Mar 202007
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Irwin Blue Chip ChiselsAlmost all of us who work here, including myself, are avid woodworkers. Needless to say, we love our tools. We take an active interest in making sure the stuff we sell works. If it’s expensive, we want the best. If it sells for less, we make sure it’s a good value. The bottom line is we want our friends, our customers, to be happy and enjoy our tools. So, we have things like a tech line and a fairly liberal return policy to make sure you get what you want. Another thing we do is we test our products. Product testing has been a tradition at Highland since day one. You’ve read our ad that says, “Our catalog gives you more than just manufacturer’s specs…” We really do take this stuff home, give it a go in our own shops and try to be as honest as possible with the copy in our catalog/web site.
A while ago, Irwin bought Marples, the maker of the famous Blue Chip Chisel. The Blue Chip has been a favorite at Highland for as long as anyone can remember. I still have my original set I bought as a carpenter’s apprentice. Blue Chips have always been what we consider a good value, fairly inexpensive tools for better than average quality. I have never broken a handle, though I’ll admit to occasionally bashing one with a framing hammer. There, no one saw. Irwin recently moved manufacture of the Blue Chips from Sheffield, England to China. Our current catalog went to print before we found out, so it still says “Made in Sheffield”. We actually found out today (March 20, 2007), when a new batch arrived on our loading dock. As a result, I’ll take a set home, and once again give ’em a go. I just finished sharpening the set, and so far they still take a fine edge. Over the next week or so, I’ll see how they hold up and let you know. Thanks.
Chris Black

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