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What bike mechanic tool kit to get?

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What bike mechanic tool kit to get?

Old 11-25-14, 12:10 PM
  #26  
ksisler
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
Yeah, they have several:

Park Tool Co.

Just wondering if there was another brand to look at or is Park the way to go.

She's got her eye on this one:

http://www.parktool.com/product/advanced-mechanic-tool-kit-ak-38[/url]
OP; This is a fine set. She can find it at low cost ($264 Delivered) here:

Amazon.com : Advanced Mechanic Tool Kit AK-38 : Bike Tool Kits : Sports & Outdoors
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Old 11-25-14, 12:59 PM
  #27  
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Having worked on bikes without one, I can't overstate the usefulness of having a good bike stand. I bought myself a PC-10 last year and it was the best purchase ever when it comes to do it yourself repair work on my bicycles.
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Old 11-25-14, 01:43 PM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by Phloom View Post
Having worked on bikes without one, I can't overstate the usefulness of having a good bike stand. I bought myself a PC-10 last year and it was the best purchase ever when it comes to do it yourself repair work on my bicycles.
Strongly agree with this. If you really looking for a nice gift in the $100-300 price range, a bike stand is what I'd go for. It's what I got my wife to buy me for my birthday this year, and it's been a great help.
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Old 11-25-14, 02:23 PM
  #29  
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I compare having a bike stand to having a big expensive hydraulic car lift when working on cars. I never had one of those and working under a car could be very unpleasant. A bike stand makes working on a bike very pleasant no matter what you are doing. It is the only tool that is used 100% of the time.
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Old 11-25-14, 05:01 PM
  #30  
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AK-38 looks like a very nice kit, but that's a lot of dough, at least for me. I got the Nashbar "Essential" kit, and it's got most of the same functionality for well under $100, which leaves room for buying higher-quality pedal and cone wrenches.
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Old 11-25-14, 06:22 PM
  #31  
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Sometimes, i look at a few sets and thought to try them out. Amazon sells a few sets with some good reviews. Convenience is what it is about, and just add to the kit what you need. Personally i just bought tools as needed and had a bunch for my car.
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Old 12-30-14, 01:30 PM
  #32  
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So, we took the advice of the BF and she got me this for a combo Christmas/birthday present which I promptly consolidated all of my new and old tools into:



















Thanks for all of the advice. Do you see any tools I need to add to the bike tool collection?
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Old 12-30-14, 02:25 PM
  #33  
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My gift to myself a couple of years ago was to get a Sears chest (similar to yours but smaller and one set of drawers). It came with no top but I added a plywood top, then a back and sides to hang tools from, small shelves for greases and hand cleaner. Put a half dowel across the front to keep stuff from rolling off. Painted all with interior/exterior hi-gloss hard enamel paint, no color and very white. Small parts are easy to find and it is easy to clean. Then added pegs and nails to hang the frequently used bike specific wrenches and tools. Larger tools hang from the sides. I put dowel half round strips along the front top and sides so I can lean a bike against it without damaging paint. Immediately in front of the box is a rope hanging from the ceiling with a loop at about eye height. Takes about 2 seconds to hang the bike by the seat to work on and the same to lean against the cabinet when two hands/force is needed.

Ben
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Old 12-30-14, 02:52 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
So, we took the advice of the BF and she got me this for a combo Christmas/birthday present which I promptly consolidated all of my new and old tools into:



















Thanks for all of the advice. Do you see any tools I need to add to the bike tool collection?

You need to clean and oil your tools.

And take better care of them.

I'd turn the rusty Craftsman tools in at Sears for exchange, and throw away the rusty no-name tools that you can't clean or are damaged or worn-out.
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Old 12-30-14, 02:59 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by RoadGuy View Post
You need to clean and oil your tools.

And take better care of them.
Thanks dad

Originally Posted by RoadGuy View Post
I'd turn the rusty Craftsman tools in at Sears for exchange
I didn't know that was an option. I'll look into it.
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Old 12-30-14, 03:11 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by jyl View Post
If you have a newer bike, you would skip some of the tools I picked (e.g. headset wrench, bottom bracket lockring wrench, big adjustable wrench, metric socket wrench set) and instead add specific tools for your bike (whichever bottom bracket tool you need). As a result your kit would be cheaper - I'm getting around $215-230.

Anyway, do with that what you will. It is really nice that your girlfriend wants to buy you a kit, and she probably wants something all shiny and coordinated and good looking - low hassle with free shipping. If you have a newer bike, I think the Park kit will work just fine, you might add a couple tools later, but for just routine maintenance you might not ever have to. If you have an older bike, you will be adding a few tools to the Park kit, call it $20 to $50 worth, plus $25 for a bottle of Chain-L, a bottle of TriFlow, and a tub of synthetic auto axle grease. Either way you'll want a floor pump. Treat her right, and next Christmas, maybe she'll buy you a bike repair stand.

(This all assumes you have zero tools currently, not even a screwdriver set.)

P.S. Park tools are generally okay quality, not great quality - but you don't need the highest quality tools for bikes. It isn't like cars, where you have to apply a lot of torque. So I picked pretty inexpensive tools in the wishlist. Not fancy but they should serve.
+1 !
It's very difficult to make a list of all the tools someone will need if you don't know the bike(s) they will be working on or the pre-existing tools in their work space. I, like many mechanics, started my tool kit with individual tools as I needed them for the specific bikes I was working on. This is a slower process but, I believe, a more efficient way to grow your tool kit.

If I had the opportunity for someone to buy me a premade tool kit years ago, I wouldn't regret it today. I would have a fair number of tools I don't use but the gift giver would have had an easy time shopping.

I would give your girlfriend the wish list of specific tools (which take some research to match to your specific bike components) and tell her that the tool kit would be much appreciated also, though not quite as helpful.
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Old 12-30-14, 03:13 PM
  #37  
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I'm a little late to the party with the above advice :-/

That's a great tool cabinet!

I would definitely advise cleaning/oiling your tools
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Old 12-30-14, 03:45 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
Thanks dad

I didn't know that was an option. I'll look into it.
Sears Craftsman, some Snap-on, Harbor Freight, Lowes Kobalt, and Home Depot Husky hand tools have a limited lifetime warranty. Snap-on and Harbor Freight require proof of purchase.

Tools get worn and can break with age and use. Nothing wrong or that can be avoided. But, there's no excuse for rusty, neglected tools.

The condition of a technician's tools is a indication of the quality of the work he does and the care he puts into his work.

Sorry, but I wouldn't let you work on anything in my house.

Last edited by RoadGuy; 12-30-14 at 03:52 PM.
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Old 12-30-14, 06:16 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by RoadGuy View Post
Sorry, but I wouldn't let you work on anything in my house.
Dagnabbit, there goes my weekend!
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Old 12-30-14, 06:41 PM
  #40  
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To really answer this question with the best options what's the budget?
Can't select a kit without knowing the price budget.
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Old 12-30-14, 07:27 PM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by RoadGuy View Post
You need to clean and oil your tools.

And take better care of them.
This. I've got tools that are older than me and none are that bad.

Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
I didn't know that was an option. I'll look into it.
Be careful with the new Craftsman tools,they're not all USA made anymore. Was just at Sears last week,and there's more than one quality level to the current tools.
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Old 12-30-14, 07:40 PM
  #42  
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Assuming that she just wants to spend a reasonable amount of cash and that
you only want a reasonable amount of tools. Go to Performance and:



[h=2]Spin Doctor Essential Tool Kit[/h]
3.9
(63 reviews)





Read 63 Reviews








  • Our Price: $79.99
  • SALE:$49.99
  • Save: $30.00
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Old 12-30-14, 07:57 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by JTGraphics View Post
To really answer this question with the best options what's the budget?
Can't select a kit without knowing the price budget.
My question would be "What kind of bike service do you picture yourself doing?" Without knowing what you are likely to be doing, how can you possibly know what you'll need to do it?
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Old 12-31-14, 08:13 AM
  #44  
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As others have said, it completely depends on what you want to do and what you want to do it to. Go over your bike(s) and look at every fastener you might want to turn. The newer the bike the less variation (in my experience, anyway).

A set of metric allen keys, good multibit screwdriver with torx and phillips bits, two or three combination wrenches, pedal wrench, cable cutter, chain tool, chain whip & cassette tool with an appropriate large wrench or freewheel tool with the right large wrench, third hand tool, and a spoke wrench will take you a very long way. For a bit of luxury add in the Park tool for opening quick links.

Maybe add in a crank extractor (if needed) or a bottom bracket tool and definitely get a bike stand if possible.

That's my view as a fellow amateur mechanic and I defer to the experts...

Last edited by asmac; 12-31-14 at 08:52 AM.
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Old 12-31-14, 08:34 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
Dagnabbit, there goes my weekend!
Unsolicited advice notwithstanding, it's good advice. The next tool you buy should be a wire brush to clean the rust and crud off the ones you already own. For example, that file in the sixth picture down is rusted beyond any saving. Go through and discard the hopelessly damaged tools so you don't ruin expensive bike components with them.
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Old 12-31-14, 09:04 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
Go through and discard the hopelessly damaged tools so you don't ruin expensive bike components with them.
I'm curious which ones you feel those are.
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Old 12-31-14, 10:05 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
I'm curious which ones you feel those are.
Without on-site inspection I can't be sure but a lot of them seem to be candidates.
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Old 12-31-14, 10:09 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
Without on-site inspection I can't be sure but a lot of them seem to be candidates.
When are you stopping by?
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Old 12-31-14, 07:15 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Jarrett2 View Post
When are you stopping by?
Next time I'm in the DFW area. How are you fixed for dark beer?
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Old 12-31-14, 08:08 PM
  #50  
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From a point of experience/knowledge, most wouldn't go with a kit. However, I was in a similar position and opted for the Park AK-37, which I liked. Bear in mind, I had zero regular tools except for a couple old screwdrivers, an off brand adjustable wrench, and those allen wrenches from Ikea-type furniture...and I didn't know a lot about tools otherwise. I liked getting a kit that just came with what I needed. The quality was pretty good and I was happy with the AK-37. The tools I still use are the: pedal wrench, various freewheel tools, crank extractor, spoke wrenches, chain checker, cone wrenches (but you really do need a double of the one's you need and I don't use all of them), tire irons, chain tool, cable cutter, chain whip, bottom bracket tool (for cartridges) and I even used the crank bolt wrench thing (which isn't really necessary but I have it so I use it). At the time, I also used the screwdrivers, y-allen wrenches, regular wrenches, and I also used the included grease and lube. I never much cared for the chain cleaner as it was messier than the soda bottle shaking method. As I went on, I replaced the wrenches with real combination wrenches, got an allen wrench set (some people like the Park y/star ones but I just don't), and different screwdrivers....the park ones were fine but I just needed more screwdrivers in my life, generally. So, in the end, I feel like I got a decent deal for all the tools I did use and still do...so, it was a good start. I did have to quickly supplement with a spanner and lockring tool for some mid 80s bikes and a headset wrench. Knowing what I know now, I'm not sure I'd get the kit unless I did a price comparison and figured out the tools I got would be cheaper to get that way. This said, it got me started well. I think that Park set is as good as any to start out with. Good luck.
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