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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking to sell of some of my sim racing gear and buying starter tools. I have only a range of spanners and some allen key sets, no sockets or anything.

Was hoping to buy a complete-ish kit for about £100-150ish and riding it out. Fully expect cheap stuff to wear and turn to cheese but will replace on the fly.

Any suggestions? UK based.
 

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Happily expanding the To Do list since 1997
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I bought tools piecemeal as I needed them so can't advise on a particular kit but I would put in a good word for Halfords own brand tools. The quality of their sockets and spanners is pretty good.

I started out buying 1/2" square drive sockets and found that, although they're a bit heavy duty for many jobs, they can manage most stuff (except maybe hub nuts). Now I've got 3/8" sockets too I actually use those more of the time as they're slimmer and lighter, but if you're only looking to build up a set in one size I would probably say go with 1/2" ... probably.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I bought tools piecemeal as I needed them so can't advise on a particular kit but I would put in a good word for Halfords own brand tools. The quality of their sockets and spanners is pretty good.
Awesome I was looking at the Halfords socket sets and was unsure of the quality.

Do you have a minimum list of socket sizes that I should buy for a 1/2 driver? The reason I am going for a full kit is because I don't have a manual, so no idea of the required sizes.
 

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Happily expanding the To Do list since 1997
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Well, the sizes I've found a need for on my Mk.1s have been 10mm, 12m, 14mm, 17mm, 19mm, 21mm, 23mm and 24mm. The 23 and 24 are for the differential drain and filler plugs and very little else. Sometimes you need a deep socket and I've accumulated deep versions of the 10 - 19 sizes. A long breaker bar is useful as well as the inevitable ratchet handle. Some 5" and 10" extensions are super handy too.

Torque wrenches seem to be cheap these days so long as you're not anxious of Chinese brands you never heard of. One that goes to 80ft lb/100Nm for the wheel nuts is worthwhile. Getting one that does low range stuff too is harder. I eventually accumulated a 3/8" one and a cheap set of 3/8" sockets to solve that. (But then a ham-fisted mate asked me to help him with a bike engine and after he snapped a second bolt I bought yet another; a cheap 1/4" torque wrench and sockets too. It's surprisingly confidence-giving for small stuff.)
 

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Early Man
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Halfords own have served me well over the years too but I tend to only pick stuff up when they have a sale on. Couple of years ago I bought a Parkside set from Lidl for ~£70 for my son and it's not bad at all. Hex sockets, long reach, spanners, screw driver heads, etc, all of which have done everything required of them without fault.
 

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Hiding from the Ayatollah or making Full Metal Jac
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IMO you can get away with a 1/4" and 1/2" set. No need for 3/8"

1/2" kits go down to 10mm and 1/4" kits max out at 13-14mm.

Add in a ring spanner set or two (hex and 12 point, brand doesn't matter that much just it needs to cover +- 6mm-19mm )

10mm, 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, 17mm are the most used sizes.

As for brands..

Halford Professional is well made. Can't fault it.

My wrenching experience, summed up:

My daily kit that I use is a 2nd hand 1990s Teng 1/2" 43 piece set and a (new to me, 15 years old now...) 1/4" Teng meccarosso set. The blow molded cases hinges on these are going tho. I've got elastic cord around them to keep them shut.

In our family car we have a Facom SLD 1/2" and dinky Teng Meccaroso 1/4" since these are minimalist sets perfect for the road.

The Facom SLD 1/4 and 1/2 sets would be my 'go to' now as I prefer the form factor to the Teng ones. Better box. Not blow-molded. Higher quality sockets and mechanism.

I got a cracking deal on our 1/2" set 5 years ago, they're up in price now.

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/154773243868c 1/2"
Facom SLDBOX412 Metric Size Socket - 22 Piece 3148519048018 | eBay 1/4" still a good price tho.

The current version of my daily 1/4" Teng Mecarosso set - I use this kit at least once a week.

If you use tools on the regular you'll learn to prefer some ratchet designs over others. The nicest one I've used Facom. Teng is good but not 'gosh, that's a nice mechanism' like the Facom.

Ultimately the cheapest sets will still 'do the job' but the better sets will last you a decade or a lifetime if you look after them.
Other kits to look out for that shouldn't cost the moon - Hazet, Wera, Wiha, Draper, Stahlwille, Bahco (Great adjustable spanners!) and Knipex Cobra Pliers (no toolkit is complete without these and a set of mole grips)

Left field suggestion ? Wurth! I've got a secondary 1/4" Zebra set and it's good, small profile, decent ratchet mechanism. Better than Teng.

The best screwdriver I've ever used was a King Dick 1-for-6 tho. And I never lost a 10MM. :D
 

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Another recommendation for Halfords and they do lifetime replacement of any broken bits!

Worth pointing out that if you are a member of the MX-5 Owners Club (in the UK) you get 10% off at Halfords and 50% off Footman James insurance. Paid for itself that way for me.

I love Teng Tools but, so expensive and I'm probably subject to advertising........

Another vote for King Dick, have inherited some King Dick spanners and they give off that "they don't make em like they used to" vibe.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for all your replies!

I am thinking of going for the mid-large sized Halfords Advanced 175 Pc Socket & Spanner Set since it's on sale for half that of the large and only 25 pieces less. However this is about £50 over my budget, would this smaller set, Halfords Advanced 100 Pc Socket Set? I can see from the description it has most things suggested here, and I'll have enough budget left to grab a torque wrench.

Trying to reduce my cost of entry so I have enough liquid for replacement parts as I intend to take it to the track at least twice a month, then buy extra tools as required.
 

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Early Man
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The smaller set will be perfectly adequate imo and if it leaves some cash for a torque wrench or long bar or spanners, then all the better. Many of the 175 pieces in the larger set will probably never be used. Same could be said for some of the parts in the 100 piece though - lots of adapters and the likes.

As another option, they do have a 24 piece 1/2 inch set for £42 which would leave you plenty of cash for a set of spanners, decent screwdrivers, torque wrench, and still have some budget left for the times ahead when you find you need duplicate sized sockets or spanners, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
As another option, they do have a 24 piece 1/2 inch set for £42 which would leave you plenty of cash for a set of spanners, decent screwdrivers, torque wrench, and still have some budget left for the times ahead when you find you need duplicate sized sockets or spanners, etc.
Awesome. I'll go ahead and nab the 24 piece set, some screw drivers and a torque wrench. I already have x2 of 10, 12, 15, 17 and 19mm spanners (nice Britool ones as well) that I got off eBay donkeys ago.
 

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layabout
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Another recommendation for Halfords and they do lifetime replacement of any broken bits!
+1.

I've tested the garantee & can say its an easy / painless process:cool:

have a few Halfords sockets & spanners, their tradecard makes for a decent discount at times (iirc had ~£25 off a torque wrench a few weeks ago - because I 'couldn't find' one in my workshop when building a diff:rolleyes: )

Another vote for King Dick
I've still got my Kingdick spanners, sockets and ratchet I bought as a first-year apprentace (~33 years ago🥴) and they're still in use(y)

Rich.
 

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Thanks for all your replies!

I am thinking of going for the mid-large sized Halfords Advanced 175 Pc Socket & Spanner Set since it's on sale for half that of the large and only 25 pieces less. However this is about £50 over my budget, would this smaller set, Halfords Advanced 100 Pc Socket Set? I can see from the description it has most things suggested here, and I'll have enough budget left to grab a torque wrench.

Trying to reduce my cost of entry so I have enough liquid for replacement parts as I intend to take it to the track at least twice a month, then buy extra tools as required.
Whew twice monthly track? That's expensive!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Whew twice monthly track? That's expensive!
All relative really, £100 for evening sessions or £200 for all day. Plus fuel, So worse case it's £500-550 a month, or £300-350 a month. Obviously if the car needs work/parts then no track days. Not too bad for my financial situation but still makes a bit of a dent. Cutting back in other places to make up for it lol.
 

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I'd skip the torque wrench and get one of those electronic doodads. way cheaper. I say that having three actual torque wrenches. and the electronic doodad. if you're doing track days you'll probably want an impact gun tho :D and perhaps some of those torque-limiting torque sticks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'd skip the torque wrench and get one of those electronic doodads. way cheaper. I say that having three actual torque wrenches. and the electronic doodad. if you're doing track days you'll probably want an impact gun tho :D and perhaps some of those torque-limiting torque sticks.
Linky linky? I'm all for not having torque wrenches because 1 is never enough and they aren't cheap.
 

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You'd want the 200 or 340nm version 1/2

The 200nm version covers most of the things you'll want it for (i.e. up to wheel nuts!)

the way they work is you put it between your wrench and the socket you're using and you set it to beep as it approaches the correct torque.

In my testing they've proven quite accurate. more accurate than I expected.
 

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I'd give yourself just one track day a month for the first 3 months and spend the cash you've saved on tools. You definitely want JIS screwdrivers (vessel ones are genuinely worth the money), a decent 3ft 1/2" breaker bar and good non ratchet spanners (sounds like you have those). I'd get a 1/4" and 3/8" socket set for general spannering and then a set of 1/2" impact sockets, shallow and deep for giving some grief. A set of 3/8" six sided sockets is worthwhile and make sure you by a/some flare nut spanner(s) 10 and 11mm if you're changing calipers or brake pipes.

Aside from that, extension bars, adaptors (reducers and embiggeners) and some pry bars will get you out of a lot of situations. A handful of plastic trim pry bars are worth having and a copper and hide hammer or deadblow is much nicer to use than a steel hammer and bits of wood.

I'd probably only use a torque wrench if I was rebuilding engines, gearboxes or diffs....
 
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