SK Hand Tools Corporation is an Illinois based company. Their main products include mechanic’s tools such as wrenches and drive tools. They also manufacture wrenches, sockets, as well as air tools.

The company is one of the most recognizable names when it comes to professional hand tools in the market. Their products are widely used and they are easy favorites for a lot of professionals.

The company notable for having invented the round head ratchet, which is one of the most used tools today. Note that the company is now a subsidiary of Ideal Industries.

Company History

Described as an iconic brand in the United States, SK Hand Tools Corporation has been around for decades. Some professional mechanics have used and grown old using the company’s products.

When Noah Grover Klove and Mason H. Sherman founded the company, they named it simply as the Sherman-Klove Company. Back then the company specialized in the manufacturing of screw machine products.

It was one of the products of the massive industrialization that occurred in World War I. During its inception, the company manufactured munitions for the US Army. Their Chicago screw machine plant produced mortar housings.

Things changed after the war since the demand for munitions dropped significantly. The business shifted and the company began contracting to manufacture tools for other brands, which included Craftsman.

 

The Great Depression

The manufacture of screw machine products for other business entities was a hit. Well, that was until the Great Depression came along. Unlike the many companies at the time, Sherman-Klove thrived in spite of financial difficulty.

One of their major clients, Hinsdale Socket and Wrench Company, closed down and filed for bankruptcy. This left them with a huge inventory of socket wrenches.

The company redesigned these socket wrenches – well, that’s not the only thing that changed. The entire company had to undergo a few changes as well. The name was changed to S-K Tools.

The redesigned socket wrenches became one of their more successful products. These ratchets have been rescaled ranging from 1/4-drive up to 3/4-drive.

Note that their redesigned round head ratchets became one of the most 7 popular ratchets in the US market for the last 7 decades. It is so effective that many of the reinventions of the round head only showed very minimal innovations when compared to the original.

They own the patent for this type of ratchet, which was patented in 1933. It’s a standard offer not only of the SK Hand Tool company but of its major competitors as well. Simply put, they still make money every time a competitor makes money.

In 2010 SK Hand Tools became part of the Ideal Industries family. Both companies are founded on innovation and commitment to American tradesmen.

 

Product Quality

The tools and products that come out of the factories of the SK Hand Tools Corporation are pretty much considered the standard in the industry. Their tools are usually pretty highly rated by actual customers.

A lot of their tools are rated 4 to 4.75 stars out of 5 stars. These are ratings from real customers who have used their products for many decades. They produce more than 3,000 types of tools. The company currently has production plants in Sycamore, Illinois and Colorado Springs, Colorado.

What Customers Have to Say About Their Tools

The majority of the customers have a generally favourable opinion about the company’s products. Some would say that SK Tools are their go to brand for really tough jobs.

The sockets usually get a lot of praises from DIYers who love to work right out their homes as well as professional mechanics working hard in shops nationwide. The tool sets are also a huge favorite for a lot of users.

Tools with multiple sockets included in the set are also quite popular. They are usually described as having a pretty nice grip. Even the refurbished SK sockets become easy favorites for experienced mechanics. All products from this company are made in the USA.

 

SK Hand Tools Best Sellers

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Product

Price

Rating

SK 94549 3/8-Inch Drive 6-Point Fractional/Metric Socket Set, 49-Piece

$$

4.2 Stars (4.2 / 5)
SK 42470 Professional 1/2-Inch Drive 10-1/4-Inch Reversible Ratchet

$$

4.9 Stars (4.9 / 5)
SK 45172 3/8-Inch Drive 1-1/2-Inch Professional Thumbwheel Ratchet

$$

4.7 Stars (4.7 / 5)
SK Hand Tools 86255 Fractional Combination Wrench Set, 15-Piece

$$

4.4 Stars (4.4 / 5)
SuperKrome 86265 12-Point 8-to-22-mm Combination Wrench Set, 15-Piece

$$

4.1 Stars (4.1 / 5)

Here we list some of the best-selling products produced by SK Hand Tools. We’ll list their best features and downsides as well.

SK 94549 3/8-Inch Drive 6-Point Fractional/Metric Socket Set, 49-Piece
4.2 Stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Patented SuperKrome finish
  • Features the SureGrip hex design
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Expensive
  • The quality of the case is suspect

SK 42470 Professional 1/2-Inch Drive 10-1/4-Inch Reversible Ratchet
4.9 Stars (4.9 / 5)

Pros

  • Reversible ratchet design
  • Features a diamond grip
  • Smooth ratchet action
  • Triple tooth contact

Cons

  • Slightly pricier than competition

SK 45172 3/8-Inch Drive 1-1/2-Inch Professional Thumbwheel Ratchet
4.7 Stars (4.7 / 5)

Pros

  • 36 tooth design
  • Diamond knurled grip
  • Features a thumbwheel
  • Fully enclosed ratchet mechanism
  • Triple tooth contact

Cons

  • Higher price point

SK Hand Tools 86255 Fractional Combination Wrench Set, 15-Piece
4.4 Stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • Features SureGrip lock
  • Thicker shank
  • Has edges that are rounded off

Cons

  • Packaged on the short side set of the market – not the set for you if you need bigger wrenches
  • Some finishing issues

SuperKrome 86265 12-Point 8-to-22-mm Combination Wrench Set, 15-Piece
4.1 Stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • SureGrip hex design
  • 15 degree open end
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Open box sets may have missing tools