Swap sale purchase earns loyal Klein customer $5,000
Finding 109-year-old pair of side cutting pliers in working order wins company contest
A $10 purchase at a California swap meet has turned into a $5,000 prize from a promotion from Klein Tools looking for the oldest working pair of side-cutting pliers.
According to a Klein Co. press release, Dan Schmidt found the 1904 pair of pliers at the Sky Village Mall in Yucca Valley, Cal. and purchased them for $10. They originally sold for $3.60 when they were made 109 years ago, but that included the 30 cents for the special nickel plating.
Klein Tools embarked on a nationwide search for the oldest pair of pliers, and company officials were thrilled both with the enthusiasm of their customers and the tales behind the submissions.
“We were overwhelmed with the inquiries and heart-warming stories of Klein tools being handed down from one generation to another,” said Thomas Barton, product marketing manager. “Stories such as our second oldest pair from Robert Armstrong, Jr. really exemplify what the Klein Tools’ brand is all about. His pair of 1906 pliers were handed down to his father in 1941 while on the job as a line foreman in Dyersburg, Tennessee and then handed down to Robert.”
There were other stories, like 89-year-old Gerald Schumacher, who bought his pair of pliers in 1956 and used them on the job for 30 years. Then there was 13-year-old Brody Tonelotti, who found a pair of 1952 pliers in good condition while rummaging at a yard sale.
“The value placed on our products is exceptional,” said Mark Klein, a sixth generation Klein who serves as the company’s vice president of domestic sales. “As a company, our goal is to produce the highest quality product possible. In exchange, we are rewarded with incredible customer loyalty.”
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Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey