Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

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HorserloverFat
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Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby HorserloverFat » Sat Jun 27, 2015 12:19 pm

Sears Craftsman comes to mind , but I understand that they are made in China now . What about a set from Lowes ? Snap -on is another but are they really that expensive ! ? :eek: Which tools would be essential in a basic starter set for a young man that would like to do simple home and automotive tasks ? Thanks in advance ...

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby tvenuto » Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:04 pm

I'm no handyman, but I ascribe to the same philosophy with tools as I do with kitchen knives: quality, not quantity. There are obvious basics you'll need, but I would avoid large "tool sets" with a variety of tools that you may or may not need. I would buy the highest quality of the ones I did know I was going to use. For instance, your tool needs will very much depend on what sort of car work you plan on doing, or house repairs. If you're changing your oil, you might find a socket that fits the oil filter useful. Changing spark plugs might require another specialty socket. If you're doing work with wires you might want a pair of electrical pliers (I'm sure these have a real name). Perhaps a set of nut drivers will be useful for automotive work, or maybe you won't need those at all.

I think everyone needs:
-One or two "normal" sized screw drivers (philips and flat)
-A set of mini screw drivers (always useful!)
-Probably a torx set, for your spydies
-A pair of needle-nosed pliers
-A decent hammer
-A non-marring mallet
-A smalish crescent wrench
-You'll probably want a socket wrench set for the automotive work, but the sizes/units will be dictated by the kind of work and make of car

From there I'd add as the tasks dictate. I've had fine luck with the "Husky" socket wrench set I have, I don't think you need to go snap on if you're not an actual tradesman.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby bdblue » Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:05 pm

I don't think there is anything wrong with current Craftsman, but the better tools from Lowes and HomeDepot are probably OK too.
When I was working as a mechanic we used SnapOn and I really liked them, but they are too expensive for anyone not a professional mechanic.

You would need different tools for household use vs. automotive use. Off the top of my head- for most automotive use you would need:
open end/box end wrenches
sockets, ratchets, extensions- 1/4" drive and 3/8" drive. If you are doing engine building and suspension work you will need 1/2" drive too.
start with short sockets and add deep sockets later. I prefer 6 point sockets but occasionally you find a fastener that needs 12 point
std. pliers, larger slip-joint pliers, needle nose piers, wire cutters, vise grips
medium and large ball peen hammer
allen wrenches
the above tools would need to be SAE and Metric, depending on what you are working on
various straight slot and philips screwdrivers
a few pry bars
there are other specialty tools you might need such as feeler gages, torx drivers, etc. Actually maybe these days torx drivers could be considered essential too.

For home use you need various saws, levels, drills, measuring tape

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby farnorthdan » Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:59 pm

I think craftsman are just fine, especially with their lifetime warranty. I've been using the same stuff I bought years ago.
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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby SpyderNut » Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:49 pm

farnorthdan wrote:I think craftsman are just fine, especially with their lifetime warranty. I'be been using the same stuff I bought years ago.
Yes, I heartily agree. I've been using my Craftsman hand and power tools for 20+ years and they have never let me down. At times when I accidentally broke one of my Craftsman ratchets, screw drivers, tape measures, etc., I simply took it back to Sears and they replaced it for free with no questions asked. IIRC, I believe SK used to make the hand tools for Craftsman/Sears back in the good ol' days. I wouldn't be afraid to buy Craftsman.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Pinetreebbs » Sat Jun 27, 2015 11:28 pm

My sons are maintenance mechanics, the older one was a heavy equipment and crane repairman. Both sons earn their money with their tools so they are willing to pay a little more. They use Snap-on, Proto, Mac, SK and other US made tools most of the time. They watch for garage sales and auctions where you can often pickup excellent used tools.

I would only consider buying 3/8" drive sockets and accessories for general use. Ratchets and end wrenches wear and will ruin bolts so it's good to buy accordingly. That said, if it is a special size or you are an occasional user less expensive tools like Tekton (Esp those from Taiwan), Kobalt, Huskey and Craftsman may server you very well.

Get a good set of screwdrivers, they are worth the money. For those, I prefer Wiha, made in Germany, but there other good ones. If you use screwdrivers for pry bars and punches, get a cheap set and replace it often.

If a person has no tools at all, a small set can be a good idea. Just make sure the count is largely actual tools, wrenches, sockets etc, not miscellaneous junk hardware. Most screwdrivers included in tool sets are low quality.

Most heavy iron tools like punches, hammers, pry bars etc can be purchased from Harbor Freight or Northern Tools for a good price. They do have some serviceable sockets and ratchets.

Metric or inch is another questions to answer. In general I lean toward metric, the 13mm will work on common 1/2" and you can pickup individual 3/8", 5/8", 9/16" sockets as needed.

Craftsman tools used to be very good. Current Craftsman tools are not as well made, do not have quality plating and tolerances are lose. There are much better and more durable ratchets than Craftsman. Not all their tools have that lifetime warranty and really, what good is replacement you know it's going to break again?

I never though I would say this, but a good cordless drill or screwdriver with an assortment of screwdriver and socket bits, often sold by the tool maker, will do most light jobs around the house.
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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Ankerson » Sun Jun 28, 2015 10:04 am

HorserloverFat wrote:Sears Craftsman comes to mind , but I understand that they are made in China now . What about a set from Lowes ? Snap -on is another but are they really that expensive ! ? :eek: Which tools would be essential in a basic starter set for a young man that would like to do simple home and automotive tasks ? Thanks in advance ...

Something like this would get you started nicely.

http://www.lowes.com/pd_538864-22328-87 ... 8&pl=1#img" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Then add power tools as needed like saws etc.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Evil D » Sun Jun 28, 2015 10:44 am

Many years ago when I was a teen, a friend of mine's mother went bankrupt. His father had passed away when he was very young, and left a lot of tools in the shed behind their house. When she had to liquidate her belongings, she told me to take what I wanted from the shed. Her son didn't want anything to do with any of it, so I got a crap load of old rusty Craftsman sockets. So, having a lifetime warranty, I took them all to Sears, and they replaced every single one of them. The counter guy was really not happy about it, but I got a bunch of new tools basically for free.

Currently, I have a ~154 piece set that came in the typical briefcase style tool box. It was a father's day gift years ago, and has more or less served me very well. I've added a few tools that fit into the case here and there. I do hate that they're made in China now, but the warranty still stands and they still work. I haven't noticed any decrease in quality, but I don't buy as many tools as say a professional mechanic would.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby HorserloverFat » Mon Jun 29, 2015 6:18 pm

What about this one from HD (?) : http://www.homedepot.com/p/Husky-Mechan ... /203203976" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I don't know where it was made or if the tools included would be essential for a first set ...

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby bdblue » Mon Jun 29, 2015 7:15 pm

HorserloverFat wrote:What about this one from HD (?) : http://www.homedepot.com/p/Husky-Mechan ... /203203976" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I don't know where it was made or if the tools included would be essential for a first set ...

For automotive use the selection looks good. Would need to add other stuff such as hammer, pliers, maybe more screwdrivers.

For home use add saws drills and such.


If you can wait until closer to Christmas you can find sets like this on sale for good discounts.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Skidoosh » Mon Jun 29, 2015 9:57 pm

Check out Craig's list. There is ton of stuff locally. IMO it is not worth buying new or buying a tool before you know you will use it.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby MacLaren » Tue Jun 30, 2015 6:49 am

I got a nice Craftsman set from Sears a few years ago, and have really enjoyed it.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby paladin » Tue Jun 30, 2015 1:22 pm

Craftsman is good for homeowner use, regardless of where they're manufactured...

I would be more concerned about how long their "Lifetime Warranty" will last if Sears goes bankrupt :eek:

A socket & ratchet set is a must, IMHO, and here is my go-to set...I reach for it EVERYTIME! :cool:

http://www.sears.com/craftsman-85pc-uni ... 937698000P" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

the "pass-through" allows most (not all) bolts to completely pass through which can be very useful on long fasteners with a lot of exposed thread & eliminates the need for duplicate sizes in "deep well" sockets...the nutdriver does the same function, BTW...really ingenious design, IMHO :)

whichever ratchet set you go with, do yourself a favor & make sure to get one with the molded carry/storage case...the loose sets are a pain to keep up with & keep organized :(

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Mad Mac » Wed Jul 01, 2015 4:15 pm

It's a beginning. $30 at Harbor Freight with coupon.

Handle most home or automotive repairs with this complete tool kit

Image

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby bdblue » Wed Jul 01, 2015 7:14 pm

Mad Mac wrote:It's a beginning. $30 at Harbor Freight with coupon.
You might have to check those products and determine how good they are. I shop at HF and find that some things are pretty good and some might not be. I have to study them and make up my own mind. If the products look good and fit fasteners well, that would be a good start. If some of the products aren't so good then you haven't lost much.

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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Dodge » Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:38 pm

Craftsman is the best for the starting home repair/ auto repair guy. I was an auto mechanic and transitioned to a body man mid career. My craftsman tools never let me down. Although I have special tools from snap on, Mac, matco, cornwell, my craftsman are my get the job done tools.
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Re: Please recommend a good starter tool set for home and auto use ?

Postby Doc Dan » Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:55 pm

Craftsman tools are great and they are hardened. They offer kits (like the one above from Harbor Freight) that will get you started. They make home kits and car kits. Lowes and etc. will have these kits, too.
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