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Old 11-10-2019, 06:33 PM   #1
Dachshund
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Shop Tools Question

Just curios today! Out of all your tools (not counting hand wrenches), what is your "can't live without" tool in your shop?

Mine is my Bench Grinder.....I use it to clean most every part I work on - even nuts and bolts - I have an 8" wire brush on it that is impossible to get along without!
What can't you live without?
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Old 11-10-2019, 10:32 PM   #2
flashed
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Re: Shop Tools Question

My 12 ft Gantry Crane but its outside my shop .
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Old 11-11-2019, 01:15 AM   #3
mr48chev
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I'm right there with Flashed in that my gantry with chain hoist gets used a ton.


The I beam is aluminum and was part of a military surplus structure. The tubing was bracing for the same structure. I reworked the tubing to make the legs.

I both unloaded that Model A with it and loaded it back on the boat trailer a few months ago when I needed to move it. The old 100 buck cherry picker engine hoist at the back of the car gets used all the time too and often gets loaded up to go load something heavy in the hauler truck. A couple of weeks ago it lifted a dana 70 dually rear axle so I could load it in the truck and that rear is now hanging from the chain hoist. The rear goes under the 51 1-1/2 ton to go with the 77 Dually front suspension.

This vise and bench grinder on the stand get used all the time. I don't like either taking up space on a work bench and this works great. I am going to weld a piece of heavy steel plate in the middle to pound on stuff on.


The electrical box with it's 4 outlets on the stand on the disk brake rotor to the left of the vise stand that has 30 ft of SO cord on it gets used all the time and is real handy when you are using more than one power tool .

One thing I don't have a photo of is the seriously heavy duty file cabinet I bought at the Habit store for 14.00 the other day with five big drawers that can hold my drill motors, grinders and other tools or hold parts for a specific project. That is very inexpensive parts or tool storage that keeps the shop organized and keeps valuable items out of sight but easy to get to. I have three out in one shed and one in another shed that I have had for 40 years that will all be in my shop. You can't buy material and build anything for what you can buy them for.
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My ongoing truck projects:
48 Chev 3100 that will run a 292 Six.
71 GMC 2500 that is getting a Cad 500 transplant.
77 C 30 dualie, 454, 4 speed with a 10 foot flatbed and hoist. It does the heavy work and hauls the projects around.
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Old 11-11-2019, 01:21 AM   #4
dsraven
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Re: Shop Tools Question

several things actually. no particular order. just a start really.

-can't really think of doing much without my floor jack and many sets of jack stands
-creeper
-rechargeable trouble light (led), magnetic penlight (led) and head light (led)
-8" record brand non swivel mechanics bench vice mounted securely to the bench so the inner non moveable jaw is even with the edge of the workbench. that way a long item can be hung in the jaws and not hit the bench top.
-steel workbench fabbed from 2" steel pipe legs connected with 2 1/2" flat bar and 1/2" steel plate top. there's a steel shelf under it mounted down low for jack stands to sit on and also on the end there is provision for a slip in engine stand, a slip in bead roller or slip in "T" bar to hold long items placed in the vice at the other end of the bench. the under bench area is sheeted in with tin to keep grindings etc under control
-plethora of different sizes, lengths and shapes of pry bars/heel bars
-5hp 2 stage compressor 16cfm/minute with electric auto drain connected to lights so the drain only works when the shop lights are on. also the compressor air intake is remote into the attic area with an auto air filter box so the sound level is way less with the compressor running and air filters are easily sourced and easy to change (attic floor is sheeted 18" above the drywall ceiling with blown in insulation above the drywall. this creats a floor in the attic where small parts xcan be stored until needed. out of the weather. shop was built with trusses spec'd for concrete roof tiles so weight is not an issue due to asphalt shingles being used instead of concrete up there
-an array of air tools. impact guns in 3/8 and 1/2", 3/8 drill, air chisel with various different tips, grinders, body saw
-a plethora of air die grinders with several different tips attached. pointed 1/4" burr, 3/8" rounded end burr, 1/2" rounded end burr, 1/2" tapered burr, roloc disc arbors on several angled air die grinders, some small and some larger. non Velcro because the Velcro gets burned off easily. a long tipped die grinder for those hard to reach areas
-air operated sheet metal step tool for overlapping seams in sheet metal
-step drills of different sizes
-many pairs of c clamp vice grips including the really long ones and the very small ones. also several pairs of regular vice grips in various sizes including needle nose style
-cleco tool and various sizes of cleco fasteners
-magnets with on off switches
-air rivet tool
-various autobody hammers and dollies including some home made dollie profiles. homemade slapper tool from old leaf spring.
-a plethora of 4 1/2" electric angle grinders with different attachments on each. several with thin zip disc of different amounts of wear on each so there are smaller and larger zip discs available for open or tight quarters, several with different grits of flap discs, thicker edge grinding disc, thicker face grinding disc, cupped and knotted wire wheel, knotted disc style wire wheel, larger angle grinder with small diameter shrinking disc and a large angle grinder with a large shrinking disc.
-bench grinder with 8" wire wheel and 8" grinding wheel
-digital level with laser
-48" level that the digital torpedo level can sit on for longer runs
-old hospital bed with top removed and an old steel door attached to the top instead. this is a hydraulic operated unit that will pump up with a foot pedal and let down either end with another pedal. very handy to load/unload stuff by yourself. also will hold a truck box or cab for doing body work or to get out of the way but keep off the floor. has lockable wheels so it can be wheeled around where you need it. bought at a surplus auction for cheap
-mig welder with gas and auto darkening helmet
-arc welder
-oxy/acetylene torch
-rail road track cut off made into an anvil
-home made sheet metal break fabbed onto the end of the steel work bench
-large solvent wash tank
-several tool box roll cabs
-lateral filing cabinets for storing tools in
-several air hose reels placed throughout the shop
-10 ft ceiling in the shop
-vehicle roll dollies to move dead vehicle in the shop
-upright bead/sand blaster with dust collector and large window area
-home made/upgraded bead roller on pedestal with foot pedal
-homemade/modified bead roller with electric drill operation and foot pedal so 2 hands can be free to operate
-floor style drill press and vice
-bolt bin with necessities
-transmission floor jack
-engine lift and chains/lifting equipment
-small pot style sandblaster
-last but def not least: I love my ceiling mounted unit heater shop furnace! it gets cold here. -17C tonight with wind chill it is -25C. comes with ice crystals. ceiling mount unit heater means no floor space taken up plus it can be turned, when initially mounted, to blow air around the shop in a circular pattern rather than straight at the doors etc. better than radiant for my application because it doesn't cook the dark colored things in the shop and the recover time from bay door opening in cold weather is quicker.

that's my list
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Old 11-11-2019, 05:08 AM   #5
MiraclePieCo
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Re: Shop Tools Question

4-1/2" paddle switch angle grinder.
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Old 11-11-2019, 09:57 AM   #6
Dachshund
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by flashed View Post
My 12 ft Gantry Crane but its outside my shop .
I have one also! sure wish it would fit INSIDE my shop! Gonna have to modify it one of these days....

DSRAVEN - Can I come use your shop?
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Old 11-11-2019, 04:42 PM   #7
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I have one of those aluminum HF 1-1/2 ton floor (race ) jacks that gets used constantly. That is something everyone needs in and around his/her garage/shop even if it never lifts a car or truck. It's super handy to do the "here hold this up for me" thing when you are trying to line something up and don't have help or don't want to drag the 90 pounder out.

I've actually accumulated more shop equipment in the past five years than in all the years before as I got closer to being retired and had a bit of expendable money for a change. Some of it are more big boy hobby toys than tools while others like the belt sander/disk sander combo and the drill press get used on about every project.

I use the O'Relly's / Autozone tool loan thing on tools that might be a bit spendy but don't get used very often. A radiator pressure tester costs around 80 bucks and around home you might use one every two or three years but by paying deposit, taking it home, using it and taking it back and getting the deposit back you save that amount and don't have a seldom used tool sitting on the shelf.

I hit yard sales and estate sales a lot looking for decent shop equipment and tools. I've bought a number of quality wrenches that way and got a batch of nice tools when I bought two tool boxes to get the boxes on an online auction a while back.
I also got all of my tie downs and boomers for my trailer, a winch for my trailer and two seriously heavy work benches for the shop at that auction.
Here locally I have got some deals on good power tools at Habitat when they got in a batch that were donated by a contractor who had to buy new power tools because of the requirements of the construction contract. I get a lot of small good quality hand tools there too as they tend to price wrenches by size or how shiny they are rather than by brand.
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Founding member of the too many projects, too little time and money club.

My ongoing truck projects:
48 Chev 3100 that will run a 292 Six.
71 GMC 2500 that is getting a Cad 500 transplant.
77 C 30 dualie, 454, 4 speed with a 10 foot flatbed and hoist. It does the heavy work and hauls the projects around.
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Old 11-11-2019, 05:26 PM   #8
mick53
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I'm accused of praying to the tool god. I have invested as much in tools as truck parts. I hate not having the right tool. If I had to pick one it would be my 2 post 12,000 LB lift. It was made in Indy about 150 miles from my house. I was working in PA at the time. They wanted $200 to ship it to my house but they shipped it to the jobsite in PA for free. I have a bobcat with forks at my house. So I had it shipped to PA and brought it home with me.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:33 AM   #9
Jemezcrusher
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Kegerator, and the two post lift.

Hated to see my wife rolling around on the floor when changing her oil
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:18 PM   #10
my56chevytruck
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dachshund View Post
Just curios today! Out of all your tools (not counting hand wrenches), what is your "can't live without" tool in your shop?

Mine is my Bench Grinder.....I use it to clean most every part I work on - even nuts and bolts - I have an 8" wire brush on it that is impossible to get along without!
What can't you live without?
My torque gun, and the hand grinder and vise Sorry. 3 tools
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:25 PM   #11
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Re: Shop Tools Question

This cause it pays for all my parts and i can make many items i need for the truck:

https://www.grizzly.com/products/Gri...ad-Lathe/G0709
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:29 PM   #12
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I'd say that for most of us our go to tools are the ones we are comfortable using an a lot of it has with what we are doing.

I've got an electric 1/2 inch impact wrench that I picked up from someone at a swapmeet that I use all the time because my air compressor won't effectively run the air impact wrench that I have had for 45 years. The older I get the less I like removing and installing lug nuts by hand or disassembling things by hand.
__________________
Founding member of the too many projects, too little time and money club.

My ongoing truck projects:
48 Chev 3100 that will run a 292 Six.
71 GMC 2500 that is getting a Cad 500 transplant.
77 C 30 dualie, 454, 4 speed with a 10 foot flatbed and hoist. It does the heavy work and hauls the projects around.
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Old 11-13-2019, 02:39 PM   #13
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I have a cheapy ryobi cordless drill and impact gun combo that must be 20 years old. The batteries still work and find i use both almost every day.. I got a second set and batteries at a garage sale for $5 cause they said battery was dead. 20 minutes on the charger (that came with) and is use down at my second shop. My only complaint about these is I don't the hand strength to tighten the drill chucks without channel locks for heavy work. Heck the older one from 1990 still works but

https://www.homedepot.com/p/RYOBI-18...1817/309659483
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Old 11-14-2019, 11:37 PM   #14
mr48chev
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I picked up a used Ryobi 3/8 drill a couple of years ago and my wife pretty well took it over. The no name replacement batteries off Ebay aren't worth a hoot though. I bought a set of 4 tools off a guy who had replaced them with something fancier and they work good with the original battery but don't do well with the other ones.
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Founding member of the too many projects, too little time and money club.

My ongoing truck projects:
48 Chev 3100 that will run a 292 Six.
71 GMC 2500 that is getting a Cad 500 transplant.
77 C 30 dualie, 454, 4 speed with a 10 foot flatbed and hoist. It does the heavy work and hauls the projects around.
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:02 AM   #15
mick53
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jemezcrusher View Post
Kegerator, and the two post lift.

Hated to see my wife rolling around on the floor when changing her oil
You could have at least got her a creeper before.
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:27 AM   #16
vintovka
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Tell you the "tool" NOT to buy is the cr-ppy mechanics seat that Harbor Freight sells for $20. The thing is flat dangerous as it was designed wrong and the threaded inserts are made from butter soft mystery metal. The caster studs are way too short and soft as well. Caster came off in use and I slammed my head hard on the concrete floor. Left with a big bump and migraines for a week. If you have one of these stop using it as there might be a class action product safety lawsuit coming as i found its a common occurrence and HF ignores complaints.. Not even red loctite will keep the caster nuts from stripping out. This one was not even a couple weeks old.
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:39 AM   #17
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Re: Shop Tools Question

well, what's inside actually



but seems I can't even change a light switch in the house without going into the rollaway..

tools for every job from a tail lamp to engine swap come out of there

as for specific jobs that are difficult to work without specific tools,

I would say engine hoist, trans jack, and a couple of floor jacks and stands are tough to substitute..
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Old 11-15-2019, 10:32 AM   #18
Tempest67
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Hands down, it's has to be the 4 1/2 grinding tool. ( with cut off blades, grinding blades, flap discs, and wire wheel attachments)

It cuts metal, it deburrs metal, it grinds welds, it cuts welds, it cleans metal to prepare for welding, it cuts rusty bolts, it cleans metal for paint with a wire wheel attachment, it is the tool that makes fabrication and welding possible.

when they cost $25 , It is nice to have one for each attachment, as it saves time switching attachments,
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Old 11-16-2019, 02:17 PM   #19
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Re: Shop Tools Question

A couple of years ago Ace Hardware had 4=1/2 inch Black and Decker angle grinders for 19.95 and I bought three of them so I could have one with a cut disk, one with a flap wheel and one with a grind wheel. That saved a lot of time on cut, weld and grind projects.

Probably my can't do without tools is my pair of 20 inch Bluepoint channel lock pliers. I've had them since I worked at Ryder truck rental in Waco in 1973 and they get used all the time. I've taken hundreds of oil filters off with them when I was working in shops and on the dairy and the guy who gave me a razzing when I bought them off the tool truck was the first one to borrow them as they worked great to take the big screw on fuel caps off diesel trucks.

The heavy duty file cabinet is one of several I have and i Picked it up at Habitat for 14.00 the other day. Big seriously heavy drawers with dividers that can be removed that can hold parts or bigger tools like angle grinders and drills. Dang cheap parts or tool storage that also keeps a shop organized and keeps stuff out of sight.
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Founding member of the too many projects, too little time and money club.

My ongoing truck projects:
48 Chev 3100 that will run a 292 Six.
71 GMC 2500 that is getting a Cad 500 transplant.
77 C 30 dualie, 454, 4 speed with a 10 foot flatbed and hoist. It does the heavy work and hauls the projects around.
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Old 11-16-2019, 03:34 PM   #20
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tempest67 View Post
Hands down, it's has to be the 4 1/2 grinding tool. ( with cut off blades, grinding blades, flap discs, and wire wheel attachments)

It cuts metal, it deburrs metal, it grinds welds, it cuts welds, it cleans metal to prepare for welding, it cuts rusty bolts, it cleans metal for paint with a wire wheel attachment, it is the tool that makes fabrication and welding possible.

when they cost $25 , It is nice to have one for each attachment, as it saves time switching attachments,
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr48chev View Post
A couple of years ago Ace Hardware had 4=1/2 inch Black and Decker angle grinders for 19.95 and I bought three of them so I could have one with a cut disk, one with a flap wheel and one with a grind wheel. That saved a lot of time on cut, weld and grind projects.
<snip>
yep, that's what I did too.. noticed this in my buddies shop years ago..

got about a dozen of these types of motors around here, all with different tools in them

here's a few front line tools for general work, the rest are in my metal fab bucket-o-tools



I have the same set up for nut n bolt work, ain't got no time to be swapping sockets on big jobs

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Old 11-18-2019, 10:21 AM   #21
Tempest67
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Killer Bee, that looks like a 66-7 GTO in your Avatar, nice.

Here's my 67 Tempest.
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Old 11-18-2019, 11:34 AM   #22
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Re: Shop Tools Question

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Killer Bee, that looks like a 66-7 GTO in your Avatar, nice.

Here's my 67 Tempest.
also 67, the pinnacle year

mine unfortunately is no longer with us
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Old 11-18-2019, 10:44 PM   #23
vintovka
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Re: Shop Tools Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr48chev View Post
A couple of years ago Ace Hardware had 4=1/2 inch Black and Decker angle grinders for 19.95 and I bought three of them so I could have one with a cut disk, one with a flap wheel and one with a grind wheel. That saved a lot of time on cut, weld and grind projects.

Probably my can't do without tools is my pair of 20 inch Bluepoint channel lock pliers. I've had them since I worked at Ryder truck rental in Waco in 1973 and they get used all the time. I've taken hundreds of oil filters off with them when I was working in shops and on the dairy and the guy who gave me a razzing when I bought them off the tool truck was the first one to borrow them as they worked great to take the big screw on fuel caps off diesel trucks.

The heavy duty file cabinet is one of several I have and i Picked it up at Habitat for 14.00 the other day. Big seriously heavy drawers with dividers that can be removed that can hold parts or bigger tools like angle grinders and drills. Dang cheap parts or tool storage that also keeps a shop organized and keeps stuff out of sight.
You keep everything outside? Here it would rust to pieces and wash out to sea with the torrential rain.
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Old 11-23-2019, 03:41 PM   #24
klutz51
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Re: Shop Tools Question

EVERY TOOL I HAVE .. AND ANY REASON TO BUY MORE. But I have to say welder, grinders and floor jack are my most important. I have learned being this is the first frame to finish project my son and I have taken on , never guess what you need, buy as you need it and it makes the collection way easier to afford and sometimes easier to sneak a few by the wife.
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Old 11-23-2019, 08:37 PM   #25
BigBird05
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Re: Shop Tools Question

I have to have my radio on. First the lights, then the radio. Best tool in the shop!
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