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Socket Set For Causal Use?

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[OP]
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Dec 16, 2012
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Socket Set For Causal Use?

Hey

I want to get a socket set that is not too expensive but has enough variety that when I do need my set there is a good chance I will have the "right tool for the job". I don't need tools very often it could be (6 month, a year before I need to use them again) but when I do need it I find I have to go borrow from my dad who has limited looks and usually they are too big or too small.

Biggest things I would be using it for are working around the house and stuff on the car (for instance I needed to untighten a nut to put a ground wire for a dashcam hardwire cable, I only had big wrenches or too small so I had to struggle through it till I got it lose enough to use my hands.

I don't want to spend an arm in the leg so probably no more than $100 if possible.

I found 2 sets but I got no clue what to really be looking for

https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/mast ... p.html#srp

https://www.amazon.ca/AmazonBasics-Mech ... HJ1ZQ&th=1
18 replies
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Jun 12, 2008
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I think Canadian Tire with one of their sets on sale will be your best bet. I'm not handyman and the set I bought from them does me just fine. If you need any larger sockets after the fact you can buy them from Canadian Tire or any number of other sources.

Here are a couple of examples. One of them you already listed in your post.

https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/mast ... p.html#srp

https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/stan ... p.html#srp
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Aug 2, 2001
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It depends what you are looking for, but the Canadian Tire set you linked as all 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2" rachets. I would purchase that one over the Amazon Basics one. It also carries a lifetime warranty if anything breaks and you can exchange in store.
[OP]
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nielboy wrote: I think Canadian Tire with one of their sets on sale will be your best bet. I'm not handyman and the set I bought from them does me just fine. If you need any larger sockets after the fact you can buy them from Canadian Tire or any number of other sources.

Here are a couple of examples. One of them you already listed in your post.

https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/mast ... p.html#srp

https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/stan ... p.html#srp
Whats the difference between the stanley set and master craft?
TrevorK wrote: It depends what you are looking for, but the Canadian Tire set you linked as all 1/4", 3/8" and 1/2" rachets. I would purchase that one over the Amazon Basics one. It also carries a lifetime warranty if anything breaks and you can exchange in store.
Well like I said I am looking for a general purpose set, I really don't know what the job will be maybe a bit on the car or maybe something around the house. I just want to have a set so that if a job comes along I have something to do it with. I just cleaned my "toolbox" out and I don'e even have a single wrench or socket wrench so to do even the job that I need to do on my wifes car of putting a ground wire in I won't be able to do with out borrowing some tools from someone.
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Mar 23, 2008
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I picked up the second set you linked, and I'm pretty happy with them. The selection of wrenches is pretty limited, though, so I'll probably pick up some additional wrenches.

Just watch the regular/sale prices. As you can see, Canadian Tire jacks up their regular prices up a ridiculous amount.

C
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Dec 25, 2007
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you can probably find a set on sale for under $50. it doesnt sound like you're much a DIY'er if all you need to do is loosen a battery terminal for a dashcam wire.
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Apr 24, 2006
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xiaobao wrote: Whats the difference between the stanley set and master craft?
Well like I said I am looking for a general purpose set, I really don't know what the job will be maybe a bit on the car or maybe something around the house. I just want to have a set so that if a job comes along I have something to do it with. I just cleaned my "toolbox" out and I don'e even have a single wrench or socket wrench so to do even the job that I need to do on my wifes car of putting a ground wire in I won't be able to do with out borrowing some tools from someone.
Depending on what’s already in your toolbox, I suggest trying 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.
"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"
[OP]
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CNeufeld wrote: I picked up the second set you linked, and I'm pretty happy with them. The selection of wrenches is pretty limited, though, so I'll probably pick up some additional wrenches.

Just watch the regular/sale prices. As you can see, Canadian Tire jacks up their regular prices up a ridiculous amount.

C
What did you pay for your set? I know Canadian Tire jacks up the price but I just started to look at the sets so not sure what it should be priced at.
smitty9999 wrote: you can probably find a set on sale for under $50. it doesnt sound like you're much a DIY'er if all you need to do is loosen a battery terminal for a dashcam wire.
Recommendations on a set? I am starting to become more of DIYer now that I have my own place and this will continue to grow (right now it will be more just fix stuff, but as I work my way to my forever home then it might become bigger).
ndiniwachojeff wrote:
Depending on what’s already in your toolbox, I suggest trying 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.
This set seems to have a lot of sockets but I am not sure how many sockets are useful. As for what is in my toolbox, Screwdriver (with a 100 different bits), staple guy, hammer, needle nose pliers.
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Jan 27, 2006
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Another alternative is the Home Depot or Lowe's house brands as both of them have Lifetime warranties and are typically have a set on clearance pricing every once in a while. Just be sure that any set you set with a lifetime warranty has the brand clearly marked on each piece so it would be easier to claim the warranty from the retailer - ie you don't have to prove that the piece came from that retailer.
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Dec 25, 2012
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Jeez, people linked a bunch of starter sets above...are you waiting for bob villa to come on rfd and tell you what to buy?
JS
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Dec 28, 2007
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craftsman wrote: Another alternative is the Home Depot or Lowe's house brands as both of them have Lifetime warranties and are typically have a set on clearance pricing every once in a while. Just be sure that any set you set with a lifetime warranty has the brand clearly marked on each piece so it would be easier to claim the warranty from the retailer - ie you don't have to prove that the piece came from that retailer.
Lowes now carries the Craftsman line of tools. Stanley Black+Decker bought it from Sears.
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jackrabbit000 wrote: Lowes now carries the Craftsman line of tools. Stanley Black+Decker bought it from Sears.
Lowe's is clearing out their Kolbalt line of sockets so there are some good deals to be had if you can find them at your local store.
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Jul 6, 2010
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xiaobao wrote: Whats the difference between the stanley set and master craft?
The Mastercraft set has longer ratchets, which will give you additional torque. And it also has metric wrenches in addition to SAE wrenches, whereas the Stanley set has only SAE wrenches. I don't really see any significant advantages of the Stanley set.

I've owned a set similar to the Mastercraft one for about 15 years, and it has served me well. I needed more wrenches and some deep 1/2" sockets for what I've needed to do, but I use the tools much more than once or twice a year. For your use, this set will probably be fine. You can add additional pieces over time if you find you need them regularly.
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James Stonehenge wrote: Jeez, people linked a bunch of starter sets above...are you waiting for bob villa to come on rfd and tell you what to buy?
So being an ass is your resolution? Success!
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James Stonehenge wrote: Jeez, people linked a bunch of starter sets above...are you waiting for bob villa to come on rfd and tell you what to buy?
As the famous "Oddball" would say to "Moriarty", "So much negativity."
#1 - “Don’t irritate old people. The older they get, the less “Life in prison” is a deterrent."
#2 - Are you a Sexual Intellect? /S - What you post in this thread may determine that.
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xiaobao wrote: Whats the difference between the stanley set and master craft?



Well like I said I am looking for a general purpose set, I really don't know what the job will be maybe a bit on the car or maybe something around the house. I just want to have a set so that if a job comes along I have something to do it with. I just cleaned my "toolbox" out and I don'e even have a single wrench or socket wrench so to do even the job that I need to do on my wifes car of putting a ground wire in I won't be able to do with out borrowing some tools from someone.
I doubt there is much difference between the Mastercraft & Stanley set. Best bet would be to read up on both of them for their reviews and maybe ask at Canadian Tire what the difference is and which set is better,
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Dec 25, 2007
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OP is putting way too much thought into a simple socket set. I would just buy whatever is reasonably priced since a socket set won't do much for home repair.
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Oct 3, 2011
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I have a 96 piece set from canadian tire... I had to go out and get a 2nd set of wrenches because I needed a few duplicates to work on the car. CT tools often come on ridiculous sales and that's the time to buy. The ratchets have all been used 3-4 times a year for the last 14 years without issue.

Around the house you will need imperial most of the time if at all. For your car, american made you need imperial. Every other make you need metric. You can use one on the other but that's how you round off nuts and bolts.

Most common metric sizes you use are 10, 12, 14, 15, 17, 19, 21 and 22. If you are using an impact gun for tires you will need to get impact sockets, which are much beefier to take the hammering of the impact hammer. I've seen a few non impact sockets crack or break over the years. For impact sockets if all you are doing is changing tires, just get the smallest set that contains your size when it comes on sale.

For general purpose get a set that has both metric and imperial. The CT stuff should last a lifetime if you don't leave it out in the rain or submerged in water.

Edit: the sets with high piece count are nice and all, but you'll never use most of them. Just make sure you have both metric and imperial (sae) in and around the range I mentioned. Off the top of my head I don't know the exact conversions for those metric pieces, but a set that contains both measurements will contain the same range in both.

The screw driver bits get lost easily, wouldn't count their inclusion as a bonus. Deep sockets are useful for certain things. Hex keys are hex keys. I keep buying new sets every now and then because 1 goes on a walkabout.
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Buy a Canadian Tire set; of any cheap set, you'll either never break anything (if you're not using it much, meaning virtually any set will work), or you'll be breaking stuff often (which the Canadian Tire stuff is great for; no questions asked warrantee, which I've personally used often enough).

I'd suggest getting as bloated a set as you feel makes sense; inevitably you'll need a torx bit, and that giant set will probably have it ... otherwise it's off to Canadian Tire to either get ripped off for that single item, or buy another set that has it, which will have repeaters of whatever other set you already have. I have a 240-ish piece Canadian Tire set that is pretty good ( something like this: link ); I've never run into anything it doesn't have (though mine doesn't have wrenches, so I have a big set of those too), and I wrench lots of peoples cars, snowmobiles, go-karts, lawn mowers, etc. I also have their screwdriver set ( something like this: link ); no small bits, as your "big" set will have plenty, and it covers most of the bases.

If you want tools, just buy something good, that covers a wide range. The more tools you get in those sets at once, the cheaper per tool it will be, and the less likely you'll run into a situation where you don't have a tool you need. If you're patient, you can probably get basically all of the hand tools you'll ever need for about $200.
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