Putting together a tool kit
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  1. #1
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    Putting together a tool kit

    Awhile back I posted about learning to work on my bikes and where to get good info. So now I'm looking to start getting some tools and I thought it would best to start by learning to work on my chains for the 3 bikes that I have.

    Here's is the list of tools that I figured to get and would like your recommendations for said tools.

    Workstand
    Chainbrake tool
    Masterlink pliers
    Chain guage
    Chainkeeper

    I only know of Park Tools (sorry cx!) and Pedros. I don't want to break the bank but I prefer to "cry once".

    tia

  2. #2
    tlg
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    I have this stand (the 2nd one which I got for $95). It's really stable, holds the bike well, & easy to use. I would buy it again.

    https://www.amazon.com/Bicycle-Mecha.../dp/B07BMN8BM3
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D9B7OKQ/



    You don't need a chain gauge. They can be inaccurate. It's a pretty easy DIY to measure.
    If it's over 1/16 you need a new chain. If it's 3/16 - 1/8 you probably need a new cassette. If it's over 1/8 you probably need new everything.
    It's not clear in the video, but make sure the 1" mark is dead center on the chain rivet. You're measuring center to center.





    But I do have one of these and use it often because it's dark in my workshop, my eyes are getting older and reading the tape is harder, so it's an easy quick check.
    When my chain is getting closer to it's limit, I will put on my glasses and check it with a tape measure.
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  3. #3
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    I'm not bike professional mechanic and don't do this for a living... however I have collected the following tools over the years and glad I did as I use them all and very happy with my purchases.

    • Park Tool Master Link Pliers MLP-1.2
    • [VENZO Bicycle Bike Torque Wrench Allen Key Tool Socket Set Kit
    • Park Tool Professional Cable and Housing Cutter
    • Adjustable Repair Stand w/ Telescopic Arm Cycle Bicycle Rack 41" To 75"
    • Faswin Bicycle Bottom Bracket Tool Shimano Hollowtech II
    • Electronic Digital Vernier Caliper, LOUISWARE Stainless Steel Caliper 150mm/0-6 inch Measuring Tools with Extra-Large LCD Screen, inch/Metric Conversion
    • Park Tool Bladed Spoke Holder
    • Park Tool SW-0 Spoke Wrench for Nipples of 0.127- Inch (Black)
    • Park Tool CC-4 Chain Checker for Bicycle Chains Sold by: The Rusty Crank


    All where sourced from Amazon
    Last edited by ROAD&DIRT; 05-15-2020 at 08:22 AM. Reason: Thought I was posting pictures
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  4. #4
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    I do all my own work (with some exceptions but definitely on chains) and over the years I've never come across a need/want for a chainkeeper. They are cheap so I suppose you may as well find out for yourself but if you're looking to keep money down I think you'll definitely be fine without one.

    Chainbrake tool - I have a Shimano that I think was about $40. I think it's good but to be honest the small one that's part of my multi-tool gets the job done too. So I think you can get by fine cutting cost there too if you want.

    Masterlink pliers - No experience there because until recently I've been using just pins but I'm thinking the same is true with those. They either work or don't so not sure spending a lot will do anything for you.

    Workstands - I think those are largely a matter of personal preference. For example I live in a small apartment so ability to tuck it away without taking up a ton of space is the #1 priority for me. Someone with a basement or other dedicated workspace would probably want something more substantial.
    Last edited by Jay Strongbow; 05-15-2020 at 08:38 AM.

  5. #5
    'brifter' is f'ing stupid
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    If your bike has rim brakes the chain rest is great when washing. Even if you have disc brakes you can take the pulley off the Park (or really any) chain rest and put it on the thru axle to accomplish the same result. I have used one for years and wouldn't be caught w/o it when washing bikes. Not surprisingly it's a custom job from Abbey that has a Zipp Ti skewer.




    T-handles are definitely go-to but there are times when regular L shaped wrenches work better. Wera is great quality and not at all expensive. The T's are from Feedback Sports and not cheap. The thing in the middle is a b-gap gauge made by a friend. Takes care of checking that on ALL SRAM drivetrains instead of having 4 plastic things floating around.



    Good cutting tools are essential. I only use the SRAM cable cutter for derailleur housing. I cut brake housing and all cables w/ the Knipex diagonal cutters. The little black ones are flush cutters and great for zip ties.



    Same with good screwdrivers. Wera for most, and a Vessel JIS from Shimano. The T10 Torx is cool just cuz it has the strips.



    A couple of pokey things and a surgical clamp always come in handy as well as the 13mm offset SRAM brake wrench.



    I like the Abbey Decade chain tool but that's a lot like the HAG...most people can't justify the price. I also use the Abbey chain whip and lockring tool.

    I mostly use the Feedback Sprint workstand as well. It's a beam type stand that holds either the fork dropouts or the rear dropouts and the bike rests on the bottom bracket.
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  6. #6
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    Thanks for the help guys. CX its very safe to say that I will never have a tool set like that!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by stogies4life View Post
    Workstand
    Chainbrake tool
    Masterlink pliers
    Chain guage
    Chainkeeper
    Workstand-Get the Park PRS 22.2 or the Feedback Sports Sprint Stand. I've used the "clamp by the seatpost stands and they're not as handy if you want to use the stand to say, wash the bike and rotate the bike on the stand. Sure, you may be inconvenienced when you have to remove a wheel to work on the bike on a sprint style stand, but overall I think they're a better design. The Feedback stands are really burly.

    As for the other tools, Park Tools are the standard. If you don't use a quick release chain link, then you don't need Masterlink pliers, but the pliers make it easier and less messy than wrestling with the chain with your hands.

    The chainkeeper is definitely handy for washing the bike.

  8. #8
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    Like most amateur mechanics, my toolbox is a combination of cheap tools, expensive tools, a few specialty tools, and a few tools no longer used because they are now obsolete. Unless you are 'in the business', a tool collection is something generally added to a single tool at a time.
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

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    Quote Originally Posted by No Time Toulouse View Post
    Like most amateur mechanics, my toolbox is a combination of cheap tools, expensive tools, a few specialty tools, and a few tools no longer used because they are now obsolete. Unless you are 'in the business', a tool collection is something generally added to a single tool at a time.
    This how I am hoping to have mine look like, except for the obsolete tool part! I have 3 bikes oldest one being a '12 Trek FX and I just want to be able to some of the basic repairs/maintenance. Anything really serious and I would go to my lbs

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Time Toulouse View Post
    Like most amateur mechanics, my toolbox is a combination of cheap tools, expensive tools, a few specialty tools, and a few tools no longer used because they are now obsolete. Unless you are 'in the business', a tool collection is something generally added to a single tool at a time.
    Yup, exactly how I acquired my bike tools. Eventually you will want a torque wrench, cassette lock ring removal tool, and a cassette holding pliers set of some sort (don't get a chain whip, they are old tech).
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post
    Yup, exactly how I acquired my bike tools. Eventually you will want a torque wrench, cassette lock ring removal tool, and a cassette holding pliers set of some sort (don't get a chain whip, they are old tech).
    I've never used one but it's difficult imagining how they would be easier than a chain whip.

    Anyway, I got all my tools on an 'as needed' basis too.

    My only regret from either going to cheap or just getting the wrong thing was the first thing I bought. That was getting a Jackknife style set of wrenches instead of individual ones. Having good individual wrenches is much better so I eventually got those. The jackknife ones are still good to have though for travelling and bringing wrenches just incase but not to do 'real' work.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    I've never used one but it's difficult imagining how they would be easier than a chain whip.
    If you were to try one of the vice clamping ones you would agree I'm pretty sure. I have both and the chain whip is never used, probably should get rid of it since its taking up room in my tool box.
    Gravel Rocks

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    Niner RLT9 RDO
    BH G7 Disc
    Trek Crockett

    "The Spirit of the Party "serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. It agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by stogies4life View Post
    This how I am hoping to have mine look like, except for the obsolete tool part! ....
    I still have freewheel removal tools for specific brands of freewheels I haven't actually owned for 30 years. But, who knows, someday someone will need one, and I'll have it.

    As to the cassette holder wrench, yes, those look nice. But I still own 2 chain whips, and I'm used to wrapping the 2 of them facing each other, then squeezing. Why drop $50 when I have all I need? Still have a whole bunch of cogs, spacers, and freewheel bodies from an earlier time, too. If anybody needs a classic, custom freewheel, give me a message....
    "L'enfer, c'est les autres"

  14. #14
    xxl
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    Quote Originally Posted by No Time Toulouse View Post
    ...a few tools no longer used because they are now obsolete....
    My toolbox contains "rocker blocks," which are big chunks of hardened, polished and precisely curved metal.

    They are for pounding out dents in curved auto body panels, specifically tail fins.

    You just never know when you'll need them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxl View Post
    My toolbox contains "rocker blocks," which are big chunks of hardened, polished and precisely curved metal.

    They are for pounding out dents in curved auto body panels, specifically tail fins.

    You just never know when you'll need them.
    My father had a few of those too. Think he got them while working in the Body Shop of the Ford Motor Assembly plant

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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post
    Yup, exactly how I acquired my bike tools. Eventually you will want a torque wrench, cassette lock ring removal tool, and a cassette holding pliers set of some sort (don't get a chain whip, they are old tech).
    I bought a shimano torque mainly for the smaller items, not sure I will need anything larger. If I do I am probably gonna be in over my head.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Srode View Post
    If you were to try one of the vice clamping ones you would agree I'm pretty sure. I have both and the chain whip is never used, probably should get rid of it since its taking up room in my tool box.
    I'll take your word for it. I was think how could anything be easier than a whip but after replying to you I remembered I wasn't all that smooth with one the first few times so I suppose there is room for improvement.

  18. #18
    Never Give Up!
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    As others have said, don't buy all the tools at once just to say you have them. Buy as you need and buy only what you need. No sense in having a bunch tools that will not be used.
    "I refuse to be afraid of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday & I love today!!"

    "There are only two ways to establish competitive advantage: do things better than others or do them differently."

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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by stogies4life View Post
    I bought a shimano torque mainly for the smaller items, not sure I will need anything larger. If I do I am probably gonna be in over my head.
    40nm is what you need for a cassette lock ring or disc brake rotor when you get to replacing one of those.
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    Niner RLT9 (Gravel Bike)
    Niner RLT9 RDO
    BH G7 Disc
    Trek Crockett

    "The Spirit of the Party "serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. It agitates the community with ill-founded jealousies and false alarms, kindles the animosity of one part against another, foments occasionally riot and insurrection

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