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  #1  
Old 04-05-2011, 10:54 AM
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Default Tools & Recommendations

Hi ya'll

Ive just started a bike course and am starting to tinker more and more as my confidence grows taking stuff apart. What i would like to know from you well informed lot is.. Which is a good brand/make of tool to go for as i start to buy them and build up my kit??

Ill be getting them one at a time as money allows but only want to have to buy them once. Don't mind spending a little extra if its worth it in the long run. Currently looking for a torque wrench. They will all be used on my wide glide.

Any recommendations will be welcomed
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Old 04-05-2011, 10:58 AM
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Snap on....

Some are cheaper on ebay but are they real snap on????

These below are chunkier than Halfords

http://www.awautomotive.co.uk
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:56 AM
biggus mickus biggus mickus is offline
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Halfords Professional stuff is good.

Cheers, Big Mick.
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Old 04-05-2011, 12:11 PM
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Snap on are good, but are they worth the expense to someone starting out? I still only have a few bits after 30 years collecting...mostly as 2nd hand bargains as the Scot in me won't pay top dollar
As a rule of thumb, avoid anything that HASN'T got a name.....as it's likely to bend, snap or otherwise fuck up JUST when you don't need it.
I've got Halfords everyday and professional, Laser, Kamasa, Draper, King Dick (now there's a name for the oldsters and pisstakers!).
The one thing I have found is wall drive sockets, the ones with a hump where you expect it to be flat, grip AF or metric and they don't round off the corners due to them gripping on the flats......and I detest 12 point sockets!

I just kept my eyes open over the years, small ads, shop windows,boot fairs, ebay and other sites......I've even got a devilbiss compressor, donkeys years old, rebuilt and mine for 2.76!!

Just remember IF you have to sell anything, at anytime how much will you lose?
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Old 04-05-2011, 12:31 PM
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Snap on ? Hmm someone said up here that on ebay are cheaper, but are them any good? I have no confidence in people which is selling cheap things on ebay.
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Old 04-05-2011, 01:29 PM
BigBod BigBod is offline
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Halfords Professional for me. Had a ratchet spanner go wrong and snapped a socket and they replaced em no questions asked.
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Old 04-05-2011, 02:42 PM
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cant go wrong with draper expert gear, also 12 sided sockets are much better that 6 but its always worth getting a cheap second hand socket set off ebay as sometimes its nice to have a socket you dont mind destroying by hammering it on/welding it to stuff etc......
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:00 PM
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Yup, I bought a set of Halford professional similar to this -

http://www.halfords.com/webapp/wcs/s...egoryId_165572

It is a tad expensive but, as I had some spare brass at the time and wanted to invest in a set of tools that would last, I thought they were worth it. They also have a lifetime guarantee. Which is nice.
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Old 04-05-2011, 03:56 PM
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Halfords pro are the only ones I havent managed to break yet.
I was given a snap on breaker bar and...umm...shatered it....I hate doing the laundry
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Old 04-05-2011, 04:05 PM
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Halfords Pro.
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Old 04-05-2011, 04:16 PM
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Speaking as someone who's broken Snap-On tools I wouldn't waste my money on them. Ok, so theres a warranty against breakage but why not just buy something that isn't going to break in the first place?
If you're on a tight budget, try looking for Elora, King Dick, Britool, Bedford, Gedore at steam fairs, autojumbles etc and take nuts the size you'll be working with to try the fit. Odd as it sounds, Halfords stuff is quite good too.
Metrinch sockets & spanners for rounded fasteners, they've got bulges instead of flats if you see what I mean and work really well - theres other makes with similar shapes but I haven't used them.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:11 PM
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Of course, the best advice is to buy the finest tools available, and forever take pride in the ownership of them.
On the other hand, you could slip 20 into your back pocket and take a trip on Sunday down the A1 from Donny to the Newark Autojumble (I have no connection with them) and buy and ogle loasda cheap tools that will get you on your way. You can buy better quality tools later in life if you wish. You will not worry about cheap tools rusting or breaking or going missing or being 'borrowed' by so-called friends and you will get to know which are important for you.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:13 PM
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I went the Sealey proffesional range, appart from the torx adapters for the sockett driver nothing else at all has broken, thats after 7 or 8 years quite hard use of the 1/2 inch drive set to bottom up rebuld a 1960 landrover as well as a lot of use on my rusty old jap bikes, plus visits to scrappies attacking old farm tractors and machines. Ok they've not had a proffesional level of use (every day but not far off it) but have made up for it in abuse steaks and so far all good - I used to use Draper expert but I've broken a fair number and recon long term the Sealey stuff works out a lot cheaper. Look for tool chest deals where you get the tool chest and contents in a job lot as it were. 500 well spent for what I had and has paid for itself several times over - You can never have enough space in tool chests and I'd not be without mine.
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Old 04-05-2011, 05:21 PM
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ive broken my snap on 3/8th ratchet and its replacement, done the same with my teng ratchet but it did last a fair few years. but as has been said here, halfords pro gear has thus far avoided letting me down. my mate who has a bike shop also uses it.
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  #15  
Old 04-05-2011, 06:21 PM
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I bought a britool 3/8 socket set in 1970, used profesionally till 2002, still my favourite and used in all my bike maintenance. And still in perfect working order even the ratchet.

It's a good place to start cos you can use it most places.

It'll go places a spanner won't but it's rare you need a spanner where a socket won't go.

3/8 drive is perfect for bike work IMHO.

All the names sugested are quality stuff. But I agree snap off are not worth the money.

But did buy some deep sockets by snap off at an auto jumble cos they were cheap.
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Old 04-05-2011, 07:40 PM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wes View Post
Of course, the best advice is to buy the finest tools available, and forever take pride in the ownership of them.
On the other hand, you could slip 20 into your back pocket and take a trip on Sunday down the A1 from Donny to the Newark Autojumble (I have no connection with them) and buy and ogle loasda cheap tools that will get you on your way. You can buy better quality tools later in life if you wish. You will not worry about cheap tools rusting or breaking or going missing or being 'borrowed' by so-called friends and you will get to know which are important for you.
Although i agree with this, please please only buy from the stalls selling tools, you will see stalls full of random shite with old toolboxes full of various tools for sale but ask yourself who has multiple old secondhand toolboxes to sell unless some poor bastard has had his shed robbed!
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:53 PM
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Most useful thing in my garage is the Halfords Pro ratchet ring spanner set. Teng do some great tools, and you can sometimes find a deal as they tend to be less pricey than Snap-On. Roebuck spanner set I have is also good as is Facom stuff. For torque wrench try Norbar.
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Old 04-05-2011, 08:59 PM
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i think youve all missed the point...theres only one tool..
a fugin big hammer...lol....ill get my coat....
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Old 04-05-2011, 09:37 PM
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Halfords Pro here too, no quibble lifetime guarantee.
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Old 04-05-2011, 09:44 PM
matthewmosse matthewmosse is offline
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sockett set and combination spanners are the most used tools I have. Powerfix from Lidl are pretty damn good too by the way, I used the double ended metric ring spanners in combination with a hammer on a inpirial landy axle on the theory they were cheap enough I didn't mind if I broke one but despite the real abuse they survived in good order. After that I think the lathe weighs in as best / most versatile tool in the shed.
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  #21  
Old 04-05-2011, 11:01 PM
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Have to admit to being a real tool snob and I have spent a bloody fortune on my kit. All of my kit is either Snap On, MAC Tools or Facom. I am bloody fussy about them and know exactly where every single spanner, socket, screwdriver, ratchet is in my tool cabinet. I am one of those people that has to have the right tool for the job. If I haven't got it, I buy it. Hence my tool cabinet is taller than me and 5 feet wide, full to over flowing. I have several other cabinets full of engineering tools, one for wood working tools. A small cabinet for welding consumables, another for abrasives, another for polishing gear. Three small cabinets full of drills, cutters, chisels and thread cutting gear. Taken me nearly thirty years to collect it all and I dread to think of how much I have spent on it all. I just will not buy cheap tools.

If you are just starting out and want to buy quality without breaking the bank, have a serious look at the Halfords Professional range. It is bloody good value for money and from what I have heard they do not quibble about the warranty.

Facom is actually owned by Britool. Very good kit and not as dear as Snap On or MAC Tools. Teng Tools offer a lifetime warranty but they are not as good as Facom or Britool. (I used to sell Facom, Britool, Teng and Kennedy).

Kennedy Tools is the brand name for hand tools supplied by Cromwell Tools. Bloody good stuff and cheaper than Halfords. They do an extensive range of mechanics hand toolsincluding socket and spanner sets, tool cabinets and power tools. Thier power tool range is called Kobe, named after the town in Japan where thier tools are made.

If you work on the basis that Halfords Pro range is a good bench mark, look at kit of the same price. Buy your kit face to face so that you can actually see it, handle it and guage the quality. Buy what you need as and when you need it. You will be surprised at how quickly your kit will expand.

If your own bike is a Harley, bear in mind that they use all Imperial size spanners and sockets. They also use a hell of a lot of spline/Torx bits, which are a complete pain in the arse. Soon as you can replace them with either St/Steel allen screws or Hex head bolts. If you have to use spline or Torx bits then get yourself a top quality set of spline bits. The cheap ones are utter shite and will fuck up every spline bolt on the bike. Once fucked they are a right bastard to get out.

Other than Harleys, most if not all of the older British bikes use Imperial. All of the japanese, German and Italian bikes are metric.

Buy the best you can afford at the time. The "Best" tools is a subjective opinion, so make your own choices. Other than that, whatever tools you buy, look after them. Clean them and put them away properly after using them. Use the right tool for the job.

Hope this has helped, good luck.

Chopper.
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:10 PM
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halfords are good, i`ve also got snap on and a socket set called Kinzo i bought 20 years ago, only snapped the reduser from 3/8 to 1/2" drive
the set is ace, but always buy a cheep set too, sometimes theres a bolt/nut/allen/screw that ain`t moving, so i use the cheep shite for those
and cheep ratchets for hammering corroded nuts off with
buy one good and one cheep for the shite jobs
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Old 04-05-2011, 11:27 PM
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Well you have a lot of suggestions and must give them a bit of thought before deciding..

Halfords do a lifetime guarantee on their professional range and several people on here have stated that they took tools back which were exchanged without any problems, the thing to bear in mind is that at some point there will be a siezed bolt that will not undo without a welder, or a tool that has to go back even if it has a lifetime guarantee..

If your knowledge of your bike is limited you will break down without the right tool to get you home, you cant carry everything..but you can carry an RAC card, this should get you home..

Taking advice about the tools you should stock is always going to be difficult, you will round the odd nut or bolt, and having the best tools in the world will not remove that without a welder, having the odd cheap ring spanner to weld on a rounded nut or bolt is sometimes the way to go..

many of the folks on here are customisers and builders and need the best tools they can afford..some of us who dont build, or modify or customise have tools bought for one off repairs and over time replaced and upgraded them..all I really have to say on the subject is dont spend more than you can afford and try to buy backup tools for the time when the 14mm spanner just lets you down..

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Old 05-05-2011, 06:13 AM
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A fucking good debit/credit card comes in useful.

Having said that, I`ve got Halfords pro tools in both sheds and a good impact driver.
Cheap allen keys come in useful when the heads on the screws/bolts are rounded as I weld em to the tops to get em out.
Get some wiring diagrams laminated and put up around the shed. Not a tool I know but you will be suprised how often you look at them without realising and wiring does become easier.
Some metal tube is handy that slips over the top of your ratchet for those hard to undo thingies. And dont forget to go out and buy the bigger spanners that you dont get in your toolkit.
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:14 AM
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all the above, and a copper/hide mallet, a set of punches, a good hacksaw and something to get oil filter cannisters off with. I use a set of plumbers water pump pliers on mine, but from conversations I've had with Harley owners, nothings every where it should be on the things.
Oh yea, and a four foot length of scaffolding pole.
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:25 AM
PeteHaddock PeteHaddock is offline
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Quote:
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all the above, and a copper/hide mallet, a set of punches, a good hacksaw and something to get oil filter cannisters off with. I use a set of plumbers water pump pliers on mine, but from conversations I've had with Harley owners, nothings every where it should be on the things.
Oh yea, and a four foot length of scaffolding pole.
length of scaffold pole????? I think you mean a torque amplification device lol
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Old 05-05-2011, 07:50 AM
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Whatever you buy, know how to use the tools you have, and their limitations.
Its no good putting a length of scaffold pipe on the end of a 3/8 ratchet to give you some extra ummmph. you`ll only only ruin a good ratchet, or socket.
Use a knuckle bar or a larger size ratchet to get the purchase you need.
don`t hammer a perfectly good socket onto a bolt head, as you`ll only end up ruining it, getting a small set of sacrificial impact sockets is ideal for this task. Its not nessesary to buy "complete" sets of tools, as 1/2 of em in there will be of little use to you, buy only the tools you want, & are right for you and your budget, however as everyone will tell you, you will no doubt spend the rest of your life buying the next best thing & upgrading.
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Old 05-05-2011, 08:04 AM
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All the advise is good...
I personnally have Halfords expert socket sets....everything else i aquired over the years, spanners by britool, king dick...laser,cheapos, same with screwdrivers, molewrenches, hammers, including a decent rubber/hide mallet, everything else ive bought as i needed it...torque wrench / impact driver etc....also last time i did a bike job i ended up buying a 2 foot long half inch drive breaker bar a reducing adaptor and a m24 inpact socket...you just pick up stuff as you grow older....

I notice you are planning on working on a wideglide...you will need a decent set of imperial sockets....alternatively, a decent limit on a creditcard :-p

Later
Ron
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Old 05-05-2011, 02:09 PM
matthewmosse matthewmosse is offline
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When buying socketts one worthwhile hint is some manufacturers offer ' duo metric sets' or some such concept that basically avoids duplicating inpirial and metric socketts. In my Sealey set that goes from 8 to 22mm it has an additional 5 socketts that are inpirial and a chart on the lid so you can look up easily which metric size is equivalent to which inpirial. You will probably find having both i one set is pretty handy, I know when I started out I was detrermined to avoid anything Inpeirial in the shed to save on 2 toolkits, then I got an old Landrover, oh dear........ BSF, Whitworth, BSC, UNC so manydifferent types of thread and ways of determining the spanner size, that's before some *&&^^&*&^&* stuck a load of metric things in.
Tap and die set's. You will eventually find you need one, don't buy the cheapest ones as they are brittle and crap and will cost more effort to remove than they are worth, they really are worse than useless and the one type of tool not worth buying cheap. Get a middle range set and use it carefully and all is well. Draper 'value' and things in that price brackett are best avoided but their 'expert' range are just about as cheap as I'd tolerate. Lidl's Powerfix are the cheapes I found and would give shelf space in the shed. Poundland and poundstreacher efforts are best put in the recycling bin for the council to dispose of with the trash. I do hoever find the rigger gloves and files from poundland to be pretty good.
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Old 05-05-2011, 02:09 PM
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Chunkier than Halfords is this company.


AW Automotive - supplier of lifetime warrantied quality tools.
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