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Thread: Tools

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Milton, Ontario
    Posts
    14

    Tools

    I am currently trying to get into the trade and many job postings want u to have your own tool. So I was just wondering if anyone could give me a list. Big or small, all tools needed to get the job done. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    GTA, ON
    Posts
    1,272
    Gas, refrigeration or both? Here's a start and some guys will fill you in on the rest:

    1) Nut drivers (the set you can pick up at crappy tire will be OK to start), always make sure you carry the 1/4 and 5/16

    2) Screw drivers - flat, phiips, red robby, green robby, plus a larger flat, get'em in stubbies too, you can also get away with one of those big crappy tire sets

    3) Tubing cutter - This is a nice one to start with, you can get it cheaper at a jobber's http://www.homedepot.ca/product/no-1...-1-8-in/903576

    4) Channel locks (original), I got the 3-pack, but leave the smallest ones at home

    5) Stripper - Channel Lock has a very nice stripper with a built-in crimper. I went with Klein and ended up having to lug a pretty big crimper because of it (don't skimp on quality here either)

    6) Cat III clamp meter - UEI DL-379 is probably the best starter available locally (Frontier has the best pricing there) - many will disagree with me and you might wanna spend more bucks on Fieldpiece or Fluke stuff if you got the cash [you might even wanna hold off on that purchase and ask your boss what he recommends - with some shops, you won't get to use it for a while]

    7) Hacksaw and hammer - cheap and can always come in useful

    8) Adjustable wrench (seen many good guys cheap out on that)

    9) Eventually, you'll need to get some power tools - if you're gonna be an installer, an 18+V hammer+impact combo kit will be your bread and butter (get a good brand like Bosch, Hitachi, Makita, black&yellow, Milwaukee, to name some), if you're just gonna be doing service work, get a 12V impact driver (Bosch PS-41 is the best of the bunch, Makita makes a very nice powerful light one, then you got Bosch PS-40 and Milwaukee as decent cheap choices) - good sources for power-tools: Investment Hardware and JC Cayer

    10) You will need one set of gauges per type of refrigerant if you're doing refrigeration work. Typically 1 set for 22, 1 set for 410. Get a set for 22 just for them to look pretty as you might not get to use them for a while, but having a set makes you look more serious about working in the trade. Frontier sells JB's that are comparable in pricing to Yellowjackets, but I have some issues with Ritchie over their level of respect for the patents of a small Canadian manufacturer

    11) If you're gonna be doing gas, especially resi, get MAPP gas, forget about the blue stuff if you expect to work on HWT's. On that note, get grit tape, not emery cloth. Tubing brushes are also great, typically have at least 1/2 and 3/4

    12) That reminds me, get a ball-end allen key set in imperial

    13) Controls driver - you can get one for free at any jobber

    14) Speed wrenches - very versatile, Princess or Wally (I treat those as disposable)

    15) Socket set (smaller is ok and you can cheap out on those - don't need Snap On's lol)

    16) At least a 7/16 open ended wrench

    17) If running pipe, you don't wanna cheap out on pipe wrenches. Aluminum handle Ridgid is the golden standard here and cheap enough at any jobber (Frontier and Don Park were decently cheap last time I checked).. Either get a 14 and an 18 (I did and kinda regret it) or 2 18's. For commercial work, you'll probably be getting bigger later on down the line

    18) Some tinbashing tools will come in useful.. At the very minimum get a set of snips and crimpers (Malco has decent stuff), the boss will tell you what else you need to get

    19) Side-cutters (don't cheap out there), needle nose and regular pliers
    Last edited by Moonrunner; 06-24-2012 at 11:55 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cal
    Posts
    1,596
    Get a leatherman.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    139
    Quote Originally Posted by btuhack View Post
    Get a leatherman.
    All the above, I go nowhere without my leatherman just sent a broken one to leathermn and they sent me a brand new model with sheath!!!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    534

    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by TheApprentice10 View Post
    I am currently trying to get into the trade and many job postings want u to have your own tool. So I was just wondering if anyone could give me a list. Big or small, all tools needed to get the job done. Thanks
    Here is a list I have from 2008 it is in US dollars and a little outdated.
    I hope it helps you out a little.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    If it doesn't go easy, you are not using a big enough hammer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Cal
    Posts
    1,596
    Stat wire pulling tools, because A) you will pull many wires thru walls over your career, B)you will waste lots of time and be frustrated if you do it the hard way.

    1) 48" long flexible drill bits.

    2) fiberglass pull sticks from home depot, the skinny ones with end fittings.

    3) good/high strength braided Dacron fishing line. It knots well, hangs straight, and won't break.

    3) 2-3 pairs of klien forceps.

    Also, unrelated, wall scanners have always been a source of frustration for me. A small dime sized rare earth magnet is usually my first choice for finding structure(nails/screws).
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Fayetteville, NC
    Posts
    130
    I'll be honest with you and this is just my opinion. If this is the trade that you want to get into,,,,You will need a meter, an 8 in 1 or 10 in 1 screwdriver, and a decent manifold set to begin with.

    I have been in the trade for two years now and I still don't have everything that want so far. It is very easy to go overboard and spend a crap load of money.

    If you know someone already in the trade take a look at his toolbag and go from there.

    I made the upgrade to digi manifolds about a month ago and I love em. Before that my regular manifold and a PT chart worked fine.

    Hows the saying go? The suit doesn't make the man,,, the man makes the suit?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    459
    All you need to start IMO is a basic set of hand tools, a set of gauges and a meter.

    Once you land a job you can buy tools that meet your specific needs and acquire them over time.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Winter Haven, FL
    Posts
    4,379
    #1 answer ..


    Brain.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    GTA, ON
    Posts
    1,272
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Harper View Post
    #1 answer ..


    Brain.
    Show up at a shop on your 1st day with that answer and they might find it cute. 2nd day.. Not so much

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    south jersey
    Posts
    1,104
    As stated above, Basic set of hand tools with a meter and manifold. I tell all the aprentices to make it a point to buy a tool a week for the first couple of months no matter how big or small. This is a great trade that requires much investment. The tools don't make the man but they sure look cool in his truck.
    You need to put the phone down and get back to work!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Fresno, CA
    Posts
    212

    Talking

    Heres a couple things that I have tried to upload a 3 sheet hand tool/hvac tool word doc but heres a couple I suggest: good gloves, a small head lamp, uni bit or step drill bit, plumbers tape, insulated connectors female/male, good Infrared therm, those small thermostat flathead/phillips head screwdrivers that most of the time have the parts house's logo on them they come in handy, color coded electrical tape, deadblow hammer, good air compressor, small vac, good coil gun pressurized or not, level, good set of craftsman wrenches, sockets, etc.. they have the universal/maxx access out now which are ok I have slowly bought most of my hand tools from that department store because of the lifetime warranty on them but if I would do things over again I would do the same most of the time your just going to need a couple nut drivers, service wrench, driller/driver couple bits, meter, jumpers, the k type thermocouple that comes with your meter some shades and a good shadying hat. I got this big ol bag of tools that I really don't need to lug around but sometimes I have what is needed that others don't have in theirs and it pays off then. Have a cool one buddy

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    oklahoma
    Posts
    202
    brain check 10 in 1 check dikes seriously you can get by with very little. But in this field time is money and tools that make the job go quick to me are a must. Think other posters have given you excellent suggestions. Headlamps are the bees knees. Just consider what you will be doing buy cheap ones at first except your meter. And replace them as money time allows and retire the cheap ones to backup status. Don't think you can have to many, we just need bigger trucks to hold them all.

    In this field you often end up doing a little bit of everything. Woodworking, sheetmetal, plumbing, electric, roofing, so the list is long.

    Also, don't think anyone mentioned a tape measure but probably did and i missed it.

    Also dont skimp on your tool bags. Buying a cheap one that lasts 6 months really isn't saving you any monies.

    Will you be working out of a truck or a van?

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