Hammers haven’t changed much in hundreds of years, save a few minor tweaks with materials and aesthetics for branding. But, though they haven’t changed, the old saying still goes, “hammers are the hammers of the construction industry.” Don’t quote me on that. Everybody has a hammer, even people who can barely even hold a hammer. Hammers are even used to make other hammers, here’s proof. So, when a new hammer hits the market, it’s not really that big of a deal, unless, of course, it’s the only one to provide an adjustable claw.
Craftsman has recently released an 18 ounce Flex Claw Hammer, which provides 4 different claw positions to give you greater leverage for prying at the perfect angle. Just press the button on the joint head, rotate it to the correct angle, release the button, and get dirty. The hammer also comes equipped with a magnetic nail starter for one hand nailing and a large striking face for solid contact. The hammer retails for $19.99 at Sears, so it’s a pretty good value.
Interestingly enough, this isn’t the first hammer designed with a flexible claw. We were able to dig up a patent from 1953 created by Ray W Johnson. It’s a different design with the general idea of increasing the hammer’s leverage being the same. In Johnson’s design, he used an additional “adjustable fulcrum” on the top of the hammer to allow longer nails to be more easily pulled out of a material. We’re not sure if Johnson’s adjustable leverage hammer ever made it to market, but it’s pretty cool to see an idea from 60 years still relevant today. You can view the patent images from Johnson below.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced a recall of a Craftsman portable table saw, sold exclusively by Sears Holdings from April 2014 to October 2016 for around $200. The specific saw was manufactured in China by Rexon Industrial Corp, Ltd. of Taiwan.
With Sears and Kmart stores slowly closing across the country, Sears Holdings had to sell off their longtime brand of tools, Craftsman to generate cash flow. The buyer turned out to be Stanley Black & Decker (SBD), who also runs DeWalt, Black + Decker, Porter Cable, Bostitch, and others. Late last week, their deal to purchase the tool icon was officially finalized.
An acquisition of Interline, a home repair and maintenance products firm, and a 2 year trial run of delivery services has positioned The Home Depot (THD) to begin offering same day deliveries for professionals.
Daqri, an augmented reality technology company, made waves throughout the industry when they released the heir apparent to the trusty hard hat last year. The Daqri Smart Helmet is part head protection, part computer and is littered with sensors and gadgets that can make a construction job site completely interactive. The helmet puts 3d models, plans, and even a thermal imaging camera on your head and overlays that information onto your real life project. At 3.3 pounds, the helmet is a pretty hefty object, so that’s one of the reasons the company decided to create a lighter, more mobile version of their technology in the form of Smart Glasses.
With the increased push from nearly all major tool manufacturers to ditch the cords and convert your toolbox to battery power, it’s important and interesting to learn about where all that lithium is coming from. Not only are lithium ion batteries in power tool batteries, but, as you probably know, they also power smartphone batteries and electric cars.
Announced at the start of the new year, FLIR has released specs on its new and updated line of thermal imaging devices and accessories. We have talked about the many reasons that contractors should use a thermal imaging camera and the FLIR ONE mobile accessory in the past and it has returned in 2017 with a new Gen 3 Pro Model. They have also announced their FLIR C3, which is the size of a standard digital camera, offering great accuracy and detail in a compact form. Lastly, FLIR is also offering the FLIR Duo, which will remind you of an action camera. Intended to be used on that fancy new drone quad-copter you got your kids for Christmas.
Sears' iconic brand, Craftsman, is leaving the mothership and being bought by Stanley Black & Decker for around $900 million. This announcement comes on the heals of Sears planning to close 150 Sears and Kmart stores nationwide this year. The deal for the 89-year-old Craftsman brand allows Stanley Black & Decker to manufacture and sell Craftsman products in non-Sears stores. Sears will also continue to sell the Craftsman brand in its dwindling retail stores.
For decades and decades, construction and technology didn’t mix. In recent years, companies have been flocking to the underutilized construction industry to try and offer the newest solutions. When we talk about technology, we’re not just talking about computer work, there are tons of new products out there that are challenging the way our industry thinks and acts.
Many of the items on our 2016 technology list are still very much conceptual and will undergo plenty of testing over the next few years, but that’s one of the beauties of technological advances: many are extremely forward thinking.
Until recently, I had no idea that Nike even made field boots, especially ones that could be used on a construction site. The men's Special Field boot is designed by Nike for first responders, military, rescue, and law enforcement, but if you ask me, it would be perfect for the jobsite. Some of the key features of this boot are its lightweight design, flexibility, and breathable materials.