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Inexpensive Tool Kit

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Inexpensive Tool Kit

Old 01-27-13, 07:37 PM
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Inexpensive Tool Kit

I was wondering if anyone can tell me where I can get an inexpensive Bicycle tool kit. I live near Toronto and here in Canada they seem so expensive. I noticed that they are a lot cheaper in the U.S. but there you have to pay duty, and shipping is a lot more to. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks..Greg
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Old 01-27-13, 08:39 PM
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If there's a big enough difference, consider having a friend or cousin in the USA buy it for you. Then you can bring it home after a visit. But regardless of price, tool kits rarely represent good value. Usually, by the time you buy more bike tools, you already have a few, so a kit will have some wasted duplications. Then there are cases where various bikes use different tools for a specific job, ie. BB service. Tool kits might contain tools not apropos to your bike, so there's more waste. Lastly tool kits may include tools that you may never use.

Buy tools as you need them, for the jobs you need them for. Individually they'll be more expensive, but odds are you'll end up ahead based on what you actually use. Buying individually also you allows you to mix and match buying the best version of each tool rather than being locked in to what's in a kit.
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Old 01-27-13, 08:52 PM
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Cheap tools!

No. Do not buy a cheap, inexpensive, beginner, etc. tool kit! They are like the little tool kits that you buy for your kids first tool kit! As you can tell I am not enarmored with these tool kits! Decide what you want to accomplish on your bike and go to one of the tutor sites and see what tools are being used for that particular job and go about getting those tools.I use Amazon for most of my tools. They have great deals from time to time. Go on the Park tool site. They have tutorials, too! Get their Big Blue Book, too! I still use mine almost everyday! I sometimes will read the part of the book on my up coming project. I have a lot of different types of bikes, and old and newer. Differing components, too.
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Old 01-27-13, 09:08 PM
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The tool on the left cost as much as the whole tool kit cost that the tool on the right came out of! The chain breaker failed almost as dramaticaly as the freewheel tool did! The tools are use one time and throw away! After bandaging up your knuckles! Good tools give you the confidence to do more jobs. The right tool makes the job easier to do right! Take pride in your tools and the job you are doing!
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Old 01-27-13, 09:19 PM
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+1 on avoiding cheap tools. There is a saying; "only a rich man can afford cheap tools." It's more than a cliché and has a lot of truth to it as cheap tools will not fit their intended use properly and can damage themselves, the component and you. Good tools are a lifetime investment. You don't need the most expensive but you should buy quality the first time.

As FBinNY said, tools kits are too generic and will not have many of the specific tools you need and will have several tools you will never use.
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Old 01-27-13, 09:31 PM
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The tool kit was bought for my grandson to use while deciding if he was interested in doing the bike thing! I have also been lucky at buying used bike tools. I have found some at yard sales. Do not be afraid of dupes. A lot of times you need two of the same tool. I also have a small group of tools to carry in the truck when we go out riding away from home.
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Old 01-27-13, 09:55 PM
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the only bike specific tools I regularlly need are ...
  1. tire irons
  2. chain punch
  3. cone wrenches
  4. crank puller
  5. bb tool


and I went for years without the last two, just bringing the very occasional crank/bb job to my LBS where they'd charge me like $5 or whatever since the bike was already stripped and ready to do whatever.

past that, good quality metric allen wrenches and a decent pair of cable snips, and a few 1/4" drive metric 6-point sockets will cover 99% of everything.

the single tool I use the most often is...

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Old 01-27-13, 10:52 PM
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I collect bikes so I have outfitted my garage like a real bike shop. I let or make my "hobby" pay for itself. A lot of my bikes are worth fixing, but not getting fixed! This last week or so I rebuilt a Fuji Monterey, a Cannondale ST600, and I just tonight finished a Trek 1100! This beautiful Trek was maintained, but a lot of the components showed signs of damage from using regular hand-tools. I'm thinking hammer and big ol' screwdriver on the bottom bracket! It was nice having the tools needed to fix this correctly!
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Old 01-28-13, 12:12 AM
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When I was a poor college student in a cramped studio, I had a bike and one of these cheap Nashbar beginner sets and it let me do the basic maintenance I wanted to do to save money. For $50, it'll get you the basics and might be worth it if you have absolutely zero tools (can't speak to the international issue). If you already have an adjustable wrench, metric allen wrenches, and screw drivers, I'd spend the same $50 picking up what else you might need as you need it that is bike specific. Otherwise, a lot of the tools in those kit may or may not apply to you or your bike (e.g., headset wrench, chain whip). But, if you have nothing, like I did, this kit will get you what you need, some likely extra stuff, but none of it will be great quality. If you posted what kind of bike(s) you are planning on working on, we could possibly steer you a little better. While my cheapo Nashbar kit served me very well for a couple lean years, the only tool from it still in my rotation is the headset wrench.
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Old 01-28-13, 04:33 AM
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Thanks to everyone for there excellent advise. That sure opens my eyes a lot now. The bikes that I am starting to do now as a hobby are bikes that people give me. I fix them up and give them away to a church or others that need a bike. I don't get high end bikes. Mostly Canadian Tire and Wal- Mart type bikes. Although I do have one that is a Trek but don't know much about that one. So you see I get all sorts of bikes here and there and put as little money into them as I can, BUT I also make sure that they are in top notch condition before I give them away.

Thanks...Greg
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