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Ratchet - socket set tools

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  • Jan 5th, 2020 10:23 pm
Feb 10, 2015
337 posts
Hamilton, ON

Ratchet - socket set tools

I was trying to install BMX Pegs for my son's bike and I realizes that few sockets that I have dont match the size I need. I was due to buy whole set of these tools anyway so was wondering if someone can recommend not overly expensive set with all socket sizes (including deep sockets). there are lot of options on amazon but would feel better buying set if someone already had the same set and is happy with it. It turns out I have ratchet 3/8 but dont have socket extension. I have 15, 17 and 19 sockets but not deep enough. See below. any suggestions would be much appreciated.


Tools Needed

1.Ratchet 3/8”*
2.Socket Extension
3.15mm, 17mm or 19mm Deep Well Socket*
5 replies
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2001
17330 posts
Canadian Tire has different socket sets on sale every week - are those in your price range? Princess Auto is also another one that sells tools at a low price point.

If you are looking for very minor work you can always buy the ultra cheap ones off Amazon. This one doesn't have the deep sockets, but this is the sort of "cheap" brand that is fine for a light duty applications:
https://www.amazon.ca/Performance-Tool- ... 003WZRHZG/

I'm on the fence as to whether that is a good idea. I see it being a poor idea for things automotive or for something like lag bolts in a deck. But for minor appliance repair, bicycles, etc. I think it's fine.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 12, 2007
6156 posts
I own hundreds of sockets, have acquired many of them over decades and can honestly say the following:

99% of my (non pneumatic) socket size applications fall between 10 and 21 mm (metric) and 1/4"-1" (imperial)
Of those that I've used, roughly 90% are regular depth
The ones I've used the most (by far) are six-pointed
I gravitate to those sockets requiring 3/8" drive - this is a function of the size of the sockets I tend to use and how much torque needs to be applied. For impact sockets, I almost exclusively use 1/2" drive (for example).

So, the majority of the sockets in the massive Mastercraft set I bought about 10 years ago have never been used. These large sets are overkill for most people but you can't really go wrong buying one by Maximum or Stanley at CTC as TrevorK suggests as they are half decent quality for the DIYer, have a "lifetime guarantee", will give you exactly what you asked for in your post and they provide some assurance that you will have the oddball socket you need when you're in the middle of a project. I do advocate supplementing these large sets with a good quality ratchet though as they ratchet included in these sets are usually pretty basic.

Three pieces of advice: 1) pay attention to the quality of the case - especially the hinge and the clasps. If either of those things is just a flap of plastic, it will fail at some point in its life. Choose a set that has a case with a real hinge and clasps that are preferrably metal. 2) buy a good quality ratchet that has something like 60, 72 or even 90 teeth ("standard" seems to be in the range of 20-40 teeth). Especially when you're doing precision work in tight spots, it's super handy to have a ratchet that has a smaller engagement arc. 3) Make sure the set you buy has an 18mm socket. For some reason, this is a size that is commonly left out of some socket sets and yet it is a common size for the sorts of jobs I do (brakes, wheel bearings, etc.).

And a shout out to Gray brand sockets - yes, they're expensive but they're made right here in Ontario and they are very high quality. A Gray ratchet will serve you well for decades.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jun 12, 2007
17156 posts
Stribor40 wrote: ..I was due to buy whole set of these tools anyway so was wondering if someone can recommend not overly expensive set with all socket sizes ..,*
Any of the big box store (CT, Lowe’s/ Rona, HD) sets will be fine. Some of the store brands are actually made by the same company like Stanley - Husky (HD), Craftsman(Lowe’s/ Rona), Mastercraft (CT).

If you are close to a Rona or Lowe’s that is being closed, I would check out the clearance sales and compare to the CT prices.
Sr. Member
Mar 17, 2006
635 posts
If you having a Rona near you check out these two Craftsman sets on clearance ...item # 000274961 165 pcs for 59.80$, and item# 000274960 137 pcs for 49.80. The piece counts are misleading, and Craftsman is not what it was 20 years ago but a very good deal for Craftsman tools at Jobmate prices.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Apr 24, 2006
1247 posts
As I mentioned in another socket thread, try to find a set with as many sockets of different sizes as possible, not one with piece counts bloated by 30 screwdriver bits and 15 Allen keys etc.. It seems manufacturers are now adding loads of non socket pieces to their sets just to bump up the piece count to make it look more enticing. If you didn’t have any tools before then this would be helpful.
"Just because something is on sale doesn't mean a) you can afford it, b) you should buy it, c) you need it, d) you're not spending far more buying it than not buying it at all"