One of the things I love about staplers, mechanical calculators and typewriters is the incredible amount of engineering and inventiveness involved with them. You look at what’s available today and everything looks and operates the same, but it hasn’t always been that way. This stapler is a great example of that. For me this epitomizes the genius behind these everyday devices.
The Trigger Action Stapler is a medium-duty office stapler that uses modern standard staples. This is a very well-built machine weighing 2 pounds and measuring 7”L x 2.125”W x 5.5”H. While mechanically more complicated than most staplers, the unique trigger design means that regardless of the amount of force used to depress the trigger that force is converted to a specific amount of mechanical energy so that neither too much nor too little force is used when stapling. This improves stapling results while reducing to almost zero the number of wasted staples. There is a lot of thoughtful design that was put into this stapler.
The Trigger Action Stapler was invented by Edward Krantz. He applied for the patent for this item in 1936 and was granted patent 2154755 in 1939. The label on this stapler states “PAT APP’D FOR” from which it can then be assumed that this stapler was made sometime between November 1936 and March 1939. While it is possible that the Trigger Action Stapler was made for a longer period of time it is unlikely and I am reasonably sure it was no longer in production in 1947. However, another patent, number 2310530 for “Anvil for Stapling Machines” uses the same illustrations as in patent 2154755 and both were applied for and granted to Edward Krantz. As this patent was granted in 1943 and it utilized the same illustrations it could be argued that it meant that this stapler was still in production. But that’s a shaky argument at best.
The Trigger Action Stapler was manufactured by the Fastener Corporation which was founded in 1935. By 1947 Fastener Corporation changed its name to Duo-Fast, a name you may have heard of as it is still in business and still makes various types of fasteners. As the label on the stapler shows it being made by Fastener Corp. and I have not seen any evidence that this was manufactured under the Duo-Fast name, it can be reasonably assumed, as stated above, that it was no longer being manufactured by 1947.
Edward Krantz invented a number of fastening devices, most of them more for commercial/industrial use. Notably he holds patents for hammer staplers and tackers and his two office staplers that he had made (this being one, the “Krantz” by Krantz Mfg and “Kling-Tite” by Hansen Mfg being the other) show that heritage in their design. It would be my guess that the Trigger Action Stapler wasn’t made for very long because of its complicated mechanical nature, not because of quality or other issues. The large number of moving parts likely necessitated a higher price than its competitors which folks weren’t willing to pay.
My personal design tastes tend toward the industrial and this stapler exemplifies the term. Its unique look paired with its utilitarian nature gives it a surprising and unexpected sculptural quality.