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Discussion Starter #1
i just read some of the other thread labeled setting up shop but it didnt exactly answer my ?. I know i will be doing some work on my upcoming bike (still tbd :frown:) so i want to know what tools will make the jobs easier and any recommendations as far as manuals go (ive heard clymer?) I already have this craftsman socket/wrench set


i have been looking at some nice hydraulic bike stands (the kind that keeps both tires off the ground) would these be a good idea?

between me and my step dad, we are very handy when it comes to tinkering with things. we normally have a certain tool and if not we try to rig something up before spending money on something your only gonna use once.

any info would be greatly appreciated!

Aaron
 

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One set of tools you will need is going to be good set of allen wrenches. I be that craftsman kit came with the L shaped ones but for as often as you will be using them if you tinker on a bike you should run out and get a set of standard and metric allen wrenches, I recomend a set of them in socket for and a set of them in T handle form. Hide those stinkin L shaped ones for emergency only use.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
One set of tools you will need is going to be good set of allen wrenches. I be that craftsman kit came with the L shaped ones but for as often as you will be using them if you tinker on a bike you should run out and get a set of standard and metric allen wrenches, I recomend a set of them in socket for and a set of them in T handle form. Hide those stinkin L shaped ones for emergency only use.
good idea. i hate sitting there spinning and spinning and worrying about the ones that just are not strong enough breaking on me. so a set of socket allens and t shaped allens. is a good majority of a bike allen heads?


thanks!
 

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If you have the tool kit that came with your bike, I would start by getting sockets, wrenches, allen keys(as above)and screwdrivers in the same sizes. Pick a brand that fit your hands. No use in buying expensive if they are not comfortable.

Add to that:
wire cutters and/or cutter-strippers,
soft face mallet(rawhide, rubber),
vise grips(last resort nut destroyers),
GRIPLOCK® channel lock pliers(better than vice grips for tight nuts),
channel lock also makes a real nice oil filter plier,
spark plg cap puller if needed,
spark tester,
plug gapper,
long needle nose pliers to reach those tight spots,
6 or 8 inch crescent wrench.

That should get you started.
 

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If you have the tool kit that came with your bike, I would start by getting sockets, wrenches, allen keys(as above)and screwdrivers in the same sizes. Pick a brand that fit your hands. No use in buying expensive if they are not comfortable.

Add to that:
wire cutters and/or cutter-strippers,
soft face mallet(rawhide, rubber),
vise grips(last resort nut destroyers),
GRIPLOCK® channel lock pliers(better than vice grips for tight nuts),
channel lock also makes a real nice oil filter plier,
spark plg cap puller if needed,
spark tester,
plug gapper,
long needle nose pliers to reach those tight spots,
6 or 8 inch crescent wrench.

That should get you started.
Those look like a nice start...Honestly I started my tool collection with a hammer and 2 screw drivers, I have since moved on to an assortment of air tools(impact wrenches, impact drives, etc.) 2 or 3 socket sets, dremel tools,
drills, an a number of specialty tools that I can't think of off hand.
 

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The Cool Joker
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jeeze you've got like a bazillion more tools than i have, mtnbiker! i have an el cheapo 100 or so piece set, but it has served me well.

craftsman's 1/2 inch drive beam type torque wrench is like 30 bucks, best thing i've bought yet. essential for tightening axle nuts so you don't end up destroying your adjusters from a below-spec nut, or ruining the bearings from being over tight. my axle spec is 85 lb/ft but i found that i was doing it closer to 100 before i got the torque wrench.

same can be said for clutch boss nut, mine is 50 lb/ft spec. steering head is likely pretty close as well.

you should be able to find a small clicker type at harbor freight for those under-20 pound items. a while back they had a special on digital calipers and 3/8 drive clicker torque wrenches, but when i got there they had sold out of them. got the caliper later on though, it's a handy tool to make sure wear items are in spec (brake rotors come to mind).

anyway if you ever replace clutch springs, you'll be grateful to have a small clicker type. the specs on mine are something low like 5.8 lb/ft and VERY easy to break things if overtightened.

oh, and an extension magnet :D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
sweet. thanks guys. i was raised and only told to use craftsman tools. granted i do have a few kobalt things but for the most part it is all craftsman.

supersherpa197- got that set from my grandparents since i was constantly taking my step dads sockets for working on my mountain bikes.

is harbor freight fairly reliable? i have been looking at a bunch of stuff from them. does anybody use a motorcycle jack?? im thinking this would be a good idea because im a taller person and even though im young, getting on the ground with bad knees (yes already) is tough.


thanks!

aaron
 

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I have a regular car jack that I use on my bike. I has a pretty big craddle on it so I use that and a piece of wood. I rarely have to jack my bike up but it never hurts to be prepaired. I would however love to get a motorcycle table lift. Harbor freight sells them. As to harbor freights quality, there is a reason there stuff is more affordable. When it comes to tools I tend to go for craftsman, there easier to find then snap on and matco stuff and they have life time warantee, so I usually buy crafstman sockets, wreches screw drivers ect ect. But I haven't seen any awesome craftsman ratchets (haven't looked very hard though) so I have a few highend matco ratchets with high teeth counts, nothing is more annoying than ratchet that wont ratchet. When it comes to those specialty tools, things like a heat gun, air tools, buffers, vices ect ect I love harbor freight stuff.

Funny story about a craftsman ratchet I had one that got left in the rain and so it didn't work worth a crap. I took it to sears said I need a new one. The guy said technically its not broke so I took it out to the parking popped out the ring that holds it together smacked it on the ground, picked up the pieces went back and and said now its broke. They gave me a new one.
 

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sweet. thanks guys. i was raised and only told to use craftsman tools. granted i do have a few kobalt things but for the most part it is all craftsman.

supersherpa197- got that set from my grandparents since i was constantly taking my step dads sockets for working on my mountain bikes.

is harbor freight fairly reliable? i have been looking at a bunch of stuff from them. does anybody use a motorcycle jack?? im thinking this would be a good idea because im a taller person and even though im young, getting on the ground with bad knees (yes already) is tough.


thanks!

aaron

I would buy craftsman but they are pricey. I use cobalt tools and I so far have loved them.
 
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is harbor freight fairly reliable?
Yes, that is you can rely on them breaking. All their stuff is made in China from melted down recycled hubcaps (but so is everything these days). I once bought a crowbar there (as big around as your thumb) and broke it in half with my bare hands! :thumbsdown:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
thanks guys! ive got a long list of tools i need to go out and buy. did a quick price check just to see how much it will all cost. so far im at 200 bucks and there's still a lot more i need! :eek: obviously this will all gather up over time.

thanks again!
Aaron
 

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The Cool Joker
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haha for general use tools harbor freight is fine.

want to talk about quality?

there's a reason your mechanic uses snap on or matco......not craftsman or kobalt. let's be honest, for working on your own bike doing just basic maintenance, any cheap chinese tool will do the job. for rebuilding your whole motor, craftsman and the like will be more than sufficient.

now if you start using/abusing your tool set all day long being a mechanic for a living, that's a different story.


i still find it hard to belive you broke a crow bar with your bare hands. what was it made out of, friggin aluminum or something? any item that's going to carry as much load as a crow bar should really be made out of something heavy and appropriate for the job.

i found this while playing around on google, it's a list a guy compiled about what does and doesn't suck from harbor freight. worth reading :D

http://www.motoredbikes.com/archive/index.php?t-17045.html
 
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i still find it hard to belive you broke a crow bar with your bare hands.
I frankly don’t give a **** whether you believe it or not. My purpose for bringing it up was to stress the point that they use inferior metals in all their tools, not to hear your two cents on my crowbar and your vast knowledge on metallurgy.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
easy guys. no need for a ****ing match. :71baldboy:



thank you for the site super sherpa.

i was wondering about the torque wrenches. also, what size should i get? im looking at a 3/8 drive and if i need to put a 1/4" drive, i have a 3/8 to 1/4 adapter.


thanks again guys

Aaron
 

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Custom broke the crowbar because he was angry. You wouldn't like him when he's angry.

Also, it's about their quality control. None of their tools should be breaking like that. They probably use the right (or close to) kind of metal but if it's fired and cooled the wrong way it's going to be brittle (son of a mechanical engineer).

Also, "snap on or matco......not craftsman". Are you kidding? I've been really loyal to craftsman my whole life. The tools are amazingly well made (which is hard to find anymore). I recently had a seized bolt on a brake caliper that I couldn't get off. I was using a quarter inch drive socket wrench, with a 3 inch extension on the socket, all craftsman. I had a four foot pipe on the end of it, and put all my weight on the end. For those of you playing at home, that's 1,305 ft/lbs of torque on that extension and nothing broke. That's quality. I had to just about jump on it before it finally got the bolt loose, and it was smooth sailing from there.
 

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/\/\ Holy cow black, your really making that 1/4 inch drive ratchet earn its spot in the tool box, but hell even if it did break, you just need to head on over to sears and you get a new one. I don't know about that kobalt stuff rex uses, I have no idea if they have any kind of warantee but **** Jimmy Johnson uses em, they must be alright. LOL, "what are you doin Jimmy", pipe fitting guys deeeerrrrrrr.
 
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What were you doing when you snapped the crow bar?
Prying a 1x1 piece of trim off a doorframe. It was actually a little comical and when it snapped I pegged my Dad in the head with the other end. (ie Three Stooges) :eek:

They probably use the right (or close to) kind of metal but if it's fired and cooled the wrong way it's going to be brittle (son of a mechanical engineer).
Well I’m no metallurgist but have been working in metal for many years (from machining to welding) and from the crystallization at the breaking point I would swear it was cast steel (if not iron). When common sense would dictate it would be forged tool steel, considering the tools (and most good tools) intended purpose.
 

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seriously, you don't have to be an ass about it....

buy the proper tool for the job. i agreed that the load strength of metal for a crow bar should be suitable for the job. you bought a cheap tool, now you know better.

that's not saying that everything in the harbor freight store is made to the same tolerance as your sorry excuse for a crow bar.

and black, if you seriously think craftsman is up to the same quality as professional tools, ask a few bike mechanics what they use in the shop.
 
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