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Wednesday, August 7, 2013

My Pride and Joy--Ruined Tool

Craftsman 30 inch power lever bypass loppers
Yes, I love them and protect them.

I bought these in 1993 after the old loppers totally failed. The old loppers were missing one handle, so I had to stick a pipe on the metal part and try to keep it on while I lopped. I think I paid $35 for this pair, an exorbitant price for me when I was in school. But, I planned to only buy this one pair, ever. Plus, I did all my yard work. So, good tools were important.
Some days, you make mistakes. My mistake? I allowed other people to use them on my bushes. These are only meant to lop a 1 1/2 inch branch. I would come outdoors to find someone using these for a 3" branch. Sure, they will eventually hack it off but at what price to my equipment. Or, they would have the loppers around a limb and would be twisting the loppers in an attempt to remove the limb. I have had great shouting arguments with men, with me finally stomping off with my loppers clutched protectively to my chest. You are doing me no favor if you needlessly cost me money!
I can shift a car if I try long enough, but with damage to the transmission. So, men hate me shifting their cars, but my loppers are fair game. Unfair? What do you think?  
Now, when asked, I do not own loppers or a lawnmower or a yard rake. And, I have caught men leaving with my hand tools tucked into a pocket. It is not right to have to retrieve tools from someone you are paying who just did not bring tools or even from a friend who is doing me a favor.
Look at this below.

 See the nicks in the cutting blade?
Those actually can be seen as "holes" or indentations when I hold it up right. Oh, the loppers above  are sitting on a table that has plastic over it. But, it looks like a palm. Hmmm. Weird.
When Charlie and exbf put in a new little ac in a window for me, they needed to lop some errant wisteria so they asked for something to cut with. I mistakenly gave them the loppers and came back to find Charlie using all his gym-trained strength to cut wisteria wrapped around a dead 220 electric line hanging down and hidden by wisteria. Aaaack. I made him stop and told him why the loppers would not cut the wisteria.
Then, he and exbf decided the loppers would make a good prying tool. I shrieked, ran and snatched them up. I clutched them to my chest and retreated into the house, whining about the mistreatment. Soooo, these have a lifetime guarantee from Sears. But, they no longer make the double hinged ones.
I am so sad.
Other mistreatment of my loppers: I caught one person who had stabbed the blades into the ground so they he would have them handy. ???
Another, trying not to abuse the blade, stood the handles on the ground in a muddy place. I lay them flat on the ground when I need to lay them down if there is not a handy surface around to place them safely.
Am I just a pain in the @$$ to others when it comes to tools?
Every time I finish using my loppers, I bring them inside the house, clean the blade and apply WD40. I try so hard to not have to replace tools ruined from misuse or neglect. I do buy few tools, but they are quality tools.
Seriously, would you have a difficult time keeping my loppers unharmed? So you keep your tools safe and figure other folks' tools are there for abuse?
When anyone happens to see my loppers, the person eventually wants to borrow them for their own use at their home. My answer: "Meet me at Dollar General and I will buy you a  pair."  So far, no one has ever taken me up on that. But, I never have asked to borrow anything. EVER! I refuse offers to lend me things.
One friend had a 1/2 mile drive with privet hanging and scratching cars that drove on her driveway. Her creek was choked by privets. She drank and was not reliable with other people's things. Her own tools were in the rain because she "forgot" to bring them in. Would you trust her with your expensive loppers? She got over my denying her use of my loppers. She refused my offer of Dollar General loppers. Remember, these were $35 twenty years ago. What would they cost now?
I have been on the phone for two hours with Sears trying to get these lifetime-warranty loppers replaced, repaired. Or, sell me the part that is damaged.
Your turn
Am I too possessive? Do I care more for things than people? Am I selfish? Am I not a good friend? these are things people have said over the lopper debate. 


  1. I am very careful who I lend tools to also. Why? Well some of them were my dads craftman tools and some I have accrued over time but they are expensive and I can not afford to replace them. I need to be careful with everything I posses from tools, to clothes, dishes, everything. These are the things that keep my life going. One of my friends is greatly annoyed at me because I had my son stop last night to get my pyrex bowl she borrowed over 6 months ago. It was my grandmoms and means a lot to me plus it is the perfect size for making meatballs and such. So she called me this morning saying she was going to return it eventually she just forgot. I told her now she didn't have to worry since my son picked it up and she doesn't have to make a trip.

    1. Judy S,
      You gave such a good response. I am also careful with my things, but good things and cannot afford to replace them.

      I would say your friend should be embarrassed you had to send someone to retrieve it. "I forgot" is the perfect way to gain a nice bowl. I would never lend her anything else.

      My friend's son wanted to borrow an antique vase with flowers I arranged in it. He promised to bring it back the next day. Two weeks later I had to retrieve it, and his mother was annoyed, saying she was going to bring it back. Yeah, she passed my house every day. The kid/older teen should have returned it. PLUS, the flowers were in the vase, still with a tiny bit of water, and the flowers were dead.

      She borrowed a coiled extension cord. I had to go get it. She was mad I wanted it NOW--three weeks later, so she threw it on the hood of her car and the grass, not coiled, even with loops.

  2. Well, I learned something today. Thank you! I will be more mindful tomorrow when I continue my assault on the wisteria!

    1. Alex,
      Wisteria disguises everything, even the chained link fence, so the loppers have tried to bite the fence....grrr.

  3. Well, I don't think I'd get so wrapped around the axle over some clippers. But I absolutely feel the same way about my guns. So maybe the only difference between us on this is that we value different items. If you have something you value of course you will want to take care of it. I'd say just don't lend people your tools.

    1. Harry,
      Yes, it depends on what you value. I value things I had to pay for once and will have to replace. I could not have afforded to replace my loppers every year. No, I don't lend, but Charlie and exbf were needing to rid the area of shrubs and wisteria!

      I don't own guns, but wish I did. I would be careful about those, too.

  4. Ouch. You make me sound like a witch!! lol I have always had MY tools. Then, during my divorce of the wasbund, he took HIS tools AND my tools. Okay then. I slowly got a new tool here, and a new tool there, and coveted them. The right tool for the right job. Right? My last replacement was a pair of loppers. Perfect. Then Joe loaned MY loppers to an idiot in the village, who also happened to have a nut and bolt he wanted to loosen. Did he use pliers? A screwdriver? Of course not. Not when he had my loppers nearby. They now will not snip a piece of grass!!

    Does Sears require the original receipt?

    1. lotta joy,
      I did acquire my tools one at a time and with much thought and care. When I need a tool, I do not borrow one, I go buy it.

      Joe loaned your loppers? Ouch! I would have had a come-to-jesus meeting with Joe and the village idiot.

      No, they will not require a receipt.

      How did I make you sound like a witch? Because that is what I sound like? lol

      Secret--keep loppers in the house and hidden from view so no one knows you have them. I even make exbf bring his loppers because they barely work because he ruined his own loppers!

  5. Linda, I am so sorry. I would be unhappy too at the idea of someone being less than careful with a treasured tool. I avoid lending my favorite tools, especially to my husband who is tough on everything ! LOL

    1. Jane,
      That is hilarious that you don't lend tools to your husband. Now, I don't feel bad at all for not lending to exbf when he is working in my yard. The loppers are just so easily ruined! I was just so horribly mistaken that I could trust Charlie or him for three minutes and within my sight! Thanks for the support.

  6. Can you sharpen your loppers? Most tools need sharpening after a certain amount of use, no matter how careful you are with them. I'd use a knife-sharpening whetstone on it. Here - I actually found some instructions on doing it

    and if you search on YouTube you can probably find a video that shows you how.

    1. Jane,
      Sharpening them is one of the things I want to talk about with Sears. I can barely grate cheese. I probably won't be sharpening anything with a whetstone. At the end of the day, my hands hurt with just normal living. I injured both hands in two separate accidents years ago. There is no arthritis, just pain after doing normal things and not much of that.

      Thanks for the link. My ploy is to figure out how to do something, find written instructions or video and then find someone who may have never done what I need and show that person instructions or have the person watch a video. I am devious that

      Going to the link.

  7. The internet just ate my rather lengthy response but in a nut shell .....No you are NOT crazy or selfish! I figure that lending anything is like lending money .... you should never lend something that you are not prepared to loose.

    I have my own tools ....My husband leaves his stuff out in the elements. I hide tools and scissors and have an eagle eye on my kitchen knives. I'm with you when it comes to caring for my tools!

    1. I never thought of the lending money angle. Well, since I have been accused of both, I just wondered.

      My ex told me that it did not hurt to do anything once. So, he ruined a swimsuit in the dryer, wooden bbq tool with leather on it by putting it in the dishwasher, a good table knife used as a screwdriver.

      A guy I was thinking of dating became very excited when he heard of my many machines and sewing equipment, saying his daughter was learning to sew, that she would love all the different types of machines. I told him she was not going to ever sew on my machines. He became icy cold. He had a woodworking shop and professionally made furniture. Lots of his equipment was computerized. I told him my son would love to learn woodworking, so would my son be allowed to used his equipment anytime he pleased. He said, "Hell no. No one touches my tools or equipment." He begrudgingly acknowledged that I had a point. He moved on to the next woman who had a machine, most likely. lol.

  8. I don't have yard tools of my own, but heaven help the person who ever uses my fabric shears! :-)

    1. Sue,
      Oh, so true! my children knew not to touch them. However, husband's attitude of "it doesn't hurt to do anything once." infuriated me. Hell's fury came down on anyone caught even looking at my sewing scissors. I did not have yard tools then.


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