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Retiree Carries on Late Father's Tradition with Chicago Pneumatic Tools that "Last a Lifetime"

March 10, 2020

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At 71, Richard Berryhill has the means to buy a new impact wrench for occasional tinkering on his old truck -- but he doesn't want to. A far more special tool was worth the extra effort it took to restore, and Chicago Pneumatic helped him do it.

Richard's dad had been born in south Texas in 1919, and lived through the Depression as a teen. He worked on cars and trucks his whole life, opening a garage with a partner in 1957 and buying the best tools he could afford. He didn't have a lot of money, and just made enough to support his family, but he believed in the quality of Chicago Pneumatic tools, and bought a CP734 impact wrench in 1987 -- engraving the date and his initials on the tool, because he knew it would be around a long time. And it was.

Richard's dad retired in the late 1990's and died in 2007, leaving his tools to his son. Richard had his own tools, and didn't need to use his dad's, but a recent project was vexing. He had to remove a cross member and transaxle and lower the steering mechanism on his truck, and had to rebuild the front suspension. At 71, the job was more than he could do on his own. He needed an impact wrench, and knew his father had the right tool for the job.

Richard's father in his shop in the late 1990's

When Richard dug the tool out of his father's tool cabinet, , he realized it didn't work. Unwilling to give up on this sentimental piece of family history, he decided to order replacement parts. However, there was one small problem.

"The end plate with the model number was dented and scarred from dragging it, by the air hose, on a concrete floor out from under cars," says Richard. "The serial numbers were illegible." Still not willing to give up, he sent photos of the impact wrench to Chicago Pneumatic and asked for help.

The team at Chicago Pneumatic was able to identify the tool so Richard could buy a Tune Up Kit from the same line. They weren't an exact fit, but when Richard opened the impact wrench to clean it out and replace what he could, he found the rest of the tool to be in great shape, even after 30 years. He put it back together and hooked it up to his air hose, and it worked perfectly. It was an important moment for Richard, and for the connection he felt to his dad.

"This tool has my dad’s initials on it and when I pick it up, I can imagine the thousands of times his strong hands held that tool and made a living for him and his family," says Richard. "The tool means a great deal to me. I'd rather have it to use than any other."

He wants to thank Chicago Pneumatic's "quick and caring staff" for their response to such a personal piece of equipment.

"Chicago Pneumatic helping me to identify the tool and get it going again means a lot," he says. "It was a request I’m sure the support staff could have done without, particularly because I wasn’t likely to purchase a product. But they helped me when no one else could and I appreciate it."

The customer service from Chicago Pneumatic was beyond Richard's expectations -- and meant the world because with his dad's tools, he can "have a little piece of him near me the rest of my life."

Vintage CP734 Garage

Richard with his late father's restored 1987 CP734