When I was in Tech School, honing my skills as a Motorcycle Technician, I began researching toolboxes, and stumbled upon the StrictlyToolBoxes website. I called them up, and the owner answered the phone; Very Impressive when the company is small, and anyone that answers the phone has extensive product knowledge! Honestly, I think Sean even helps clean up the warehouse. I asked if I could visit their location, and examine some toolboxes for myself. They said I was welcome to visit anytime, and gave me the address and business hours. I drove the 1.5 hour journey to explore, for myself, if the reviews were true. I had looked at other brands, such as Craftsman, US General, Snap On, Matco, etc, but was not impressed by the lack of quality, OR the extreme price. At the time (year 2013), Strictly Tool Boxes showed me their Montezuma brand. I liked the detent system, and made up my mind that I was going to start a savings account while I was in college, in order to purchase a Strictly Tool Boxes product.
I continued tech college, and signed up for more dealership classes (electives), and even started a part time job in the Sears tool department. This gave me plenty of opportunity to examine their toolboxes up close, and discuss with other Mechanics/Technicians about their experiences with the various brands of toolboxes. After my completion of Technical School, I started visiting motorcycle dealerships, and touring their service departments. Most experienced Techs were telling me to spend my money on quality tools, and "don't waste your money on a toolbox that's the price of a used car,,, put your money in tools". This was NOT the same song and dance that the Matco and Snap On "truck guys" were telling me, Of Course!
So, almost 45 days on the job as a new Motorcycle Technician, and working out of a Blue Point Service cart (and borrowing tools from the other techs), I decided to make the plunge and get my very own tool box,, but, before I did, I insisted on making another trip to Gainesville, FL to speak with the staff and examine a Tool Vault for myself.
This visit was almost identical to my first visit. Everyone invited me to stop by during business hours, and see for myself. They had a Tool Vault 72" in the shop that they use as a work station for shipping. I looked the box and hutch over thoroughly, asked lots of questions, and even showed my girlfriend that I could stand in the bottom drawer without buckling the metal (I weigh 200 pounds).
I was told about the changes to the toolboxes since the first time I had examined one.
the difference of strength of the boxes that had been upgraded to the Detent System over the previous Raise and Release. Before that moment, I was sold on Raise and Release. I had seen Sears' GripLatch, and liked it,,,up until Sean told me how the tabs break off and you'll have to purchase a complete drawer to fix it... so,, I was sold on the Detent System.
So, the decision was made! Almost 2 years had gone into researching every popular brand, and comparing material thicknesses and quality, and it all came down to the decision of getting a Hutch, or a Top Box. I'm 5'6". and assumed that looking in the top drawers of a top box would require a short step stool, so I decided on the Hutch.
The purchase was made on-line the following Monday evening, and I received a phone call from Strictly Tool Boxes (and a confirmation e-mail) the very next morning to let me know that they were available if any questions arouse. Day 2, I received the shipping company information, and was told that it was recommended that I contact the shipping company and schedule a delivery, even though the box was being shipped to my dealership. Day 3, I was sent Freight Inspection instructions, and even got a phone call from Strictly Tool Boxes. I was even told about the common mistake of someone at a business signing for delivery without the new toolbox owner being present,,, so, I made signs, and warned other people at the dealership,, "if you sign for it, without me getting a chance to inspect the toolbox, you may be making a $4000 purchase that you didn't expect". I was serious; $4000 is not easy for a new technician starting out in the field, and I wanted to inspect the toolbox before signing for it and letting the shipping guy drive off.
So, on the day my box was scheduled to arrive (Friday), I planned on skipping lunch, and being available for delivery Any Time during that day. As the day almost came to an end, I called StrictlyToolBoxes, and informed them that my box hadn't arrived. They gave me the number to the shipping company, since I didn't have access to my e-mail at that moment. I called the shipping company, and they seemed like they really didn't know where their truck was at the moment. I was beginning to worry about the shipping company, but the truck showed up in the last hour of the day. The driver was very patient as I got out company forklift driver to unload the crate, and I began to inspect every inch of the box. I had read the Shipping Inspection Instructions, and didn't want to take any chances. Our tech that assembles new bikes stepped in to give me a hand with disassembling the wooden crate. BTW, we get new motorcycles from overseas that are not any way near as carefully packed as the tool box was. I got the box out, and looked everything over as our dealership was closing for the day. I signed the paperwork, and closed the garage door to secure my new box for the night. I didn't sleep much, because the excitement was like Christmas as a kid.
The next day, I arrived at work early, and people that I've never met before were coming over to look at the blue toolbox they had already heard about. Luckily, my service manager let me stay off the clock all morning so I could assemble my hutch and place it on top.
The instructions for assembling the hutch are very easy, and the Stainless Steel top was marked perfectly for drilling the mounting holes to secure the hutch to the rolling cabinet.
Some quick tips: use painters tape around the area where the stainless steel shelf goes to avoid scratching the hutch inner walls when wedging the shelf into place. Also, if you plan on using the shelf to store books, measure the books before you assemble the shelf. I store 8.5x11 binders on my shelf sometimes, and it helped to measure the space before assembly.
Also, don't peel off the blue-ish transparency film from the stainless steel top until you've completed assembly of the hutch. I'm sure this step saved some minor scratches.
Debur the hole you drill through the stainless steel top,,, it can be sharp, and will draw blood!
Our motorcycle area has a carpeted table top that was great for flipping the stainless steel top onto when drilling holes from the bottom side. If you don't have a carpeted table, use an old blanket, or the cardboard from the original shipping packaging.
The eyelets on the top of the hutch were a great help, and having access to a forklift and a buddy to hold a steady guide rope (hung from one of the eyelets) made the placement of the hutch onto the rolling cabinet a lot easier.
After assembly, you're going to spend a lot of time filling up this spacious box. I've got quite a collection of Metric and Standard tools, with 1/4, 3/8, and 1/2 inch socket sets, Electrical Diagnostic Tools, and a variety of Specialty tools. I'm yet to fill up my box.
You will not comprehend the size of this box until you stand in front of it, and pull out the 30 inch deep drawers All the Way out. Other boxes have 18 or 24 inch deep drawers. And, if you think 30 inches is too deep, put your least used items in the very back of the drawer, and you'll still enjoy easy access to them later.
I've received multiple compliments about my huge box, and even saw the Matco guy stop and stare at it; He wouldn't answer me when I asked "how much would your company ask for a toolbox of this size?" The Snap on guy asked how much I paid for it, and didn't believe me until I showed him the invoice. The Gear Wrench truck salesman doesn't talk to me much anymore, because he's mad that I didn't buy a tool box from him while his were on "special" for $8000. I only wish they came with a StrictlyToolBoxes information sticker, so I could just point at the information, rather than spending time telling the people that are admiring it almost every day. I've had Sales guys and Parts Associates stop by and talk to me because they heard about it from someone else in the large dealership I work in.
Ok, so if you noticed the lighting I installed. I went to Home Depot and got 3 Linkable light fixtures; Two 24 inch fixtures, and one 18 inch fixture. I had to trim the wire to make it bend 90 degrees in a tight spot, but it all fits. I used the brackets that came with the lights, as well as double sided tape to secure the lights to the hutch door. As the hutch opens and closes, the electrical cord does move, so you'll need some slack to accommodate this. Snap On charges $300 for lighting that fits,, OR, you can do what I did for less than $100.
What else can I say about this box, other than I love it? Well, after assembling the hutch onto the rolling cabinet, I made one quick phone call to Strictly Tool Boxes, gave them the number code for the key set of the box, and they sent me a matching lockset to put on the hutch. I really like the 1 lockable, private drawer. I lock my wallet and keys in that drawer and only have to carry 1 key in my pocket for the rest of the day.
In the rolling cabinet, I received a bag of replacement detents, in case I ever wear the original ones out (doubtfully).
The chrome end handles make pushing this box around very easy. The large wheels made it easy to get my box from the assembly area of our shop, across the parking lot, and into the Service Department. I don't plan on moving this box a lot, but I'm sure that anyone in the Aviation industry or Heavy Equipment line of work would consider the casters a great asset.
Other features: If you have a drawer open on the Strictly Tool Box, and decide to lock the whole box, that drawer will lock once you shut it all the way; Some Craftsman and Blue Point boxes do not work like this, and it's a pain in the rear to make sure every drawer is pushed all the way in before locking it.....
I plan on keeping my toolbox for a very long time. I'm extremely satisfied with the product, and the customer service which I received.
...(Posted on 10/20/2015)