Hey, all you fellow fire tool nerds!! New informational post about some good news regarding Leatherhead’s NY Hook…. they are no longer heavy!!! Before we get into the latest update, lets back it up and talk about the history and why the Leatherhead NY hook’s weight changed over time. When we were invited down for a plant tour and entered the hook section, we were able to place our hands on the original hook they manufactured, and it was the same weight/ diameter as their competitors (.095). So inevitably, we asked why change to such a heavy shaft and why change what has been tried and tested for many years. Leatherheads answer was, “Because of our Leatherhead warranty, we replace tools that have problems, so people would send bent hooks back to us asking for a new one or to replace the shaft and we would do so. We forge tools, and anyone that knows manufacturing with metal understands that forges and dies will wear out or need adjusting over time due to great use, so we understand there can be defects, and we correct it… defects happen when making hammers, pry bars, etc.”
I’m sure as well, we all know that some of the issues always stem from user error and improper use. So that being said, a decision was made to increase the thickness of the wall diameter (.175) of the tube steel to reduce the chance of bending per Leatherhead. Truthfully all we have known was how heavy their hook was, no idea they used to make lighter ones. Now we will say that some do value a heavy hook at times, and here is why. The weight when sounding can be beneficial and also have some extra oomph while pushing down through a sturdy ceiling helps at times, but let’s be honest, we use them for pulling ceiling, prying up floorboards, and other overhaul applications, so the lighter weight trumps the heavy weight.
So after the explanation that there needs to be a change and the reasons why to support a financial cost to them, Leatherhead has changed to a much lighter shaft while increasing durability than the standard/ traditional diameter (.095). So really, this is a breath of fresh air because their new chosen diameter (.125) gives you a little more strength and weight for those window sashes to save your arms, a good pry end with an angled chisel tip for getting the angle needed for flooring and skylights, and still keeping the functionality of the designed use.
We will take it even further to let you know that more tool changes and new tools are being made by Leatherhead, all designed by firefighters on the job who used them to ensure correct function and use. We will tell you a brand-new hook only available from Leatherhead called the Lockwood Hook, which was brought to us at FDIC last year is now in production, so stay tuned for that media release. We hope this hook will prove to be one of the best hooks around as it already has had nothing but positive results during testing—a hook designed by a firefighter for firefighters. So the bottom line is if you are in the market for new tools, Leatherhead is a company to consider, and they are listening to what firefighters need and ensuring quality meets the hands of the user.