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Places To Buy Tools

Puddle Jumper

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If you're just starting out and your budget is limited, I would suggest going to Sears or Canadian Tire. The "Professional Series" Craftsman or Martercraft tools are just as good as any Snap-on at 1/3 the price with the same warranty. Some items like racheting screwdrivers and 1/4 inch rachets are worth buying at Snap-on but for most of what you'll need, you can save a lot of money until you get a job and get a decent income.



This is of course just my opinion!!! :D

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I would assume the college will supply you with all the tools you will need, so all I would show up with is a pen.

As far as buying tools after your finished, just go and see what the other engineers have so you don't go buy a bunch of tools you will never use. I bought the cheaper wrenches and stuff when i first got into mechanics and slowely replaced them with snap-on as i could afford them. Do not buy snap-on under there loan plans unless you don't mind paying 18% intrest.

I would suggest gear wrenches though , I don't know i lived without them.

cheers and good luck .

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Guest Bullet Remington

Have to agree with Maggioe. (Jeez, did I say that outloud??) Cambodian Tire is a good as pretty well anything. Especially when you get to the stage you have to "modify" wrenches. I have a couple of 5/16th that I modified for hauling off the bleed valves on the C20B. Plus C.T wrenches are easy to cut and weld.


Don't start buying wrenches until you know where you'll be working. Planks will require an assortment of larger wrenches than fling wings. Especially the engines. in which case ya do as Mag Pie stated and get hold of some 12 point wrenches, good quality ones. Again, if you're going on fling wing you'll eventually need some of those short "strike" wrenches for the fuel lines and hydraulic lines. You can get those from Allied. The 12 points better off to get from Snap-on.


The ratcheting screwdrivers, you can get from Busy bee, they make a really nice ratcheting screwdriver, just as good as Snap-on for about 16.00 to 18.00 bucks, depending on the length. Home Depot carrys a really nice (short) ratchet handle that will hold a 1/4" scocket, on one side or a screwdriver tip in the other. really handy for working under the floor or under the instrument panel.


Other than that, keep an eye out for some body packing it in, and make them an offer on some of the tools they may have for sale.


Good Luck to you, whatever you chose.

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Thanks Guys


My overall plans are to work on fling wing aircraft as I also hold a CPL-H. I have already recieved some wrenches that came from Canadian Tire and I also have their ratchets that look like the snap-ons. As for sockets I have been told to buy all 12 point and was considering buying these from sears. As for extensions I can always rob my personal tool collection. I was wondering if 6 point is used in maintenance. I know that many engines use 12 point but what about the rest of the aircraft?? So does Sears make decent enough sockets for while I am in school?

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Guest Bullet Remington



If ya can afford it, it's a good idea to carry a set of 6 points as well. Thety make it easier to pull of blots/nuts that have rounded edges. As, I catty a set of metric wrenches and sockets. They are graduated a little better that Standard sizes. and are excellent for grapping rounded bolts/nuts etc.


If you're going fling wing, it might be more advantagous to wait until you actually get a job wrench bending. then talked to the wrench benders and find out what they carry in their bush kits.


Other than that, good luck to you in school. Enjoy yourself and have fun!

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Guest graunch1

Schools generally supply you with a tool list (approx $1000) that you must buy at the start of the year. Specialty tools are available but primarily you are required to own a certain number of tools from day 1. Usually there is a tool fair and all the major suppliers have pre-made and priced kits.


From my point of view the Crappy Tire/Sears options are the best when starting out as you can buy the tools for $500 and spend the rest on beer and mummy will never know the difference :P


also a good place for the larger grunting type wrenches is the local pawn shop as there are often super buys if you don't mind tools with experience

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watch for a sale at sears or can tire,I don't like the long wrences but the swivel gear wrenches at crappy are good.The princess auto torque wrench is as accurate as the snap on ones the princess auto offsets are good enough.wire twist pliers are from House of tools for $34. get the narrow duck bills from snap on,but watch ebay

for stuff.tools are half price this week at sears

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I would like to add a few things.....


1) you get what you pay for, cheap wrenches are just that. Cheap


2) you will end up owning snap-on at some point, so go out and get them while they are affordable now, they don't come down in price, EVER. 1/4 drive sockets are a must-have, so are the off-set open ends. 12 point socket is a lot more useful on a 6 point nut than a 6 point socket is on a 12 point nut.


3) never stop buying tools....buy what you need....if you borrow it once, buy it next pay-day. I don't mind loaning an apprentice my tools once, but not all summer.


4) get a couple of small bush-boxes....1 gets too heavy, and you can't carry 1 heavy box as easily as 2 lighter ones.


5) if you buy a roll-cab, buy a much bigger one than you think you'll ever need, believe me, you WILL fill it. 20 yrs in the Biz, and I seem to out-grow my roll cab regularly.


6) like a previous poster said, buy just what you need for wrenches, but don't ignore the "strange" looking ones, they can be a life-saver. ie: half-moon wrenches ect.


7) build stuff. lots of helicopters need modified or custom wrenches. look in the "old guy's" kit...see what he has made, then copy it.


8) don't cry when you have to spend $$ on tools....without them, you are just a over educated pilot. Take pride in your stuff, it makes it easier to remember to not leave them under the cowls when you paid a king's ransome on a tool. you might have to skip a few nights of beer drinking with the crew until you get your tools, but then you have something to show for it later.


9) remember, you are a skilled craftsman. craftsmen have good tools. home handymen and Red Green have crap tools. You get my meaning? Good...now go make friends with your local Snap-on dealer( or Mac ).

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