Need a new saw or tool but can't afford to get the top of the line? Should you run out to the big box nearest you and pickup the cheapo tool just to get that project done? In my opinion you should never settle for buying a new low quality tool just because you need to get by. Why not look on craigslist, garage sales, resale, or goodwill instead and pickup something better?
Even an old tool can be cleaned up and give you years of use.
Many of the older tool out there are made with high carbon, high quality steel, less plastic, and better components than even the top of the line tools out there these days. Save yourself some money, pickup something used from a local shop or neighbor, cleanup it up and have something worth cherishing.
When I am planning a project I start by planning ahead and start looking around for those needed tools. Local resale and second hand shops, eBay, Goodwill, and craigslist are great resources to start with. It is much better to support your local community than to run out for the cheap made in China junk that will most likely end up in the land fill after you use it three times.
How many of your tools will be around in 40 years? This particular saw is, as far as I can tell, about 40 years old. The company is no longer in business but manufactured quality tools from Illinois. As I took this saw apart I could tell that it was engineered and built with one thing in mind, quality. There were no talks about outsourcing, finding cheap suppliers, or how the could make their tools for less than the other guy. It was more about quality and dependability they were worried about. This was from a time when the word of your neighbor's experience with something that meant more than any commercial or fancy packaging.
This saw is no doubt old and may not last me as many years as it did the previous owner. But after cleaning this saw up and working with it for a few hours I have a new found respect for the quality that used to be the pinnacle of America manufacturing.
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