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Buying new socket handles for your socket wrench? Or are you considering whether it’s worth investing in a specialty tool?

Then this episode holds the answer – and more.

Tune in to discover:

  • 6 MORE tips to help you when you’re shopping for tools
  • One tool that you’re better off NOT getting
  • A genius tool you’ve probably never heard of before


Hello, and welcome to another episode of 30-minute motorcycling – a podcast for those riders who are at the beginning of their own Dual Wheel Journey, where you’ll discover something new about how your motorcycle, moped, or scooter works – in less than 30 minutes.


And this episode is a follow-up from Episode 51 – which was about 6 tips when you’re shopping for tools to get your money’s worth. 


In this episode, you’ll some more of those tips – including one about a tool that you’re better off not getting and one that you should absolutely consider getting.


So without further ado, let’s begin. 


The first tip is about the socket wrench – specifically its size. If you’re buying new sockets, it’s important to know this.


Why? Because in this context, size DOES matter. 


Socket wrenches come in different sizes – ½” ⅜” and ¼” being some of the most common ones.


This size refers to the square-shaped mounting point that you attach the sockets to, and the critical thing to remember about it is that sockets are not interchangeable between the different wrench sizes.


To keep it short – a ½” socket wrench is only compatible with ½” sockets, a ⅜” wrench is only compatible with ⅜” sockets and so on.


So don’t make the mistake of buying a set of ⅜” sockets for a ½” socket wrench.


The second and third tips all relate to specialty tools – which, if you’re curious, check out episode 54 of this podcast to hear more about speciality tools.


Anyway, if you’re going to buy a specialty tool, you should know that some of them are only designed to work with a certain brand – and in some cases, specific models of a certain brand.


So, if you’ve found a clutch removal tool for a Kawasaki and you’ve got a Triumph, look elsewhere.


But even if you find a specialty tool compatible with your bike, you really have to think about how much you really need it.


Are you changing clutches on a regular basis or just every once in a while? If you are, then, go ahead – it will certainly save you time in the long run (not to mention the aggrevation).


But if all you’re doing is essential maintenance and don’t change clutches that often, buying a clutch removal tool is not the best investment you’ll make – especially when you remember that a clutch removal tool can cost as much as $1000.


Before we move on to number 4, I have a small disclaimer to make.


Usually, I’m not one to tell you to completely avoid getting a tool altogether – even if you do have the money and you’re doing the type of work it’s designed for regularly.


The test light, however is an exception – if it’s between a test light and a multimeter, skip the test light and get the multimeter instead.


To understand why, let’s look at what the test light does – and also what it doesn’t do.


A test light is an electrical tool that’s often shaped like a screwdriver with a pointy tip at the end, which you can use to test whether there’s electricity inside a circuit.


If there’s electricity inside the circuit, a small light at the other end of the handle will light up.


So to recap, the test light tells you that electricity can flow through a circuit. Now, let’s talk about all the things it CAN’T do.


First of all, it can’t tell you how much electricity is in the circuit. 


Secondly, it also can’t give you any kind of accurate voltage reading.


And last, but definitely not least, even if you’re measuring an electrical component where most of the connectors are broken, the test light can’t tell you that – it will still light up as usual.


So, if you’re going to get an electrical tool, a multimeter is a much better choice – they’re a little harder to learn how to use, but if you’d like to know more, I’ve got a link to an article in the description to this episode that shows you how multimeters work.


Now that we’ve looked at a tool that’s not worth getting, for the 5th tip, let’s look at the stark contrast to that – a tool worth getting.


If you’re brand new to the world of mechanics, I bet you didn’t even know this tool existed – I know I didn’t.


The tool in question is called “magnet on a stick” – I know, not the most exciting or creative tool name in the world, but don’t dismiss it just yet, because whoever invented it was an absolute genius.

Why? Because the magnet on a stick relieves some of the frustrations of trying to get out spacers, nuts, bolts, and other small metallic objects from spaces where your hands or fingers can’t reach.


With the magnet on a stick, you just need to stick it into the space and fish out the metallic object with little to no problems.


Even better, this tool usually doesn’t cost more than $10-$20, and some of the high-end ones even come with integrated flashlights or torches.


The sixth and final tip for this episode is about tire pressure gauges – one of the most essential tools.


If you’re investing in a good tire pressure gauge, you have two options – analog or digital. If you’re thinking about the digital one, remember that these require additional batteries.


Sometimes, these batteries come included – other times, they’re sold separately. If they’re sold separately, you must factor in the batteries’ cost with the cost of the digital tire pressure gauge.


And those were 6 more tips when shopping for tools to ensure you get the best possible value for your money. 


Thank you for listening – I hope that you enjoyed this episode, and above all, that you discovered something new.


Until next time, keep your helmet on, and your eyes on the road. Bye!