Author Topic: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study ©  (Read 56183 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study
« Reply #120 on: July 02, 2020, 01:10:14 AM »
Screen captures of the TD ratchets from the 1966 Sears Consumer Spring/Summer Catalog and from the same year 1966 Craftsman Tool Catalog.

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study
« Reply #121 on: July 05, 2020, 03:04:12 PM »
Here's an image of the RHFT Type 4 handle panel. Kissing Cousin to the TD Type 8 handle!

Offline PowderKeg

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 18
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study ©
« Reply #122 on: April 09, 2021, 05:02:42 PM »
So I have a question on the stubby Bowtie shifter lever - have looked over your Type descriptions but not every post in the thread (so maybe you've already answered this and i missed it by speeding thru).  Was that selector switch ever offered from the factory/catalog on standard ratchets?  Obviously used on flex-heads (along with the V-selector in it's time) to avoid interfering with the flex joint, but I have a few standard handle ratchets with it as well.  Is it a safe assumption that those are rebuilds/replacement parts?  I've never seen a 1/4" version, which can be more easily be explained if they were only available on the flexes and in rebuild/parts kits, since there was never a 1/4" pearhead/teardrop flex (or at least one I've ever seen or heard of).  While not Craftsman, I've got a few standard NAPA pearhead/teardrop MDF/Easco ratchets with the stubby Bowtie shifter as well, including a 1/4".

Offline Jim C.

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 994
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study ©
« Reply #123 on: April 11, 2021, 05:34:05 AM »
Hey PowderKeg,

Thanks for stopping by the thread. The Type Study presented above focuses specifically on standard raised panel Craftsman ratchets manufactured between 1956 and 1993.  While it doesn’t necessarily take the flex head ratchets into account from the same time period, I can say that I’ve looked at a lot of Craftsman flex head ratchets.  To the best of my knowledge, the standard non flex head Craftsman teardrop ratchets were never produced with the hour glass directional selector.  That being said, I have seen several examples of Cman standard teardrop ratchets outfitted with the hour glass directional selector.  More often than not, I see them on the 3/8” drive models.  Although the Craftsman tool catalogs are not always accurate and frequently depict inaccurate artist renderings that are used from year to year, as pointed out by Dadstools, I haven’t seen any catalog evidence of an hour glass directional selector being mated with a standard Cman non flex head ratchet.  It’s my opinion that the hour glass directional selectors that are occasionally found on the Cman standard teardrop ratchets are replacement parts.  A little while back, I did come across an unusual directional selector found on a standard Craftsman  1/4” drive ratchet.  Check out the link below.  Let me know what you think.

http://www.papawswrench.com/vboard/index.php?topic=25835.msg147312#msg147312

Jim C.
« Last Edit: April 11, 2021, 05:40:50 AM by Jim C. »
Our Go-To Type Study Member

Offline PowderKeg

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 18
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study ©
« Reply #124 on: April 13, 2021, 07:05:11 AM »
Hi Jim,

I must complement you on your thoroughness in researching the Craftsman pearhead/teardrop ratchets - I never realized there was such an extensive trail of changes to those ratchets over the decades.  I've only considered obvious lever and QR design changes/evolutions for inclusion to my USA-made ratchet obsess..., er, "collection" - while I don't see that changing for me anytime soon, you've definitely helped shed light on what I do have and what timeframe they fit in.  I'll also be removing (from the count at least) the couple of standard length bowtie/hourglass shifter ratchets I have, since your study and comments pretty well confirm what I was starting to ponder - that they're the result of repairs/kits and not original offerings.  Although I also have to "dang" you, as now I'm gonna have to find more of the early rounded-corner raised panels to add - never noticed that before (and just realized I have one in 1/4") and they're different enough for me to include - so DANG YOU!!   :grin:

Below is my reply (today) to your unusual 1/4" ratchet thread - I copied it over since that's an older thread.  I think we're on a similar wavelength regarding that ratchet and it shifter origin:


So here's a pic of various 1/4" non-Craftsman pearhead/teardrop ratchets I have, along with an early and later Craftsman to compare.  EASCO eventually made this ratchet design (teardrop) for multiple parties, and those ratchets variously had narrow shifter snap-ring cutouts (narrow like the Type 1/2 Craftsmans) as well as wider cutouts with thicker shift levers as all the later Craftsmans. 

My SWAG (hopefully) employing Occam's Razor is this - Sears/Craftsman eventually ran low/ran out of Type 1/2 repair kits.  Other-branded ratchets were in production and some versions utilized similar narrow opening shifter kits with levers that didn't protrude down into the wider shifter cutout.  Instead of retooling to produce the increasingly older and obsolete Craftsman shifter, EASCO substituted the newer style shifter (and pawl if necessary) in kits for narrow cutouts to Sears.  Simply put, it was cheaper for Sears to get replacement kits this way instead of paying to re-start production of an obsolete shift lever design. 

The two NAPAs on the left have very narrow inset cutouts for the snap-ring without the levers protruding down into the cutouts like the T1 Craftsman beside, while the rest of the non Craftys have thicker lever ends that protrude down into the wider cutout area, like the T3+ beside them.

It's been a long time since I broke down these ratchets to clean and re-lube them, so I can't recall at all what they look like inside, or what kind/shape of protrusion/indentation they have on the lever to engage the pawl, or how completely they interchange parts with Craftsman ratchets.   I'll also note that the one NAPA with the hourglass/bowtie shifter has an oil hole/ball in the top while all the others do not, so if that's used as a rough dating method, then the narrow shifter snap-ring and cut was used variously on other-branded ratchets for a longer and later time than the narrow openings on the Craftsman Type 1/2s.

So to recap, my SWAG is that your ? ratchet has a later rebuild kit in it from EASCO supplied to Sears as a replacement kit for the repair of early Type 1/2 ratchets that required the narrow snap-ring and non-protruding lever.  This was done as a cheaper option (to Sears) than retooling/re-starting production of the specific Craftsman-style shift levers and pawls for an otherwise obsolete/dated design.

At least that's my nickel's worth...

Offline Jim C.

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 994
Re: Craftsman Teardrop Ratchet (1956-1993) Type Study ©
« Reply #125 on: April 14, 2021, 06:51:50 AM »
PowderKeg,

First off, MANY THANKS for the kudos on the Type Study.  I’m glad that you’re finding some value in its contents.  Like I’ve said early on and at various points throughout the narrative, others made contributions, and were credited for them while I was contemplating, writing, editing, re-writing, etc.  That takes me to my second point. 

Your detailed analysis and photo seem to strongly strongly support the unusual replacement selector on my 1/4” drive Cman Type 1/2 ratchet.  While DadsTools and I shared your thinking on the topic, neither of us really had any Easco examples to study/observe.  Like I said, I think your analysis makes logical sense and is spot on.  Many thanks again for taking the time to check out the Type Study and furthermore, many thanks for adding some valuable content to it.  In my opinion, it was worth way more than a nickel.  :smiley:

Jim C.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2021, 06:53:39 AM by Jim C. »
Our Go-To Type Study Member