Author Topic: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009  (Read 11457 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #30 on: June 14, 2020, 11:17:15 AM »
Any of the three "heads" (QR1 large, QR1 small and QR2) will fit in any of the RHFT "bodies" (type 1 through 9) and can be swapped out in about 30 seconds with a pair of needle nose pliers. They still sell the rebuilt kits on eBay that may have any of the “head” types in them. And then there's the Craftsman Lifetime Warranty. When you take a broken ratchet back to Sears they hand you another one that may or may not say "REBUILT" on it. You could end up with any of the 9 "bodies" with any of the 3 "heads", but it was usually the latest "head" at the time. Sometimes the salesman would rebuild your broken ratchet right there in the store and hand it back to you. If the ratchet went back to the factory for rebuild it would be stamped as such. And if they installed a QR2 “head" into a type 4, 5 or 6, that made the part number invalid so they would strike over the part number so you couldn't read it. So finding a very small percentage "large plunger" QRs in a type 6 with " double-line" logo is not surprising. I’ve purchased many Frankenstein ratchets over the years, like a type 1 with a QR2 “head.  But the overwhelming majority of the of the ratchets I've seen support the pattern.
Todd F.

I agree that the ability to easily swap out the core on most round head ratchets makes the job more challenging. We could also be dealing with NOS large plunger cores installed in the double-line logo handles for it would be unlikely they'd dump them. The overall wear pattern on the linked examples on both the core and the handle does not display any obvious inconsistency that would cause one to suspect they're not factory (I've not noticed any examples of the over-stamps so far). I've been seeing a few more examples of the large plunger with double lines (I see no need for me to keep posting additional links since it would be redundant at this point) . But I also agree that the overwhelming majority of the examples I've seen so far follow the pattern you discovered.

In the case of the double-line vs no-line, I did not keep score of how many of each I found. I did not have the luxury of having a huge collection before me that I could examine at my leisure. As it was, it took days to find and examine all the online examples (not sure I can afford the time to do it all again, but I'm trying). If I noted an example, I just made note that they did exist.

Is it inappropriate for me to ask how many of these RHFT you actually have? :O
« Last Edit: June 14, 2020, 11:55:22 AM by DadsTools »

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #31 on: June 14, 2020, 02:36:45 PM »
There is a picture of my RHFT collection in Reply #9 back on the first page. Three more have been added after I read your study and corrected my oversight and separated the type 5 and 6 ratchets. (had to buy more to fill in the holes). There are 42 RHFT and 11 RHFT flex-heads in the display drawers. There are probably another 20 or 30 in the reject bin. This pales in comparison to my Teardrop ratchet collection. I have all the ratchets in Jim's teardrop study except for the elusive type 4.  I'm beginning to think I have a better chance of finding Big Foot than a type 4 teardrop. I have 69 teardrop and 26 flex-heads in the display drawers. The rejects from that are measured in 100s of pounds. I also collect the 15-inch teardrops as well as the 3/4-inch drive ratchets. There's also the Plastic Lever, the Professional Full Polish, the Industrial Full Polish, the Next Generation Thin Profile, the Tri Wing, the Tri Prop Round Head, the Thumb Wheel Quick Clean, the Premium Polished, the Stainless and the Lifetime. And if you want to see my Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench collection, there are pictures of them in my thread in this same forum called "Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench Study" Some people collect stamps.
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #32 on: June 14, 2020, 06:44:51 PM »
There is a picture of my RHFT collection in Reply #9 back on the first page. Three more have been added after I read your study and corrected my oversight and separated the type 5 and 6 ratchets. (had to buy more to fill in the holes). There are 42 RHFT and 11 RHFT flex-heads in the display drawers. There are probably another 20 or 30 in the reject bin. This pales in comparison to my Teardrop ratchet collection. I have all the ratchets in Jim's teardrop study except for the elusive type 4.  I'm beginning to think I have a better chance of finding Big Foot than a type 4 teardrop. I have 69 teardrop and 26 flex-heads in the display drawers. The rejects from that are measured in 100s of pounds. I also collect the 15-inch teardrops as well as the 3/4-inch drive ratchets. There's also the Plastic Lever, the Professional Full Polish, the Industrial Full Polish, the Next Generation Thin Profile, the Tri Wing, the Tri Prop Round Head, the Thumb Wheel Quick Clean, the Premium Polished, the Stainless and the Lifetime. And if you want to see my Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench collection, there are pictures of them in my thread in this same forum called "Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench Study" Some people collect stamps.

"Some people collect stamps." That's funny! It's crazy, isn't it? Got to fill those holes too (glad to have been some service in this, although I'm not sure 'help' would be the right word)! I was beginning to suspect you have 100s....well, if you count the teardrops and others, apparently so. I got carried away like that only once with a particular style of fishing reel made in Japan. I did manage to stop myself. Oh yeah, and Dalton Special fishing lures. I stopped that too. I finally stopped the Harrison tackle when I published that study. A man's got to know his limitations. Or, so I've heard....

I finished my eBay RHFT re-study. That's searching every conceivable way a seller might try to list a RHFT, even down to just the generic terms "quick release" and "thumb wheel" and "round head" because there are many sellers who don't really understand "RHFT" or "fine tooth" nomenclature for these. I also went back over my own photos. I have not yet begin my deep web searching of online images, videos and forums, including historical listings on Terapeak (if my friend will let me leech that again) and Worthpoint (also has non-eBay historical sales). I'm dreading the thought...I'm not even sure I should devote several more days of my life (again) on it. Again. It's not like looking in a drawer. And if you don't want to take up life in front of your computer, you have to look quickly and move on, keep moving, keep moving. At the time of the first marathon, I was primarily shoring up the study Types based in the patent markings, the other details being incidental.

That being said, this latest eBay run yielded seven Type 6 RHFT, 3/8 and 1/2 mixed, that had both large plungers and double-lines. I also ran into my share of false-flag mismatched cores from the other types. But I'd say most were later cores on earlier handles, which makes sense in terms of replacements (more likely than someone placing an older core in a later handle), or mismatches where the wear was noticeably inconsistent between the two parts (I did mention this core-swapping issue in my APPROACH section). The seven I mention appeared to be consistent and displayed no overt evidence that they weren't factory. So, while they indeed embody a small minority compared to the small plunger/double line, they do apparently exist. Perhaps only as factory crossovers mixing old stock parts with new.   

The date, as well as the purpose for Sears moving to a plunger of a smaller diameter, is unclear. However, there are several very sound reasons to conclude it had nothing to do with the Roberts lawsuit. I'll cover that in a subsequent posting on this thread, since it involves patent law and the landmark Roberts case, both which are a bit lengthy. My question as to the rotation of the plunger has something to do with this.

In my first expedition into the outer reaches of the webula, I believe I did observe examples of RHFT Types 3 through 6 of both double-line and no-line logos. Did I stop to note how rare each might be? Nope, just kept moving (a return to normal life beckoned). How sure am I of this? Well, I probably wouldn't bet the farm, but I'd sure bet a steak dinner. Hindsight is easy for everybody (including me) once the Study is published. And peer review is fine (although I'm not sure how much a 'peer' I might be in light of yours and Jim C.' impressive collections--I have only two RHFT ratchets at the moment). 

So, let's say my theory in my APPROACH section is correct, that the factory on occasion may have used different logo stamps they had on hand to explain the dichotomy.  Were this to be sensible, Easco would have had to have two different logo stamps compatible with the same size handles. To the best of my knowledge, the handles for both the RHFT and the TD during the period in question are the same geometry, and so either stamp could have been used on the corresponding drive size of either RHFT or TD. So let's look at Jim C.'s TD Study.

But before we do, we have to make certain considerations. The TD has a different patent pedigree than the RHFT, the TD evolving from Roberts while the RHFT evolved from Hazner. Also with the RHFT, we have a rapid progression of patent marks, each anchored with hard patent event dates during the critical years in question, whereas the TD doesn't have the same number of mile markers in that period and so the TD chronology may be less precise out of circumstance. Yet each year was the same for both model ratchets on the calendar, so that, for example, what was 1970 for one was 1970 for the other too.

According to your collection and your searches,
--all RHFT Type 3 are double-line 1969-70
--all RHFT Type 4 are no-line 1970-71
--all RHFT Type 5 are no-line 1971-72
--all RHFT early Type 6 no lines 1972 to ?

According to the TD Type Study,
--Type 7 all has double line 1970-72  (which means both logo stamps were in use at the time of RHFT T4)
--Type 8 1/2 & 3/8 no lines, 1/4 double lines 1970-72 (with above, both stamps in use at same time of RHFT T3, T4 and T5)
--Type 9a 1/2 no lines, 1/4 & 3/8 double lines 1972-76 (both stamps in use, double-line in early part of RHFT T6)
--Type 9b double lines 1972-76 (same time as early RHFT T6 and TD 9a)

So, during the critical RHFT years in question where all are supposed to have no lines, both double-line and no-line stamps were in use at the factory, and were both in use on the examples in the TD study. Also, the TD study shows there is no absolute cutoff where Sears ended the earlier double-line and began the no-line--both are in use on the same TD Type ratchets during the same time period.  ALSO, it shows that the no-line logo was not exclusive to the RHFT, because it was used at times on the TD too. All this while keeping in mind we have hard dates for the RHFT where the variance might be at most in mere months, not in years.

So.....my report of the occasional double-line being stamped on RHFT T4 through early T6 and no-line on T3 is entirely feasible (since both stamps were in house and in use alternatively at the time as seen on the TD), as well as my conclusion that the no-line logo was not an across-the-board wholesale tool line change. That is, unless....there is something very flawed about the TD Study typing and dating during this time period. Which I don't think so. 

As all serious collectors know, just because a person has never seen such and such an artifact doesn't mean that such and such an artifact cannot possibly exist. We've all encountered this time and time again.

What we can say for certain from our combined RHFT research and Jim's TD Study is that the double-line logo was in use exclusively on these ratchets until somewhere around 1970. A no-lines logo was then introduced for a short time but was not used exclusively across the entire Sears tool line, both double-line and no-line being applied during that time. Then somewhere in the mid-1970s, it appears as if the short-lived no-line logo was eliminated. Then sometime around the mid-1990s, the no-line logo appears once again and the double-line is eliminated.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2020, 09:03:20 AM by DadsTools »

Online Jim C.

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1063
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #33 on: June 15, 2020, 03:51:56 PM »
Dad,

Once again I think your reasoning is persuasive and right on point.  When I read your most recent analysis, I did so with a watchful eye, looking for a possible “What about this?” question.  But, like I said, I think you got it right in terms of what we know and still don’t know, or may never know.  What I do know is that the TD type study got better because of your efforts.

Jim C.
Our Go-To Type Study Member

Online Jim C.

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1063
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #34 on: June 15, 2020, 03:58:28 PM »
There is a picture of my RHFT collection in Reply #9 back on the first page. Three more have been added after I read your study and corrected my oversight and separated the type 5 and 6 ratchets. (had to buy more to fill in the holes). There are 42 RHFT and 11 RHFT flex-heads in the display drawers. There are probably another 20 or 30 in the reject bin. This pales in comparison to my Teardrop ratchet collection. I have all the ratchets in Jim's teardrop study except for the elusive type 4.  I'm beginning to think I have a better chance of finding Big Foot than a type 4 teardrop. I have 69 teardrop and 26 flex-heads in the display drawers. The rejects from that are measured in 100s of pounds. I also collect the 15-inch teardrops as well as the 3/4-inch drive ratchets. There's also the Plastic Lever, the Professional Full Polish, the Industrial Full Polish, the Next Generation Thin Profile, the Tri Wing, the Tri Prop Round Head, the Thumb Wheel Quick Clean, the Premium Polished, the Stainless and the Lifetime. And if you want to see my Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench collection, there are pictures of them in my thread in this same forum called "Craftsman Professional Combination Wrench Study" Some people collect stamps.

Todd,

You very well may have the greatest collection of Cman =V= era and later ratchets anywhere in the civilized world.  It’s beyond impressive.  It’s really awesome to say the least.  When you officially open the National Craftsman Ratchet and Tool Museum, I promise to officially donate the TD TYPE 4 so that you can put it on display with the rest of your collection.  If I find another one, it’s coming your way!

Jim C.
Our Go-To Type Study Member

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #35 on: June 15, 2020, 04:45:12 PM »
Dad
Another possibility:
I know that Easco had forges and manufacturing facilities in multiple locations.  Consider the possibility that one location has the die stamp with lines and the other has the stamp without lines.  When an order for a batch of wrenches is submitted to Easco, it is assigned to one factory or another based on scheduling and availability. It’s just matter chance as to which factory makes the wrenches and whether they have lines or not.  For the type wrenches that have both lies and no-lines (like the RHFT type 6), it’s possible that there were multiple batches run months or even years apart at different locations or an order may have been so big that they were manufactured at different location simultaneously.
Todd
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #36 on: June 15, 2020, 05:05:32 PM »
Jim
Thank you for the kind words regarding my collection. I wish my wife was half as enthused about it as you are.
Todd
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #37 on: June 16, 2020, 01:37:02 AM »
As always, gentlemen, I appreciate your feedback and contributions. I do not think I will embark on my second "deep web" search. It's just too much, and I think it's unnecessary. My own recollections from my first deep search coupled with the findings in the TD Type Study are sufficient to form a tenable conclusion about the logos. Todd, your suggestion about different factory facilities is a possibility.

I mentioned I was going to talk about the small plunger and the Roberts lawsuit not being related. The entire Roberts issue is quite involved. I even contemplated posting a report on it, but I'm not sure how relevant it would be to a tool forum, as a lot of it pertains to legal issues. What I find most intriguing is that after 20 years of court battle, it was finally resolved by a settlement between the parties just five days into the retrial of 1989 without a ruling--to this day, it has never been "officially" determined if Roberts' patent was even valid in light of the prior art (earlier patents or representations from other sources).

For a patent to be issued, an invention must meet three criteria: novelty, utility and unobviousness (I had to contend with these criteria when the initial application for my own patent was rejected because my claims were too broad). Novelty means it must really be new, utility means the novelty has to do something useful. The unobviousness is trickier to determine, having to pass this 'obviousness' test: the subject matter as a whole would have been obvious at the time the invention was made to a person having ordinary skill in the art to which said subject matter pertains. To assess this, one must try to imagine themselves being ordinarily skilled in the art of the trade in which the patent relates. What "ordinary skill" means is not well defined--it's entirely subjective.

However, we can apply these criteria to the question as to whether the change from a large diameter to a small diameter plunger provided any remedy to Sears against Roberts. The critical consideration is the effect this change might have made specifically to Roberts QR means. In other words, it can't be an issue of it being cheaper to make, more visually appealing or something like that--it would have to affect the specific QR means in Roberts according to the three criteria. Did reducing the plunger diameter create a novel means of QR? No, for the internal QR means were still identical to Roberts. In fact, Roberts abstract provides for plungers of different sizes or shapes. That just one criterion fails is sufficient, but we'll look at the other two. Did the smaller diameter produce a utilitarian function distinct from Roberts? No, for the internal QR means is still Roberts. Was it unobvious? Hmmm....just take a look at the three drive sizes being made--aren't the plungers all different diameters for each drive size? Nothing unobvious here. The lawyers for Sears were VERY smart and would have known these changes meant nothing. They would have also known that a new patent filing would have been necessary. We already know what and when that patent was filed, which was Sardo in 1981, rushed out the door immediately after Sears was finally forced to assign the existing QR patent back to Roberts just a couple of weeks earlier. At the suspected time of the introduction of the small plunger, the legal battle was still in flux and so a remedy was not immediately needed.

So, why did Sears reduce the size of the plunger? There could have been some cost or manufacturing advantage to it. But I wonder....could it have anything to do with the quick release "adapter" extension bar described in Sardo? I've already noted that the Sardo bar may have been made earlier sometime in the 1970s, but that Sears may have made it under to cover of Roberts, and once it lost that cover had to recover itself for it under Sardo. The Sardo drawing shows that the bar is not like the later ones Sears produced with the QR button in the stud right below where the socket rests. The QR mechanism for Sardo has a rod traveling though the entire length of the bar through a narrow channel and activated by a protruding plunger from the ratchet stud. A study of the Sardo drawing reveals that the original large plunger would have been too big to fit up into the QR bar channel, but the smaller plunger would. Is this the answer????

There's a couple other points of interest with regard to the QR patents.  The Roberts patent calls the protruding rod the pin, while Haznar calls it a plunger. I think it's because Haznar also shows the RHFT dual pawls riding on pins, and so the use of pin for the center rod would have been confusing and redundant to the examiner.

Why did Sears need the Haznar patent for the RHFT QR anyway, when it already had the Roberts TD QR? Because the TD had a separate selector and pawl, so all its QR button had to do was to push straight through the head. But the RHFT was a round head with a selector integrated in the ratchet core. Additionally, the RHFT release button was set in a rectangular opening in the selector so that when the selector was turned, the button would be forced to turn with it. Trouble was that the Roberts QR mechanism (which the RHFT also employed) had only a single groove cut into the side of the plunger to allow the detent ball to drop in, so that groove had to be aligned with the ball position at all times, which means the plunger could not rotate with the button/selector. Which means the RHFT plunger had to be made as a separate part from the button or in two pieces, whereas the TD button/pin could be made in one piece. This is why the TD evolves naturally from Roberts, but the RHFT is forced to evolve from Haznar.

Todd F., this is why I asked you to confirm that the RHFT plungers of either size remain stationary as the selector is turned--the plunger is a separate part from the selector/button.

So....how does Sardo solve Sears' dual problem of protecting itself from Roberts while providing a QR that would work with both the TD and the RHFT? Roberts and Haznar had only a single groove in the plunger, which required it to stay in alignment with the detent ball. Sardo employed an orbital groove, or a groove that was cut around the entire plunger. The plunger could now be turned a full 360 degrees if needed, and the groove would always be in a position to receive the detent ball dropping down when the button was pressed. Sears incorporated that new design in both the TD and RHFT, marked them both PATENT PENDING, and made the stud with no opening to blatantly show just on visual inspection that it "differed significantly" from Roberts.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 01:41:40 AM by DadsTools »

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #38 on: June 16, 2020, 08:36:59 AM »
Dad
I've disassembled all three types of the RHFT Quick Release mechanisms and I will be posting the details in a hours but here are some preliminary observations. Although the Sardo Patent "differs significantly" from the Roberts Patent there was never a Craftsman ratchet build using the Sardo design. Both the QR1 with the large diameter plunger and the QR1 with the small plunger have a "ramp" machined into them that when pulled inwards by spring tension, force the retaining ball above the surface of the stud to hold the socket. Neither have the a groove machined around the plunger. The QR2 is a totally different design that has no plunger at all and also looks nothing like the Sardo design. I think you'll be surprised when you see how it works. Just give me a few more hours to refine the post.
Todd
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #39 on: June 16, 2020, 09:51:11 AM »
Dad
I've disassembled all three types of the RHFT Quick Release mechanisms and I will be posting the details in a hours but here are some preliminary observations. Although the Sardo Patent "differs significantly" from the Roberts Patent there was never a Craftsman ratchet build using the Sardo design. Both the QR1 with the large diameter plunger and the QR1 with the small plunger have a "ramp" machined into them that when pulled inwards by spring tension, force the retaining ball above the surface of the stud to hold the socket. Neither have the a groove machined around the plunger. The QR2 is a totally different design that has no plunger at all and also looks nothing like the Sardo design. I think you'll be surprised when you see how it works. Just give me a few more hours to refine the post.
Todd

This would not surprise me. I've mentioned a couple of times that Sardo feels contrived. However, its connection with the Haznar RHFT is indisputable. Sardo's filing date of 3-6-81 only days after the reassignment of the original patent back to Roberts 2-17-81 is too close to be coincidence. Remember that the application took a little time to get to the USPTO in the mail, and then probably sat a bit in the in-basket before it was finally opened, read and registered. Sardo gave Sears a patent pending mark they could immediately stamp on the ratchets. Its orbital groove would have also solved the problem of needing something different than Roberts while providing a single design that could be used both on the TD and RHFT.

But again, it wouldn't surprise me that the actual mechanism they ultimately put in the RHFT would be different still. We already know from the lawsuit and other details that Sears was certainly not the most ethical player, and Sardo has all the earmarks of being merely a contrived CYA patent. I'm anxious to see it.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 11:00:16 AM by DadsTools »

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #40 on: June 16, 2020, 11:57:56 AM »
Here it is, I‘ve disassembled the three kinds of Quick Release Cores as far as possible without causing any damage and here are the results:
First of all, just to keep everything straight, I’m going to call them QR1-L for the large plunger, QR1-S for the small plunger and QR2 for the blind-stud version.
Figure 1 shows all three, QR1-L, QR1-S and QR2 from left to right.  Right away you can see there are differences in all three and you can also see that the QR1-S has the Quick Release mechanism still installed. More on that later.  The parts that have to do with the ratcheting action and direction selecting are identical in all three versions and won’t be discussed here. The terms “up” and “down” in this discussion are in reference to the drawings in figures 2 through 4.

 The QR1-L (figure 2) is, in every detail, identical to the Haznar Patent – 3532013.  During normal operation, the spring pushes up on the under side of the release button, that pulls up on the plunger via the threads pulling the “ramp” against the Socket Retaining Ball pushing it out of the bore until it runs into the staked area around the hole and holding the socket in place.  Pressing the Quick Release Button compresses the spring, moving the plunger down, moving the “ramp” away from the Retaining Ball allowing it to slide back into the bore to release the socket.  Downward travel is limited by the full compression of the spring. Upward travel is limited by the retaining ball contacting the staked area which limits the upward travel of the plunger due to the ramp contacting the retaining ball.  Disassembly of the QR1-L is accomplished by removing the core body from the ratchet housing and removing the reversing lever disc. Then one or both of the pawl retaining pins is removed allowing pawls to be removed, allowing the balls and small spring to be removed from the transverse bore in the release button. Next you simply unscrew the button counterclockwise until it comes out. After that the plunger (now unrestrained by the button and compressed spring) can be pushed out of the bore until the retaining ball can be dropped into the detent in the plunger (gravity works well for this). The ball and plunger now fit fully within the diameter of the bore and can be pushed out in either direction.  (It really takes less time to accomplish this than it does to read about it here).

The QR1-S Quick Release mechanism is not made to be removed or disassembled!  The reversing mechanism can be taken apart, but not the Quick Release portion. The Quick Release Button spins freely while the plunger remains fixed. No amount of pulling, pushing or rotating will remove it. The plunger and the button are hooked together somehow (I have a theory) and inserted into the bore. Then the Socket Retaining Ball is inserted into its bore and stud is staked around the hole preventing removal of the ball, plunger and button.
Figure 3 is a sketch I made showing the way I think this might work. The extended shaft on the release button would have a “U” shaped groove machined around its circumference and the plunger would have a hole drilled in its backside with a smaller hole drilled perpendicular to it. Once the shaft is inserted into the plunger and the ball is inserted into the hole in the side, the whole assembly is locked together when it’s inserted into the bore of the stud. Once the retaining ball is staked into place, removal is not possible.  It could also work with two balls spaced 180 degrees apart on the shaft or some type of circlip.  Let me reiterate, this is pure speculation on my part but it has to look similar to this based on the way the two parts interact. I can tell the plunger still has the same “ramp” as the QR1-L.  When the button is depressed, I can rotate the plunger a few degrees in either direction until the sides of the ramp contact the ball. If there were a groove cut all the way around the plunger, it would rotate 360 degrees. The major difference between the QR1-L and the QR1-S is the method used to join the plunger to  the button.  I’m seriously contemplating sacrificing one of these heads and grinding out the staked metal to get it apart and see how close my theory is to reality.

The QR2 is shown in the sketch in figure 4 and is an even greater departure from the QR1-L.  The hole in the end of the stud for the plunger is gone as well as the plunger itself. In their place is a second ball (I’ll call it the “keeper” ball for clarity) and a small spring. Both the keeper ball and the retaining ball appear to be the same size, I can’t verify this because the bore for the retaining ball is staked at both ends but with just enough room for the ball to move in and out to allow removal of the socket when the release button is depressed. When assembled, the keeper ball sits adjacent to the retaining ball keeping the retaining ball in place to retain the socket. When the Quick Release button is pushed, the keeper ball is moved further into the bore, compressing the spring and is no longer adjacent to the retaining ball allowing it to move inward and the socket is able to be removed.  The release button is prevented from being removed from the assembled unit by a ridge on each side that sits against the under side of the selector lever disc.  When the mechanism is removed from the ratchet body, the disc comes off and the release button can be pulled straight out. A slight tap on the workbench and the keeper ball and spring fall out. The retaining ball cannot be removed.

I speculate that the elimination of the plunger with its ramp, (the defining feature of the Roberts patent) was a “significant enough deviation” to comply with the requirements of the lawsuit settlement.

Now who’s going to help me put these ratchets back together?
Todd F.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 11:56:53 PM by Todd F. »
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Online lptools

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3055
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #41 on: June 16, 2020, 12:40:02 PM »
Hello, Todd. Thanks for sharing!!! If I had to bet on who could put these back together, my money would be on you!!! Regards, Lou
Member of PHARTS-  Perfect Handle Admiration, Restoration and Torturing Society

Offline DadsTools

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 38
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #42 on: June 16, 2020, 03:57:19 PM »
That's very exciting, Todd! Ambitious work! I'm not sure if I would destroy a RHFT core just to see that deeply inside. But that's up to you. I certainly don't think it's necessary for its relevance to the Type Study--its relevance has already been established by the current extent of disassembly.

Which brings up what is to me the guiding principle. The intent of the RHFT Type Study is not about defining every minute mechanical internal detail, but only that which enables us to identify and date an artifact in the Type Study. The disassembly you've done so far is more than sufficient for this purpose without having to take a hacksaw to it!!! There's only so many that are still extant.

Your disassembly sheds some light on the purpose of the what you are calling the QR1-S. It appears to be involved with a change in how the QR is manufactured during the Type 6 era. It may have been a means to manufacture it more efficiently and inexpensively. It may also have something to do with implementing a smaller diameter plunger to effectively engage the rod inside the QR extension shown in Sardo, which might have been originally made or planned to be made during this period back in the later 1970s. Or a combination of both.

Understand what I am about to say is not to diminish your exposure of the internal differences in the QR1-S, which is certainly significant to the serious collector as well as an important contribution to the RHFT knowledge base (thank you!). What I want to point out is that, in relation to the criteria of RHFT Study, it's not significant enough to merit any re-typing. The inner QR means is still purely Haznar. All patents allow for these kinds of variations in manufacturing, size and materials, as long as the novel means for effecting its utility is the same. In this case, we still have the plunger as a separate component from the button, so that the button can rotate with the selector while the plunger is held relatively stationary (non-rotational). That's still Haznar. The means by which the detent ball is released is still a groove cut at a singular location on the plunger, and so must also be kept aligned at the same degree as the detent ball in order to effect its utility. That's pure Roberts, which Haznar carried over in the RHFT, and which was apparently also flagged in the Roberts lawsuit. So the internal details prove that the QR1-S was not introduced as a way to work around Roberts--it's essentially the identical mechanism.

We've all heard the saying that you can't see the forest for the trees, meaning that focusing too exclusively on the details can cause one to lose sight of the overall scheme of things. I've noticed in other type studies I've seen that there seems to be a tendency to get so deep into the trees that the forest is neglected, thereby drifting into over-complication and esoterica. To me, both forest and trees are continuously important. Not criticizing, just observing. The path of the RHFT Study is to keep both the trees (and all their details) and the forest (with the clarity and context of its overarching perspective) in sight at all times, hence the decisions regarding what is a type and what is a variation within a type. In this case, the overarching definition of the Type 6 is its immovable connection to the two Haznar patents and the corresponding handle markings, both which are easily identified and date-ranged. The QR1-S is just a tree within that forest--important to be sure, but nonetheless incapable of redefining the Type 6.     

It would be interesting to see if this modification to the manufacturing is also implemented in the 1/4, which you reported showing no change to the plunger diameter.

Which brings us to the Type 7 and the QR2. The RHFT defines and dates the Type 7 according to the PATENT PENDING mark linked to Sardo. If that connection is severed, then the Type 7 is called into question. I think that the differing device in the disassembled ratchet does not disturb this relationship.

--First is the Sardo dating, its indisputable hard connection with the Craftsman RHFT, and its redesign of the QR mechanism which fulfills the need of protection from Roberts.
--The PATENT PENDING mark requires that a real patent application had to be on file with the USPTO. A very extensive search revealed no other patent besides Sardo that fills this requirement while being date-correct for the circumstances and is so solidly tied to the RHFT.
--The fundamental improvements of the QR in Sardo is the ability to make the release button and the plunger as a single piece, so that the plunger can now rotate in its channel along with the button when the selector is turned. I disagree with second part of this statement in the analysis of the QR2 internals, "The hole in the end of the stud for the plunger is gone as well as the plunger itself." It can be seen that the plunger is still there, now made as a single piece with the button so that the two can rotate together, just as the Sardo improvement claims (the older iterations clearly show the button and plunger as two separate parts as in Roberts/Haznar). So this element is also solidly tied to the patent pending Sardo, and along with the blind stud is sufficient to meet the 'significant difference' distinct of QR2 from the Roberts/Haznar QR1. What is different is from Sardo is that the means to lock the detent ball in place is no longer part of the plunger, but is now a 'dual-ball' arrangement that is activated by the one-piece plunger/button.  But we already know that Sardo does not show the blind stud seen in the production wrench. This in itself was not enough to disqualify Sardo as the PATENT PENDING patent because of all the other strong ties Sardo has to it. Unless a different patent can be found that shows the dual-ball and that is at least equally tied to the Type 7 PATENT PENDING mark in its abstract, claims, drawings and date, Sardo is still the best candidate. And so the dual-ball in itself is insufficient to disqualify Sardo as the PATENT PENDING on the Type 7, thereby maintaining the integrity of the Study typing. And there's still one more consideration....
--Finally, the disassembled QR2 shows a two-sided cutout on the end of the plunger leaving something like a screwdriver blade. While it is not the orbital groove I anticipated from Sardo, it actually still constitutes a groove that the detent ball falls down into when the button is pushed, and so it is the groove--not the dual-ball--that effects the quick release function. So here again, the groove is not completely eliminated either. Now take a look at figure 3 in Sardo of the QR adapter. Note the dual recess in the internal bar and numbered 55. The abstract reads, the ball 53 retreats into the plunger groove 55. Notice that the recess is on both sides of the rod--if you cut off the end of the rod at the front of the recesses and replaced it with a ball and spring like in the dissembled example, the remaining recess would still look and function identically to Sardo. The duplicate recess on the opposite side of the rod, or a 'two-sided' recess is the tell (it's not the groove from Sardo Fig.2 as I mistakenly anticipated, but actually the groove from Fig.3!). Sears made this 'screwdriver' end identical to the two-sided Sardo in Figure 3. The disassembled QR2 parts are still primarily Sardo, with only the very end of the Sardo adapter plunger being replaced by a ball and spring. In fact, it's questionable whether the dual ball could even be patented in the face of the Sardo dual recess, since the dual ball only provides a means to make a blind stud (which is a different objective) and to lock the detent ball in place--it in no way alters the means by which the detent ball retreats into a groove to effect the quick release utility.

Now here's the legal aspect to all this. In the lawsuit, Sears argued that Carpenter 1660989 and Gonzales 3172675 anticipated Roberts, and thereby invalidated Roberts as being obvious to anyone having ordinary skill in the art could have easily derived the Roberts QR based on the prior art. Roberts argued that the difference was that Carpenter and Gonzales patents describe a means by which the detent ball is locked into place preventing a socket from falling off, while his patent described instead a quick release, the main utility of it was to allow a socket to be easily removed by a smooth operating means (the groove). The jury in the first trial agreed with Roberts on those grounds. Now take a look at the disassembled QR2 with the dual ball. What's the purpose of the second ball? To lock the detent into place preventing a socket from falling off--just as was the purpose of Carpenter and Gonzales. But the two-sided recess on the end of the QR2 plunger is instead what actually effects the quick release function--as was the purpose of Roberts, Hazner and Sardo. The dual-ball facilitating a blind stud and a locking means would not have protected Sears as per legal precedent established by the elimination of Carpenter and Gonsalez. Only the recess built into a rotatable plunger being one-piece with the button as a quick release means had any chance.

Yes, this was very long-winded, but legal arguments always are. The entire case of the change to the QR2 and the corresponding  PATENT PENDING on Type 7 is entangled with a means to legally protect Sears from Roberts infringement, not because of any real mechanical advantage or improvement. Hence the contrived Sardo patent. If you don't review the legal aspect of this structure with all its 'unobvious' subtleties, there's no way of really understanding the intent and the mechanism of the QR2, nor its relationship and context with the various patents involved.  The RHFT Study's Type 7 and its definition remains undisrupted by these new findings.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 10:25:23 PM by DadsTools »

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #43 on: June 17, 2020, 12:41:26 AM »
Well, I took the leap and ground out the stake on the QR1-S and disassembled it.  I actually did it before your previous post this morning.  So what did I find? It’s not like the drawing I made with the ball and “U” shaped groove but something even simpler.  And of course, the first thought I had was “Why didn’t I think of that”? You can see in the pictures exactly how it works much easier than I can explain it in writing. It locks the plunger and release button together longitudinally while still allowing them to rotate with respect to each other. The plunger still has a “ramp”, but it has a “U” shaped cross section unlike the flat “ramp” of the QR1-L yet still functions the same way.

BTW. On the QR2, the recess at the end of the release button extension is not “a two-sided cutout like a screwdriver blade” but is indeed a 360-degree machined “groove”.  I think the third picture below shows this better. My drawing should have indicated that clearer also.  I can only do so much with a stubby pencil. 

I still owe you a new thread on the two extension adapters I own, and how they relate or don’t relate to the Sardo patent. I think a new thread is required to keep your study on track. (We’ve already gone off on a few wild tangents).

At least we all know for certain now what’s inside the Quick Release of the RHFT ratchet.
Todd F.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 08:18:56 AM by Todd F. »
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession

Offline Todd F.

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 75
Re: CRAFTSMAN RHFT RATCHET TYPE STUDY 1968-2009
« Reply #44 on: June 17, 2020, 08:53:35 AM »
Like you said, "just because you've never seen one, doesn't mean it doesn't exist".
I was beginning to think that the flex head did not exist in 1/2-inch drive but one popped up this morning in perfect condition. My collection just increased by one.
BTW. It has the "double-line" logo and a small plunger.
Todd
« Last Edit: June 17, 2020, 08:58:25 AM by Todd F. »
remember - there's a fine line between collection and obsession