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    Thread: Guide To Select Essential Home Garage Tools - A Must For All DIY's

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      Guide To Select Essential Home Garage Tools - A Must For All DIY's

      That ride in your garage won't fix yourself and you won't be much good either if you don't have a good set of auto mechanics tools. There're tools for every occasion, but you don't need every tool under the sun to take care of your regular maintenance. You can do most of the basics to intermediate repairs with about 10% of the tools in the market. Knowing which tool you'll need for a task, what it does, and where to buy it can save you a lot of time and money during maintenance and repairs.





      Hammers - There're atleast 6 types of hammers that I'm aware. Lets keep our discussion to 3 essentials for now.

      This is one is the most common, that's called Claw hammer & mostly proffered by carpenters.


      This is called Ball Pein hammer & mostly proffered when closing rivets


      This Sledge hammer is the one that really drives the punch. Basically used to knock off or shear metals with metal cutter.


      For more information on different types of Hammers, pls go through - Different types of hammers - what there are, and what each type is designed for.
      For general household garage needs, one need not have all 3 of them; probably buying a hammer based on most common work would be of great. For example, if one uses hammer only for garage needs, the sledge hammer is more than sufficient to carry out all rounder needs.



      Screwdrivers - There're 2 common types of screw driver heads.
      Flat head


      Philips head (star screwdriver in more colloquial term)


      Keep both the types of screwdrivers handy. There're screwdriver set available in the market that contains sets of 2 to 2 dozen. While 2 set screwdriver is quite low, 24 of them sounds too much for a house or house garage need. One can opt for 6-10 pieces depending upon the work involvement.


      Alternatively, there're magnetic ended screwdrivers with interchangeable bits available & they're called retractable screwdrivers. When buying them, make doubly sure that the end of the driver has a strong magnet to hold the bits. Sometimes the magnet end will be handy enough to pull some washers, bolts & nut if they're struck out of reach for fingers.


      Allen Key or Hex Key
      A hexagonal or hex screw head has a hexagonal hole turned by a Allen key. An Allen key is a hexagonal shaped wrench.

      Allex/Hex screw


      Allen/Hex Key


      Here's the complete list of allen key type heads


      Also Hex Keys are available with bits




      Hacksaw/mini saw

      Have a good set of hacksaw blades for cutting down plastics, metals & wood. There're several types of handles available, use the one that is most comfortable & for all rounder usage.






      Ratchet & Sockets
      If there's a pleasant way to remove a nut, then it has to be with Ratchet & Sockets. These are best one than wrenches under certain situations to remove open those stubborn nuts. The best part is that ratchets can be used for both tightening as well as removing the nuts using the locks on the ratchet head.


      Ratchets also have extensions through which the sockets can be attached to the extension ends so as to drive the nuts in depth.

      Though Ratchets & Sockets can be bought as individual units ranging metric sizes from 5 to 25 (or may be even upto 28), it is economical to buy them as ratchet & socket tool kit.




      Extensions - In a standard socket/ratchet too kit, there're limited number or no extensions available. On such cases, it is always better to buy a over & mid size in handy.




      Wrench - These are the most common tool to fasten or remove nuts. Basically there're two types of wrenches. Open ended & close ended/rounded/box end. Higher quality wrenches are typically made from chromium-vanadium alloy tool steels and are often drop-forged. There're several types of wrenches to choose from

      Open ended only - The benefit here is that each open ended have different metric/standard sizes. For example, one can cover sizes, 6/7, 8/9, 10/11, 12/13, 14/15, 17/18 using just 6 wrenches. The draw back being the box ended not available.


      Combinations - The benefit here is that each wrench has open end & box ended on the same metric/standard size. For example sizes, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 would require 10 wrenches. The greatest benefit being is that, even the stubborn or rusted nuts can be easily removed using the box ended.


      Though wrenches can be bought as individual pieces, it is economical to buy them as wrench sets. Though a little expensive, its is always better to buy combination wrenches than open wrench. Reason being that, though open ended can do the job, sometimes stubborn nuts tend to shear off due to metal bonding & box ended are the best to do the job in those situations.

      All pictures courtesy in this thread courtesy: Google Images
      Last edited by Aargee; 30th Mar 2011 at 20:32. Reason: Writing down image courtesy
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      Pliers - A plier has three components; handles, jaws and a pivot. It is used to gripping, turning (to an extent fastening/removing) or even cutting applications. Pliers can be divided into two basic types: slip joint & fixed joint.

      Slip Joint - These types of pliers have a slip by means of a slot & screw and can be used to hold multiple widths. Since the joints can be moved, the slip joint can be adjusted.


      Fixed Joint - These pliers are quite opposite to slips; their joints cannot be moved & offer a solid grip in holding the materials.


      Like every other took kit, pliers are also available in plier tool kit. To give a sample, here's a plier kit


      On day to day basis work, a long nose plier, a regular plier, cutter & an adjustable plier is more than sufficient to carry out the daily chores.



      Adjustable Wrench
      An adjustable wrench/spanner (wrench) with a jaw that can be adjusted in width so that it can be used with different sizes of bolts to fasten or remove them. An adjustable spanner may also be called a shifting spanner, shifter, fit-all, crescent wrench or adjustable-angle head wrench.



      General Tool Kit
      When buying the essential set of tools, like every other tool, they can be bought individually or the work specific tool kits that are available in the market. Generally, buying a work specific tool kits are the way to begin with any DIY.

      Mechanic Tool Kit - They contain anything from ratchet, sockets, pliers, extensions, screw drivers, hex keys, wrenches & bits. All of them may not be available on all the tool kits because each of them comes with a price tag. Higher the price, more the number of tools.


      Carpenter Tool Kit - As the name suggests, these tool kits contain essential tool kits for carpenters. They contain, hammer, pliers, measuring tape & some of them even have electrical/mechanical driller, screw drivers, hacksaw, chisel, bits.


      Plumbing Tool Kit - These tool kits contain essential tools for plumbers such as pipe wrench, hammer, adjustable wrench, hammer, screw drivers, wrenches.


      Word of caution on tool kits - Take a special care to carefully examine the contents because buying a tool kit containing all the tool might still leave you without one or more essential tool. Take a careful examination on the available tools in the tool kit & strike a balance between the tools in the tool kit & the additional ones you may need to buy. Remember, certain tools in the tool kit will not even be used, probably, for a life time too. Also do not end up not buying a tool kit or a basic one & land up buying all the essentials. Sometimes it is also good to have multiple tools on the same lines. Say a combination wrench for size 10/11/12/13 & also open ended for the combination of 10/11, 12/13 & 14/15.

      Last but not the least, it is equally important maintaining them and taking care that your tools operate efficiently. Store your instruments in a proper manner in chests and boxes with different.
      Last edited by Aargee; 28th Mar 2011 at 22:54.
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      Here're some more essential garage essentials. Most of these aid to carry out the job better.

      Waste Cloth - Have ample waste cloths when getting down to work. Use separate cloths for cleaning dirt & grease/oil. Reason being that, dirt sometimes contain solid particles that might get into the engine components when the same cloth is used to wipe clutch hosing.

      WD40 - An indispensable item & must have solvent, forget the garage, even for every household application. It is capable of cleaning anything right from grease/oil stains to cleaning the carbon deposits on spark plugs. If WD40 isn't available, then use the inhouse solvent Zorrik-88 from Pdilite Industries (makers of Fevicol products) that is more than sufficient to do the job.


      Petrol - It might sound little odd to spend few buks on petrol & use them as cleaning solvents. But the truth is, nothing cleans better than petrol. Use Petrol to clean things such as carburettor, air filter where things are little delicate.

      Diesel - Have a litre of Diesel in handy (lasts for several months) to clean that dirty engine oil spread on the engine case, frame, clean tar spots (How to remove tar spots). Soak a cloth in Diesel & apply it all over the vehicle before a complete water wash & certainly one can notice the difference compared to a regular water wash.

      Toothbrush - Do not throw away the old tooth brushes. They're very handy when it comes to cleaning chains, drums, wheel hubs & may be even remove dirt from those parts that are not reachable by fingers. Keep about 2 or 3 of them based on application; one for chain, one for cleaning & don't mix the burshes between the application.

      Broken Clutch Wire - If you think broken clutch cables or throttle cables are to be dumped, then they can prove you wrong. Use the broken end of the clutch wire & spread out the individual steel wire in the cable (ensure not to hurt the fingers during this process). Use this as a tool to clean those corners that is out of reach for fingers & stubborn sediments like carbon deposits that cannot be cleaned using solvents. For instance, the interiors of spark plugs can be used to clean to scrape off the carbon residues.

      Knife - Kitchen knives are no good when it is tested in garage. Keep a multipurpose utility knife that can be used for cutting anything from wires, plastics or thinner sheets of tin/aluminium.


      File - Use file to shave of excess metal to fit into grooves or to smoothen or roughen metal surfaces. Though its usage is not that high in a two wheeler garage, it can sometimes be helpful to roughen the brake shoes from being smooth.


      Oil Can - Do not dispose off the old engine oil. Infact dumping to Mother Nature is also harmful to environment. Store the oil in a can & use an oil can to lube the chain. Ofcourse, these days, most chains are lubed using Chain Lubricants, however, if you're one of those, who has the old school ride then its worth getting an oil can. Even otherwise, it is very convenient to lube the door & gate latches.


      Plastic Tray - Costs less than Rs 50, but very effective when it comes to cleaning carbs, air filters, bolts, nuts, screws or may be even cleaning the tools. It is very effective during an oil change to collect the drain.


      Gloves - For added protection as well as to prevent callus in the hands. Also gloves helps to stay clean, especially on those dirts that gets accumulated between the flesh & nail that are impossible to clean otherwise. But for people who love DIY, there's nothing more pleasing to get their hands dirty
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      One question - Why a Sledge hammer for a two wheeler?

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      Quote Originally Posted by Godfather View Post
      One question - Why a Sledge hammer for a two wheeler?
      Three actual applications that I carry out...
      - Hammer on main, rear or front axles, when they're struck
      - To hammer the rubber foot rest into the foot pegs
      - Sometimes to (over) fasten/loosen the wheel nuts, you put the wrench on the nut & then hit on the wrench mildly

      Otherwise, they can be put to use to bring back things to shape, like bent brake pedals, foot pegs, fenners, side stand.

      For households, there're plenty of usage around
      Last edited by Aargee; 28th Mar 2011 at 23:32. Reason: correcting grammatics
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      Since there're hundreds of tool manufacturer in the industry, its quite impossible to list all of them.
      Here're few pioneers in the industry worldwide
      Snap-on: Hand Tools, Power Tools, Tool Boxes, Automotive Diagnostics and Shop Equipment
      Mac Tools -> Home
      Craftsman | America's Most Trusted Tool Brand | Top-Selling Lawn Storage
      Hand Tools, Tool Storage, Automotive Service Equipment, Business Franchise Options - Matco Tools
      Cornwell Home Page
      Kobalt - The Next Generation of Tough Tools
      Welcome to CooperTools
      Stanley Hand Tools
      DEWALT | Power Tools, Contractor Tools and Accessories
      Wrth UK Ltd. - the world's number one supplier of assembly products and consumables
      Black and Decker
      Home Page (mostly power tools)
      Milwaukee Electric Tool | Power tools | Cordless Tools, Accessories
      Portable Generators, Heaters + Stoves, Power Tools, Welders | Northern Tool + Equipment
      IRWIN TOOLS - Hand Tools & Power Tool Accessories
      GearWrench

      Indian Manufacturers
      Eastman handtools
      Taparia Group
      Spanner Wrench Tools India - Venus Hand Tools
      Netco tools - makers,hand tools,handtools,india,vices,pliers,wrenches
      :: MAKITA POWER TOOLS INDIA PVT LTD :: (mostly power tools)

      Almost all the international brands are currently available in India & Wurth has already started their operation in India (CBU imports only ). Stanley, Black & Decker & Dewalt are mostly found at good tools store.

      Disclaimer - The pictures above are shown only for illustration & provide better understanding for the reader. Gearheads opinion on brand & model stands neutral.
      Last edited by Aargee; 29th Mar 2011 at 17:22.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Aargee View Post
      Three actual applications that I carry out...

      Otherwise, they can be put to use to bring back things to shape, like bent brake pedals, foot pegs, fenners, side stand.

      For households, there're plenty of usage around
      For foot pegs, best and easy way is to get a G.I pipe, at least around a meter in length and slide one end over the footpeg, just enough to get a grip and then push it back in place. Its much smoother and easier than hammering. This thread brings a lot of memories from my D.I.Y days. Now life has moved on in another direction and I hardly can change a bulb in peace. Thank you so much for this thread.
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      Guys, I certainly am Sorry to have not mentioning this earlier; There's a very indispensable tool which is MUST for every DIYers & every garage

      Plug Spanner - A single most important & the only tool to remove the spark plug from the cylinder head. They come in different form & usually will be available as part of any mechanic tool kit.
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      Another awesome thread Aargee. Although I would suggest you move it to the general section since most of the tools are not restricted to two wheelers.
      Also, add credits to the photos to avoid plagiarism issues.

      A noob question, are plug spanners needed to remove spark plugs in 4 wheelers as well?

      Another site for the people with tool fetish Tool Snob - The Online Source for Tool News and Reviews

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      nice thread Ganesh!!

      about the hammers: i have seen a heavy, big hammer head made of plastic/clear pvc stuff with nice rubber grip used for the gentle hammering at my Mechanic's place. this is especially used for hammering the wheel axel bolts and likes. this really helps in avoiding scratches and unwanted marks on the parts.
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