Every garage has tools. Your Dad's garage, your Grampa's garage, your Uncle's garage, maybe even your Mom, Aunt, or Sister (we don't discriminate). But these are not your Grampa's tools. You're lucky enough to be wrenchin' in an era where innovation doesn't stop at the roll-up door, and "It works, doesn't it" is not a good enough reason to not invent new tools to make your job easier or quicker. These cool tools do just that: relieve the struggle and help you speed up, or ease up. Here's 5 cool tools I think every mechanic should own!
#5 - Mini Hacksaw
If you've ever had to cut a bolt tail or exhaust hangar in a tight and awkward place you know exactly how cool this little saw is just by looking at it. Your days of duct taping a wood block to a hacksaw blade are over! (Come on, I can't be the only one...) There are several different styles of this Mini Hacksaw, but this is the best I've seen, as it has a comfort grip and a quick-release blade clamp. While I already have one without these features, this one has been added to my cart!
I can't put in to words how happy I've been since this little guy came into my life. No, I'm not talking about a child. I'm talking about this time (and knuckle) saver of a device that I don't know why I lived without for so long. It's so effortless to use, that you no longer have to leave your distributor hold down loose while you adjust your timing, which makes the whole process quicker and less frustrating. If you've ever had a distributor hold down too tight or too loose, you know what I'm talking about. It's really a no-brainer.
If you work on older cars like I do, some of them are inevitably going to have drum brakes, and they're still present on new cars as well! This handy all-in-one contraption has a tool for almost every spring in a brake drum setup. The only thing missing is a compressor for the disc and spring that holds the shoes to the backing plate.
#2 - Roller Ratchet
Have you ever had everything go so smoothly at first, that you worry about what's to come? You're under the car, finally got your hand and ratchet wedged in between the exhaust and the frame in the only spot you can get it like a monkey hiding a banana, only to find that the space is so tight that you can't even get a single click out of it? Before you teach your kids some new no-no words, I have a solution for you. The roller ratchet uses an overrunning clutch, the same as in your starter, to give you an almost zero degree throw. Sure you may be there a while, but small progress is better than no progress!
#1 - Ratcheting Wrenches
You never know how handy they are until you've used someone else's then gone back to your standard wrenches and ratchet.
The set I have includes both regular and stubby, in both SAE and Metric, so they come in handy on just about every project. I have a set of swivel head as well, which I use even more often. I usually grab these over a ratchet the majority of the time.
Yes, I know, there's tons more cool tools out there and I'll showcase more later, but these were at the top of my list to share. I have them all in my toolbox and they've made life a lot easier for me, so I wanted to pass on the info in hopes that they can help you out too! What's your coolest tool in your toolbox? Share it in the comments!