If I had a hammer (OT)

From: Russ/Alice Blakeman <rhblake_at_bbtel.com>
Date: Sun May 24 11:07:12 1998

Kip Crosby wrote:

> At 02:16 5/23/98 -0500, Russ wrote:
> >It's jealousy really. I'm sure most of us wish we could buy top of the
> line machines
> >for ourselves....I actually got
> >to use some of those $250 hammers and $190 screwdrivers while I was a missile
> >maintainer.
> But are they any _better?_ I mean, once you get to Snap-on, isn't a tool a
> tool?

The whole debate on the specialty tools for the miltary was viewed as someone
buying "off the rack" tools for 1000% more than the actual value. The tools
usually came about as special tools, made to maintain or operate a particular item
of equipment of aircraft. We had screws on the Air Launched Cruise missile that
had a coin slot type head and the tool to insert and remove them was only
available (through contract) by the main contractor of the missile - Boeing, for a
specified period of time. The actual manufacturer of this special tool was Snap-On
and was no better than any other brand.

When I first started in the AF, we had toolboxes full of Craftsman, Snap-On and
other high quality tools. It also made them targets for theft, either while in the
tool room or before they even made it to the shop, by those left in charge of
their security. All of a sudden we started seeing KAL, Ivy, and other less than
desireable brands being stocked. The hitch was that they were throw aways and were
stamped with GSA designators to supposedly deter theft. All you former GI's and
Civil Service workers that snagged a yellow handled Ivy screwdriver should check
your tool boxes. If you have a tweeker that has "Ivy-GS" on the handle you've got
a marked item. It does scrape off rather nicely with a pocket knife though. I
bought a handful of them at a Ft. Knox surplus sale and even though I have a
receipt, I just hate seeing that "GS" staring me in the face.Well, onto talking
about Classic Computers again..

 Russ Blakeman
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Received on Sun May 24 1998 - 11:07:12 BST

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