015, 05:39 PM
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<p>correct, impact sockets do not break. they shatter. and it is very scary when the do, because it is almost like a little explosion with pieces going every which way at terminal velocity</p>
 

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