those big plastic tool cases.....

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[snipperized for brevity]

After I read your post, I realized that I had never given it any thought. Most (75%) of my power tools are in their cases. The ones I use all the time, like my routers... on the shelf... no cases. My cordless Milwaukee 14.4 volt drill. In the case. Always. The charger and a few bits and bits belong together. It also helps during clean-up on a site, to see if I retrieved all my bits and bits. I also just realized, that it is my only cordless pro-grade tool. Other tools... like my Milwaukee jigsaw, pretty much has to live in a case. That pointy thing with teeth would have to be removed otherwise..and where would you keep IT? My Porter Cable belt sander CANNOT live in its case, because the outside of the case is so rounded that it won't stand up... OR lie down with the sander in it. It's like one of those jumping bean toys.... and the inside of the case, is so moulded to the shape of the sander, that if you wind the cord wrong, the case won't close. Just awful. To me... a case makes sense. If you reach for your laminate trimmer...you might as well have all the trimmer bits and guides and bases right there. I actually made a few cases.. like for my Paslode 16ga finishing nailer. I only ever purposely paid extra for a case once. The one that went walkies when somebody lifted my Lamello biscuit joiner. The replacement is in a plastic case. The TOP still comes in a wonderful case, the C2 classic doesn't.
I sooooo want the Fein Multimaster with that gorgeous case with all them outer-space-looking weird Roswellian shaped attachments.
I really enjoy looking at some of the cases that antique pistols came in.
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Ebay!
Dave
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The case tends to be a lot more regular in shape than what it contains, and holds the cord, proprietary wrenches, spare easily-lost parts and such without the need for extra packaging and labels. Makes it easier to store, even if it is more bulky.
I line the boxes up on shelves. The high-density stuff anchors my lathe to the floor, the lower-density is stored in the largely empty places underneath other tools. When I have to help the kids with something at their house, it's soooo much easier to grab, open, inventory, and maybe add to the package before closing for transport than it is to toss tools into some larger common container.
Did I mention that the cases have better handles, by and large, than the tools they contain, and help keep them in alignment by protecting their parts?
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I've always been a little bit peeved at the cases that come with my power tools. I fully realize they can protect a tool until it gets to its new owner, but as far as I'm concerned, they're a waste of money. Considering the elaborate construction of some of these cases (like the full metal case that came with my Milwaukee hammer drill), I'd just as soon have had a decently constructed cardboard case and put the saved money towards lowering the purchase cost of the tool itself.
There might be a few contractors who approve of these cases for purposes of transporting to job sites and such, but I think most tools are purchased by home owners and the cases just become another piece of plastic or metal that serves no further purpose after its glitter attracts the eye of the purchaser.
I'd have to assume the mindset of the manufacturer's goes along the lines of "If we make a really good sturdy case, the customer will assume that it also contains a really good sturdy tool."
Any I a cynical person? Naaaah!
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I try to keep them and store all but the most frequently used tools in them because they tend to help me keep all of the parts together better than I can without them.
Some cases are designed very poorly and these drive me crazy. It is obvious to me that the case design job was left for the new junior engineer in the department and nobody checked his work. The latest and worst that I have is a huge case that came with my DeWalt 618 router kit. It is very poorly designed. Every time you pick it up by the handle everything in it seems to fall to the bottom. The router came with 2 bases and a rebate that get's you a D handle base, but the case only has space for the 2 original bases. Another case that is driving me crazy is the one for Kreg's new K3 pro kit, although this one isn't quite as bad as the router case. There's no place in it to put the right angle clamp which every "pro" will have. Also, the bench fixture needs to be screwed to a board in order to use it but as soon as you do this it doesn't fit into the case any more. I'll likely be building my own cases for both of these tools very soon. When companies design these cases they should include space for all of the available options and they should make the case fit the tools and parts well enough so everything doesn't fall out of place when you carry it. If they don't, the case is useless and a waste of money.
I'm down off my soap box now. Sorry for the rant, but I just had to let it out.
--
Charley


"bob" < snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com> wrote in message
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I'm with you. I have some cases that fit the tool so well there's only enough room if you put the tool back in exactly as it arrived from the store. That means the cord has to be twisted up exactly the right way, the tool's adjustments have to all be put back to the smallest setting, and forget about the manual fitting back in anywhere. If it meant that I could save that couple of minutes trying to solve the puzzle every time I put it back I'd gladly pay an extra ten dollars for a better case. These design choices are lose-lose in my opinion.
- Owen -
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On Wed, 7 Dec 2005 18:59:48 -0500, "Owen Lawrence"

that my router came with a case with spaces to store bits, but those spaces either get hammered by the other side of the case so it won't close, or have giant gaps so that the bits just fall out and roll around. Yeah, that's why I buy those nice carbide tipped bits, so they can roll around and beat each other up in the damn case!! The wrench has to face to the right as well, if it's to the left, the case won't close.
On the other hand, I can't imagine having my Dremel tool without a case for all the tiny little bits that go with it. That adjustment wrench would be lost permanently otherwise.
Mark
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My basement has full (well, maybe 6'4") headroom in only 1/2, the other half is just a crawlspace about 4 ft high. Most of the time I wish the basement was larger but when it comes to things like those plastic cases that I don't use, but seem to "nice" to throw away, that crawlspace sure does come in handy.
--

Larry Wasserman Baltimore, Maryland
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Geez, my tools are always in their cases cuz they get transported around the state daily :) The cases keep attachments, bits, sandpaper, blades, wrenches, fasteners etc. together in one place. Heck, IMO, it prolongs the life of the tool by keeping it clean, dry, and a little protection from the shock of being bounced around in the back of a truck for hours a day. --dave

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I recycle all of them, and store my hand power tools in a steel filing cabinet.
--
Bob

Travel and Astronomy Photos
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Yes. Steel file cabinets in the shop are _fantastic_ ways to keep things sorted and out of the way/dust/clutter.
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I chunk the cases (no one wants them) and store drills, saws, routers, sanders, paint guns and etc in a pair of older heavy duty steel 4 drawer file cabinets that have had the racks/hangers removed from them. You would be amazed at how much they will hold. RM~
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well I don't know about everyone else but some tools I have more than one or one type of for example I had to check 5 circular saws to find my melamine blade and I keep the ones I don't use in there cases My shop is in a unfinished garage so the walls are covered with peg board to 12 in below the top plate I have shelfs above that all the way around the garage which gives me plenty of room to store books router craftier hand miter boxes and my tool cases since the isn't a ceiling just open rafters but the cases are needed when you have to transport them and you always know where there at with out having to move all the others
Jim
A MAN WITH THE RIGHT TOOLS CAN SURE SCREW THINGS UP
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