Why are office staplers so crappy?

Why is it that common office staplers are so horrible? It seems you have to try 50 times before you get a staple that isn’t twisted or broken in some way. I have noticed that the older a stapler is, the more likely it is that it will work well. Have we lost some crucial knowledge in stapling technology that was known to those living during the Eisenhower administration?

This is pretty much a WAG, but I would say it has something to do with a decrease in manufacturing quality. The manufacturer has to save money, so they cut corners in manufacturing to keep prices low. That’s why so many staplers now are more plastic then metal. Plastic is cheaper, but it doesn’t work as well IMHO.


In my experience people who purchase office supplies will buy the cheapest ones possible because they’re too dumb to realize how much time people waste struggling with things like staplers that don’t work. I bet you could find some really great quality staplers if you didn’t mind paying a little more.

I have one of the newer, mostly plastic staplers, and it works just ducky, though I don’t do all that much stapling. ONe of the best staplers I’ve ever had was one of those tiny compact staplers, about the size of your thumb. Never had trouble with that one either.

One thing to think about is buying a better quality of staple, I got a box of good staples a while back, made a big difference.

My theory is that employees walk off with all the good staplers.

The only ones left at work are so crappy they’re not worth stealing.

The problem isn’t the stapler, it’s the staples.

Office managers tend to buy the cheapest everything, including staples. Cheap staples (made from aluminum?) mangle as often as they penetrate.

I found out about this when our crappy office stapler ran out of staples, and I reloaded it with some (steel) staples from my own stash. It worked just fine with those.

I’m going to second Cheesesteak here. I’ve found that the quality of the staples is far more important than the stapler itself (assuming the stapler isn’t complete garbage.)

Excuse me, I believe you have my stapler…

A girl I knew from high school–we graduated in 1967–gave me, as a Christmas present that year, a wooden stapler that looked kind of like a small wildcat. (The slip of paper accompanying it read “Remember the Tigah!” :D)
I used “Tiny Tot”/“Swingline” staples in it, for years. Worked just fine. I don’t do that much stapling any more, but I still have her stapler… :slight_smile:

I was wondering how long it would take before certain Office Space quotes started showing up.

And they put my desk by the window and I could look outside and see the squirrels and they were married and then they moved me back against the wall and then they switched from the Swingline stapler to the Boston stapler but I kept my Swingline stapler because it doesn’t bind as much…