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Sawzall

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bob_46
bob_46 Member Posts: 813
Does anybody remember how much a Sawzall cost in the 60's ?

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  • Tinman
    Tinman Member Posts: 2,808
    edited December 2016
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    No but if I had to guess, I'd say around $65?
    Steve Minnich
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
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    Are you heading 'Back to the Future' Bob? I bet they were solid, heavy and had that instant on to full speed like the drills-no variable speed triggers.

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  • bob_46
    bob_46 Member Posts: 813
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    Real "mans" tool. Mine was all aluminum , no plastic , no double insulation , no third prong . On humid days you had better wear dry gloves or you would get a tickle . A sawzall purchase was a big deal back in the day . You can buy a new one today for about $100, only 30% increase in 56 years . How can that be ?

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  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,923
    edited December 2016
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    bob said:

    Real "mans" tool. Mine was all aluminum , no plastic , no double insulation , no third prong . On humid days you had better wear dry gloves or you would get a tickle . A sawzall purchase was a big deal back in the day . You can buy a new one today for about $100, only 30% increase in 56 years . How can that be ?

    All aluminum doesn't make it a better tool, in fact, it often makes it a worse tool. Plastics have come a long way and often will take more abuse than metal in the same application.

    No third prong and no double insulation is most certainly worse for obvious reasons.

    I think my Sawzall was around $150 in 2012. As far as how can that be look at the quantities they are making vs what they made in the 1960s. Also, look where a majority of the components are made. Is a 1960s one more durable, perhaps, I don't know but they are also most certainly weaker. The 1960s one most likely came with a metal case where the modern $100 one may come with nothing. My $150 one came with a plastic case.


    My 1933 7 cubic foot Monitor Top was the equivalent to around $3000 new in 1933 and literally weighs 350 pounds empty. You can get an equivalent sized refrigerator for around $120 today and it weighs 60 pounds. How can that be?

    I know exactly where you're coming from and I'd say it has to do with both quantity produced, how they have refined the manufacturing process and the fact most of it is made overseas. You get a tool that is 90% as good for 60% the cost.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    I think I paid about $140 for my first Sawzall (sometime in the mid-80s.)
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,923
    edited December 2016
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    SWEI said:

    I think I paid about $140 for my first Sawzall (sometime in the mid-80s.)

    What cost $140 in 1985 would cost $310.87 in 2015.


    What do you feel the differences are between the current ones, and your first one?

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    I believe mine was one of the first offered with orbital action, so it cost maybe $20-25 more than the standard models at the time.

    The new ones are a bit lighter, and the quick-change blade chucks save a lot of time. My Porter-Cable and Bosch saws have both needed repairs, but both were worked hard during their first couple of years of life.

    They mostly get used for for wall and carpentry demo now. The M18 bandsaw sees a lot more action these days.
  • Tinman
    Tinman Member Posts: 2,808
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    Honestly, the old Sawzalls sucked. I have 2 from the 60's (I'm not that old) in mint condition, bought them at flea markets. I wouldn't use them if you paid me. I just like old things in great condition.
    Steve Minnich
    Solid_Fuel_Man
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,923
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    Honestly, the old Sawzalls sucked. I have 2 from the 60's (I'm not that old) in mint condition, bought them at flea markets. I wouldn't use them if you paid me. I just like old things in great condition.

    This is often the case.
    Look at 1980s cordless drills, expensive and complete garbage.

    I restored a 1950s, or 60s Skil 3/4" or 1" hand drill for my uncle, it was all aluminum, very heavy and strong. But, no variable speed, no clutch, no reverse. A modern rotohammer is just as strong and sometimes stronger, and has all of the features the old one didn't. Sure, it's mainly plastic but who cares, it's just as durable. In fact, I'd bet the modern rotohammer has a better made armature and field.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • BobC
    BobC Member Posts: 5,481
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    I remember a 1950's era hole hawg made by Millwaukee we had in the machine shop. It had an aluminum casing and a 3 ft piece of conduit attached to it with a rope connecting the pipe to the drill.

    This was a drill with a D handle, single speed (500RPM?) it had tremendous torque. If the bit stopped YOU started to rotate. At least one guy got a broken wrist because he didn't use the pipe to hold it back.

    Tools like that deserve a lot of respect.

    Bob
    Smith G8-3 with EZ Gas @ 90,000 BTU, Single pipe steam
    Vaporstat with a 12oz cut-out and 4oz cut-in
    3PSI gauge
    kcopp
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 15,923
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    BobC said:

    I remember a 1950's era hole hawg made by Millwaukee we had in the machine shop. It had an aluminum casing and a 3 ft piece of conduit attached to it with a rope connecting the pipe to the drill.

    This was a drill with a D handle, single speed (500RPM?) it had tremendous torque. If the bit stopped YOU started to rotate. At least one guy got a broken wrist because he didn't use the pipe to hold it back.

    Tools like that deserve a lot of respect.

    Bob

    Keep the bit slightly loose...... :)
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • BigErl
    BigErl Member Posts: 38
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    These are from an ad for Stanley tools out of the Saturday Evening Post (1961). No sawzall but you can get an idea of costs.
  • Harvey Ramer
    Harvey Ramer Member Posts: 2,261
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    I don't remember how much I paid for any Sawzall. I'm a tool nut and I buy everything I see. Ever since I bought the M18 hacksaw, I have been looking down my nose at Sawzalls and haven't touched one since.
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    $40 for a jigsaw, $50 for a sidewinder, and $80 for a router in 1961.

    $40,000 bought a house in Los Altos in 1963.
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,750
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    I have had a couple old aluminum tools, drill and a reciprocating saw. The drill has it's uses, but a lot of shortcomings as Chris already pointed out. The saw I got rid of, my modern DeWalt kills it handily.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 22,483
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    Here is a handy tool for the tool nut. I've used it on 3 projects now and it is impressive for a cordless tool. 18V transfer pump.




    http://mechanical-hub.com/prostaff-review-milwaukee-tool-m18-transfer-pump
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
  • Fred
    Fred Member Posts: 8,542
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    You gotta love Milwaukee tools!
  • Harvey Ramer
    Harvey Ramer Member Posts: 2,261
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    Oh great. Thanks Bob. Now I have something else that I'll have to buy.
    I am the king of cord cutters.

    #cordlesseverything
    Canucker
  • billtwocase
    billtwocase Member Posts: 2,385
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    Lucky you to have a sawzall back then. Hacksaw was very popular and very common :) I would say they were very pricey back then.
  • hvacfreak2
    hvacfreak2 Member Posts: 500
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    This is my go-to for most anything I do. Strut , rod , emt , schedule 40 steel , L copper , greenfield , liquidtight , etc. are just butter to this thing that is as light as a feather.

    https://milwaukeetool.com/power-tools/cordless/2429-20
    hvacfreak

    Mechanical Enthusiast

    Burnham MST 396 , 60 oz gauge , Tigerloop , Firomatic Check Valve , Mcdonnell Miller 67 lwco , Danfoss RA2k TRV's

    Easyio FG20 Controller

  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    One size up here -- this one cuts 3" pipe and I can still one-hand it if needed.
    Paul S_3
  • adamfre
    adamfre Member Posts: 122
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    BobC said:

    I remember a 1950's era hole hawg made by Millwaukee we had in the machine shop. It had an aluminum casing and a 3 ft piece of conduit attached to it with a rope connecting the pipe to the drill.

    This was a drill with a D handle, single speed (500RPM?) it had tremendous torque. If the bit stopped YOU started to rotate. At least one guy got a broken wrist because he didn't use the pipe to hold it back.

    Tools like that deserve a lot of respect.

    Bob

    2nd or 3rd time I broke my nose was due to a 1/2" Milwaukee drill. Thing will eat your lunch if you aren't paying attention to what you are doing :)

    Just want to stay warm in the winter. :D
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    On one of my first jobs I needed a bit more punch than my 1/2" drill could provide to punch my ships auger through a big stack of plates & beams. The plumber offered me his Hole Hawg (which turned out to be the low speed version, four inch drain lines and all) and it hung on something just before I finished the hole. I was up high on my ladder, using leg grip to steady myself. It spun me and the ladder together about 2-1/2 turns, winding my extension cord around the ladder. I ended up with a huge bruise on my upper arm (and serious respect for the tool.)
  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505
    edited December 2016
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    SWEI said:

    One size up here -- this one cuts 3" pipe and I can still one-hand it if needed.

    What's you're blade of choice for that @SWEI ? Or is there only one

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  • Gordy
    Gordy Member Posts: 9,546
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    SWEI said:

    On one of my first jobs I needed a bit more punch than my 1/2" drill could provide to punch my ships auger through a big stack of plates & beams. The plumber offered me his Hole Hawg (which turned out to be the low speed version, four inch drain lines and all) and it hung on something just before I finished the hole. I was up high on my ladder, using leg grip to steady myself. It spun me and the ladder together about 2-1/2 turns, winding my extension cord around the ladder. I ended up with a huge bruise on my upper arm (and serious respect for the tool.)

    Looks like you, and many others could have used this.

    http://dewalt.com/en-us/products/power-tools/drills/drills-and-hammer-drills/flex-volt-60v-max-vsr-stud-and-joist-drill-kit-with-eclutch-system-1-battery-kit/dcd460t1
  • hvacfreak2
    hvacfreak2 Member Posts: 500
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    The first generation " Hole Hawg " is a beast , I've been spun around by those a few times. We also had a 1/2 inch drill , Milwaukee " Hole Shooter ". " Wrist Breaker " was what I called it. Drills and saws have come a long way.
    hvacfreak

    Mechanical Enthusiast

    Burnham MST 396 , 60 oz gauge , Tigerloop , Firomatic Check Valve , Mcdonnell Miller 67 lwco , Danfoss RA2k TRV's

    Easyio FG20 Controller

  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,109
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    Back to the first Sawzall. After doing my first new furnace install cutting in about 20 or so SA/RA holes with a handyman scroll saw it was time for the big plunge of tool investment.
    8-11-1980, 6512 Sawzall, 2 speed with steel case, was a good deal at $150.00. (even with the allen wrench shoe....PITA today)

    The invoice also includes a 40 gal Rheem electric water heater for $117.81. It too may still be working.

    Still have the invoice and the tool. It is a back-up to the back-up.
    Switch is a little sticky but works fine otherwise.

    The 18 volt Hackzall is the favorite. One hand for the saw and one hand for the pipe. But any serious cutting the corded one comes out. Killing batteries gets you closer to buying another kit of goodies, that is why they always include a flashlight. ;)
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    edited December 2016
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    SWEI said:

    this one cuts 3" pipe and I can still one-hand it if needed.

    What's you're blade of choice for that @SWEI ? Or is there only one
    It uses 35-3/8" blades, which (at least a year or so ago) were only available from Milwaukee. They do offer 10,14,18, and 24 TPI versions (versus 18 TPI only on the M12 mini.) We almost always use the 18 TPI, though sometimes the 14 for demo work. The 10 could well be perfect for PVC but I haven't tried it. That's one place where a Sawzall with a demo blade really does cut like butter. I wish they made an M18 Fuel version of it.

    DeWalt makes a couple of mid-size saws with 2-1/2" throats (versus 3-1/4" on the 2629.) They do fit in tighter spaces.
  • rick in Alaska
    rick in Alaska Member Posts: 1,458
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    I have the Dewalt and it is one of my favorite tools also, along with my Milwaukee 12v fuel impact driver. I bought the dewalt to cut unistrut for gas installations, but use it for everything now. I haven't used a pipe cutter on almost anything since then. It has a small throat, but if you hold it right you can actually cut 3inch plastic with it.
    Am seriously considering going with the Milwaukee next time. Am really liking how the Milwaukee tools are any more, but the local place sells Dewalt. However, with Amazon Prime, I can get things delivered right to my door from the internet. Would prefer to buy local, but if I can't get it from them...
    Rick
    Rick
  • Charlie from wmass
    Charlie from wmass Member Posts: 4,333
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    I keep hearing cordless cordless cordless. I tried going cordless with the Sawzall and I got as far as the price tag. I have a little 12 volt hackzall but the 15 amp plug in Sawzall will always be on my truck. Granted the first one I bought last month only lasted 1 cut the second one seems to be better.
    Cost is what you spend , value is what you get.

    cell # 413-841-6726
    https://heatinghelp.com/find-a-contractor/detail/charles-garrity-plumbing-and-heating
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,109
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    From what I gather the 12v hackzall falls a little short.
    The 18v has quite a bit more going for it. Works on deep channel/strut up to maybe 2" IPS.

    The corded one is still close......I will pick it up with out plugging it in and wonder what is wrong.......dead battery?......no, just used to everything being cordless.
    Charlie from wmass
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
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    The M18 FUEL (or one of the DeWalt brushless models) have more punch -- and batteries should also last longer. They're not cheap -- but if you need to cut a lot of pipe they're probably what you want.