From the bench vice to the calliper, these top ten tools are must-haves for anyone who spends time in their garage. Invest in the proper equipment and you will reap the rewards in your finished projects and repairs.
If you’re a dab hand at DIY or have got to grips with mechanics, you’ll already have a range of basic tools at your disposal. As you take on more complicated jobs it is important to have the right tools to hand. Invest in any of the following and your work will be safer, quicker, and provide a more professional finish.
1. Bench vice
No garage workspace is complete without a good bench vice. Lock in an object on top of a work surface and your hands will be free to saw, cut, measure, sand, and shape to your heart’s content. They needn’t break the bank, with affordable models available online at sites like www.tool-net.co.uk.
2. Tool board
OK, so it may not be a tool in the traditional sense. You could even consider it a project and make your own. But the tool board should not be underestimated. Having your hammers, screwdrivers, pliers and hacksaws all in their place will make your life easier and save you hours of searching.
3. Digital calliper
This handy gadget will accurately measure the width of any gap or material. Digital callipers record minute differences in measurements so your pieces will have a perfect fit. Many digital callipers also convert measurements between inches and millimetres, so you don’t have to.
4. Portable generator
Power tools have now made their way into most UK garages. If you need a convenient source of reliable power, choose a portable generator. Models such as the Clarke FG3000 use a 6.5hp 4-stroke petrol engine, with a solid metal frame for easy carrying.
5. Nail gun
A hammer may work well for the occasional job, but for more extensive use try a nail gun. This tool is now the mainstream among builders and carpenters, proving to be an invaluable time-saver.
6. Jack stands
Whether it’s a fluid leak or a problem with the extension pipe, seeing the state of the underneath is a quick way of identifying the problem with a vehicle. If you do not have experience, leave this job to the professionals. With jack stands or wheel ramps, however, you can get under the body of the car and get to the root of the problem.
7. Safety gear
It may not be exciting, but a good selection of safety gear will keep your fingers and toes in situ. Invest in strong gloves, safety glasses, dust masks and some first aid basics, and you’ll be ready to get down to business.
8. Power sander
From the small scale palm sander to larger rotary disk sanders, this tool is useful for woodwork tasks. Use a power sander to create a smooth, even finish to the surface of your materials.
9. Hilti gun
The Hilti gun is similar to other powered nail guns, but with much more power. This tool can be used to join materials to steel or concrete surfaces.
For a flat, even surface, use a planer in your woodwork. You can cut materials to a specified thickness to create a high quality finish to your DIY projects.