1 2
CJ (He's Just an FS)
CJ (He's Just an FS) HalfDork
11/30/20 9:25 p.m.

So my bride has been asking me what I want for my birthday/Christmas – both are in December. I have been thinking about tool storage for a while. Currently I have a 20-year-old Craftsman lower and upper box. It is in perfect shape, but many of the drawers are simply not deep enough for the tools I am trying to put in them. The ultimate goal is to have reasonable organization for the mechanic tools, the body tools, and the woodworking tools. Also, having some additional work surfaces would be helpful.

We recently had a Harbor Freight open and it looks to me as if they have raised the bar on some of their tool chest lines. The ones I am looking at are US General and Yukon. I have seen both in person and both seem solid. Drawers are smooth…. at least while they are empty.

The US General box I am looking at is this 72” unit. $1100. Looks like a very nice unit. 6” casters, all ball bearing slides – big drawers have 2 sets of slides. 530 lbs empty.

The Yukon box is 46”, on sale for $300, so I would buy 2. 5” casters, all ball bearing slides. About 180 lbs each empty.

To be honest, I am a hobbyist/hack. Whatever I get, it will not be abused or spend a lot of time rolling around. The shop floor is smooth concrete, so it will not have to go four wheeling if I do move it around. Given my age (mid-60s) it is unlikely I will be making this purchase again, so don’t want to mess up.

What is the thinking of the tribe? Am I missing something? Is there another brand I should look at? Most important, does anyone have ownership experience with either brand?

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 SuperDork
11/30/20 9:36 p.m.

I have a US General from about ten years ago. It has been pretty great. One of the drawers is sort of dicked up because I was standing on the top of the tool box and fell, landing on the open drawer. That was my bad. 

This guy: https://www.harborfreight.com/44-in-x-22-in-double-bank-roller-cabinet-red-64281.html 

I've seen the new ones at HF and have been very impressed- that said- I've seen a nice milwaukee (?) and Husky box at HD that I would definitely compare against. The HD boxes had power strips built in which are a nice little touch, and are not much more expensive if at all than the HD ones.

CJ (He's Just an FS)
CJ (He's Just an FS) HalfDork
12/1/20 1:14 a.m.

I think I may wait a bit to see what HD ends up within the next couple of weeks.  They had some real deals last year. 

Good info on the US General.  Thanks

03Panther
03Panther Dork
12/1/20 1:22 a.m.

In reply to Teh E36 M3 :

I have two of those hf boxes... well used, and still in great shape. One for metric, one for standard, separated by a craftsman box. I just wish one was mirror image... just ‘caus. 

That being said, I like some of the more modern at H D right now. Power strips etc. 

SkinnyG (Forum Supporter)
SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/1/20 2:08 a.m.

I just bought the 52" version of that Yukon box you posted to house my autobody and metalworking tools.  I was very disappointed to discover that it was full as soon as I loaded it.  Decent box though - VERY glad I got it.

RevRico
RevRico UltimaDork
12/1/20 2:10 a.m.

Go multiple boxes. One for mechanical, one for wood work, one for body.

Some day I'll be able to afford to follow my own advice. Having everything in 2 big boxes SUCKS for finding things or keeping them clean. 

preach
preach Reader
12/1/20 3:56 a.m.

I have a 5x" snap-on lower and middle for my car tools and a 40" Kennedy 10 drawer wood topped work bench. The Snap-on is freighted and I still have a bunch of (hated) injection molded cases with tools under my regular workbench. The Kennedy hardly has anything in it, but I just unburied it after 2 years.  It is going to get casters as well. In the pics in front of the Snap-on you can see my little service cart. It has 3 drawers on it that I have yet to use. To the right of the drill press you can see part of a smaller Craftsman box. It contains an over flowing pile of drill bits etc.

When I acquired the snap-on box is was completely disassembled and I took the time to paint the outside and brushed in bed liner into the bottoms of the drawers. I plan on doing similar to the kennedy.

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
12/1/20 6:56 a.m.

Last year I bought a very similar one to the Yukon you listed - like identical but it adds a power strip built in to the right end. I got it at Home Depot as a dented model for well under $300. I think list was $359? I use it for all the general mechanics tools and automotive tools that my tiny Craftsman homeowner stack wasn't big enough for anymore. It works great and the workbench top is nice for general shop projects. If I were only doing hard core auto work I might prefer the all-metal, traditional wall-o-tools style box though.

I walked by those new boxes at HF recently and they were nice enough to literally stop me in my tracks. They had the full wall on display and I think I said "Damn that's nice" out loud.

GhiaMonster
GhiaMonster Reader
12/1/20 7:06 a.m.

I have the Husky branded version of that Yukon and it has been good to me so far.  A smaller old snap on box holds a lot of the specialty tools and helps spread things out.  I wouldn't like one giant box with everything in it. The Husky gets rolled across the garage or out to the driveway when tearing into something and provides a great mobile bench.  

thedoc
thedoc Reader
12/1/20 7:19 a.m.

how are the harbor freight boxes for use as a  work bench?  I am about to build another bench because I want a spot to work on parts, and I am about to rebuild a rear end.  If these work, it might be easier for me to just buy one.  I also need a spot to put a vice.  I forgot the other thread where he built a tool box into the bench.  It's pretty slick.

bigdaddylee82
bigdaddylee82 UberDork
12/1/20 9:27 a.m.

If you've got a Menards within a reasonable drive, check out their Masterforce boxes too.

I've had the 36" chest for several years, really like the latching drawer pulls. 

https://www.menards.com/main/brands/masterforce-tool-storage/c-12199.htm

 

I haven't looked at them in over a year, it seems they no longer offer a red tool chest, that sucks, I was planning on getting more to match my red chest when I get the room to expand.

Jake
Jake Dork
12/1/20 9:33 a.m.

I killed the other thread answering it at the end, so I'll just paste that reply here, more or less, with a thought. 

Most of the lawnmowers you can buy are made by a big Chinese company, AYP (American Yard Products, lol), and then rebadged into your consumer grade Deere, Craftsman, whatever. I imagine toolboxes are likely pretty much the same - all just built in the same place with varying specs, etc. Does anyone know the dirt on who makes these and how that industry works? 

For my part I'm just gonna get into my garage storage project over the next few months and then I'll buy what seems to be the size/ features I want- and the HF boxes will do for me for sure. I don't need super-massive durability for daily use, as I'm just a hobbyist. Something shiny that has enough storage to organize my crap inside and hopefully slides that won't disintegrate every 5yrs is all I'm after.

travellering
travellering HalfDork
12/1/20 11:12 a.m.

I can't speak as to who makes which box, but I can definitely vouch that the Harbor Freight US General 44inch rolling toolchest is a sturdy mofo.  I have one that I used for three years in a mold making shop.  I had a granite surface plate on one end of the top, and never noticed any substantial flex putting a few hundred pounds of mold plate on the other side of the top.  They rate it to hold something like 1500 lbs on the top of the box, and the remainder of the 3000lb capacity spread amongst the drawers.  I'll be purchasing another shortly as that one is in my garage now and I need a toolchest/workbench again at work...

Yukon brand is one they brought out as the price for the US General kept creeping up due to shipping and raw materials cost.  They are noticeably lighter gauge construction and I would not want to hit them with any especially heavy loads in any drawers.  

Recently they started going for the bottom end of Snap-On's market with the Icon brand of tool storage.  Out of my price range even with the recent price drops, but they are every bit as solid as Blue-Point(SnapOn value brand).  If you need a pro toolbox and have a tool allowance or are willing to sign up for their credit line, not bad for the price...

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
12/1/20 11:35 a.m.

at my previous job, i had the US General 56" version of the 72" shown by the OP, and it was pretty dang nice.

Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter)
Paul_VR6 (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/1/20 12:34 p.m.

In for reviews on the big Series 2 HF, thats on my sights for the next few weeks. cool

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 SuperDork
12/1/20 12:56 p.m.

As far as workbench top, I bought this 3/8 steel worktop- 2ft x 4ft from JMR Fab. Heavy as hell but a great welding surface and it has slots to use those holder downer things so I can mount a vise, or hold down stuff when I weld. Unfortunately it is a horizontal surface, and therefore collects crap  

ultraclyde (Forum Supporter)
ultraclyde (Forum Supporter) UltimaDork
12/1/20 1:13 p.m.

If horizontal surfaces weren't meant to hold random crap, Newton would never have invented gravity.

trucke
trucke SuperDork
12/1/20 1:28 p.m.
Teh E36 M3 said:

I have a US General from about ten years ago. It has been pretty great. One of the drawers is sort of dicked up because I was standing on the top of the tool box and fell, landing on the open drawer. That was my bad. 

This guy: https://www.harborfreight.com/44-in-x-22-in-double-bank-roller-cabinet-red-64281.html 

I've seen the new ones at HF and have been very impressed- that said- I've seen a nice milwaukee (?) and Husky box at HD that I would definitely compare against. The HD boxes had power strips built in which are a nice little touch, and are not much more expensive if at all than the HD ones.

Got the same one recently.  It was on sale for $450.  Added the side chest with a 15% off of $219 or $186.15.  Now I need one for the other side!  Waiting for a deal!

CJ (FS)
CJ (FS) HalfDork
12/9/20 11:02 a.m.

So thought I would close this out. 

Home Depot had a sale on this Husky 46" tool box at $348.  I bought 2.  When we were loading them, saw that one had a dent in the end panel.  Got $100 off that one.  Having the power / USB available is nice and they have double slides on the big drawers.

Thanks for all of the suggestions!

 

WillG80
WillG80 New Reader
12/11/20 7:56 p.m.
CJ (FS) said:

So thought I would close this out. 

Home Depot had a sale on this Husky 46" tool box at $348.  I bought 2.  When we were loading them, saw that one had a dent in the end panel.  Got $100 off that one.  Having the power / USB available is nice and they have double slides on the big drawers.

Thanks for all of the suggestions!

 

As someone looking to buy a similar box in the next 12 months, what did you like in the Husky box over the HF Yukon box? 

SkinnyG (Forum Supporter)
SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/11/20 8:50 p.m.

I'll bet the Husky/Yukon is just a sticker game.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/11/20 8:58 p.m.

In reply to SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) :

I bought Snap On and have never regretted my decision. Yes, Some new boxes are as good as my old Snap Ons. 
     But paying for a toolbox and tools each paycheck was an easy interest free way to acquire tools that have lasted my lifetime and still feel good and work perfectly. 

03Panther
03Panther Dork
12/11/20 9:41 p.m.
frenchyd said:

In reply to SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) :

I bought Snap On and have never regretted my decision. Yes, Some new boxes are as good as my old Snap Ons. 
     But paying for a toolbox and tools each paycheck was an easy interest free way to acquire tools that have lasted my lifetime and still feel good and work perfectly. 

Unfortunately, Snap On makes up for the interest on their ridiculously inflated prices! The are definitely good quality tools (including their boxes,) and a valuable resource to a shop mechanic, but the deals come from being friends with the truck owner, and having access to the deals that come up!

SkinnyG (Forum Supporter)
SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) UberDork
12/11/20 9:50 p.m.
frenchyd said:

In reply to SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) :

I bought Snap On and have never regretted my decision. Yes, Some new boxes are as good as my old Snap Ons. 
     But paying for a toolbox and tools each paycheck was an easy interest free way to acquire tools that have lasted my lifetime and still feel good and work perfectly. 

A Snap-On anything isn't going to personally, directly, benefit my current career at all, much less even justify the cost. At no point have I said to myself "dang it, I wish I had that one Snap-On toolbox instead of the five I was able to buy for the same money.  And tools."

know they are good quality.  But my tools are not my bread and butter.

frenchyd
frenchyd PowerDork
12/11/20 10:18 p.m.
03Panther said:
frenchyd said:

In reply to SkinnyG (Forum Supporter) :

I bought Snap On and have never regretted my decision. Yes, Some new boxes are as good as my old Snap Ons. 
     But paying for a toolbox and tools each paycheck was an easy interest free way to acquire tools that have lasted my lifetime and still feel good and work perfectly. 

Unfortunately, Snap On makes up for the interest on their ridiculously inflated prices! The are definitely good quality tools (including their boxes,) and a valuable resource to a shop mechanic, but the deals come from being friends with the truck owner, and having access to the deals that come up!

That's exactly how they entice you to keep you in debt.  "The wrenches that used to sell for $374.00 are on sale today only for $199 or $12 more per paycheck". If a month went by without a major purchase something I'd had my eye on always came on sale.   
     I'm a tool-aholic  and the Snap on Guy was my pusher.  Besides SWMBO understood that I needed tools to do my job. ( even when later on  when I was a salesman ).    

1 2
Our Preferred Partners
sdAmoP4AmLzV80lg9pc37n4TkuVxu7YgtsGcyIXm7IX2YBf4lQbCzrCzGEXzdHax