Can you spot the differences between these two Craftsman ball bearing storage cabinets? Three people asked similar questions this week, and it’s an issue that has puzzled me in the past as well.
Readers have asked other questions, such as why the 5-drawer version is more than double the price of the on-sale 4-drawer version, but the differences between the two 4-drawer units are a lot subtler.
Both have 4 drawers.
Both are 18″ deep x 26.5″ wide x 34″ tall.
Both have ball bearing drawer slides that are rated to 75 pounds.
Both have (4) 4.5″ x 1.5″ casters.
So does one cost over $100 more than the other right now?
There are a few differences. The more expensive one (113616, on the right) has the new “stylized” casters, such as on the ball bearing cabinet I purchased and reviewed last summer. This one also has deeper finger pulls for the drawers.
The drawer configurations are a little different as well, but I can see no reason why this would affect the pricing by such a substantial amount.
Those are the only three differences I can identify. Both models are available in stores and online, and both models lack the more premium GripLatch drawer closures that I initially thought the pricier model might offer.
Often, Craftsman ball bearing products that are also available in-store are cheaper than online-only products when on sale, but more expensive when not on sale. This kind of makes sense to me.
A few years ago I noticed that there were three identical ball bearing chests with three different prices. If I recall correctly, one was a previous year’s catalog model, one was an online-only model, and one was in-store and online model. The products looked identical and I could not figure out why there were three different model numbers and different prices.
Back to the two cabinets discussed above – aside from the minor differences I haven’t a clue why there’s such a big difference in price. The model numbers are close to each other in sequence, the product pages both say they were added to the online catalog in April 2013, and both are available in stores as well.
As part of this post I wanted to see how well a Sears customer service representative could sort through the differences.
Please wait for a Sears Customer Service Representative to respond. This chat may be monitored or recorded for quality assurance purposes. Thank you for holding.
Hi, my name is Anthony F, and it is my pleasure to assist you today.
Anthony F: Good afternoon Staurt, it is a pleasure to chat with you. How may I assist you?
Anthony F: Stuart*
Stuart: Hello, could you please tell me the differences between these two products:
Thank you for chatting with us.
You are not currently in a chat session.
I waited for about 4 minutes of silence before adding the question mark. A few seconds later the chat was disconnected. Unless there was some kind of technical error, my guess is that Anthony F left the chat after realizing he couldn’t tell the differences between the two products and that this would not be a commissionable chat.
I hadn’t had the best experiences with Sears’ “tool experts” chat personnel before, but was hoping that somehow they had access to information beyond what appears on Sears.com product pages.
I really like Sears’ Craftsman ball bearing tool storage products, but they can be very difficult to sort through at times.
With these two products, the one that’s on sale for $140 has a “regular price” of $323, and the one with the sale price of $244 has a “regular price” of $306.
I wish I could provide greater insight, but ultimately only a few people at Sears know exactly how Craftsman ball bearing products’ pricing works.
The only thing we could do as customers is tear apart product specs, descriptions, and photos, and hope that the differences become noticeable.
The common question has been why does one model cost so much more? Sometimes it pays to instead ask why does one model cost so much less? In this case, I can’t really tell you, but I can tell you that you don’t trade too much for that lower price. Personally I prefer the drawer sizes of the pricier unit, but could live with the configuration of the less expensive one. Besides the drawer configuration, at that price I would be happy with the less flashy casters and smaller drawer pulls.
Once or twice I thought why bother sorting through the differences, only to remember that I really like Craftsman tool chests and cabinets, at least at the under-$500 price point. Deciphering the prices can be a chore, but it’s worth it, especially when they have odd sales.