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Stanley Proto released a cool new tool today designed to let you use the now-ubiquitous ratcheting wrenches as extreme-low-profile-head ratchets utilizing standard sockets.  They’re specially-cut adapters that lock into the wrenches, adapting them to square-drive.

What makes these adapters such a great idea is that they leverage tools that most professionals — or serious hobbyists — will already find in their toolbox.

The new line includes adapters designed to fit 3/8″, 1/2″, and 3/4″ — as well as 10mm, 13mm, and 19mm — ratcheting wrenches.  1/4″, 3/8″, and 1/2″ drive versions are available, which means you can use pretty much any standard socket-type tool in your collection, including standard and metric sockets, hex, Torx, spline, and even square.

These are very new, so we don’t have pricing or other details yet, but we’ll follow up in the next day or so with more.

Update: We were told today that the set of four will cost “under $30.”  Rock!


6 Responses to Finds: Stanley Proto’s New Box Wrench Ratchet Adapters

  1. Fletcher says:

    Okay, so the ratchet begat the ratcheting wrench (which, by the way, I love), and now we can conver those ratcheting wrenches into…ratchets? (How much longer before we can convert the ratcheting wrench ratchets into band saws?) It’s Proto, so I’m sure it’s quality, but I fail to see the advantage of popping an adapter into a ratcheting wrench versus just reaching for a proper ratchet. And because it’s Proto, these things likely won’t be cheap, so even if all you have in your toolbox is ratcheting wrenches, you’re not going to save any money by buying these adapters over a nice set of ratchets. (Ratcheting wrenches also don’t lend themselves well to breaker bars.) Am I missing something here?

  2. Myself says:

    You’re not the only one who fails to grok the advantage here. I have a set of socket caps for those occasions when a ratchet won’t fit, they’re rather thin and I can turn them with a standard open-end. But these adapters look like they’d be just as thick as a regular ratchet, so there’s no point.

  3. Chuck Cage says:

    By looking at them it seems that they’ll offer a slightly lower head profile than a standard ratchet. It’s been my experience that the more options you can have at your disposal to get at those hard-to-reach fasteners the better — especially if you’re doing automotive work.

    And though Stanley Proto certainly isn’t the least expensive option around, their pricing isn’t out of range when you compare them to Snap-on.

  4. Harry Zier says:

    KD also makes these adapters for use in their standard or metric gearwrenches. They’ve been out since gearwrenches first appeared. Their handiness really depends on how thick your ratchet head is. If you have real thin ratchets, then these may not make you any money. However, if you still use the bulkier ratchets, then these may give you just enough clearance to get those hard to reach fasteners and that can be priceless depending on the situation. Sears even has sets of gearwrench sockets if you will that fit flush in the corresponding gearwrench for an even lower profile. As with all other tool purchases, you have to look at the return on your investment to see if they’re worth getting.

  5. Charlie Wardell says:

    I talked with an engineer at Proto and asked why you would buy these instead of using a standard ratchet. According to him the advantages are:

    -You can get into smaller spaces with a ratcheting wrench and adapter than you can with a conventional ratchet.
    -The total thickness of the wrench head-and-adapter combination is considerably thinner than a conventional ratchet. A Proto 4749P is 20 mm thick. A Proto 10 mm ratcheting wrench (SCRM10) with a 1/4″ drive adapter is 15 mm thick.
    -The ratcheting wrench head is also smaller than the ratchet head (4749P – 23 mm wide; SCRM10 – 19 mm). The differences increase on the larger sizes.

    These aren’t intended to replace ratchets; if you’re using ratchets regularly, keep doing so. However, if you only intend to use a ratchet a few times a day, the adapter/wrench combination will be lighter, smaller and easier to carry around, especially if you already have to carry the wrenches anyhow. A 1/2″ drive ratchet is likely to weigh more than a pound. The 1/2″ adapter weighs a couple of ounces.

  6. Tom Brovold says:

    I have a patented product that turns this ratchet into a 360 rpm high speed ratchet. No modifications required. It will soon be on the arket for $7.95. It turns all your ratchet wrenches into high speed wrenches but the socket ratchet is beyond awesome. Email me if you are interested.

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