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All-American Tool Manufacturers

Staple Guns

The Sell-Outs

Some companies that have long been thought of as “American” companies now produce most or all of their tools overseas. For example, Craftsman (the Sears house brand) now produces many of their tools in Asia. Others include: Cooper, Disston, Eastwood, Greenlee, Lufkin, Milwaukee, Peerless, Porter Cable, Shurlite, Snap-On, Thorsen, Vise-Grip, Vermont American, Weller, Williams, and Winchester. The many, many others are almost too numerous to list.

Some of the “good guy” companies that I will list here sell a few imported tools, but to qualify for inclusion, they must sell mostly American-made tools (and component parts.) Also, beware even “All American” tool companies source their plastic storage boxes, their belt pouches, and their tool bags overseas.

What to Buy?

When I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, I would simply look at my father's collection of tools to get an idea of the good brands to buy. My kids can't safely do that today. Quite sadly, the majority of those tool companies have now moved their production offshore.

Do your homework before you buy! With the exception of high speed cutting tools, the vast majority of American tool manufacturing has moved offshore to mainland China. (The home of laogaiReform Through LaborChinese prison factories.) Rather than just be depressed about this situation, I have resolved to do something to counter this trend. I urge all of my readers to do the following:

1.) Don't just blithely purchase merchandise without first checking on its country of origin. Take the time to LOOK at labels! When buying from mailorder catalogs or online, take a minute to call and ask, before you order if the country of origin is uncertain.

2.) If a product listing says “imported”, then the odds are now better than 80% that it is made in mainland Chin. So skip it.

3.) Be sure to thank the management of these companies for keeping their production in the States, and tell them that they earned your business because of it.

Companies that proudly still offer “Made in USA” tools:

Measurement, Squaring, and Leveling Tools

  • L.S. Starrett Co. - Calipers, levels, tape measures, micrometers, dial indicators, and gage blocks. Most are still made in USA at their plants in Ohio, Massachusetts, Minnesota and North Carolina. (Some imported products, so see their catalog or web site, to be sure.)

http://www.kahntools.com/3-4-x-12-carpenter-s-pro-tape-w-rubber-boot.html $12.48

Wrenches, Socket Bits, and Socket Sets

  • Armstrong Tools - A wide variety of tools, all made in USA. (Now owned by Danaher Corporation.)

Hand Tools (Various)

  • Klein Tools: http://www.kleintools.com - This great company was mentioned by nearly a dozen SurvivalBlog readers. They make a wide variety of hand tools at nine factories in Illinois. (A few of their products are imported, but those are noted in their catalog and on their web page.) Klein tools are widely available at hardware and Big Box stores.
  • UTG - AR-15 Sight adjusting tools, and many products. (Check for country of origin.)

Welding Tools:

Handheld Electric Power Tools:


Floor and Bench Mount Power Tools:

Note: Pitifully, there are no more mid-size (home shop weight) milling machines made in the USA. The only one that comes close is is the Industrial Hobbies (Charter Oak Automation) brand mill, but the big castings that they start with fro those are imported from Taiwan. It is generally best to look for used American-made machines from quality makers, locally, via Craigslist. (Such as Apex, Jet, Atlas, or Bridgeport.) Ditto for bench grinders, disc sanders, scroll saws, and many other tools. Here are a few American floor and bench mount power tool makers that are still hanging in there:

  • = * [[DR - Gas engine and electric splitters. Unlike a typical gas engine splitter, their electric splitters cannot be heard from more than a short distance away.
all-american_tool_manufacturers.txt · Last modified: 2019/12/01 02:58 (external edit)