As promised in our previous post here’s a run down of our top 10 Christmas gifts for 2019 from Langs! They’re listed in no particular order, so here they are:
No.1.. the classic 3 piece Bahco’s spanner series 80 set @ £34.99 inc VAT. These 3 spanners, 6 inch, 8 inch and 10 inch are the professionally made and most popular range of Bahco spanners. With phosphate finish, 16 degree head angle and non slip handle and knurled sized adjusting nut.
Made to standard ISO 6787, DIN 3117, ASME B107.8-2003 and BS 6333
Item 2.. Another Bahco product, the S240. This is a comprehesive and useful selection of sockets and accessories, which any DIY or professional will find complements any set of tools. The set consists of the following;
- 18-Piece 1/2″ hex sockets 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 27, 30 and 32 mm
- One 1/2″ ratchet, quick release, 60 teeth/6° action angle
- Two 1/2″ extension bars, 5″ and 10″
- One 1/2″ universal joint
- One 1/2″ T-adaptor
- One 1/2″ breaker bar with two-components handle: 10″
- One removable three-section plastic box with lid
- Matte finish
- High-performance alloy steel
- Less wear and damage to fastener thanks to Dynamic-Drive™ profile sockets
- Quick socket release button on ratchet
- Case: High density polythene (HDPE)
- Standards: ISO 1174 and DIN 3120
Selling for £55 including VAT
Our 3rd Christmas product is the Irwin Marples M373 8pc chisel set. Incredible value for this splitproof bevel edge set are ideal for heavy-duty use and have splitproof handles. They are made from best in category steel for improved sharpness and edge retention. set consisting of 6mm (1/4in), 10mm (3/8in), 12mm (1/2in), 19mm (3/4in), 25mm (1in), 32mm (1.1/4in), 38mm (1.1/2in) & 50mm (2in)
Selling at £70 inc VAT
No 4 the Stanley antivibe hammer and wonder bar pry bar set.
More classic design, this time from Stanley with their one piece antivibe hammer and their wonderbar prybar made from highgrade carbon fibre with a powder coated finish, with bevelled nail slots and contoured grip. Both together are £29.99 inc VAT
No 5 Draper’s Redline 14pc spanner set; consisting of 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 17, 19, 22, 24, 27, 30 and 32mm made of Chrome vanadium steel, hardened and tempered with a chrome finish. All coming together in a roll-up teflon pouch making this Incredible value @ £49.20 in VAT
No 6 Draper tap and die set; Suitable for cleaning and rethreading mild steel or aluminium. Manufactured from high carbon steel, hardened and tempered. Supplied in plastic case. Contents: 8 metric dies size: 3 x 0.5, 4 x 0.7, 5 x 0.8, 6 x 1.0, 7 x 1.0, 8 x 1.25, 10 x 1.5 and 12 x 1.75mm die 1/8″ NPT 8 metric taper taps: sizes as metric dies tap 1/8″ NPT bar type tap wrench M3-12 (1/8-1/2″) die holder screwdrive. A great starter set or replacement to anyone’s precision equipment for £31.08 inc VAT
Our 7th item is another Draper item. 110volt, 30Watt, 360 degrees LED site lamp. 2800 lumens of 360 degree light coverage. Has a carry handle, hanging hook and tripod fixing holes. Our price £76.20 inc VAT
8th on the list is the DeWalt DWE315B corded oscillating tool with bag. For ease of use, it features quick accessory change and adjustment, no hex key required. The body features superior ergonomics, the soft comfort grip helps to reduce user fatigue whilst improving control. Supplied with a 37 piece accessory set that contains: 1 x Rigid Scraper 1 x Sanding Plate 25 x Sanding Sheets (Assorted Grades) 1 x Universal Adaptor 2 x Hex Keys: 3mm and 5mm 1 x Dust Extraction Adaptor 1 x Depth Stop/Straight Cut Guide 1 x Tool Bag Specification: Input Power: 300W No Load Speed: 0-22,000/min. Weight: 1.5kg
Langs Industrial price £119.99 inc VAT
No 9 is the Einhell TC-VC 18125 Wet and Dry vac 1250W 240v. This compact wet and dry vac is extremely flexible and versitile for both wet and dry cleaning. Supplied with: 1 x 3 Piece Plastic Suction Pipe, Ø36mm 1 x Suction Hose 1.5m x Ø36mm 1 x Big Comfort Nozzle with insert for carpets/smooth floors 1 x Crevice Nozzle 1 x Foam Filter for wet vacuuming 1 x Paper Bag for dry vacuuming Specification Incredible value at £40
Our last item no 10 is the 25 piece Wera Kraftform Kompakt W1 Maintenance Kit includes the following:
- 1 x 817 VDE Kraftform Blade Holding Handle
- 4 x 154mm VDE Slotted Blades: 0.4 x 2.5, 0.6 x 3.5, 0.8 x 4.0, 1.0 x 5.5mm 2 x 154mm VDE Phillips Blades: PH1, PH2 2 x 154mm VDE Pozidriv Blades: PZ1, PZ2 4 x 154mm
- VDE TORX Blades: TX10, TX15, TX20, TX25 1 x Screw Gripper Attachment 1 x Single Pole Voltage Tester 1 x Joker Double Open Ended Wrench 10 x 13mm
- 1 x Zyklop Speed Ratchet 1/4in Drive 1 x Zyklop Bit Adaptor 1/4in Drive 1 x 75mm Zyklop Extension 1/4in Drive
- 8 x Sockets: 5.5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13mm 1 x Universal Bit Holder 2 x 25mm Pozidriv Bits: PZ1, PZ2 1 x 25mm TORX Bit: TX25 4 x 25mm Hex Plus Bits: 3.0, 4.0, 5.0, 6.0mm
All in a robust textile box @ £100 inc VAT
That’s it for our top 10 Christmas products listed on our website! We’d like to take this opportunity to wish everyone reading a happy Christmas and a happy new year for 2020! See you in the next year!
Please leave your spam at the door!
Many of you may have noticed how there’s not been all that many posts recently on this toolblog. Well there’s many reasons for this. One reason is the amount of spam/adverts/fake posts that are automatically created and flood the blog on a regular basis. Yes, I had all the IP blockers and other “spammer” tools but they had no or little effect. I would come on line with every intention of writing an interesting, useful or funny post, but instead have spent all my time “weeding” the spam from my comments, sometimes 1,000 a day! As I say this was until recently, I’ve got the spam down to 10 a month, which is a lot more palatable and means I can actually get on with writing that epic blog post.
This blog uses wordpress, which in my experience has many problems when it comes to being spammed by bots, before you start! You can take all the precautions, install all the add-ons and come back to the blog the next week with 5,000 – 10,000 spam comments you need to review, and delete or approve; mostly viagra, porn, dating, Russian, Polish or just weird random medical sites! But yes, there are some real comments in there too! Real actual people reading the blog, not just spam bots!
The one thing I’ve done which helped me get the spam down was putting the Google Captcha add-on into the blog. This means that when someone writes a comment, they have to click a Captcha box next to the comment they’re posting. Humans can, but bots can’t, so this gets rid of most of the spammers immediately. So my advice would be to install Google captcha as soon as possible to make your life easier, and you will be able to write blog posts, instead of sitting for hours ploughing through spam comments and rubbish. It doesn’t get rid of everything but it will mean the difference between spending an hour and spending five minutes taking care of your spam issues.
This, in turn, means that there should be more blog posts coming more regularly in the future with hopefully some guest bloggers too. So stay tuned.
The state of tools and of Christmas..
As we move into December in a few day’s time. Our thoughts turn to Christmas and the commercialism of the high street; Who started their Christmas sales around August 31st, with all the quality street and heros they had left over from last year. Here at Langs, we try to leave it till late November before we even think about putting up trees and decorations, and even then sometimes we don’t bother with all the frills and glitz.
Obviously being a commercial enterprise, we have suppliers who offer many goods they think would make incredible Christmas gifts. Rather than just pushing all these goods, we pick the best of what’s on offer (usually 10 or 12) and then recommend these as the best available deals for Christmas. These will be put into a separate post at the beginning of December.
Christmas and looking forward to 2020 and onwards…
We have some interesting Christmas bargains this year as you will see if you look over at Langs Industrial From torches by LED Lenser to Dewalt power drills. There’s something for everyone, even as a stocking filler.
This is a good opportunity to tell you our Christmas closure times for this year. Over the Christmas period we will be closing from the 21st December 2019 and then will be back on 2nd January 2020 bright and early for the new year!
In 2020 Langs will be celebrating their 74th year of trading since Fred Lang opened his little engineer’s supply back in 1946 – Making 2021 the magical 75th anniversary year since opening.
So lots to look forward to in the next few weeks, months and even years…
I haven’t written to this blog in a while and thought I’d post something a little different.
During our time working in retail, hardware, engineering supplies and tool sales. We’ve met some interesting people. Many have been weird, wonderful and some have been just totally mad or strange. I think for the most part, mistakes, misinformation and misunderstandings are what this comes down to, for the most part…
Here’s a few comical examples of 30 plus years working with the public. I think the title and the original “two ronnies” sketch says it all “I’d like four candles!” And here it is if you’ve never seen it.
And there seems to be a trend; when you don’t know the name of what you want, make the name up! I can’t fault this for the most part, although sometimes it can be annoying when a customer insists on using a term which is wrong or you just don’t understand what they are saying. The amount of times I’ve been asked for a gromet, a thing-amy-jig, or even an bolt – all of which can be anything at all to anyone who’s asking.
The “wags” over at British Rail, Ford and Sterling (among others) would send their neophyte fresh-face workers into the shop on a wild goose chase. Having an official purchase order in hand or just verbally told “Get over to the supplier, we are in urgently need…..”.
A recipricating bore. Tartan paint (pictured below). A left or right handed coat hook. Glass hammers. (although apparently Yoko Ono actually created one in 1967!) A Teep-Opt with four digi-stiff display. Skirting board ladders. An “I-M-nu”. Or a “long wait”, and of course “four candles….” to name a few of the items asked for.
A good example of misunderstandings is when I was asked for an “Axsaw” To this I naturally said, “Do you mean a hacksaw sir?” The man looked angrily at me saying, “NO, an Axsaw! A. X. S. A. W!”…..This is when we get the tool catalogue out to show the customer, to discover what the customer means as communcation has failed. I always say that if we the assistants/counter staff/shop keeper/Sales team are doing our good job right, we are part detective and can usually get to the bottom of what it is they’re after.
On a side note – It turns out, there really is something called the “axe saw” (see picture below) however, this wasn’t really what he wanted and didn’t exist at the time – he wanted a Hacksaw, and confirmed this with the catalogue pictures.
This of course is the tip of the iceberg. The word “Gromet” seems to cover almost any small item that a customer is searching for from a small piece of rubber (yes, a real gromet) to a furniture cam or roll pin. “What’s one of those? ” I hear you say….
Give us a screw…
Screws are a huge source of humour, until you’ve heard that joke everyday for 10 years. “I’d like a screw please! No not that kind!” There was actually a well known brothel….er massage parlour very close to where our shop was, within crawling distance.
There’s many a time a customer has come into the shop for a “bolt” and it turns out they want a woodscrew or machine screw, a padbolt or a chutebolt. Yes these are all different as a customer can tell when they look at you like you’re insane when you bring the “bolt” back.
No good deed….
Then there’s the maxim “No good deed, goes unpunished!” which I have personally felt the sting from more than once. Sometimes we would get customers come into the shop who desperately need something “fixed”. I fell into this trap many times, notably with one lady with a leopard print shopping trolley (Yeah, snazzy). Unfortunately she was constantly overloading it and the metal reinforcements had broken, along with the wheels, and most of the rest of it. She kept coming in to fix it so I thought, I would do her a favour and fix the cart for her. I was at it for a hour, she wasn’t grateful in the least in fact she didn’t like the fix and complained. So I fixed it in a different way with some jubilee clips, which she was much happier with. By the time this was done I’d been with her for an hour and a half before she was satisfied, until I told her the price. £5…Yeah for an hour and a half’s work and the goods to fix her cart. She looked at me like I was cheating her!
Then we get the “regular customers” who treated the business like their very own hire purchase establishment. Having “a tab” (although this was stopped very quickly because of lack of funds the shop’s direction) that he would put goods on and then pay for later….Much much later. Sometimes bringing back goods that were purchased 6 months earlier and expecting us to take them back or swap them. Some of these items were hundreds of pounds.
Yes, you get thieves, con men/women and aggressive customers if you work with the public in any way.
Three are more noteworthy than most (that I can mention here); the first a woman who came into the shop with her two kids picked up a 5 liter tin of cleaning solution (I saw her) and proceeded to ask for a refund for it! Saying “Sorry, I don’t have the receipt for it…” To this was said “You can’t have a refund then! When did you buy it?”….She said “Ok, I’ll just take it away again and look for the receipt!”….How about we call the police and see what they say, we’ve got video evidence of you picking it up from the shelves!
The second was stranger. A customer came into the shop asking “Can you come and have a look at this miter saw I want to buy?” I said “Yes Sir I’ll just come over….” to this, the customer leads me down the aisle of the shop and out the front door. I said “where are we going? I thought you wanted me to look at a saw that you want to buy?” He said “I do, it’s out here!” He lead me to a transit van outside where an Irishman was standing in front of opened its open doors. I looked at the miter saw, then at the customer. “This is a fake…..Hold on a minute!” I went back into the shop and got my colleague who had worked there 25 years out to have a look. He couldn’t believe it, there was some guy selling counterfeit powertools out of the back of van in our car park! We told the Irishman to leave our car park and we were calling the police! To this the Irishman said ” Don’t be cheeky….”. The customer who called me out to look at the saw, looked at me bewildered saying “thought it was too good to be true” and left.
The third was just odd and very quick. A eastern European man came straight into the shop, and into our large showroom. Then immediately turned around and walked straight out again. However, while leaving he had a new DeWalt hat on his head which no-one missed and a chorus of 4 counter staff shouted “Oi! That’s not your hat!” To which the man turns and feigns ignorance….takes it off, throws it on the floor and runs.
The other side of the coin
Then there are the very strange people who work for the company. Yes, it takes all sorts to make a world….
One assistant, we will call “Rambo” the reason for which you will find out soon. Worked for the company for around a month, maybe a little less, but left a trail of angry customers and destruction in his wake and finally was “let go” because he came in late shirtless claiming he was “beaten up” at the nearby train station. He had only scratch marks over his chest and stomach. (self inflicted?)
Another assistant had literally breath-taking extreme halitosis! Having a conversation was difficult because you couldn’t breathe or you would choke and gag. His breathe could peel paint from a wall without any paint stripper or heat gun involved. I ended up offering him a mint every time I saw him.
So it can be fun, weird and interesting working for an Engineer’s suppliers as you can see.
From the discovery of fire to the illumination of the night…
It’s been a while since our last blog post, and so with the new year 2019, we hope to set it off to good start!
From the still red embers of fire discovered in the darkness of the past to the dazzling bright future of illumination from LED’s and beyond; fire, burning torch, oil lamp, candle, the innovation of batteries and utilisation in lights. It’s been an interesting journey to get to today’s point of progress.
And then there was fire.
It’s been a while, and no one really knows how fire was discovered, and I suppose it depends who you speak to. Whether Prometheus stole the fire from the Gods to give a flaming torch to man, or if there was a forest fire caused by lightning that some clever proto-human managed to salvage a flaming piece of wood from. It’s difficult to know how things went, but according to “English Heritage” around 120,000 years ago the secret of fire was discovered independantly around the world, however according to the History Channel and Science Daily caves have been found in South Africa that are 1 million years old with proof that fire was tamed and used by the hominin humans that were living there.
Fire was literally light, life and power! So to harness this was very important to humans becoming what they are today.
The next steps…
The natural progression of wanting to see in the dark, to keep warm and/or to keep predators away meant the transferring of fire from place to place was nessassary if not extremely important to remaining alive. Especially when humans discovered the joy of cooking their food.
So, humans had to initially learn how to transport their fire from one location to another and then the innovation of creating a fire itself. Which was probably found while using flint hammers against rocks (see the history of hammers on this blog); creating sparks and setting dry kindling on fire.
You may have seen old films where the hominin people just happened to live next to tar pits where fires rage, the hominin dips some fabric into the tar with a branch of wood so and it instantly ignites this new firey torch to illuminate the night. According to Wikipedia and other sources clothes were first worn around 170,000 years ago; although clothes, fabrics, hides and animals skins wouldn’t have survived through till now. So there’s no definitive evidence of when torches like this could have been created. So the earliest we can say that torches could have been made is 170,000 years ago.
Something more illuminating..
So man and fire where united and unleashed on the world.
Fire creating cooked food, heat, warmth and a safe environment for all the tribe. Over time these early people became more expert with fire, and how they used and controlled it. Cooking food had usable side products including fats, tallows waxes and oils when used with a wick would last much longer and be more controllable than the large firey torches. Which brings me to the oil lamp which was first seen 70,000 years ago according to the history of lamps website, probably first used with cut out wood, shells or stone. Then refined later on with the advent of pottery (4,000BC), bronze (1,500BC), Iron (800BC) and other containers became more widespread and better designed
These oil burners became widespread through-out the ancient world from Greece, Rome to Egypt. Along with the later oil burners the candle makes an appearance around for 1,000BC with wicked candles. Unfortunately because of the nature of candles there’s little evidence remaining of when exactly candles were first used and created, although there are bronze, iron and other candle holders through to the present day. Gradually become widespread throughout the world to be the main source of light until the early 1800’s.
The death of the candle and the oil lantern in the home was heralded with the widespread installation of gas heating and lighting. However this didn’t mean the end of the storm lamp/lantern when needing a torch to light your way in open country or anywhere without street lighting
A revolution of batteries…
With the revolution of the battery in 1887, quickly industry wanted to utilise this incredible new harnessed power! With many new innovations and designs, the now familiar handheld torch (flashlight) was created in 1899 and became a public success! This were called flashlights because they couldn’t keep the light on for too long or the torch would get hot, burn out the bulb or just stop working! This basic model used 3 battery cells to shed very little light in a wide scattered beam using a polished brass reflector, using a contact switch to active the torch.
After the first world war by the 1920’s the design of the torch developed with the arrival of better quality battery technology, better more economical bulbs, thinner glass lens and a better reflecting lens. Making a more popular, more user friendly, easier to use and a higher quality product. Notably the Rayovac flashlight which is significantly brighter and more ergonomic than the earlier torches.
Another war and the invention of the transistor changed the torch again; although it had the same old familiar design externally, it revolutionised the all the internal components. Gradually miniaturising, improving and re-designing the torch. Initially made of steel, brass or other metals, these newer torches were gradually made out of bakelite, rubber and finally plastics. All the way through to the late 1970’s where plastic was the most material a torch was made out of.
Progress came fast and furious with the end of the 80’s with improvements in battery cell technology; today using Nickel Metal Hydride and Lithium ion. With light bulbs; today using LED’s or HID’s shedding thousands of lumens of light without the heat created of the incandescent or halogen bulbs. Utilising electronics rather than wires making electrical contacts much more efficient.
Although aesthetically is essentially the same all put together makes a quantum leap from the 5 or so candle power (65 lumens) and only having 10 minutes of ‘on’ time of the first torch, to the modern torch supplying 3,200 lumens for 40minutes in only 110 years.
The future of the torch is definitely getting brighter!
Over time, there are more innovations, updates and tweaks in technology. With an eye on the future, another on the past, and yet another on their competition, Metabo have released (2017) a new battery range. It’s the new LiHD (lithium ion high demand) battery which is backwards compatible to be used with existing machines and chargers; a policy that Metabo has had since 2009. Metabo trying to deliver a cordless tool, with the performance of a corded power tool.
What’s the difference between the new and the old technology?
Compared to the old Lithium Ion batteries, the new Lithium HD batteries have 67% more power, and 100% more run-time! With an ultra low profile and a 100% compatibility with old chargers and machines. These look like the perfect upgrade for a already purchased machine. Here’s what Metabo say themselves.
Revolutinary LiHD high-performance cells: Completely new electromechanical design with significantly stronger conductors, which in combination with more active material, permit a
- significant increase in the accessible power output
- resulting in more usable energy for you
Massive power rails capable of handling high currents, enlarged contact and cell connectors made from a special CU alloy, conduct the current with reduced losses.
Increased run time thanks to:
- an increase in active cell material
- high-quality materials (silver and copper) in combination with stronger conductors – this permits a more efficient energy flow
These 18volt batteries come in three AH versions 7AH, 5,5AH and 4AH costing around £110, £85 and £69 respectively.
So what’s next? What’s next, is the innovation and redesign of Metabo’s power tool line-up to work more efficiently with their new battery. More efficient power governers, more effecient brushless motors, a change back to a metal or carbon fibre gearbox, even further and better ergonomic design. The list is endless, difficult to keep the tool under an affordable price, and this is a problem for a lot of power tool companies. So stayed tuned for more innovations!
As a follow-up to my recent post regarding all things hammer, I’m writing this article to complement the previous post. This time it’s a comparison of three claw hammers rather than more on the evolution of the hammer which I covered pretty comprehensively in my last post. We’ve chosen three in an attempt to be scientific with our testing.
So, what’s so special about these hammers? Isn’t a hammer, JUST a hammer? Well, yes, it’s a hammer and essentially they’re the same thing; it’s used to hit things with! However (according to experts, designers, trade professionals and the manufacturer) , there are some interesting nuances between the three hammers I’m looking at. The first is a very popular old classic from Estwing, who you will know if you read my other blog post about hammers has been making hammers since 1923, their E3 claw hammer being one of the most popular hammers for professionals all over the planet. The second hammer I’ll be looking at is a new innovative design by Vaughan, an American company that’s been making hammers since 1869; it’s their Dalluge style straight claw titanium hammer! And finally our control or baseline for a reasonable everyday hammer, so I chose the Stanley 51-621 hammer created with a fibreglass handle to reduce vibration.
So let’s look at the three and their attributes.
The Stanley hammer 51-621
The heat treated forged high carbon steel curved claw head is fully polished and rim tempered for durability and safety.
The fibreglass handle absorbs shock and vibration and the textured rubber ensures a comfortable, secure grip.
High visibility yellow makes the hammer safe and easy-to-locate in work areas.
So, basically an everyday and cheap hammer, for around £12 inc VAT at your local shop or online. Not pretty to look at with a rubber grip and fibreglass handle that in reality does little to cushion the blows you land. Yes, it’s better than cheaper hammers, a little. But it doesn’t really match up to the other two. So this is our baseline hammer, everyone at home has something of this quality or slightly better.
The Estwing hammer E3/16
The Estwing E3 series curved claw hammers have a vinyl grip made from liquid vinyl bonded on to the shaft during production, offers the utmost in both comfort and durability, while reducing vibrations caused by impact.
The conventional carpenters’ curved claw hammer offers unsurpassed balance and temper.
Made in the USA from high quality steel.
As I’ve already said earlier, the Estwing E3 claw hammer is the go to tool of the professional, the workhorse of the construction site for the carpentry teams. The steel shaft goes the length of the hammer with the vinyl handle molded around it to create the soft handle. This hammer would set you back around £50! I’ve known carpenters who have their Estwing hammer for 20 years.
The Vaughan “Dalluge” style straight claw hammer
Weight: (16 oz.).
Handle length: 430mm (17 inch)
The lightweight DDT 16, with its patented deep “V” head design, provides faster, greater power at point of impact with less stress and arm fatigue.
The DDT 16 hammer features a patented titanium head with overstrike guard. It’s exclusive Double “D”™ Magnetic Nail Holder has the ability to hold both standard and duplex nails and provides increased reach for one-handed nail starting, while the Sidewinder™ Nail Puller provides extra leverage for removing nails without ripping up forms. For fast and easy tear downs and rip outs the Short Stack™ Claws on the DDT 16 hammer are reinforced to provide increased strength for prying. Heads made in China. Handles made in USA. Assembled in USA. MADE IN CHINA
So Titanium hammers have been around for a while now. You will get this Vaughan hammer from the internet or if you’re very lucky from a shop but it will set you back £220!! So it makes sense that you’d want to check it out before you put that kind of money into buying this hammer. Why does it cost 4 times the price of a regular high quality claw hammer and, what would it take to convince anyone to pay this much money for it?
The good, the bad and the not so bad…
In a direct comparison between the three hammers.
The Stanley is cheap, it’s rubber grip isn’t great but is usable, the fibreglass, anti-vibe handle doesn’t stop the softer vibrations and I suppose would do if you had nothing else to use. When we decided to do this test, we did think about using some kind of kenetic testing equipment to compare the impact force and the vibration carried back down the handle, but this equipment is really expensive and we decided against it. In the end the hammer is heavy and unforgiving. At around 10 nail mark your arms starts really feeling it, and honestly you want to take continue much longer…
The Estwing is heavy like the Stanley, but the handle feels much better in your hand. There’s a certain amount of anti-vibe through the vinyl grip but not much. It’s heavy but it hits nails perfectly, and once again is unforgiving in the long run. Around the continuous 10 nail mark again, your arm starts feeling it. It’s better with vibration than the Stanley.
The Titanium Vaughan hammer is much lighter, and the wooden handle helps with vibration, so lots of anti-vibe characteristics. So light you don’t feel any strain from hitting in 20 nails continuously!
So the bottom line? To me the titanium hammer isn’t just a fad, it does help with it’s weight and you won’t suffer from a sore wrist afterwards; or will need to nail twice to three times as many nails as the steel hammer to get the same effect. Saying this, the price IS a down side, so the titanium hammer is really just for the professional who works all day at hammering or a dedicated DIYer who doesn’t mind paying out the high price! But for most serious professionals it’s the trusty Estwing!
If you’re interested in trying and buying any of these three hammers here’s a link to each.
Stanley glassfibre hammer 51-621 hammer – £11.94 inc VAT
Estwing E3/16C Vinyl grip hammer – £49.26 inc VAT
Vaughan ‘Dalluge’ Style Straight Claw Titanium Hammer – £220.96 inc VAT
The modern day hammer has had an incredible evolution since its origins when man needed to hit and smash shells or bones to get food. Initially. I thought a post about the evolution of the hammer may be interesting, but I’ve found that hammers are much greater than just a hand tool, they are literally the great grandfather of every tool ever made!
A hammer is a tool for striking another object or substance, whether wood, metal, stone or anything else. The modern day hammer has many variations, looks and sizes. Creating an extremely versatile tool.
Then man created the hammer;
Archaeologists have now discovered the first appearance of a tool used as a hammer was 3.3 million years ago (149 found in Lake Turkana in northern Kenya in 2015) when a “hammer stone” was used to splinter more brittle stones like flint, into cutting and killing tools. After they began to perfect their technique, they formed and shaped axes, knives, then more intricate arrow heads and spear heads. Still later these proto-humans used the formed shards into carving tools for wood, to break open animal skulls, bones, shells and even make jewellery.
This embryonic hammer, was little more than a heavy elliptical stone between 300 grams to a kilo smoothly formed at the bottom of a river bed, or from the sea. The stone was used to hit an object, which was sitting on a large flat stone below it, like an anvil. If a more intricate point was needed, the stone hammer would be replaced with a smaller stone, bones, ivory and antlers using more finesse for finishing the new cutting tools.
Then around 30,000 BC, an incredible 3.27 million years later. The next stage of the hammer’s evolution came into being. The addition of a handle; the stone being tied to either a piece of wood or bone with leather, vine, sinew, hair or similar substance tying the head to the handle. Creating the more familiar modern day looking hammer, similar to those made by native americans in the 1800’s.
This addition may not seem a big one, but it enabled the user to have more control over what they were hitting, and the accuracy of the strike. It meant that this new hammer could be used for more intricate work and meant the creation of a more artisan society. With the advent of the handle this meant the hammers evolution to what we know today advanced exponentially. Having a handle also allowed the user to have less accidents with the wielded tool.Then hammer’s next advance was the coming of metal and the bronze age. Around 3,000 BC, 27,000 years after the last important update of the hammer. Hammer heads were forged with bronze, making them more durable as far as binding them was concerned. The first hammer heads were probably melted bronze bound with similar bindings to stones, and evolved with the onset of forging and casting processes. This allowed a hole to be put through the bronze to take the handle. With the invention of forges and casting other copper and bronze products were made including nails.
Bronze age hammer face. The hammer was fitted on to a piece of wood or bone, then used as a hammer.
Although iron was around in it’s raw form since the beginning of the bronze age, with meteroic iron. Which was found and used for tools such as hammers. It wasn’t until 1200 BC that iron was properly extracted and used to make tools and weapons. Making the old bronze hammers and equipment obsolete. Hammers started to evolve their shapes at this point in their history. Having round faces, square faces, cutting edges, reliefs, and so on. Among the new shapes of hammer the claw head was created for recovering bent or damaged nails for re-smelting. Also meaning you could reuse the precious iron or bronze nail.
Iron age (post medieval) hammer head.
The discovery of Steel was the advent of modern day hammers and tools. From the unrecognisable embryonic eliptical stone of 3million years previously. Originally created around 1800 BC, but spread across the world properly in the 11th century. The process was refined and augmented by the 1500’s with the birth of today’s standard of steel making.
From 1500’s on the evolution of industry came the evolution of the hammer, during which the refining of hammer types and their nuances was developed and experimented with to make a different hammer that was ideal for each job. Coachbuilding, house building, brick layers,blacksmiths, masons, miners and any number of other jobs.
A copy of a steel headed and handled hammer. (circa 1760)
The Hammer’s produced next were “forged” by the industrial revolution starting in 1760 and 1870 the explosion in industry and the need for tools to repair and maintain the new machinery created. Also mass product of hammers, made them all similar and had to be produced to the same standards. These processes also meant that wood, rubber, copper, lead, brass, hide and broze hammers and mallets were easier to make and made more popular. With these new industries came bespoke hammer product such as larger moving and slogging equipment.
With the coming of the new century in the 1900’s came the invention of new materials; Bakelite, casin, and new metal alloys mean hammer faces and handles could be used in a new and different ways. With the development of physics to explain why a hammer works and man has learned to make it more efficient at its job, and so the development of the hammer has continued to become advance, along with its aesthetics. Leading to the modern hammer we see today, made by companies like Stanley, Thor and Estwing, all founded in the early 1920’s. These commercial companies essentially creating the sophisticated hammers the we still see today, from the invention of massive powered steam or electric hammers, to the smallest archeological or surveyor’s hammers.
The modern claw hammer. Mass produced since the 1920’s
In the next post I shall go through the best modern hammers, who makes them and where to buy them.
Interesting news from the USA! Stanley/Black and Decker who own Stanley, Black and Decker, DeWalt, Porter Cable, and Facom to name a few. Are hoping to own another large part of the hand tooling industry. They’ve put in a $1.95 Billion offer for Newell brands which owns Lenox, Hilmor, Dymo and Irwin tools.
As a result of this bid it’s sent Stanley Black and Decker’s share prices through the roof. But what does this mean to you? And what does this mean to the tools in your tool box? Will they be the same? Will they be as good? Will the tool lines be streamlined? All good questions.
If we take Stanley as an example. When Black and Decker purchased Stanley, they were a world renouned brand and extremely popular; a popularity well earned from years of producing high quality tools. Unfortunately for some, the new company formed streamlined Stanley’s range. Getting rid of less used and more expensive items; including their Yankee driver range, various artisan files, planes, rules, and tapes. Many would say this is updating the company, and is progress to fit a fast passed and innovative industry. Most of the new stanley range of products is built to the same high standard, and is still very popular. With the influx of more in the way of power tools, many would say that Stanley is indeed on the front edge of innovation and is keeping the company current and viable.
Personally, I think Stanley products are still excellent and ever evoloving. If they’re not popular with the customers, why make them? So I believe that Irwin, Lenox, Hilmor and Dymo are in good hands with Stanley Black and Decker. They may get streamlined, but hopefully they’ll be around with their most popular products for another 100 years.
If and when the deal goes through, we shall see what happens with both Stanley and Irwin.
To Lang’s surprise, many people who buy tools don’t actually know who Rodcraft are. Well, I suppose this isn’t SO surprising as they are mainly European with only one main supplier (F G Langs!) who sell their goods in the UK.
So, as an attempt to help people with just who Rodcraft are, we’ve decided to write this post to explain and to help you discover them if you’ve never heard of them. If you have heard of them, we hope to be informative to how large a range of equipment they produce.
What do Rodcraft do? Well this is what Rodcraft say on their website.
Since 1974, the Rodcraft brand stands for high-quality products and services. Founded in Germany, Rodcraft has grown steadily to become one of the world’s leading brands of pneumatic tools and workshop equipment dedicated to the vehicle service and industrial maintenance applications.
Through constant investment in research and development, the Rodcraft products feature many patented designs such as our composite sander series and latest impact wrenches.
With a strong European-based distribution channel, and local sales offices around the world, Rodcraft covers over 80 countries on a daily basis. We are close to our clients and able to provide fast service and support.
To ensure and guarantee long-life performance, many strict testing and quality inspections are conducted through the tool and equipment design, production and assembly stages.
When buying a Rodcraft product, you can be sure you are choosing quality and performance and getting one of the best designs available on the market today.
So now you know the background. Rodcraft have been around for 40 years, and in a very competitive European market place. They have only just begun to touch the UK marketplace.
What range of products do Rodcraft produce?
From small 1/4inch capacity air drills RC4105 to massive 1 1/2 inch drive impact air wrenches RC2530; Die grinders, angle grinders, percussion tools, sanders, screwdrivers, drills, impact drivers, impact wrenches, impact sockets, jacks, lights and other accessories and workshop equipment.
In Germany Rodcraft is synonymous with Desoutter and Chicago Pneumatic, known for their well built and presicion made products. Their most popular product being the 1/2 inch drive RC2277 The Beast; boasting 1250 Nm maximum real torque in reverse, Aluminum alloy clutch housing, Twin hammer mechanism, Full teasing trigger, NEW power setting system : 1 hand-operation, 1 position in reverse & 3 positions in forward and 360° swivel air inlet! Making it a must product for any car, bike or truck servicing center or garage when it’s so well priced @ £267.94 plus VAT (-30% discount from Langs.) £187.56 plus VAT!
So if you didn’t know who Rodcraft were, you may be surprised at how big their range is and what may interest you from their products. Take a look at Rodcraft’s website for more information http://www.rodcraft.com Or http://www.langsindustrial.com for UK prices and availability.
Hello Ladies and Gentlemen,
Normally I wouldn’t post on here for personal appeals, but I think this is worthwhile. Let me repost what has happened.
From Louise Fuller
Still haven’t found owner 😢😢😢
1.6 k shares so far!!
Please keep sharing! If owner isn’t found she will be going to a loving new home! Just wanted to give the owners a chance to come forward!
Found this cat tonight scared and in the middle of the road outside Favourite Chicken Shop Becontree DAGENHAM.. took her vets and isn’t chipped, she has also recently had a major operation so she isn’t a stray. Need to find the owner!! PLEASE SHARE!!! Inbox me if you are the owner please!
So if anyone can help with finding this cats home please contact Louise Fuller on the facebook link above.
Thank you for your assistance from all at F G Langs Ltd.