Been Around Longer Than I Thought

I guess I always thought Crescent Wrenches were a twenties invention. I was close.

adjustable wrench

I would bet lunch money there have been over a Billion of these things made and sold in one form or another since 1915.

31 thoughts on “Been Around Longer Than I Thought

  1. Years ago got one of those tiny Snap-on mini Cresents. They jaws are fairly close tolerance machined compared to other tiny models. The limiting feature of it is they open to 1/2 inch. And the proflie on the head is too fat for something used for tiny fastener access. After a few years of being frustrated how few spots it would work, I did a bit of milling on it to so it would open a few thousandths larger 9/16ths, for 13-14mm metrics fasteners, along with going to town re-profiling its outside jaw dimensions, after all it dont have high leverage, so it really didnt weaken it past the strength of my hand power, now it fits in about any tight spot a very slim open end will, between these mods its usefulness about doubled.

    It became such a handy little critter I flagged down a Snap-on truck and got 4 more to stuff in my 1st line tool gear kit, a spare for the dashboard in the 90 K1500, one in the constant carry truck tool box, and one for the small parts detail workbench.

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    • I can’t vouch for those enough. I have had one in my front pocket for over twenty five years now! Lost ’em and bought another one, I think in that twenty five years I have had five or six, the one I have in my pocket right now I have had for over fifteen years. Handiest little sonofabitch you can imagine. It has saved my bacon too many times to count and is especially handy for tightening loose hose clamps in a pinch. I think I paid $25 for it back then, being Snap On, they aren’t cheap but they are amazing little wrenches. Like I said, I can’t vouch for them enough. It’s not actually a Snap On either, it’s a Blue Point, from their “budget” tool line. EVERY DAY carry for me, along with several different cutting tools and a couple of pocket pen lights.

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      • Fuck Yeah. Well said. Definately one of those constant companions like the small form factor quality LED flashlight. Once you got them nothing like them. Minimalist sometimes is best.

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  2. If you guys like really unique tools, the WFMC mini splined ratchet sets are totally awesome. Nothing comes close to this design. Along with Cresent Wrenches, a good ball peen hammer, its one of those indispensable tools, The ratchet has a 12 degree pitch, giving the finest offset of any ratcheting tool. 400 inch pound capacity is more strength than you can apply without being a dumb gorrilla with it. They come with a 1/4 inch socket adapter, and using a craftsman 1/4 inch deep socket set it makes it indispensable once you have this set up. I’ve had a set for better than 30 years.
    The W-F4 set is 54 pieces, it covers just about every chore I’ve needed it for. Can’t exemplify the usefulness of the 1/4 drive feature enough.

    I bought the W-F6 set for a spares kit. Its way cheaper than buying a couple individual replacement bits or a ratchet, and you get a 2nd extension to get up some really deep reach.

    I think these guys along with Cjicago Supply are the only dealers for WMFC. Take that back, a Ferrari tool and bling company offers them at one point for the guy who has everything.

    I’m not shitting one bit, this is a really fine tool with a thousand and one uses.
    Add a mini Cresent, a high quality pair of linesman pliers, and 1 or 2 of your most favored tools and you got yourself a 99% useful mini tool set.
    Particularly good for working on motorcycles and other small motorized equipment.
    They make a dandy Men’s gift too.

    Here’s the link, http://www.newmantools.com/wfmc.htm
    Newman Tools. Pricey, but total quality, and great service, man they got machine tools and other specialized stuff you cant get anywhere else. Like the McMaster Carr of tools, which is pretty good indeed.

    In WV we got those Tractor Supply’s. They sell a monster size cheap commie Chink made Cresent, was $29 bucks last one I got. Thats one of those tools you hardly need, but when you need one its the only tool that works kind of thing. They are more than 2ft long, take abuse from 4ft pipe extensions. Super for getting off stubborn trailer balls. Bending heavy steel and aluminum, and holding something by locking the handle in a vice whiles you reef away at your work. Lot of uses for it on heavy equipment too. I used one for years as a coal mine welder/mechanic. A number of parts on CAT and JOY mining equipment you can’t R&R without one. Makes a dandy expedient hammer too. Nice swing weight with the handle size and head mass. Can’t hurt it. Might need to grind off the dings once and awhile. Used the handle as a leverage bar a million times. Thats where the monster Cresent’s shine for my experience. If you can get the jaws on a rugged surface, you got the kind of leverage to move heavy shit into fine position. Great Millwrights tool.

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    • A buddy at work has one of those little splined ratchet sets with driver bits. Tougher than hell, very fine pitch, very handy for tight spots.
      I’ll let you guys in on one of my favorites, Harbor Freight sells a 100 pce. “Security” bit set. It has almost every little driver bit in it you can imagine and room for a few more. One I highly recommend adding to it is the tiny little T2 torx bit. The one you see on cell phones and folding pocket razor knives. Here is the real secret part, they also sell a 1/4 drive ratchet with a rotating head. The combination of those two items is unreal in their applications. Putting the 1/4 inch socket from the kit on the ratchet and then the bit of your choice, you can get that thing into places you wouldn’t believe.The ratchet gives you plenty of torque to break stubborn screws with and the head can be rotated so that you can spin it like a screwdriver.
      It really shines working in tight spots like underneath dashboards and shit.
      On sale, the bit set is about $10 and I just bought another one of the ratchets about a month ago after the one I was using shit the bed for $12.99 I think.
      Under $25 for both. Every guy should get these two items. I actually buy the bit sets and give them to co workers and friends they are so handy.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Seen that set. I didnt know how to tell if they of quality. Good idea. I could use a set. Like you say, everyone uses those tiny machine screw Gucci engineering style fasteners now. Asains love that neat tidy fastener style of packaging everything like Origami art or a Bonsai tree.
        Fengswe nuts & bolts.
        Give me good ole’ SAE anyday!

        Been meaning to get to HF, their TIG gloves are excellent, and 10$, have the long gauntlets too so you don’t burn your wrists while welding. Lot of nifty stuff there. Been planning to pick up their manual tire changer rig. I change my tires by hand, with large motorcycle spoons, and a couple big truck tire tools I copied in smaller form I fabricated. Dont always have the hot sun or woodstove to heat up the tires so they R&R easy.
        Trying to work smarter not harder in my old fart stage.

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    • I bought that Chinesium crescent wrench from some guy who walked into the shop I was working in trying to raise money down in San Jose clear back in 1984 for $20. I use it very rarely but you would almost have to kill me to get it away from me. I call it my watch fixer.

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  3. What blows my mind is that it was just over 3 months between the date of filing and the date of issue of the patent. They can’t open the mail that fast today.

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  4. I work at an Ace Hardware in the tool department. Just wanted to let you know they now merged the vise grip with the adjustable wrench which I think is the best of both worlds. They call them locking adjustable wrenches.

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    • Holy MoG! Those Newman tools are pricy but I am drooling. I have many micro screwdrivers in all formats, some are top line German made, but not a micro ratchet driver for them. Going to have to keep that link handy for future consideration. Thanks for the info.

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