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Which is the better tool kit for $50??

Old 12-23-11, 01:12 PM
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Which is the better tool kit for $50??

Okay, I am all thumbs. No mechanical skills whatsoever. With that said, could you all tell me which is the better kit from these two?

First one..

https://www.ebay.com/itm/230622791592...84.m1423.l2648

Second one.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from...All-Categories

The cheaper one is better looking!

I can get the second one off Amazon for almost the same price. That is why I would like to know which is better or are the both about the same...

Thanks in advance...
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Old 12-23-11, 01:29 PM
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Both are about the same as far as I'm concerned. They may even be manufactured by the same company and private labeled for the company offering them for sale. I bought a similar kit when I started years ago and would advise against either of them. The reason is that the kit is a general purpose kit with a little bit of everything which means it will include tools you will never use along with those that you will. In order to provide all of this variety, quality is compromised and the ones you use may not perform as well as others available on the market or will need replacement before long. In the end, you will spend just as much on a collection of tools that are usefull to you because you will buy these replacements and others that you find you need.

The better way to begin is to get a few tools of decent quality specific to the jobs you will perform. Some tools are not bike specific like screw drivers, ball end allen wrenches etc and can be bought at hardware stores and home centers quite reasonably. Add other tools as you need to and in a couple of season, you will have spent no more than this path but you will own better tools without the waste of tools you never use. Also, buy your tools locally when you can. your local bike shop owner has a finacial commitment and local payrol to meet so support him when you can.
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Old 12-23-11, 01:30 PM
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Pretty hard to buy much of a tool set for $50.00.
It would cost me that much for a pump and patch kit.

What jobs do you want to do to your bike?

Figure out the tools needed for the first job, buy them, and do the job.

If that is a good experience, choose the next job, buy the tools and do it.

This way you won't end up with tools that were 'filler" in the tool kit, and you'll never use them.
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Old 12-23-11, 01:47 PM
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First one for a little cheaper: https://bikeisland.com/cgi-bin/BKTK_S...ls&ProdID=1892
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Old 12-23-11, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by skilsaw
Pretty hard to buy much of a tool set for $50.00.
It would cost me that much for a pump and patch kit.

What jobs do you want to do to your bike?

Figure out the tools needed for the first job, buy them, and do the job.
You got a good point there. However, I am all thumbs, can't turn a screw even in the smallest way. I am the bottom of the bottom of the starting barrel.. With one of these, I won't lose too much if I happen to get better and really like working on the bikes. I am rider, period..

Thanks for that feedback

Originally Posted by blamp28
and would advise against either of them. .
Makes a lot of sense. However, in my first post, I mentioned that I am all THUMBS.. Dispite owning a number of bikes, road race motorcycles, I can't turn a screw even in the smallest sense. I am that bad. So, I figure I would start with something not too expensive, and covers a lot. I am not dealing with a big budget either..

Thanks for that feedback


Originally Posted by fishymamba
Great, this is where I am going. I read a couple reviews, and the one for $53, or the higher price one, doesn't have a pedal wrench/clamp,etc. One of my first attempts at this will be to change out some pedals. Thanks for that link.

It is really hard to believe that somebody can be wrenchless. However, I did learn how to change a flat, so maybe there is hope for peeps like me..

Thanks much,
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Old 12-23-11, 02:51 PM
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Those kits have a lot of tools that you'll never use, and won't fit anything on your bike.

These will get you started: It's really all you need now.
The main one: A set of metric hex keys (the L shaped 6-sided tools), from 8mm to 1.5mm. I have one of the sets that's attached to a handle, where each key folds out. But I also use a loose set of the L shaped keys, since these fit into tighter spaces and I have more control over the tightening force.

Phillips screwdrivers, both #1 and #2 sizes. Get 2 separate screwdrivers with handles, not the kind with the replaceable bits.
A small flat blade screwdriver.
A wire cutter ("diagonal cutter") Mostly for cutting cables ties.
A pedal wrench to remove your pedals. (some pedals only use a long 8mm hex wrench--their axle doesn't have the flat sides that the wrench fits on.)
A spoke tool.
A chain tool to push out a pin when replacing the chain. I always use a Connex chain link on the new chain. It's tricky to get the pin pushed in correctly on a new 10 speed chain, and the Connex link is really easy.
Electrical tape.
Tire levers for changing tubes.
A thin wrench that fits the mounting nut where the brakes attach to the frame.
This--> A link to Park Tool's repair site: https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

Also, needle nose pliers, regular pliers, and a small adjustable wrench are occasionally handy, and good to have anyway.

Later:
A repair stand makes a lot of jobs much easier.
A brake and shifter cable housing cutter (expensive!) or a Dremel tool with a cutoff wheel.
A chain whip and cassette tool to match your cassette type.
A small torque wrench if you are tightening carbon components.
A bottom bracket tool to remove the crank axle bearings. (Depends on how your bottom bracket is designed)

Last edited by rm -rf; 12-23-11 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 12-23-11, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by cehowardGS
Okay, I am all thumbs. No mechanical skills whatsoever. With that said, could you all tell me which is the better kit from these two?

First one..

https://www.ebay.com/itm/230622791592...84.m1423.l2648

Second one.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from...All-Categories

The cheaper one is better looking!

I can get the second one off Amazon for almost the same price. That is why I would like to know which is better or are the both about the same...

Thanks in advance...


hey, even thumbs have their uses!

blamp28 called it dead on.
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Old 12-23-11, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by rm -rf
Those kits have a lot of tools that you'll never use.

These will get you started: It's really all you need now.
The main one: A set of metric hex keys (the L shaped 6-sided tools), from 8mm to 1.5mm. I have one of the sets that's attached to a handle, where each key folds out. But I also use a loose set of the L shaped keys, since these fit into tighter spaces and I have more control over the tightening force.

Phillips screwdrivers, both #1 and #2 sizes, and a small flat blade screwdriver.
A wire cutter ("diagonal cutter") Mostly for cutting cables ties.
A pedal wrench to remove your pedals. (some pedals only use a long 8mm hex wrench--their axle doesn't have the flat sides that the wrench fits on.)
A spoke tool.
A chain tool to push out a pin when replacing the chain. I always use a Connex chain link on the new chain. It's tricky to get the pin pushed in correctly on a new 10 speed chain, and the Connex link is really easy.
Electrical tape.
Tire levers for changing tubes.
This--> A link to Park Tool's repair site: https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

Also, needle nose pliers, and regular pliers are occasionally handy.

Later:
A repair stand makes a lot of jobs much easier.
A chain whip and cassette tool to match your cassette type.
A small torque wrench if you are tightening carbon components.
A bottom bracket tool to remove the crank axle bearings.

What I am trying to do in buying one of those kits is to FORCE myself to learn how to work on my bikes. I have two repair stands. Those kits have all the stuff you mentioned too. I am going to get the cheaper one for $45. Then I am going to look at all the instructional vids on youtube, and see what happens. I DREAD turning a wrench. It almost like I have a phobia against working on mechanical things, although I love riding and driving machines.

IMO, the starter tool kit will do a couple things for me. Just its presence will make me make a start at wrenching. Sheesh, I got 9 bikes, and can't work on any of them. Little things like chain-slipping out of gear, brakes adjusting, pedal change, and please don't mention anything to do with the cables. I am really out to lunch. Like I said, this is a force move to make me do something..

Thanks for the tips,

Last edited by cehowardGS; 12-23-11 at 03:12 PM.
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Old 12-23-11, 03:35 PM
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I admire your ambition. All I can tell you from many years of experience is

1. There are no good 50 buck bicycle tool kits.
2. Crappy tools make everything harder...especially
at the beginning of your mechanicking career.

If you want to change out pedals, get yourself one
decent dedicated pedal wrench (Hozan makes my favorite).

Build your tool lineup job by job with decent
quality first line tools and they will last you
as long as your legs....longer than many bikes.



https://www.modernbike.com/itemgroup....176882&TID=367
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Old 12-23-11, 04:02 PM
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IME, beginner or experience bike repairs... ALWAYS BUY QUALITY!!.
There is no point of trying to save money now and end up paying double later. "Buy once, cry once."
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Old 12-23-11, 04:19 PM
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Tool kits are a rip. Acquire them as you need them. About 90% of my bicycle tools were purchased used (I have a lot of tools).

+1 A $50 tool kit is going to be a collection of crappy tools, most of which, you will not need. I would much rather have two really good tools for $50, than 40 really crappy tools for $50.

To me, the first tools that need to be good ones are your cable cutter and your chain tool. Looking at those tool kits, the chain tools are junky. I'd be looking for a Park CT-3 chain tool, and a Shimano TL CT series cable cutter. The Shimano cable cutter is spendy, I got mine used at a reasonable cost. For lighter use, the Spin Doctor cable tool is not too bad, and is often on sale at either Nashbar or Performance bike.

What have I bought used? Well, the bike stand, the truing stand, the workbench, the tool cabinets, bb tools, screwdrivers, hammers, ratchets, sockets, crank tools, freewheel tools, cable tools, chain tool, RD hanger straightening tool, on and on. Even the Paramount banner that hangs in my workshop was used.


Yep, on sale at Nashbar: $14.99, not a bad deal:

https://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...2_10000_202578

Last edited by wrk101; 12-23-11 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 12-23-11, 04:41 PM
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I agree with all of the above posters who advise against any cheap tool kit. If anyone needs good tools it's the novice mechanic. An experienced guy can work around poor tools if he has to but the beginner needs all the help he can get. Along with "buy once, cry once" goes "only a rich man can afford cheap tools".
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Old 12-23-11, 06:48 PM
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I have a lot of mechanic tools, but when I got back into biking and started wrenching on my stuff I bought what I needed as I needed it. Some things I consider essential are Good cable cutters -I have Felcos, numerous sizes of cone wrenches there really are no substitutes for these - park shop with the blue handle, A good quality chain tool. I know you have some C&V stuff so headset wrenches are nice, as are BB lock ring and cup tools. My pedal wrench is a regular one that I ground thinner. I'm with Bill in that most were bought used or cheap on Ebay CL
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Old 12-23-11, 07:04 PM
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Listen to the advise you're getting. If you're all thumbs, cheap tools will only make it worse.
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Old 12-23-11, 07:24 PM
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Cheap tools suck! If you use them you'll break them, you might break whatever you're working on, and you'll spend more money to replace the crap tools you wasted your money on.

Do you have:
- Allen key set?
- Floor pump?
- Tire levers?
- Basic set of screwdrivers/wrenches?

These are the first things you'll need, to perform the most basic adjustments. If you need to do something and you don't have the right tool, go to the LBS and buy it. Then you'll have a good tool that may last you a lifetime. Chain tool ($15), crank puller ($15), cassette/freewheel remover ($10), chainwhip ($20 or make your own...) are some that come to mind.
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Old 12-23-11, 08:21 PM
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I saw the same tool kit as well. The higher priced one had the accessories pulled out and displayed, but those are loose items under the wrenches in the case that are included for both. If you magnify the pic you can see them.

As for cheap tools, wow, I've been using a set of kmart socket wrenches that has lasted me longer than any car I've ever owned. They are basically almost 30 years old and still work as I just did some work on the truck earlier this week. Even did a majority of the wrench turning on several engine rebuilds. There aren't many torque specs on a bike that even a cheap set of wrenches can't handle. A specialty tool, you'd be buying those even if you had a full set of snap ons.

Last edited by fuji86; 12-23-11 at 08:28 PM.
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Old 12-23-11, 08:21 PM
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Cone wrenches...ya gotta have cone wrenches. 15mm..at least 2. Next combo head wrench. Look at the tools that are in all of these tool kits...these are the bare minimal tools that you will need. Get specific bike cable cutters..they won't crush, or "oval" brake, gear cables. All of the bikes that I do or have done have needed the bearings done. Hence..the cone wrenches! The larger combo wrenches in the kits are for the skinny nuts at the head/handle bar area. Get some good T-handled allen wrenches. Also, good adjustable(monkey)wrenches..small & large sizes.
Go online and watch tutorials, paying attention to what tools you see the mechanic using. Look at the tools in the backgound, too. The ones that he uses the most will be within easy reach. Also, look at the brand which being used the most. Visit local bike shops(lbs)s and ask them what at the minimum tools they would get. Look at their wall of tools, too. Again, what is close at hand. Good luck! Have fun!
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Old 12-23-11, 09:16 PM
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dedhed said: "Some things I consider essential are Good cable cutters -I have Felcos" You will never regret buying Felco tools.
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Old 12-23-11, 09:49 PM
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Dam, a "hint to the wise is sufficient"... I thnk I got the message. I read some reviews on those kits, and they were almost laughalbe..A bunch of horror stories. However, I did noticed where those tool kits got high marks, and that was when they were given to kids as a starter kit..

Okay, I hear you all LOUD and CLEAR..

Will rethink this tool aquisition all over again...
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Old 12-23-11, 10:11 PM
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The guy has 9 older bikes to maintain and was glad a poster came up with a kit for $45.00. He's habitually cheap and proud of it, so pounding the table about quality tools isn't going anywhere. It will only fall on deaf ears. He should wait until after christmas and look for a kit that's on clearance for $39.95 or so. They will be out there. Performance bike often sells its smaller kits (similar to the OP's listings) for less than 40 bucks. bk
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Old 12-24-11, 12:57 AM
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Find a set at the flea market, these are going to be used to fix bicycles. Then when they're this inexpensive ?

https://www.kmart.com/shc/s/p_10151_1...=1324709694760
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Old 12-24-11, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by FastJake
Do you have:
- Allen key set?
- Floor pump?
- Tire levers?
- Basic set of screwdrivers/wrenches?
That's what I think too. It's surprising how few bike maintanance jobs require more than that. I'm wondering if a person who describes himself as "all thumbs" is likely to dive into a hub overhaul or a chain or cable replacement.
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Old 12-24-11, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by cehowardGS
I am the bottom of the bottom of the starting barrel..
I enjoyed that, a new literary talent.

You mentioned changing pedals to start off with, and that job can be very difficult. Remember that one pedal is a right hand thread, and the other is a left hand thread. They can be very difficult to undo and it might be a hard job to start out on. Decent mechanic's wrenches will fit in where they are needed (at least on my cheap bikes) but adjustable wrenches won't.

I agree with the comments about basic tools, that don't have to be for bicycles. I had just a single worrying experience buying from ebay and never did that again. The seller was top rated, but took about 4 times as long as he was supposed to, to ship the product. Now I tend to use Amazon, or look to Craig's list.

I think a mechanical attitude is great. I always want to know why something is going wrong and try to fix it. It seems to me that it is sort of necessary with life too, and that gets even more interesting.
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Old 12-24-11, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by fuji86
As for cheap tools, wow, I've been using a set of kmart socket wrenches that has lasted me longer than any car I've ever owned. They are basically almost 30 years old and still work as I just did some work on the truck earlier this week. Even did a majority of the wrench turning on several engine rebuilds.
From my experience the quality of cheap 30 years ago is better than the quality of cheap in todays "throw away" society. I have numerous 30-40 yo cheap tools that were made in USA and are actually decent quality.
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Old 12-24-11, 11:13 AM
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I just wanted to add a bit, since you mentioned starting out by changing pedals. Changing the pedals can be one of the most difficult jobs on a bike. They are usually frozen in place if nothing has been done to them in a long time. In my early days, there were a couple of pedals that I never managed to get off.

Fortunately I had a stockpile of spare parts from bikes I salvaged. On my days off, I would ride through the alleys and rescue any good bikes or parts of them if they had been put out with the garbage. A couple of times I had to throw out the pedal and the crank arm with it, and replace the arm with another of the same length. (but different styling)

I just wanted to warn you so you don't get a bad impression of bike mechanics from the first experience.

And by the way, rescuing a couple of bikes and taking the usable parts off, would be a great way to get used to handling tools. It's easier to take them off than to put them back on. You learn things about them as you are taking them off.

And it might not be for everyone. We all have different gifts for this world. A lot of people are just not mechanically inclined.

Last edited by Closed Office; 12-24-11 at 11:22 AM.
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