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Old 12-30-08, 08:00 PM   #1
phantomcow2
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Tool kit for car repair.

Next semester is going to be different; I will be driving to college instead of flying. I've always been able to do my own repairs, saving me a lot of money in the process. The thing is, I have access to a well stocked home garage, complete with a vast array of tools that my household has acquired over the years. Obviously none of this will be available to me out there, 600+ miles away from home. So I've decided to build myself a toolkit to allow me to do basic repairs/maintenance as I might need it. Below is a list of the things I've acquired. If there seems to be something that I would definitely use for auto repair, please comment.

99-piece socket and metric and imperial wrench set; sockets come in 3/8" and 1/4" drive, and an extension is included.

5/8" spark plug removal socket.
Two channellocks (Channellock 430)
Lineman pliers
Wire stripper/crimper/cutter (Channellock 908)
Set of medium-length phillips and flathead screwdriver.
Needle nose plier.
Two vise grips; large and small.
SAE and Metric allen wrench set, up to 10mm and 3/8" respectively.
Two adjustable wrenches, 10" and 4".
Oil filter wrench
Side cutter.
Electrical tape.
Calibrated multimeter
Digital calipers (water proof )
Set of flathead and phillips precision screwdrivers.

And a tool box to put it all in.
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Old 12-30-08, 08:15 PM   #2
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I'd throw a 1/2" ratchet and socket set in there as well if you plan on doing any suspension work.
Short set of screwdrivers would go well with your medium length ones as there can be some tight spots to get in to. Good set of pry bars always comes in handy.
Otherwise, I think you should be good to go. Oh, duct tape is your friend too.
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Old 12-30-08, 08:19 PM   #3
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Couple more suggestions:
- tire pressure gauge, plug kit, and floor pump
- gloves, rags, and Fast Orange
- cable ties (complements the duct tape )
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Old 12-30-08, 08:20 PM   #4
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Oh, duct tape is your friend too.
Yep.

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Old 12-30-08, 08:21 PM   #5
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Oh, I forgot to mention that I do have a plug kit, pump, and tire pressure gauge.

Cable ties and duct tape are an excellent idea and I'm surprised I missed them.
I think a can of PB Blaster may also be a worthwhile way to spend 3 dollars...

Thanks for the replies!
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Old 12-30-08, 08:30 PM   #6
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torque wrench.
pipe for breaker bar.
hammer.
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Old 12-30-08, 08:31 PM   #7
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couple of Hydraulic Jacks and/or ramps.
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Old 12-30-08, 08:38 PM   #8
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punches, chisels, wire brush, tape measure...
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Old 12-30-08, 08:40 PM   #9
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AAA card if all else fails...
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Old 12-30-08, 08:46 PM   #10
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A folding bike, for when you inevitably break down, needing the one part or tool you don't have.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:15 PM   #11
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Don't forget Torx bits. Maybe an angle grinder and an electric impact gun too. A good torch would be nice too. And if you ever have problems with your sockets, I strongly recommend getting a 3/8 SK set. I have used a lot of brands, and I honestly think they are the best. The sizes are usually about perfect, and I have put them on impact guns many times never managing to break one, plus they aren't too expensive if you get them from the web.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:44 PM   #12
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Things I find invaluable when working on cars are:
10 in. extension for your ratchet
The stubbiest little screwdrivers you can find
Magnet on a stick thingy
Loads of light, flashlights with magnets, headlights that go on your head or bike helmet, droplights, etc. Few things more handy than a droplight hanging from a retractor on the ceiling.

-OR-

Buy a Toyota, and an Exxon credit card, and you're done.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:48 PM   #13
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punches, chisels, wire brush, tape measure...
wire brush - I always carried one of those battery terminal cleaners - had a wire brush for scrubbing the wires and a 'female' end for placing over the terminals. Not sure if they still sell those or if they;d work on modern batteries.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:50 PM   #14
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wire brush - I always carried one of those battery terminal cleaners - had a wire brush for scrubbing the wires and a 'female' end for placing over the terminals. Not sure if they still sell those or if they;d work on modern batteries.
That red paint stuff has worked very well for me at stopping corrosion.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:52 PM   #15
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wrenches, sockets, screwdrivers. maybe a prybar and a good multimeter.

i work in a professional capacity as an auto mechanic, and that's most of what's in my toolbox. which is just one of these, so you can imagine how small my "tool kit" is.
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Old 12-30-08, 09:58 PM   #16
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pipe wrench + duct tape + hammer + 2 part epoxy = fix anything
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Old 12-30-08, 10:09 PM   #17
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Shop manual.
Spare fuses.
Spare belts.
Flashlight.
Hose clamps.
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Old 12-31-08, 10:35 AM   #18
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couple of Hydraulic Jacks and/or ramps.
Yeah a floor jack is the thing I regret parting with the most over a series of moves. Also it's the thing I retroactively regret ever having lived without. Ramps and jackstands are nice and stable but if cubic inches of storage space are the issue, go w/ a floor jack and then build a stand under the car with boards and/or cinderblocks.

As I was shedding things over moves, I let the ramps go first, then one jackstand, then the other, then the jack, and that's about the way I would prioritize reacquiring them (jack, jackstands, ramp)
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Old 12-31-08, 10:38 AM   #19
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AAA card if all else fails...
I totally got a lifetime's worth of AAA fees out of one particularly bad roadtrip of towing. Gotta be AAA plus though, they will reimburse you for using any tower, regular AAA won't, and official AAA 'providers' are not always available.
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Old 12-31-08, 10:40 AM   #20
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Keep in mind this all needs to fit inside of a 24" toolbox. Well, maybe the trunk as well. ie. cinberblock ramps and hydraulic jacks are probably out of the question.

AAA plus is lovely -- it's my parent's recurring birthday gift to me.
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Old 12-31-08, 10:44 AM   #21
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and/or cinderblocks.


Given the ease at which cinder blocks can be broken, I don't think they would make a very good way to support a car. On day one of the first auto mechanic class I took, they said not to do that unless you wanted to be crushed. Jack stands for compact cars are small and cheap. Certainly cheaper than a life.
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Old 12-31-08, 11:03 AM   #22
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I recommend styrofoam blocks from a refrigerator or CRT television box. You can use the boxes themselves, but be sure to shore them up a bit. They can be flexy.
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Old 12-31-08, 11:30 AM   #23
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Find a baby that just crawled out of a meteor from the planet Krypton. No need for jack or stands or cinder blocks or fridge boxes.
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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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Old 12-31-08, 11:30 AM   #24
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Find a baby that just crawled out of a meteor from the planet Krypton. No need for jack or stands or cinder blocks or fridge boxes.
What about your famous foam balls? Might those work alright?
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Old 12-31-08, 11:31 AM   #25
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I would not trust my balls as far as I can throw them.
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Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
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