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Thread: Buying tools

  1. #1
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    Buying tools

    How do you guys afford all these high end tools. My employer only gives me $150 a year for tools. The rest I have to pay for but it adds up. Are there companies out there that pay for tools.

  2. #2
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    Union dictates the company has to pay for tools we need.
    Usually if something breaks or I need something new I just go to the supply house and call for a PO.
    Last company gave me a tool allowance per month.
    This past year I’ve bought a new megger, Vito backpack, meter accessories and replaced worn out hand tools.
    When I started with this company they told me to stock the truck how I wanted and gave me an open PO. End bill was something like $4,000 for power tools, meters and such.
    They will also order racks, bins and toolbox’s for the truck so you can set it up as you like.
    “I haven’t failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” - Thomas Edison

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  3. #3
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    Buying tools

    Union agreement that I’m in says the employer can either supply the tools or provide a tool allowance. My current employer supply’s our tools, my previous employer payed us $0.80 per hour for to buy our own tools. That was years ago, I’m not sure what the going rate is now. Personally I preferred buying my own tools.


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  4. #4
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    OP, sounds like you should work for that company.
    If I do a job in 30 minutes it's because I spent 30 years learning how to do that in 30 minutes. You owe me for the years, not the minutes.

  5. #5
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    When the employer buys you guys the tools are they yours? Say you quit to go work somewhere else, are these tools yours to take?

  6. #6
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    Don’t know, we don’t really get many guys that leave.
    The last time someone left it was to go to the hall as a full time teacher. And they only left big ticket items like the reclaimed and vac pump.
    “I haven’t failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” - Thomas Edison

    “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” - Vince Lombardi

    "In this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics" - Homer Simpson

    Local 486 Instructor & Service Technician

  7. #7
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    Jul 2018
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    Company bought pretty much everthing on the truck. I probably bought a few hundred dollars worth but should have turned in my recipe for reimbursement.

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  8. #8
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    Aug 2018
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    Piedmont Triad, NC
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    Credit. I own every tool in my van except the recovery machine. I feel like it’s an investment. If I ever get fed up and leave I can take it all somewhere else.

  9. #9
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    We don’t have a tool allowance of any kind where I work. They do purchase the bigger expense tools like recovery machines and what not. They also purchase anything “trade specific” since we aren’t allowed to perform side work.

    The guy that’s in charge of tool purchases is very lenient. He pretty much ok’s anything within reason that makes a job easier/faster. And they replace pretty much any personal tool that fails but sometimes that process can be a pain. But any tool purchased by the company, belongs to the company. It gets inventoried on the truck like any another part. For that reason I decided a long time ago to own everything that I use for work. This way, if need be, I can start working somewhere else or for myself quicker/easier/cheaper.


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  10. #10
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    Apr 2018
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    At my work we supply all our own tools are company supplies reclaimers and core drills but other then that everything on your truck is yours. Some of the guys even have there own core drills and bits that stay on their truck just because they are tired of using the company ones. Some of the guys are pretty hard on some of the tools. I have all my own gauges vac pumps vac gauges combustion analyzer everything and then its mine and no one else can use it. and you can also buy what you want. If you want yellow jacket you have one if you want accutools you have it. Our company is pretty diverse we have old school guys that wont use digital and some other guys love them. We used to get a tool allowance but we dont anymore too many guys took advantage of it. Basically you buy it once and if it screws up the company will replace it. I like it better this way because if i ever leave i basically have everything.

  11. #11
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    we supply our own tools at work, bigger stuff like torches, recovery machine, etc co supplies. I buy a good deal of stuff at yard, estate or flea market. I've got everal extrs, like tin snips, bulldog snips, circle cutter for metal duct, but on one at work seems to want to buy tools, even if they dont have one.
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  12. #12
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    Jul 2012
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    I’m union. The company buys all the tools and they are company tools so we cannot take them when we leave. We have accounts with the local supply houses and a hardware store, so for minor stuff I just pick it up myself and charge it to the company. Even though the company owns the tools we don’t have to share them unless it’s something expensive that doesn’t get used very often.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chilly32 View Post
    How do you guys afford all these high end tools. My employer only gives me $150 a year for tools. The rest I have to pay for but it adds up. Are there companies out there that pay for tools.
    I'm in a non union company. We do $500 a year for tools and we also give $250 for being on call for the week. But we are a bit of an exception to the rule.
    “Free men do not ask permission to bear arms.”
    -Possibly said by Thomas Jefferson(but true even if he didn't)


    “What one generation tolerates, the next generation will embrace.”
    ― Definitely said by John Wesley

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