LINCOLNSHIRE, Ill. — Klein Tools set out to find the world’s oldest pair of Klein side-cutting pliers and ended up finding them via a swap meet at the Sky Village Meet in Yucca Valley, California for only $10.

Dan Schmidt is the winner of a Klein Tools promotion that started in March of this year. His submission of a pair of 1904 pliers won him $5,000. In 1904, Schmidt’s pliers would have originally sold for $3.60. It was unique because it also included a special factory nickel plating which cost an additional 30 cents.

“We were overwhelmed with the inquiries and heart-warming stories of Klein tools being handed down from one generation to another,” said Thomas Barton, product marketing manager, Klein Tools. “Stories such as our second oldest pair from Robert Armstrong Jr. really exemplify what the Klein Tools’ brand is all about. His pair of 1906 pliers were handed down to his father in 1941 while on the job as a line foreman in Dyersburg, Tenn., and later handed down to Robert.”

The oldest original customer was Gerald Schumacher, 89 years old, who entered a pair of 9” pliers from 1956. He purchased them in Colorado and they lasted over 30 years on the job.

The youngest customer was Brody Tonelotti, 13 years old, who loves tools and searches yard sales for old tool boxes. In one container, he found a pair of 1952 pliers in good condition and thought it would last for a couple more generations of use.

“The value placed on our products is exceptional,” said Mark Klein, a sixth generation Klein who serves as the company’s vice president of domestic sales. “As a company, our goal is to produce the highest quality product possible. In exchange, we are rewarded with incredible customer loyalty.”

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