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Case Study: Snap-On® Ratchet Repair Kit

The customer

Snap-on, Inc. is a US manufacturer and marketer of high-end tools and equipment for professional use.

The challenge

Snap-on, Inc. franchisees performs most ratchet warranty repairs to tools onsite. Snap-on supplies franchisees with repair kits specifically for that purpose. However, Snap-on was receiving many field reports citing difficulty in handling and placing certain small components when repairing their popular ¼” drive ratchets. Some franchisees said that it was taking as long as fifteen minutes to repair a single ¼” drive ratchet.

All About Packaging received a request from Snap-on to quote a small clamshell package  to hold three of the most critical parts of the repair kit together during shipment. However, during All About Packaging’s discovery phase, they found there was still a 50 percent chance that the parts would disconnect from each other while being transferred from the packaging to the ratchet.

The solution

All About Packaging designed a ratchet repair kit package that doubles as an assembly aid. Drawing from their experience with magnets gained from developing their proprietary VeriMag® products, All About Packaging made it possible to pre-assemble a large portion of the ratchet mechanism, including the three critical parts, which were held together during assembly with a small magnet. The outer packaging is a custom tray and lid that hold the subassembly/tray/magnet in a form-fitting compartment, while the other parts remain in five round compartments and can be easily scooped out with a finger. The package is sealed with a wrap-around instruction label imprinted with a date of manufacture by All About Packaging. The subassembly/tray/magnet can be lifted out of the package and placed directly into the ratchet head where all the critical parts end up where they should be.

All About Packaging was able to make the new package match the length and width of the bags previously used to hold the ratchet repair kits, so that franchisees could continue to store repair kits in the same place on their truck.

The magnetic ratchet repair kit prototypes were featured at a franchisee show and used in a contest to determine how quickly a ratchet could be repaired. In all cases, the new magnetic ratchet repair kit significantly reduced the time needed to repair a ¼” ratchet—one contestant, however, was clocked at less than 50 seconds!