Demise of U.S. Clamp Makers & A Defense of Hardware Hoarding



hardware hoarding

Our new Harbor Freight clamps.

The matters of United States clamp
manufacturing and hoarding might sound unrelated, and
a lot of you’ll definitely assume that they deserve two separate
entries. On this story, nonetheless, I’ll attempt to present you the way
they are often “clamped” collectively fairly efficiently.

Just lately I made a decision we wanted so as to add a couple of extra
clamps to the woodworking program in school. I want we may
have purchased some domestically made clamps, however due to
causes I’ll lay out beneath I needed to think about
options.

After I moved to the USA nearly 17
years in the past, one may have bought U.S.-made clamps from three
surviving producers: Pony, Wetzler and Hartford. Within the
previous couple of years, each Wetzler and The Hartford Clamp Co. went
out of enterprise. As for Pony (who additionally made Jorgensen clamps),
I can’t offer you a definitive reply. However after
recently reading
that the mum or dad firm – Adjustable Clamp
Co – acquired consolidated or modified possession or one thing of the
type, I attempted calling them to seek out out if my college may nonetheless
place an order for alternative components for our clamps and vises.
Sadly, I couldn’t get a solution – so maybe our final
home clamp producer has closed its doorways.

pony clamp hardware hoarding

Previous inventory of three/four” Pony pipe clamp fixture Made in USA

wetzler clamp hardware hoarding

Restored Wetzler clamp with a brand new oak deal with that I turned

hatford clamp hardware hoarding

The Hartford Clamp Co. used to make nice high quality clamps in
Connecticut. This was their half” pipe clamp meeting.

A Hartford’s “F” bar clamp that I purchased straight from the
firm within the early 2000s.

Final month I wanted to resolve what clamps to
purchase. And with no U.S. producers to contemplate, I used to be left
with solely these consideration: value, high quality, meant use and,
after all, survival score after doable abuse by 
college students. After studying and watching some evaluations on YouTube, I
determined to go along with Harbor
Freight
. The 2 decisive components had been value and really
constructive on-line feedbacks.

We ordered some “C” clamps, quick-action bar
clamps and some F-style clamps. Final week we acquired them in a single
large field that evidently had gone by way of a tough trip earlier than
touchdown on our doorstep. All of the clamps acquired to us protected and
sound however one, a 12” quick-action bar clamp had misplaced a thumb
screw nut on the highest jaw through the journey. Contacting Harbor
Freight was an possibility however it might have taken time and presumably
meant packing and mailing the software again. All that fuss for
only a small nut? I made a decision to attempt to repair the issue
myself. 

And now we arrive to the second a part of my
story: my declare that hoarding – particularly fasteners –
nearly all the time pays off.

The historical past of our woodshop goes again to the
starting of our faculty, nearly 90 years in the past. Not surprisingly,
I typically discover instruments, software components, fasteners and forgotten
in containers, behind cupboards and inside drawers. I attempt to
type and arrange them becuase I do know from expertise that
karma, destiny and probability might very doubtless imply I’ll discover a use for
them down the street. And that was precisely the case with the
lacking Harbor Freight nut.

At first I believed  discovering a surrogate
nut can be straightforward; I might solely must type by way of my nut
jar. However sadly the Chinese language producer used a nut with
metric thread, and most of our nuts are Imperial. But as I used to be
simply keen to surrender, I discovered our savior. Of all of the nuts I
picked up and rescued, just one matched the thumbscrew
completely. I felt triumphant – and vindicated.
hoarding is certainly indispensable!

hardware hoarding

The jaw of one of these quick-action bar clamps is held by a
grey thumb screw and an identical nut. This nut acquired misplaced throughout
transport. I discovered a alternative nut (black colour) amongst our
pile of miscellaneous nuts that I’ve been maintaining over the
years.

A phrase of recommendation: Contemplate making use of this
story to persuade your co-worker, partner or associate that your
stock of “unused” stuff (maybe they foolishly name it
“junk”) is definitely a treasure. We simply want to attend patiently
and – behold!

— Yoav
Liberman

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