According to Clint Eastwood, “Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone.” Who am I to argue?
Having said that, there are a few other tools that will make your life a little easier.
I made this list on Amazon, so shopping is simple.
Best advice is however to watch for advertising fliers and pick up things when they are onsale - Sears, TruValue and all the other chain hardware stores always have a loss leader to drive store traffic. Watch for those and fill out your tool chest.
I do have a few general recommendations in addition to the specific tools listed on Amazon
- For most tools, don't buy junk off brands. Long term, not worth it.
- Craftsman hand tools have a lifetime warranty.
- Electricians all seem to have a tool belt full of Klein tools - that's probably a good recommendation.
- People call locking pliers vise-grips - it's a brand, and yes they are that good so only buy visegrips
- Channellocks are largely the same league as visegrips - buy them
- Once you start buying cordless power tools, you are locked into that brand because of battery interchangablity. So be sure you are going to be happy with them. I recommend Craftsman, Porter Cable, DeWalt, Makita, Milwaukee. And buy ones with real batteries - 18 volt is heavy, but powerful. If you don't intend on building a lot of things 9 volt is enough, but if you decide to get into construction you will burn them out. And never store those batteries where it might get below freezing.
- One of the things not on my list you should have is a folding utility knife - uses razor blades. I am partial to my folding Irwin. It is handy to have some of those disposable utility knifes also.
- Tool Bags are a handy way of carrying tools - I like them better than tool chests, tool buckets or any other device.
- A head lamp makes nighttime construction simpler - the light is always pointing where you are looking.