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Getting The Job Done Right
It is natural for you to want nothing but the best when looking for mechanical toolsets because you want the job to be done well, once and for all. Better tools will simply bring you better results. The best mechanical tool sets must offer you a lot of flexibility and variety in tackling any number of projects that you undertake. A good set of tools will not just make your work easier and faster but also offer you the precisions that you will need.
It’s able to do that without the hassle of fatigue and soreness in your hands. You will find the widest range of brands and models available in the market, and the job now comes down to choosing the best from the rest, that not only serves your purpose but also meets your budget.
Having that said, I was surprised at how cheap I was able to buy the Crescent CTK170CMP2 Mechanics Tool Set from the listing on Amazon. It stood out the most amongst all the other products. After going through various customer reviews and feedbacks on different sites, this product worked its charm on me. The best thing about the product is its price as it provides value for money. There are a few things in the kit that are better than the rest, and the tools are retained in the case quite well. This makes the product easy to use.
*List recently updated for 2020
Crescent is a well-known brand that has been manufacturing tools for over 100 years now.
This has only been possible because the company never failed to satisfy its customers. Innovation and creativity are the two major things a company should focus on, and this particular car toolset is the result of Crescent’s innovation. CTK170CMP2, an updated version of CTK170CMP, maintains the same essence of the previous model, it just has a few more added features. This new set has a stronger mold case and improved screwdrivers.
What I liked the most about this product is that it contains 170 pieces of hand tools, selected carefully, to help in industrial, mechanical and consumer applications. The set includes ¼”, 3/8” and ½” drive tools (SAE and Metrics). These tools meet the new ANSI and ASME specifications and assure full guarantee. The case also comes with a foam insert, which most people think is a packing material but I would highly recommend you to keep it as it acts as secondary protection to the tools from bumping into each other.
The needle nose pliers look useful, with retention springs and textured handles, but using them can be a challenging task. The spring gives a crunchy feel every time you close the pliers, so this requires improvement. The “tongue and groove” pliers lose their position quite often when you need it to open the jaws wider.
Craftsman is one of the well-respected manufacturers of mechanical tool sets and this product bears the testimony to their fame. With no less than 450 items set in a well-projected case, this is one of the best tool sets for professional use.
What I really liked about this tool set is that it is fairly comprehensive, with a wide range of socket heads and drill bits. In fact, the collections of bits, socket heads, and Allen keys are so diverse that you can easily use only this tool set for the longest time. I also found this set easy to use for the inbuilt sliding out trays. I can simply store it on my workbench and take out the tools as needed. However, at 35 pounds, this kit is quite heavy and you need to have The Rock’s strength if you want to carry it around with you!
My biggest complaint with this tool set is that, despite all the amazing collection of items that it has, there are no pliers of any kind whatsoever in here! The case is nice enough to hold all the tools but giving a plastic case for such a heavy tool set is not okay. The quality of the case needs improvement.
Stanley is a brand that offers a wide variety of tools, but it is mostly known for their home improvement tools compared to automotive tool kits. What is exciting is that they are still doing a pretty job at it.
This particular set contains 210 pieces of mixed tools featuring chrome vanadium forged body for force, strength, and sturdiness. The polished chrome finish of the tool kit provides anti-corrosion protection so that the tools last longer and work effectively.
I really like their toolkit as they meet and exceed all ANSI specifications for added safety. The pieces are well fit within a durable blow-molded carry case which allows convenience in use and easy portability. The 210 items include sockets, wrench, screwdriver sets, utility knife, tape measures, different kinds of pliers, ratchets and other useful things. In my opinion, Stanley is a better option amongst the other brands available, because the tool kit here has a center lock twist mechanism which is stronger and holds the tools together.
The molding of the plastic case can be improved. The tools are placed too tightly which can create a problem while trying to remove them. You might need a screwdriver to pry them loose. This tool kit does not come with Torx screwdrivers, so if you are looking for one, then you might want to switch to another tool set.
As the name suggests, JH Williams was not even kidding when they named the product Mammoth, because this tool kit comes with 1390 pieces of mechanical tools.
To mention all the things this tool kit has is clearly not possible but it is fair to say that “you name it and you will get it.” The tool kit is a complete collection of sockets, wrenches, spanners, ratchets, and others that can help you with your everyday activity. It is probably most useful for people who need all these hand tools on a daily basis.
To be honest, I like this tool kit as it has everything you need in comprehensive and metric size. They also have ½, ¾, ¼, and 3/8-inch drive for both hand and impact use. You will find wrenches in many styles that will help you in tackling complex tasks conveniently. Also, it is always better to have a product and not need it than need it and not have it. All the tools in this set are made by Snap-on in their factory to match their standards.
The only problem that I find in this tool kit is that it is quite heavy and because the kit has so much in it, you will probably need two different tool chests to store them. The total package weighs around 2500 pounds.
The new Dewalt DWMT81534 205Pc Mechanic Toolset is an impressive mechanic tool set. The company is regarded as a producer of high-quality tools, and this particular toolset is a witness to that.
It comes with a collection of wrenches, sockets, accessories and specialty bits which are great for a number of uses. When you go for the 192 set piece, you do not get wrenches, and this is an added advantage of the 205 pc set.
According to me, the 72 tooth ratchet is the key specification of this product as it allows for a 5-degree arc swing which allows excellent access when you are using it in tight spaces. It also comes in a durable blow mold case, which helps in keeping your tools safe, whether you keep it in your house or garage. Another critical specification is the anti-slip screwdriver; it provides ultimate comfort during use. You will also find that the sockets and box end wrenches resemble Dewalt’s Direct Torque technology. It allows smooth contact with fasteners and effective rotation to make tightening and loosening easy.
The tool is quite heavy, but it is ok as long as they are providing quality. What they miss out on is they do not have an attachment adapter for the drill and the impact driver for the larger sockets. However, they do have an adapter for the small sizes.
Craftsman is known for offering quality products at the consumer level. The only reason their brand is famous than the other brands is because of the quality and versatility they bring with each new product.
The new Craftsman 165 piece mechanics tool set does an incredible job in delivering overall satisfaction. The most exciting thing about this toolset is that it provides freedom of choice. It comprises of a total of 92 sockets, in ¼, ½, and ¾ inch drive sizes.
Under my opinion, this is the best option for a mechanic who is dealing with numerous automotive problems. Craftsman has bundled not one but three wrenches in this toolset, each one with different drive size. This kit also comes with a pair of extension bars that increases the rotating force wherever needed. It also includes two universal joints and a total of twelve combination wrenches in both metric and inch size. It is the best purchase as you get 165 high-quality pieces of hand tools in $100-130.
There is a safety flap which is placed on the wrong side, so they can try and keep it on the right side. The ratchets wrenches are too short that it fails to offer leverage and the selection of ½” sockets are limited. You will find limited or no space for spare parts unless you fit them with the Allen wrenches.
This is one of the simplest tool sets on my list here. When you look at the price tag, it is, in fact, one of the cheapest as well.
Stanley STMT71654 201-Piece Mechanics Tool Set is your best bet when you are basically looking for good quality ratchet wrenches.
A lot similar to the product that I mentioned above, this one comes with three ratchet handles of ½, 3/8, and ¼ inch. I really like the construction of this one as it is made with tough, good quality steel. The chrome finish is another nice addition to protect this tool set from corrosion. You can be assured of durability and longevity with this tool set. I believe that Stanley has come up with a fairly good tool set for the homeowners with this model and it has all the basic tools that you can need.
Though it is a lot cheaper than the Craftsman set, it is also missing out on some crucial additions that are present in those kits. I think what this set definitely needs is the presence of a few extension bars. Another complaint I have about this tool set is the extremely small markings of socket size. I used nail paints to help with the identification and you should do it too till they come with an improvement!
My next product is another one from Crescent, and you can call it a bit of a hybrid when it comes to the mechanical tools collection.
By a hybrid, I mean with the usual range of wrench heads, it also has three really well-built and well-designed ratchets.
The best part about this tool set is that it comes with a better collection of tools and that’s what I noticed in the last few options. In fact, it is an updated version of the CTK170CMP2 model. The well-designed ratchets are accompanied by an adjustable spanner, a pair of pliers, lots of bits, and a few universal screwdrivers, making it a complete collection to keep handy. The storage box has also seen an improvement with this model, with the tools properly fitted into the gaps for easy replacement and removal, and the case being a lot sturdier than the earlier models. To me, it feels like the perfect, good-quality entry-level tool set.
The problem with the set that I got from Amazon was that it does not come with channel lock style pliers and I got flat-jawed pliers in its place. I was really looking forward to getting the channel lock style pliers and that is one thing that the company really needs to look into. The tools need better adjustment in the lower half of the case.
With this product, DEWALT has really invested a lot of effort into making a thoughtfully put together tool set. The highly useful features of this set are bound to be useful to the mechanics everywhere. The excellent set of wrenches available in it can form the basis of any good tool set.
For me, the standout feature of this set is the slim head that has been included in the ratchet design. As someone who has spent hours below a jacked up car, I can assure you of the difficulty that comes with working in such a little space. Thus, slim head ratchets are really beneficial when working on the car, and I am so happy to see it being included in here. The sockets have very clear markings which are easy to read. The ratchet head also has a quick release button and the sockets have a hard stamp on them. It is perfect for basic tasks around your home like vehicle maintenance and general lawn work.
One of the main improvements that this set needs is a numerically complete set of open-end wrenches. Though I rely on a ratchet wrench, but having a complete set of open wrenches would have been helpful. Even the ratchets are very heavy. The weight of the ½ drive ratchet alone is 1.7 lbs.
Just take a look at this tool set by Craftsman with all the ratchets and sockets lined up, and it will feel nothing less than a treasure chest for the mechanics. Though you do get a dedicated ratchet set, you also have the added advantage of a couple of extras.
The first thing that I really love about this tool set is the quality construction. The tools have a silver finish for anti-corrosion effect and they are made of highly durable alloy steel. Apart from the usual 3x ratchet line in normal sizes, you will also get amazing 116-piece socket set. Yes, you read it right. Its 116 pieces! The company claims that if you ever find a nut that the socket set cannot work upon, simply send it to the company and you will win a free tour of their factory. That’s almost like Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory, but for mechanical tool set!
There is an inner locking door that prevents the items from falling on one side. My suggestion would be a presence of that locking door on both sides. In fact, the tools do not fit too well inside the box and they spill everywhere and then I have to sit and arrange it all in place one more time. The case can also use some updates to a sturdier and durable version.
Not all tasks can be done manually and that is when using a hand tool can be helpful. Functions which are too heavy or faint for human hands can be done quickly using these tools. Hand tools offer the benefit of precision; work that requires fine carving and comprehensive work need minute control over a tool which is easy using a hand tool.
You require almost no effort or power when you are using hand tools. They do not need fuel or air pressure, and you can use them whenever you want to. In today’s world, speed matters and that is why hand tools are the best in ensuring a speedy process. Unlike power tools, it does not need motor power to work.
You would need a good amount of variety for the tool set to come in handy for all your works. So, make sure you check the collection of tools that they are offering.
The tool box is like the home of the tool set and no one wants to be stuck with a flimsy tool box that has the tools spilling everywhere on opening. Besides, you should also check the durability and sturdiness of the box.
The tool should come with a good grip to enable you to work for longer hours without any fatigue or pain in your hands. There are all sorts of grips like plastic or rubber coated, diamond or knurled pattern, and you need to choose the one that you deem fit.
It is not just enough to get the best tool set from the market; you also need to make sure that you maintain it well so that it lasts you for the longest time. Make sure you keep the tools only in an enclosed space, like the case that comes with it, or else, it runs the risk of being tarnished by moisture and humidity.
Keep the tools away from moist places at all costs. You can even get some rust collector or silica gel packets and toss them in your tool box to keep the moisture at bay. You can also put anti-rust liners for the same purpose. Once you get a really good quality of mechanical tool set and ensure that you take proper care of it, and then it will last you for years on end without any need to opt for a new set of tools.
By Darion Robinson
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