The Common Tool Set

Quick post to chat about tools: As a collector of them, and as a maker and hacker, I find that I have boxes of very specific tools for very specific applications. I have wood working tools; Mechanics tools for working on cars; Plumbing tools; Car electrical specific tools; Soldering and circuit board electrical; Watch repair; Sewing; etc. It’s nice to have a single box of tools that you can haul out for a very specific need. To say: “Here is everything I need for THIS job.” It’s very satisfying.

This helps tame the garage, workshop, and study. You no longer have a big shelf filled up with everything from a circular saw to AA brass tweezers. You can put the pipe cutter, flux, and fittings away in a box marked “PLUMBING” until needed. You don’t have to dig through a pile of electrical crimpers to get the coaxial ones you need for AV work.

Sometimes though, projects require a common tool set. I went to hang a picture in my office and I had 5 hammers to choose from. I fixed the fan in our bedroom and I had to go into 3 different places to get a set of wire strippers, a long screwdriver, a pair of pliers, and some super glue. I found myself leaving my watch repair box open all the time for access to a good pair of tweezers and a loupe. My electronics box is more like a remote soldering station and I found I would also leave it open on the counter for access to 2 long screwdrivers, a pair of flush cutters, and a pair of wire strippers.

“I leave this open on the counter all the time for 3 tools,” I thought. Then I looked at the watch repair box, also open for access to 2 or 3 tools. 90% of the time I go into the garage it’s to get a pair of pliers or a screw driver. “Yeah, I can fix this.”

Here is my common tool set. This represents the tools I use 90% of the time. Put one together for yourself and stop 15 trips to 3 places to finish a project. I on-purpose didn’t put links, because I don’t want to update them, and I don’t monetize this site. Take that as an honest recommendation.

  • Sharpies (regular / fine)
  • Leatherman Style PS
  • AA Tweezers (and small tools)
  • Wera Kraftform Kompakt (screw driver with bits)
  • CRKT Drifter (folding knife)
  • EXTECH EX330 Multi-meter (with box of extras)
  • 1lb Brass Hammer
  • Wiha precision screwdrivers
  • AA LED Flashlight
  • Klein Tools Scissors
  • Wire strippers
  • Flush cutters
  • KNIPEX Cobra self locking pliers

About The Author


Hardware hacker, technology integrator, and maker. He enjoys staring blankly at code, voiding the warranty, and touching things in the back. When not doing that he is building and racing a rally car.

Other posts by

Author his web site


08 2019

Your Comment

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!