Thursday, July 27, 2006

So Close and Yet So Far

Yesterday I made a quick trip over to Menards to pick up some new bits for my beloved Black & Decker drill. The ones I had were pretty well shot, and I needed something sharp to start work on soaking the wood consolidant into the bracket over my front door.

So, I was standing in the aisles debating what to buy when I spotted an entire set of 18 B&D bits on clearance for $5. As an added bonus, the packaging told me, I got a little set of screws & anchors for free as a gift. This free gift was neatly stored in the bottom of the bit case. I thought to myself - even if I only get one use out of each one, it's a deal. I bought the clearance set and was on my way.

I got home and took off the plastic wrapping. The bits were inside a funky little plastic case. For the next 15 minutes I sat there trying to figure out how to get that case open. I kid you not. 15 minutes.

I finally figured out that you needed to push down on one spot while simultaneously pulling open a hinged door....then they all came spilling out. Good grief.

I went outside and got to work. Later in the afternoon, I decided I needed to take a closer look at the "free screw & anchor gift." For an hour I worked on opening the little compartment at the bottom of this case. I could not do it. I am a fairly clever girl, and I could not get this little compartment open to save my life. I put the box down.

This evening I once again picked up the box. How hard could this be? For another hour I sat and tried to open this little compartment to look at those damn free screws and anchors. I am now convinced that the compartment does not even open. What appears to be screws and anchors through the plastic is probably just a photo.

Is it possible that the folks at B&D made such a poor packaging decision that no one could open these contraptions.....and as a result all the stores had to mark them down on clearance?

20 comments:

Greg said...

I bought a router bit from Sears when I was doing the marble. It came in a very impressive plastic case. After about 10 minutes try to open the case I eventually smashed it with a hammer to get it open.

There was a time when I wanted to go to a Columbia Records board room and ask every person at the table to try open a new CD. I would then stand there and laugh.

Who OKs these packaging ideas?

ben said...

It's all about childproofing. You wouldn't want some poor little unattended tyke to come along and swallow all those screws. And if you can't get to them, are they really free?

Anonymous said...

...It's all about childproofing. You wouldn't want some poor little unattended tyke to come along and swallow all those screws.,,,,

Yes, but the facts of life are that said child is most likely the only one that can actually get that plastic
box open without a hammer.

Julie - who is so happy to hear that she is not the only one having trouble opening packages lately!!!!

StuccoHouse said...

Damn those screw swallowing small children. We have now completed day four of trying to reach the screws. I'm not sure why I'm still trying. I can see through the plastic that the screws are in a little bag inside the case. That little bag, no doubt, is made from kryptonite. I'm tempted to smash it with a hammer, but there is part of me that thinks that is admitting failure. Can't do it.

lol....philosphy. If I can't get to them, are they free. Interesting in the tree falling in a forest sort of way.

I once heard a joke about those cd packages. They said that whomever designed those should be put in charge of homeland security. Anyone that could so effectively keep people from reaching a cd, could most certainly keep terrorist from crossing borders. Ya know, they may be on to something there.....

Anonymous said...

Ginzu knives. They'll hack through anything. I got a set of 16 or 20 at the dollar store at Hi-Lake for $2. I keep them with the tools. The blades will break off the handles pretty easily but for dirty hack jobs, they're great. Keep in mind, you'll have to destroy the package to open it. Of course.

Anonymous said...

I'VE GOT IT! Ok first let me say how much I love google. I actually did a search for "how to open a black and decker drill bit set packaging" then went through a few pages of results and found your page. By chance I bought the exact same set of bits that were on sale at Home Depot.

I too struggled with the top opening part where the bits reside. But I too finally figured it out. I too was dying to get to the bonus screw part at the bottom of the packaging when I notice a very small plastic rivet at the bottom (no not the side) that seemed a tad too long. I knew if this thing came off something would give. I grabbed a spoon, letter opener, then finally a phillips and broke the rivet off. Then I pushed the plastic screw thing on the bottom side of the package inward and TA-DAH it slid out sideways. Plain dumb luck on my part.

StuccoHouse said...

Adolfo - First, thank you for a good chuckle. Secondly, a big thanks for giving me the info. to open that damn thing. I saw that little button too, but kept thinking I had to push it instead of breaking it off. What on earth was B&D thinking?!!

Coherent said...

Thanks so much for the description on how to open those drill bits! I also struggled with them for about 10 minutes before finding your blog post.

Anonymous said...

Thank you. We have been struggling for 1/2 hour. We then googled it and it came up and we got it open!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

OMG THANK YOU. it took the better part of 2 days before looking online to figure out how to get into the bottom

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much! Seven years on and still irritating the heck out of consumers.

Anonymous said...

I had trouble with the main compartment, too. Once I got it open after about 4 minutes, I puzzled over the bottom compartment for a while. I saw that plastic pin, and thought maybe I should yank on it with a pair of pliers, but I hesitated for quite some time, because that just COULDN'T be what they intended. It seemed a bit brutal and risky. I didn't want to break it. How could they expect the AVERAGE customer to apprehend such an intended method of opening simply by looking at the package? This is crazy. One of the most ridiculous packages I've seen. And in what way is this a practical shape for a case anyway? Yet they went to so much trouble. I guess they care more that the customer can see the drill bits than they do about the functionality of the product. Otherwise they'd have used the traditional fold-out case that opens like a book, which I fully expected to see on the shelf instead of this. But they COULD'VE used it--they could just put it in a blister pack with the "book" open, and the bits on display. Are they morons, or just $%#holes? UGH!!!! Okay, I'm done.

Anonymous said...

Ha. Web searches are amazing. This package makes no sense. Worse than a Rukik's cube. I finally got the top open. I broke the little side tab on the bottom portion but, in retrospect, I think that must be necessary. Finally I found this blog with a pointer on the pin on the underside. Ridiculous. But thanks for having this blog with all the great assistance.

Lauren said...

Thank you so much! I was trying to hand a curtain rod and realized I needed shorter screws than what came with the rods. So I went digging through my husbands toolbox and found this case and I could SEE the size screws I needed. But then couldn't figure out how to open the blasted packaging. Now it's open and I have my screws. Hooray!

Anonymous said...

Alright I just bought it and want to throw it out the window.No one has explained how to open though! So, how do you open it?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the 1st answer / info, but what was pushed and what was pulled to open the case?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for instructions on anchor case--worked perfectly. I couldn't figure out how to open the main case from the instructions either. I used pliers to pry open the clear tab (with the hole in it) on top of the package. After the case popped open, I immediately snapped off the tic-tac-sized, clear locking tab inside the package. Now I can open and close case at will. Woo-hoo!

schwalay said...

1st step - take a pair of scissors and rip off tab on bottom plastic portion containing screws.
2nd step - rip off tiny zip-tie on the top of the package. Then push down on the top of the set - near the circular part where the tiny zip-tie was, and it will pop open with plastic cover coming towards you. 20 minutes of my life, hopefully only 2 of yours!

Anonymous said...

I also messed around trying to get it open, finally googled it and these comments were so helpful. I added a how-to on youtube for anyone that would like to see a visual of how to open it.
Home

StuccoHouse said...

Here is the link to the above commenter's YouTube video showing how to open the case: www.youtube.com/watch?v=UO7zsY7STFk

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