Coming across searches or questions asking where craftsman tool chests are made has become quite common. In fact, it has been a trending topic for the last couple of years. For many years, the Craftsman brand has been a preferred choice for many craftmen and handy individuals. It is loved because of its toughness, versatility, reliability, and quality engineering. This made work much easier, seamless, and less inconveniencing.
However, in the last couple of years, people have been questioning where the product is made. This is after some people complained of the quality of the tool chest having gone down, while others saw a sticker that bore a different manufacturing source. Also, the internet has been rife with discussions and controversies on the actual source of the tools.
Craftsman tool chest were known to originate from the United States and were made by Waterloo Industries. The company made high quality products that were efficient, sturdy, reliable and suited varied applications. However, many people are starting to doubt whether today’s tools are still made by this company.
So, where are craftsman tool chests made?
Original tools came stamped with “Made in the USA or Forged in The USA” sign. This assured them of quality, longevity, and durability. However, this doesn’t seem to be the case anymore as some people have complained of poor quality or unreliable products. Some people believe the manufacturing takes place in Mexico while others say the tools are made in China, a region famed for producing below average quality.
A deeper investigation reveals that the Waterloo Industries, a firm based in the US was the original manufacturer of these tool chests. It sourced all the materials in the region and followed the industry standards to the letter. Following the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the company shifted its chest line to Mexico due to cheaper cost of manufacturing. Unfortunately, the quality dipped due to several issues such as technical knowhow or less restrictive controls.
In addition to the tool chest, the company also moved the production of other products to Mexico. However, to save on high production cost and take advantage of low cost of labor and energy, the company has some of its products made in China. Many people have complained of products made from retail outlets such as Sears bearing the “Made in China” mark, while some say the tool bore no mark of quality yet the packing came from china.
Craftsman tools are also manufactured by APEX tool group, US. The Company was recently acquired by Bain Capital and like many other industries in the region, it also focuses on outsourcing. And China being the main source, it is most likely that the tool chest made by the firm originates from China.
What’s The Major Concern?
As any crafts or handyman will tell you, quality is the big deal when it comes to tool chests. You are are assured of reliability, durability, safety, and user-friendliness when using the best product. The US has good reputation when it comes to quality and authentic products unlike its trading rival, China. This is why many people are wary of purchasing products from the country.
Another concern is that large retailers and outlets such as SEARS and Kmart have traditionally been linked with US made products. Of late however, they are stocking items sourced from countries outside the region. What’s more worrying is they never mention this and a customer only discovers this later.
How to Get Genuine Craftsman Tool Chests
Truth is there are still some genuine Craftsman tool chests out there. But you will need to be more cautious so as to get the right type. This entails understanding the features and specs of an authentic tool, dealing with reputable sources, and reading product reviews and customer testimonials.
Taking time to scrutinize the packaging and tool also helps in making the right choice. A genuine tool will bear a permanent “Made in The USA, or Forged in the USA” mark. Products sourced from china will usually feature “Made or Assembled in China”, or the tool will be unmarked/bare, but the packaging has the inscription.
Craftsman tool chests have for many years been revered for their quality, usability, and durability. In addition to good service and maximum satisfaction, you will also have peace-of-mind knowing you have an authentic product. The only way to enjoy this is by taking time and searching for craftsman tool chests that are made in USA.