Get ready to update that toolbox this holiday season. Sears, Roebuck and Co. (NYSE: S) is bringing a new generation of tools to do-it-yourselfers everywhere that can help them be more precise, more productive and more powerful.
"More homeowners are joining the do-it-yourself ranks as interest in home improvement continues to climb among both men and women," said Bob Vila, the dean of home improvement and host of "Bob Vila's Home Again". "Having the right tool is as important as having the right materials or design plans. Whether it's a laser level or a cordless drill, there are lots of newer tools that can enhance a do-it-yourselfer's skills, make jobs go faster and smoother, and even replace two or three traditional tools in the toolbox."
For example, the Craftsman Grip Master pliers don't look like your father's pliers, and with good reason. These pliers are engineered to multiply hand strength beyond the basic lever concept. Its innovative design enables it to convert to locking pliers with a flip of the switch. (For a complete details and photography of the tools that comprise the Craftsman Innovative Toolbox, go to http://www.searsmedia.com/ .)
Laser measuring tools illustrate how technology can enhance a do-it- yourselfer's skill and add new capability. Not only do these tools make measuring distances faster, they can add multiple distances, calculate an area's square footage and volume in cubic feet -- handy information to determine capacity needs when replacing or adding humidifiers, air cleaners or air conditioners. The Craftsman Laser Measuring Tool is the latest in the tool line's collection of laser-equipped products.
Even the utilitarian adjustable wrench is easier to use than ever before. The ratcheting action of the Craftsman ReFlex adjustable wrench makes loosening and tightening bolts and other fasteners quicker since the wrench doesn't have to be repositioned between turns.
New capability has been added to seemingly mundane items. The Craftsman Long-Life L.E.D. Lighted Safety Glasses have built-in LED's directly on the frames, putting illumination directly where the wearer requires it. The two lights are adjustable to several angles. And the new Craftsman Illum-A-gloves have LED lights integrated along the index finger of the gloves to provide illumination close to the work at hand.
And the toolbox itself has changed. Toolboxes now come in lighter, high- impact plastic with built-in storage compartments for screws, nuts and bolts and other items. Now, tool bags have joined the mix with integrated pockets that hold a variety of tools and the soft sides and bottoms won't mark up the floor or walls where work is being done.
Innovation also extends to the do-it-yourselfer's workshop in the form of new power tools. Newer high-voltage cordless drills and saws provide power along with mobility, which is particularly useful for outdoor projects. And new longer lasting, rechargeable batteries make these tools more viable for big jobs, like building a deck or arbor. The addition of lasers extends beyond the measuring tool or level and into circular saws, cordless trim saws, jigsaws and miter saws.
Finally, some new tools can do the job of several traditional tools. The new Craftsman Twin Cutter is a portable power saw that has two carbide-tipped blades set flush to one another, yet rotate in opposite directions. The result is a lightweight 7 lb. saw that can quickly cut through metal, wood, plastic or fiberglass with significantly less risk of kickback. It's so versatile it can do the work of a hacksaw, a circular saw, or a reciprocating saw.
"It really pays to add these new tools to your toolbox or workshop," Vila advised. "Using a miter saw or jigsaw with a laser cutting guide helps do-it- yourselfers when cutting trim for baseboards or crown molding," he pointed out. "The laser level makes hanging shelves faster and easier. Even using an electric screwdriver or 'drill driver' can reduce hand fatigue when changing knobs on a cabinet or assembling furniture."
About Sears Tool Business
Led by its exclusive Craftsman brand, Sears has more than 6,000 tools selected and designed to equip do-it-yourselfers, mechanics, homeowners and hobbyists to help them work easier, be more productive and achieve better results. Sears' extensive selection of tools includes such popular brands as Makita, DeWalt, Porter Cable, Milwaukee, Skil, and Black and Decker. In addition, Sears' line of Craftsman Professional power tools are designed and manufactured to meet the needs of carpenters and other professionals that earn their living with their tools.
Sears, Roebuck and Co. is a leading broadline retailer providing merchandise and related services. With revenues in 2003 of $41.1 billion, the company offers its wide range of home merchandise, apparel and automotive products and services through more than 2,300 Sears-branded and affiliated stores in the U.S. and Canada, which includes approximately 870 full-line and 1,100 specialty stores in the U.S. Sears also offers a variety of merchandise and services through sears.com, landsend.com, and specialty catalogs. Sears is the only retailer where consumers can find each of the Kenmore, Craftsman, DieHard and Lands' End brands together -- among the most trusted and preferred brands in the U.S. The company is the largest provider of product repair services with more than 14 million service calls made annually.Photo: NewsCom: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20041103/CGW028
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SOURCE: Sears, Roebuck and Co.
CONTACT: News Media Contact, William B. Masterson of Sears, Roebuck and