Tool thread

lookforjoe

True Classic
There are some serious tools and tools collections on this thread. I'm jealous. On the other end of the spectrum, looking back at my work this year I would have loved to have had a set of closed ended ratcheting wrenches. Maybe for the holidays!

The best ones I've had came from SK tools, however they don't seem to make them anymore. I got a full set from 10-19mm many years ago. They are ratcheting at both ends, each one two sizes - 10-12, 11-13, 14-15, 16-18, 17-19. They are slightly longer than others I've seen, and better weighted (not heavy)
Screen Shot 2020-12-08 at 11.28.46 AM.png
. Ratchets are also that design that works even if the nut / bolt isn't in perfect health.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
Tools - my TIG200 died a couple weeks back - when I was planning on welding the shift lever. Called Eastwood, and whilst all the components can be purchased (quite reasonably too), there are no schematics or fault tracing guides available (WTF???) - so, the only way to diagnose is to look for obvious signs of circuit damage, and/or replace boards willy-nilly. They do allow you to return any board that doesn't fix it for full credit within 90 days though.

The symptom was that the unit would turn on, but neither the pedal trigger nor the switch would initiate gas flow & trigger an arc.

Started with boards related to the controls

This one, for the pedal trigger feed, they don't sell - I just reflowed the joints & confirmed continuity I/O, but it didn't fix it :( View attachment 39475

Tried this board next under $30

View attachment 39476

couldn't see anything wrong with the upper invertor board.

View attachment 39477

tried the front panel board under $20 - nope.

View attachment 39479
View attachment 39482



View attachment 39478

Turned out it was this drive board (under $90), which was my 3rd attempt. Can't see anything wrong with the circuitry that would be an obvious issue, but it worked (triggered an arc) as soon as I got the new board in.

View attachment 39480View attachment 39481
Excellent that you were able to fix it. With my total lack of electronic circuit board knowledge/experience I don't think I would have even tried. In the process did you discover who actually makes the unit that Eastwood sells?
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
The best ones I've had came from SK tools, however they don't seem to make them anymore. I got a full set from 10-19mm many years ago. They are ratcheting at both ends, each one two sizes - 10-12, 11-13, 14-15, 16-18, 17-19. They are slightly longer than others I've seen, and better weighted (not heavy)View attachment 39491. Ratchets are also that design that works even if the nut / bolt isn't in perfect health.
I also like the style with an adjustable angle ("flex head") at the ratcheting end. Helps to get into odd places. Random example picture:
5p_Ratchet_03114A_1024x1024.jpg
 

lookforjoe

True Classic
Excellent that you were able to fix it. With my total lack of electronic circuit board knowledge/experience I don't think I would have even tried. In the process did you discover who actually makes the unit that Eastwood sells?

No, there is no branding anywhere inside it

I also like the style with an adjustable angle ("flex head") at the ratcheting end. Helps to get into odd places. Random example picture:
View attachment 39492

I've seen those, and that is what SK replaced the fixed ones with. I prefer the rigid arm for what I typically use them for. It can get into smaller spaces.
 

Longitudinal

True Classic
Rotary tools.
In another thread the subject of rotary tools (e.g. "Dremel") came up. The general consensus seemed to reflect my personal opinion of them; they are very poor quality and do not last. Here was that discussion:
https://xwebforums.com/forum/index....r-tube-support-end-removal.38333/#post-341074

Well yesterday I had another rotary tool fail on me. This one was made by Black and Decker. Not that I think B&D are good products, but I'd had enough bad luck with the Dremel brand ones (3 failed) that I decided to try something else. So now I'm wondering if there are any good options.

Dremels and any other tool of their ilk are hobbyist tools, plain and simple. They are meant for RC racers, model trainers, etc. They are gutless and fragile on the automotive scale.

I have one dremel-type tool that I got in a friend's garage clean-out. It stays in its case in the event that some day I need it to carve my initials in a piece of balsa.

I have a 1/4" electric die grinder, which, to be honest, I barely use. Most of my die grinding is done with pneumatic die grinders. They are noisy (although quality grinders are not as noisy as cheap ones) and grossly inefficient electrically speaking compared to an electric grinder, but they are self-cooling, infinitely adjustable in speed, and stop much more quickly than electric in the event of a burr getting traction in a port wall.
 

Longitudinal

True Classic
Tools--what a fun subject!

Cordless: I have been well pleased with my Ryobi cordless tools. Sure, the real woodworkers and contractors scoff at me. But I let them scoff. If I needed to drive 500 wood screws per day, I would get a better impact driver. But the Ryobi tools are just fine for a homeowner, and they're fine for machine screws up to 8mm threads most of the time. If I need actual torque, I'm pulling out the pneumatic tools.

Air compressor: Double the size you think you need, then double it again.

Benchtop electric tools: I have a 12" disc, 9" disc/6X48" belt combo, and an 8" bench grinder from HF. These tools are essential for me, but also a good place to save some money. I do wish the 8" grinder had more power, though; it's too easy to slow down, especially with the wire wheel.

Hand tools: I was a Craftsman purist while Craftsman was American made. Today, if I needed a ratchet or a wrench, I would probably go to Lowe's. The difference that Mac and Snap-On make is in ergonomics.

Pneumatic tools: I am lucky enough to have some Mac pneumatic tools from my father. Most HF air tools are good enough for hobbyists and enthusiasts.

Welding equipment: Something is better than nothing. I TIG a lot and MIG a little, so I spent my equipment money accordingly. There are tons of decent welding machines for less than $1000.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
Dremels and any other tool of their ilk are hobbyist tools, plain and simple. They are meant for RC racers, model trainers, etc. They are gutless and fragile on the automotive scale.

I have one dremel-type tool that I got in a friend's garage clean-out. It stays in its case in the event that some day I need it to carve my initials in a piece of balsa.

I have a 1/4" electric die grinder, which, to be honest, I barely use. Most of my die grinding is done with pneumatic die grinders. They are noisy (although quality grinders are not as noisy as cheap ones) and grossly inefficient electrically speaking compared to an electric grinder, but they are self-cooling, infinitely adjustable in speed, and stop much more quickly than electric in the event of a burr getting traction in a port wall.
I also have a electric 1/4" die grinder that seldom sees use. Like you, the pneumatic stuff gets used mostly.

I don't know if you saw it but somewhere I mentioned discovering a much better alternative to a Dremel for really small work (i.e. 1/8" bits). Some of my 1/4" air tools also came with a 1/8" collet that can be interchanged into the tool. So the same pneumatic tools can be used for those tiny "Dremel" bits if you need them (occasionally I find a small tight area where they work better).
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
8" bench grinder
Speaking of bench grinders, somehow I've ended up with three of them. All are older units I've had forever and are very robust. One has two different grits of grinding wheels, one has two different wire wheels, and the third has interchangeable attachments for things like polishing wheels. However I've yet to touch any of the polishing wheels so that third grinder just sits.

I agree about the other benchtop stuff. I use a 12" disk grinder a lot, as well as a belt grinder. In fact the 8" bench grinder (the one with grinding wheels) doesn't get used nearly as much since I acquired those.

Regarding welders. I learned to TIG many years ago. But at that time all of the TIG machines were extremely expensive, so I never bought one. Now they are more affordable but I've become accustomed to using my MIG for pretty much everything. If I bought a TIG now I'd have to learn how to use it again.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
The other day I used another "tool" that warrants mention, a nice drill bit sharpener.
Initially when I was very young and very poor I bought an attachment that mounts next to a bench grinder. The bit clamps into it and can be adjusted to the desired angle, then pressed against the grinding wheel. It really did not work that well so I rarely used it.
Since then I've seen a couple of "professional" quality automated units available but they are very costly.
So many years ago I bought one of the early "Drill Doctor" units and loved it. Affordable, simple and did a good job. But the early versions were a bit limited. So more recently I bought the latest, largest version. Still not exactly 'cheap' (around $100 I think), but MUCH less costly than the professional ones, and it works fantastic. It is amazing how much difference a freshly sharpened bit makes. I recommend them.
 

tvmaster

True Classic
The best ones I've had came from SK tools, however they don't seem to make them anymore. I got a full set from 10-19mm many years ago. They are ratcheting at both ends, each one two sizes - 10-12, 11-13, 14-15, 16-18, 17-19. They are slightly longer than others I've seen, and better weighted (not heavy)View attachment 39491. Ratchets are also that design that works even if the nut / bolt isn't in perfect health.
If there’s a nut on the X 1/9, is it more than likely metric?
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
If there’s a nut on the X 1/9, is it more than likely metric?
Yes. And unlike many newer vehicles it is entirely metric, not a mix of both.
Although having said that, there are one or two odd items that are not metric on some X's (depending on the year), like a couple of hydraulic line fittings.
 

Dr.Jeff

True Classic
It's just like falling off a bicycle.
Sadly I haven't been on a bicycle for a long time either. When I had my house on the beach I rode a lot, along with all sorts of other outdoor activities. But the last few years living in this desert it is way too hot to do any outdoor activities most of the year.

You mentioned the hand tools from Lowes. I recently heard they are the latest (in a line of other companies) to own the Craftsman brand. As such they honor the Craftsman lifetime warranty. But it is only for the items they stock and they do not carry a lot of the line. However their own brand of tools (Kobalt) also have a lifetime warranty. And they appear to be decent, as far as affordable tools go.
 
The other day I used another "tool" that warrants mention, a nice drill bit sharpener.
Initially when I was very young and very poor I bought an attachment that mounts next to a bench grinder. The bit clamps into it and can be adjusted to the desired angle, then pressed against the grinding wheel. It really did not work that well so I rarely used it.
Since then I've seen a couple of "professional" quality automated units available but they are very costly.
So many years ago I bought one of the early "Drill Doctor" units and loved it. Affordable, simple and did a good job. But the early versions were a bit limited. So more recently I bought the latest, largest version. Still not exactly 'cheap' (around $100 I think), but MUCH less costly than the professional ones, and it works fantastic. It is amazing how much difference a freshly sharpened bit makes. I recommend them.
I use a precision drill bit holder where you can set the angle you want clamped to the bed of my radial arm saw with a grinding wheel on it. It works very well after I set it up but I usually need the incentive of running out of sharp bits in order to bother. I've often wondered if those "pencil sharpener" type devices might be an acceptable alternative.
 
Regarding welders. I learned to TIG many years ago. But at that time all of the TIG machines were extremely expensive, so I never bought one. Now they are more affordable but I've become accustomed to using my MIG for pretty much everything. If I bought a TIG now I'd have to learn how to use it again.
In the 70s, I took a shop class that included Heli-arc welding. Unfortunately, the only welding equipment I had then (and now) are oxy-acetylene so I quickly forgot what a Heli-arc torch even looks like. I still have this aluminum box I made in the class with really nice welds on it but have very little recollection of how I did it.
 

lookforjoe

True Classic
The other day I used another "tool" that warrants mention, a nice drill bit sharpener.
Initially when I was very young and very poor I bought an attachment that mounts next to a bench grinder. The bit clamps into it and can be adjusted to the desired angle, then pressed against the grinding wheel. It really did not work that well so I rarely used it.
Since then I've seen a couple of "professional" quality automated units available but they are very costly.
So many years ago I bought one of the early "Drill Doctor" units and loved it. Affordable, simple and did a good job. But the early versions were a bit limited. So more recently I bought the latest, largest version. Still not exactly 'cheap' (around $100 I think), but MUCH less costly than the professional ones, and it works fantastic. It is amazing how much difference a freshly sharpened bit makes. I recommend them.

Do you have a Link for the specific item? I have stacks of dull drill bits - I hate to throw them out (*so I haven't).....
 

Longitudinal

True Classic
Sadly I haven't been on a bicycle for a long time either.

But I'd bet that you would have no problem falling off one today if you tried.

You mentioned the hand tools from Lowes. I recently heard they are the latest (in a line of other companies) to own the Craftsman brand.

Come to think of it, I have seen Craftsman tools in there before. It's good to see the name survive. I just wish that the Craftsman ethos had survived.
 

Longitudinal

True Classic
Yes. And unlike many newer vehicles it is entirely metric, not a mix of both.

Define "newer." Even American cars have been entirely metric for 30 years. I don't know of any imports that have mixed and matched since 1980s German Fords that had some American engines.
 
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