No, they're not. I've got one 4 blocks from me here. Yesterday, while
having a recurring case of the plumbing stupids, I took the parts I'd
bought from them last week, and went back down there. 5 minutes of gentle
instruction, and the problem was solved.
I can't imagine that happening at a local BORG.
(Peter) Eames Hardware, a Do it Best affiliate, in Pleasant Hill, CA. Two
of his brothers run Ace Hardware in Albany, CA, and his sister has an Ace
Hardware in North Oakland, CA. They are all run the same way, with a mix
of experienced older staff, and well-trained younger workers, who know how
to get the right answers, or bring in the experts. This is already their
third generation in the business, and the kids are already working there on
They are my first stop, because the problem gets solved most of the time,
inside of 5 minutes. You cannot even park at HD in that period of time.
And, while I'm at it, I've had really pleasant experiences lately at
Yardbirds Home Center, in Martinez, CA. A small regional chain, their
people are better trained, their staffing levels match customer loads,
their prices are competitive, and their selection, particularly on hand
tools, is as good as any in the area. A special order yesterday evening
went pretty well (we'll see when it arrives), but I cannot imagine dealing
with HD on a similar product in nearly as comfortable a manner.
Up until the (b)Lowe's switch to "Tradesman" and "GMC" as their
housebrand tools, I thought Lowes had the best power tool price points.
Here they still carry Bosch, Milwaukee, DeWalt, Hitachi and Makita.
There's still a few Delta items left, and mine carries one Jet
Other than that -- Not really.
Just prepare yourself to be really aggravated when neither one has what
you're looking for.
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