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Must Have Tools For The New DIY Guy?

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Must Have Tools For The New DIY Guy?

Old 01-28-14, 07:05 PM
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Must Have Tools For The New DIY Guy?

First off I want to thank every one for the great information on my other posts. I used to do pretty well keeping my old trucks running till the new computerized stuff so feel confident about keeping my bikes and kids bikes going.
Its -10 outside but cleaning the garage and going to start tinkering with the kids bikes over the winter.

Everything we have now is Trek if that makes a difference but looking for some must have tools to start with. I do have a large craftsman tool box with basic SAE and Metric tools but not bike specific.

I will be getting a bike repair stand and some mentioned Cone wrenches.

Is this what you mean by crone wrenches.
Park Cone Wrenches

What else do you use a lot?
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Old 01-28-14, 07:24 PM
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Chain tool, a park would be a good bet. Crank arm remover for whatever cranks you have (mine are all square taper, so I use a cheapie). Cassette tool and chain whip are important! Torque wrenches are a good thing, I have cheapies from Harbor Freight. They work fine, and are better than a "guess"

Good allen wrenches, and allen wrench sockets (for the torque wrenches). No need for bike specific here, just whatever you can get.

And yes, thos park cone wrenches are cone wrenches, I have a set that cost all of $15. They work just fine, cones should not be THAT tight to ever hurt them!

Last edited by nymtber; 01-28-14 at 07:28 PM.
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Old 01-28-14, 07:25 PM
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Yes, those are the cone wrenches we refer to. However, most bikes only need one or two sizes depending on the hubs you have. The entire set is only needed for a commercial shop or if you maintain a fleet of family and friend's various bikes.

The most used tools by me are:

Floor pump
Tire levers
Metric Allen keys, 2 mm through 10 mm.
Cone wrenches 13mm through 17 mm
Axle Vise
Chain tool
Chain whip
Cassette lockring tool
Crank puller
Bottom bracket removal/replacement tool.
BIG adjustable wrench
1/4" and 1/2" drive torque wrenches
Metal ruler/meter stick
Cable cutters
Spoke wrenches
Pedal wrench
Grease
Oil
Chain lube

Infrequently used tools:

Steerer cutting guide
Headset cup remover
Headset cup press
Crown race seater

Keep in mind that I've been working on various bikes for well over 20 years and have accumulated these tools as needed for a specific job and to fit my specific components. For example I have four different cassette/freewheel tools and four different types of bottom bracket tools accumulated as bikes came and went. I highly recommend AGAINST buying a "tool set" as it will likely have lots of tool you don't need and be missing many you do.
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Old 01-28-14, 07:26 PM
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Many, many threads on this topic both here and via Google, but what it usually comes down to is you gett what you need when you need it. It can vary quite a bit once you get into bike specific tools, especially if you have bikes from different periods. But almost everything you need to do often can be done with a screwdriver, Allen wrenches and a spoke wrench.
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Old 01-28-14, 07:37 PM
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I'd say work with what you have, and buy more when you need them.
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Old 01-28-14, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by clevername
I'd say work with what you have, and buy more when you need them.
This is the key -- first determine the task you need to complete, then tool up as required.

Don't buy cone wrenches until you do some hub work. Don't buy a chain tool until you need to use it. Don't buy cable cutters until you replace a cable.

And when you need them, buy high-quality stuff, not junk.

As long as you have metric hex keys (allen or Bondhus) you can do a lot.



My $0.02... buy what you need when you need it on a task-by-task basis.
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Old 01-28-14, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by dkyser
..........Is this what you mean by crone wrenches.
Park Cone Wrenches

What else do you use a lot?
You'll "Most Likely" only need the smaller 5 sizes and possibly not even all of them.
It's much better to have 2 ea. of the sizes you DO need, except 17mm.
17mm is the lock nut and accessible with a "standard" 17mm box/open end wrench.
I have 2 ea. 13-16mm + one 17mm.
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Old 01-28-14, 09:25 PM
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These last two posts are really good advice. Buy as you need, and buy quality. Also, guys like HillRider are the ones you want to keep talking too because they will have the experience to know what is really needed along with when and how often.
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Old 01-28-14, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Hendo252
My $0.02... buy what you need when you need it on a task-by-task basis.
Good advice.....unless you're cheap like me. I won't buy from the LBS when I can get the same exact item for 50% off online. So shop early and shop often!

I'd suggest buying tools based on what you're likely to need first. Tire tools; you WILL have flats. Cable/housing cutters; cables DO rust and wear. You've probably got Allen wrenchs to adjust seats and handlebars. You will eventually need a chain tool.

Btw....buy a cable cutter DESIGNED to cut stranded steel cable. Any quality brand will start out fine; but if you get into more rigorous use (flipping) they just won't last.

Last edited by Thumpic; 01-28-14 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 01-28-14, 09:44 PM
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A great start is the $45 nashbar essential kit: https://www.nashbar.com/bikes/Product...52_-1___202586

If you're brand loyal to something other than nashbar, use that tool list as a baseline.

There's a lot of potential to get in WAY over your head for $45 with that kit.
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Old 01-29-14, 10:27 AM
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For starting out, Vise-Grips and a 16oz hammer should handle most jobs.
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