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Tools for a new shop... Package Deals?

Discussion in 'Scenery, Props, and Rigging' started by gafftaper, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Hi there,
    I'm working on equiping a new college theater scene shop. I can get package deals for my lighting gear, sound gear, even my sewing equipment, but I haven't found a place that will give me a package deal on my power tools and hand tools for the scene shop. I'm looking at spending $20,000 and I'm not so excited about shoping for sales at Home Depot or Sears.
    Has anyone found a company that does package deals on shop equipment? What about purchasing tools on line or directly from the manufacturer some how? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
     
  2. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Do they have a tool peddler up there in Seattle ? They've been real good to me down here but I don't know specifically about "package" deals.
    good luck buy me a new Dewalt pullover mitre saw while your'e at it ok ?
     
  3. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Find a Local Medco tools dealer. They usually stop by most shops in my area monthly to try to sell us new blades, batteries, and all that good stuff. They can give you pretty good deals, and are a full supplier of dewault and a few other good companies, however they do not carry delta.
     
  4. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    If they carry Makita, you're good...Makita makes the best cordless drills and miter saws out there, IMO. We have the Makita 12" sliding compound miter saw in our shop at Bucknell, and it's much better than any of the Dewalts that I've used in terms of the stops, the adjustments, and the slides.
     
  5. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Here we go... let the debate begin!!

    A friend of mine who is a contractor/carpenter was on vacation in Japan. He walked past a construction site and couldn't pass up the chance to try to speak with his brother hammer swingers. So he started talking with the guys and was asking them what brand of tools they use. "Do you use Makita?" There was a long silence and looks of confusion and then a huge laugh and smile... "No No Maw-key-taw!"
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2006
  6. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    I checked out the Tool Peddler website and they only are in Portland, but if the deal is right combined with no sales tax... apparently even though we are part of a state college we still have to pay sales tax. It might be worth it for me to hop the train down there, rent a U-haul, and load up. I'll check it out.
     
  7. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Sadly the closest Medco tools is three states away.
     
  8. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Call delta, see who their local dealer is for contractors. Other then that, grizzley makes some decent stuff. I would stay away from Makita.
     
  9. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    Wow Your'e right a great topic for debate. If you're on the Dewalt side that is. Makita tools are simple inferior. Period. Take one apart sometime. They use plastic gears for Gods sake. I've had issues with one Dewalt in all my years, makitas were in the shop constantly. As far as saws go, The Dewalt Compound Sliding mitre saw is hands down the best out there. The makitass are under powered, belt driven, and made out of pot metal. The dewalt mitre saw in my shop is at least 8 years old and receives almost daily abuse, as we produce and 8 show season. The electric brake on the motor just started acting up. That's that only thing wrong with it. It's never even had new brushes installed. The makitas that I have worked with in several scene shops and on-set for a couple of movies were simple cheap and light. That's about all I can say for the good catagory of makita.
    BTW does anybody know where Dewalt started ? bonus question worth 10 attaboys and three pats on the head.

    Sorry bout the highjack, I need to learn to let things like that slide. Change is hard.
     
  10. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    Dewalt started somewhere in the middle of PA and they first built radial arm saws or some kind of sliding saw...why do I know all of this random stuff??? I never realize that I know it until someone asks...wow.
     
  11. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    Oh, and I have taken apart a Makita that has a GOOD gear system, high quality parts, and the batteries also last longer than the Dewalt models. We have some Dewalt drills at Bucknell, and even though they weren't bought that long ago, three of them have stripped gears now. And it's not like we burn them or overuse them or anything, we run between 3 and 6 shows a semester, so 6-12 per year, and that's the use that they get...and not all of the shows have full sets (dance concerts for instance). But that Makita miter saw is probably the most used tool in the shop, and it works great, has a smooth slide, and has had no problems at all thus far.

    As a side note, we have a very, very old (50's or 60's) Dewalt Radial Arm saw, so that may be why I know about Dewalt because I looked it up. It's had a number of rebuilds since it was bought (including one to add a blade brake to it), but it's a beast (in the physical sense and the power sense).

    </hijack>

    Sorry for the hijacking.
     
  12. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Biggest understatement of the year. Keep in mind that most drills that you buy at your local hardware store are not intended for what we do to them. The XRP's and usually the 18's hold up much better then the 12v and 14.4's. The lighter duty guns are intended more for home use, which is bi-weekly at best, not 3-6 hours 5 days a week being dropped, hit, and driving 3" screws. If you really want to get a good gun, get a panasonic. They are amazingly light and have a great chuck. Remember, you get what you pay for.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2006
  13. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    A buddy of mine has a Panasonic screw gun It is a Very nice gun, Light , Strong, ergonomic, and good battery life.
     
  14. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    We have XRP 14.4's and regular 14.4's. I think that 1 XRP and 2 regulars are in the process of stripping themselves out of our theater, and one of them is lying in parts in our E-shed.
     
  15. gafftaper

    gafftaper Senior Team Senior Team Fight Leukemia

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    Ladies and Gentlemen...

    In turquoise corner young hot shot Soundlight and his Makita Miter saw.

    In the yellow corner crafty veteran Van and his Dewalt XRP.

    Ok, I want a good clean fight. No hitting below the belt.

    The prize, I will purchase the brand that wins!!
     
  16. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    It's not fair ! As I've stated before, " old age and treachery will always vanquish youth and enthusiasm."
    Anyway I refuse to be drawn into a silly argument, That's not my style As I'm sure Everyone here can attest to. :oops:

    Besides it's kinda like the truck argument < watch this > See I'm a Ford man, You would catch me dead in a chevy.

    Whatever else you do be sure you get a DELTA Unisaw for your tablesaw and get the extra wide bed with a beismyer <sp> fence. A Delta is like a woman, treat it nice and take care of it when it's young and it will keep you happy for the rest of you life. < God I'm really gonna get it now>:twisted:
     
  17. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    I second the biesemeyer fence. Good stuff. And I have to give the router assignment to Delta, because they make great plunge routers, we have a few in the shop. And Dewalt makes a nice trim router. Don't get me wrong, I'll take Dewalt for a few things, but I like a few of my teal-colored toys.
     
  18. Footer

    Footer Senior Team Senior Team Premium Member

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    Well, Dewault won this year... http://www.mattkenseth.com/

    He is a 1st cousin of one of my friends... She is currently the Production Electrician for the national tour of Rent.
     
  19. Van

    Van CBMod CB Mods Premium Member

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    I like Delta for most tablely things eg. Shapers, Planers-Jointers,Planers, bed-sanders etc. On the other hand, I do have a table top belt/disc sander from Delta that is a total piece of crap.

    Routers, two words for ya, Porter-Cable, hands dow best plunge router on the market, and the interchangeble base for the "D" handle intermediate model is a great feature. I was watching Norm one day when he cleaned out his router "cabinet" he filled a wheel-barrow to over-flowing with Porter-Cable routers. Made me wanna hug the T.V.

    Trim/laminate routers Makita, Best rim router I ever had.

    Makita also makes an Excellent Hypoid or Worm-drive saw.
    The Skill 5150 classic is a great little handy-mans saw and effective in a scenic shop in an educational setting simply because if it walks or gets dropped it's easy and cheap enough to replace.

    Wrenches, screwdrivers, most hand tools, ratchets. Craftsman. Lifetime warranty you break it, you get a new one. and there is a Sears almost anywhere.
    Oh yeah and Starret the ultimate in levels and replacement spirit level fluid. I sent an intern after Spirit level fluid the other day he was gone for hours !
     
  20. soundlight

    soundlight Well-Known Member

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    I shouldn't be forgetting brands like porter cable...especially when I grew up reading the Tool Crib catalog as soon as it got to the mailbox. I second the Porter Cable router recommendation.

    And yeah, get craftsman tools. I recently had a 30-year-old ratchet wrench from a yard sale break, and I took it in to the Sears store, and they sent me a new one in the mail (they didn't have the right one in stock). Free. I didn't even have to pay shipping. I didn't believe it until I saw it, and it's true!
     

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