GEARWRENCH 6-Point 120XP Standard & Deep Mechanics Tool Set, 56-Piece
Last updated date: July 7, 2020
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This wrench set includes 56 pieces, including standard and deep sockets. The 120XP ratchets feature a 3-degree swing arc to ensure you can tighten even in the smallest area. The pawls are double stacked, which gives you more strength as you're turning. In our analysis of 25 expert reviews, the GEARWRENCH GEARWRENCH 6-Point Mechanics Tool Set, 56-Piece placed 2nd when we looked at the top 13 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
Editor's Note July 7, 2020:
Checkout The Best Mechanics Tool Set for a detailed review of all the top mechanics tool sets.
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From The Manufacturer
120XP ratchets have two double stacked 60 tooth pawls (120 positions) providing a 3° swing arc so you can turn fasteners in tighter confines
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An Overview On Mechanics Tool Sets
Automotive repairs require special tools, whether you’re working on a car, truck, motorcycle or a vehicle like a riding lawnmower. You may already have some basic tools, but if you’re equipping your garage to tackle some serious repairs on a regular basis, it’s worth an investment in a specialized mechanic’s toolset.
If you have a toolkit that you use for basic household tasks, you have a good start on a mechanic’s toolset. A good pair of pliers and a full set of screwdrivers will come into play far more often than you expect. You may also already have a good pair of latex gloves, which are much more useful in protecting your hands than mechanic’s work gloves, which can be too thick for many tasks.
But those basics are only the start. One item that’s essential to any mechanic is a toolset specifically designed for working on vehicles. It will include sockets, extensions and a ratchet, at minimum. You’ll need varying sizes of sockets and ratchets, so you can save money and time by simply buying a kit with a wide range of options from the outset.
You should also invest in a torque wrench for tightening nuts, but when it’s time to remove a nut or bolt, you’ll turn to your ratchet toolkit, either using one of your ratchets or a breaker bar. When you choose a torque wrench, carefully coordinate it with the drive size of your socket set.
Chances are, you’ll need to get underneath your car from time to time. For that, a car ramp will be required. You can instead choose a jack, but ramps tend to be safer. Your ramp will come in handy when it’s time to change the oil in your vehicle, which is a task you’ll perform fairly often. For oil changes, you’ll also need an oil drain pan to keep messes to a minimum, as well as an oil funnel for replacing the oil you’ve drained.
You may think a jumper box is something you’ll only need on the rare occasion your battery dies. But when you start working on cars, you’ll be surprised how often you accidentally drain the battery, and having a jumper box in your garage will help you get your car started again afterward.
Once you’ve purchased these basics, you can add to your tools as needed. Make sure you have plenty of extra storage space for all the items you’ll buy as you advance in your DIY mechanic work.
DWYM Fun Fact
By now, you’ve probably heard varying advice on how often you should change your car’s oil. That sticker the mechanic places on your windshield after each visit likely recommends every three months or 3,000 miles, whichever comes first. In recent years, though, experts have changed their tune on how often you need to take your car in. Your vehicle’s manual will give an exact guideline, but Scientific American says you can probably push it to 5,000 to 7,500 miles. If you drive less frequently, though, you’ll need to pay closer attention to the timeline rather than what your odometer says. Six months is the timeline many experts recommend, but by checking your oil monthly, you can get a better gauge of when it’s time. The more opaque your oil is, the more likely it’s time for a change. If your oil is milky, it could be a sign you’re leaking coolant.
The Mechanics Tool Set Buying Guide
- By buying your repair tools in a kit, you often save significant money over buying each item separately. Additionally, you’ll get a case that helps you keep everything neatly stored in one place.
- Toolsets for mechanics come in a variety of sizes, from smaller sets with just over 50 pieces to those that have hundreds of pieces. You’ll find a combination of sockets and multiple ratchets, but often there are other items, as well, including extension bars. The larger and more comprehensive the toolset, the less likely you’ll have to head back to the store in the middle of your work.
- Some toolsets come with handy extras like measuring tape and pliers. Even if you already have these items in your house, it can be nice to have an extra set for your garage or work shed.
- Pay particular attention to the case the tools are stored in. Many have thick, durable cases that keep your tools safely stored when not in use. But make sure the set has a compartment for each ratchet and socket to avoid items getting scratched up from rubbing against each other.
- Many ratchets feature a finish designed to ensure they last through many uses without rusting or corroding.
- Ratchets come in varying drive sizes, each used for different tasks. Some of the most common sizes are 1/4-inch drive, 1/2-inch drive and 3/8-inch drive. You’ll find that you change from one to another throughout the course of your work.
- For general use, you’ll likely need a gearless ratchet, which uses a rolling bearing, reducing the effort you have to put into your work. There are also jointed and flex-head ratchets, which require a little more manual labor but can help you get into those tight areas.
- You’ll also find ratchets vary in tooth count. The higher the tooth count, the easier you’ll find the handle is to move around while you’re working.
- There is a wide range of socket types, each with their own unique uses. If you’re new to working on cars, you may not realize the full scope of what you’ll need. Having a set with a variety of sizes will be a big help in those early months.
- Ratchets vary in operation. Some are easier to twist and turn than others, while some feature conveniences like release valves that make it easy to eject the socket. These small things will add up if you’re using the ratchet regularly.
- You’ll find your work will call for sockets of varying sizes and depths. Don’t underestimate the value of a kit that contains a wide range of socket sizes. You’ll likely find you need many of them over the course of your work.
- For some, the brand is important. Although there are many trusted brands in toolsets, you can save money and get the same value from a lesser-known name. Still, if you want to impress your buddies, you may want to either go with a tried-and-true brand or look for a toolkit that doesn’t blast its name across the front.