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Proto (tools)

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Title: Proto (tools)  
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Proto (tools)

Type Subsidiary
Industry Manufacturing
Founded Los Angeles, California, United States (1907 (1907))
  • Alphonso Plomb
  • Jacob Weninger
  • Charles Williams
Headquarters New Britain, Connecticut, United States
Products Industrial tools
Parent Stanley Black & Decker

Stanley Proto—more commonly known simply as Proto and historically known as Plomb—is an American industrial hand tool company. It is a division of Stanley Black & Decker. The company is credited with creating the first combination wrench.


Proto was founded in 1907 by Alphonso Plomb, Jacob Weninger, and Charles Williams as the Plomb Tool Company, a small blacksmith shop making chisels in Los Angeles. In 1933, Plomb released what is commonly credited as the first combination wrench.[1]

Plomb acquired a number of companies during the 1940s, including Cragin Tool of Chicago, Illinois in 1940, P&C Tool of Oregon in 1941, Penens Tool of Cleveland, Ohio in 1942, and J.P. Danielson of Jamestown, New York in 1947.[2] Penens Tool would produce tools under the Fleet and Challenger brand names after its acquisition.[3]

In 1946, Plomb was sued by another tool manufacturer—Fayette R. Plumb, Inc., now a brand of Cooper Hand Tools[4]—for trademark infringement.[5] The company began manufacturing its tools with the Proto name, a portmanteau of "professional" and "tools," in 1948. In 1957, the company began operating as Pendleton Tool Industries.[6]

In 1964, Proto was acquired by Ingersoll Rand, and in 1984, it was acquired by Stanley and became Stanley Proto Industrial Tools.[7]



  1. ^ "Plomb: A Gallery of Tools". Alloy Artifacts. p. 2. Retrieved 2010-01-31. 
  2. ^ Stanley Proto. "Company History". Retrieved 2014-03-14. 
  3. ^ "The Proto Empire". Alloy Artifacts. p. 1. Retrieved 2014-03-14. 
  4. ^ Lamond, Tom. "Fayette R. Plumb Co.". YesteryearsTools. Retrieved 2010-03-27. 
  5. ^ "CORPORATIONS: Plumb v. Plomb".  
  6. ^ "Plomb: A Gallery of Tools". Alloy Artifacts. p. 1. Retrieved 2010-01-31. 
  7. ^ Thomas, Bob. "Company History". Retrieved 2010-01-31. 

See also

External links

  • Official website
  • Plomb Tools—Pictures and history.
  • Alloy Artifacts: "Plomb: A Gallery of Tools"
  • Alloy Artifacts: "The Proto Empire"
  • Plomb and Proto Tool Catalogs
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