Monday, November 17, 2014

Save Your Knuckles: Use a Craftsman 6-Inch Extension with Your 3/8-Inch Drive

Craftsman 6-inch Extension Bar (3/8-inch Drive)

A socket set is nothing but a tool to some people, yet to other people all each shiny pieces-part is another fix for their addiction. Makers of these marvelous tools are quite happy to sell you basic sets; usually the ratchet handle plus a few sockets in metric or English sizes. Only after you’ve started building a tool kit do you realize that basic socket set is the tool guy’s gateway drug. Once you’re gotten into a buying mode, you quickly learn there are all manner of accessories, adapters and other parts that don’t simple make using those shiny toys easier, sometimes they’re just plain indispensable. A case in point is the Craftsman 3/8-inch Drive 6-inch Extension bar.

It looks pretty simple. 

Craftsman 44261 6-in. extension bar, 3/8"

Heck, it is simple: it’s a forged alloy steel rod slightly more than 1/2” in diameter. At one end there’s a hollow bell shape that hides a 3/8-inch female socket where a ratchet or breaker bar fits, at the other end you’ll find a 3/8” cube of solid steel. The male end slots into a socket or other accessory. It’s accessorized with a end spring-loaded ball bearing that helps hold a socket securely, and has a slightly bevel end to guide it into a socket more easily. The nickel-plated extension is a total of six inches long; the total reach is a tad shorter if you take into account the socket end. 

Why an extension? 

A significant number of bolts and nuts are can be found hiding in recesses, even in deep wells. The deeper the hidey-hole, the longer the extension necessary. You could also use your extension to lift a ratchet’s head above a mass of parts so you can spin it through the full 360°, which makes loosening and tightening bolts much faster task and keeps knuckles safe. 

Like all hand tools with the Craftsman name printed on them, the extension is guaranteed for life, no questions asked. Mine, which I bought some time back in the ‘70s (the maker mark is –V–), remains in near-perfect shape even after forty years. It’s marked MADE in U.S.A., though some current versions are apparently made in China. The drive size and Craftsman's stock number are also engraved on the female end. 

A six-inch extension bar like this one is just the sort of tool about which almost every owner would tell you, "No tool box should be without one." And the people who do say that? They're right!

You can get a 6-inch extension bar in a set of extensions or by itself. If half-inch drive is your thing, it's available in that drive size, too.


PLUS: Simple, elegant, and solidly made, with a lifetime guarantee
MINUS: not a one
What They’re Saying: Socket adapters and extensions are musts for the serious tool-head, and a Craftsman 6-inch extension bar like this one is indispensable.

No comments:

Post a Comment