Has QUALITY become extinct?

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Blog entry by Cozmo35 posted 12-07-2010 03:58 AM 10756 reads 0 times favorited 30 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Please forgive me while I jump up on my soap box and rant for a bit!

As many of you know, I am a scroller. Some have said I live at my scroll saw. So you can imagine when my saw broke, I was really bummed. The blade clamp has a spring and the part of the blade clamp that holds it broke. I had a problem with the thumb screw on it a few month back and ordered a new one. I couldn’t buy just the thumb screw, I had to buy the whole band clamp. So,...when the spring popped out I thought “how hard could it be to change it out?” After looking at it closer, I saw that the clamp was mounted with a pin that was pressed in. Not wanting to mess it up, I took it to the local Sears service center (it is a craftsman). After what seem to me to be FOREVER, they called this weekend (while I was out of town) and left a message that it was ready. Right after work, I went and picked it up. They charged me more than $60.00 just to press out the pin and replace the ban clamp THAT I PROVIDED! I paid the money and took my saw home. And yes, I was smiling all they way. I had just received an order for a PAYING job and was anxious to get started on it. I took it home and plugged it in. I sat down in front of it and turned it on. IT SOUNDED LIKE A FREIGHT TRAIN RUNNING THROUGH MY SHOP! You’d think that Sears of all people would service THEIR tools correctly! I was PISSED! (sorry) I am still mad about the situation! Thanks for bearing with me! I fell better now.

-- If you don't work, you don't eat!.....Garland, TX

30 comments so far

View EEngineer's profile


1139 posts in 4774 days

#1 posted 12-07-2010 04:07 AM

Yes! Quality is extinct.

All US companies, in pursuit of ever-increasing quarterly profits, have decided it is better to sell one of something to everyone than to sell two of anything to anyone.

By the time it all catches up, the CEO in charge of decreasing quality will have moved on to do the same thing to another company.

-- "Find out what you cannot do and then go do it!"

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4502 days

#2 posted 12-07-2010 04:39 AM

they have it all down to when it breaks
the model is not made anymore

but we do have this newer one
for more money

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Maveric777's profile


2694 posts in 4237 days

#3 posted 12-07-2010 04:41 AM

I am not going to go out there and say all quality is dead. I will say some names that at one time did represent quality can’t go tooting their horns nearly as loud these days. Me personally…. I refuse to buy anything that says Craftsman on the side of it besides wrenches, pliers, and screw drivers. No power and/or pneumatic tools (especially pneumatic tools) ever, ever, ever, ever again.

I am a mechanic by trade. Let me go ahead and add that I am a lazy mechanic at that. So long and short I will use an air tool any opportunity I can. After 16 years my “Craftsman” impact crapped out on me. I figured 16 years was a decent life span for a road hard put up wet work horse of an impact. So I went down and bought me the most bad to the bone impact they had at the local Sears. This bad boy even had “Professional” written across the side. I’m thinking I am doing good and just snicker at the 2 year warranty written across the box.

So in the two years following that fateful purchase I dropped that sick pathetic excuse of an impact off to be repaired “9” (yup I said nine) times. It made it a whole month after the warranty ran out (which lasted longer than all the running bets in the shop…lol). lets just say I learned my lesson there.

Sorry for getting long winded, but I’m with you Mike about that kind of crap burning my Ars. Sorry to hear about your bad luck bud. I think you should send Craftsman a shrink bill from trying to cope with the withdraws of not having your scroll saw around. And while you are at it get them for the mental anguish (which would help cover the beer money spent….lol)

-- Dan ~ Texarkana, Tx.

View ClayandNancy's profile


532 posts in 4176 days

#4 posted 12-07-2010 04:53 AM

Maveric I know where your coming from. I was a Chrysler tech for 36 years and had my fare share of broken tools. Although Craftsman do have “some” quality tools you need to be cautious when buying tools for the professional. I strictly bought Snap-On and Mac after bad experiences with others. Expensive, yes but I didn’t spend all my time returning tools for replacements or repairs.

Now that I spend my time woodworking I have found similar problems, even though I’m not doing it professionally still want quality, dependability, and good service.

Good service makes you a return customer for future purchases, unfortunately many companies have let that part of their business. slide.

View Cozmo35's profile


2200 posts in 4197 days

#5 posted 12-07-2010 05:04 AM

Dan, That is a good idea! They are cutting in to my beer stock!

Charlie, it is a Craftsman Scroll Saw Model: 315.216090

-- If you don't work, you don't eat!.....Garland, TX

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 4889 days

#6 posted 12-07-2010 05:12 AM

I’ve heard the only 4 scroll saws worth buying are the RBI, the Hegner, the Excalibur, and the Dewalt. I think all of those cost more than any other tool in my shop.

View Dark_Lightning's profile


4723 posts in 4270 days

#7 posted 12-07-2010 05:36 AM

I sympathize with your plight. Quality ain’t dead, yet, but it’s near terminal and needs some TLC. The truth is, most companies are trying to cater to the lowest common denominator. They’ll sell a lot of cheap stuff to the newbies.

-- Steven.......Random Orbital Nailer

View Pawky's profile


278 posts in 3965 days

#8 posted 12-07-2010 05:38 AM

I’ve heard way too many people say what you said Dan, only get the wrenches, screw drivers, but not much else from Craftsman. It’s sad that a company that used to stand for quality has turned to that. Sadly I’m too young to have have been around when our country was actually built on quality and pride. Things that were built for the future are now built for the present. I also understand there is a lot today that is better then in the past, but it’s unfortunate so much has been given up in the process.

View TJ65's profile


1421 posts in 4210 days

#9 posted 12-07-2010 05:45 AM

I have no idea what a craftsman is like on the quality side of things but I just love my 12 month old scroll saw after owning 2 relatively cheap saws I was sick of them just packing it in and I know I haven’t had my new saw as long as I had my other saws but I really love it. Yes I paid top $$$ for an Excaliber. The only hassle with it is sometimes it doesn’t cut straight – oh yea that could be the nut holding the piece of wood!!!! :-)

Sometimes you do get what you pay for!

-- Theresa,

View dbhost's profile


5777 posts in 4393 days

#10 posted 12-07-2010 05:48 AM

Now having said what I have in other threads about Harbor Freight. I have nothing good to say about most anything with the Craftsman name and a power cord. Sure they still sell some good stuff, but their service has gone to, well south of Houston for sure!

For what it’s worth, on the subject of pneumatic tools, I have owned pneumatics of all shapes and sizes, including Craftsman, Ingersoll Rand, and Blue Point (Snap On) impact wrenches. I could never keep a Craftsman impact working more than a couple of months when I worked as a mechanic… The Blue Point however just keeps chugging along, and to this day is a reliable tool a decade plus after I switched professions permanently… (Although I still do most of my own auto repair work)...

-- Please like and subscribe to my YouTube Channel

View MedicKen's profile


1615 posts in 4623 days

#11 posted 12-07-2010 06:10 AM

Find ya old Delta 40-440 or Powermatic 95, restore it and laugh all the way to the bank

Something like this

-- My job is to give my kids things to discuss with their [email protected]

View Lochlainn1066's profile


138 posts in 3938 days

#12 posted 12-07-2010 06:13 AM

I won’t buy Sears or Craftsman ever again. They farmed out their manufacturing to the lowest bidder and their Service, once the best in the world, is now somewhere south of Just Plain Bad.

-- Nate,

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4873 days

#13 posted 12-07-2010 06:18 AM

I don’t think quality is extinct. I have to disagree with EE in blaming some faceless CEO, we continually insist on lower prices from everyone else (yet we want top dollar for what we make). The consumer has enormous power (and the corresponding responsibility) we just choose not to exercise it. Why did you buy Craftsman…(not picking on you personally Cosmo I have Craftsman tools as well), probably because they are convenient and inexpensive. We know they are not the best quality but they fit our budget. I bought my tablesaw from Sears because it fit my budget (I also didn’t know what a proper saw looked like before I gained the experience I have now), I don’t blame Sears for the low quality of the machine, I got what I paid for. If I want quality I have to do some research, talk with folks who own different saws and probably pay more than my $300 Craftsman. Grizzly, Rikon, Triton, Citizen all make great tools of high quality, but they are not inexpensive. Ooops looks like I got on a soapbox also, I’ll step down now :-)

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View Pawky's profile


278 posts in 3965 days

#14 posted 12-07-2010 06:26 AM

Mark brings up a good point. There are a lot of companies (in all areas of hobbies) who’s products are marketed more for the inexperienced. That’s not to say they are really ripping them off or cheating them, but why should someone new to an art spend $1000 on something instead of $300 if they aren’t even sure they are going to stay with it.

In the past, I think fewer people branched into as many hobbies as we are blessed to be able to do. That being said, few outside of the trades would be buying the table saws, planers, jointers, etc. Since their wasn’t a lower end demographic to market to, it was mostly marketed towards the professional, that needed something that would last even if it cost a little more.

View Brit's profile


8334 posts in 4003 days

#15 posted 12-07-2010 07:33 AM

Too true.

Although I don’t work as an engineer anymore, I did a 4 year mechanical and production apprenticeship and studied mechanical engineering at college. I also worked as a mechanical design draughtsman for a while. I’m grateful for the time I spent doing my apprenticeship and the knowledge it gave me. I can pick up a tool, look at the materials it is made from and the mechanism and make a good judgement as to whether it is going to last. Needless to say, I don’t buy many tools anymore!

It’s one thing when you buy a tool and it breaks down after a few month or years and you have to get it repaired, but what really gets my goat is when you see brand new tools offered for sale, that are obviously not fit for purpose and don’t work properly the FIRST time you use them.

Here is an example of what I mean. They describe it as “ideal for cutting wood”. I don’t think so – not with a mouth the size of the channel tunnel! These are the kind of tools that really piss me off.

I don’t have much excess cash to spend on tools, but the little I do have gets saved up until I can buy something of quality that will not only last, but do the job it was designed to do and do it well. These are the tools that are a pleasure to use.

Thank God for companies like Lie Nielsen, Veritas, Starrett.

-- Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

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