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For someone just starting out in adult life what would be the best four hand and power tools?
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Herb Eneva wrote:

1) Bahco adjustable spanner (or any other *good* make, not a pound-shop piece of cheesemetal).
2) Screwdriver handle with changeable hex bits and a set of good quality bits covering crosshead, flat, hex/allen, torx. That, including the torx, should allow you to open any electrical appliance.
Those two alone will let you open most things and deal with minor plumbing issues like leaky taps and stuff.
3) If you were actually going to do some actual DIY, then a *good* (Blue Bosch, Makita, Hitachi or equivalent make[1]) battery power driver/drill. Ideally a bigger mains drill and a smaller battery driver that could drill to 1/8", but as a compromise, get one medium battery device is a fantastically versatile piece of kit.
I have one of these:
http://www.langtoninfo.co.uk/showitem.aspx?isbn 00346387452&loc=GBP
For it's size it is insanely powerful - it can put 6mm wide 100mm (that's probably No12 x 4" remmebering from my childhood) Screwtite screws (self drilling lubricated woodscrews) into regular timber with ease. It can also manage a bit of light drilling with hex drills.
[1] I speak from a British perspective - there may be "well known good" makes particular to your location.
That still leaves upto one tool...
4) Side cutters for minor electrical stuff. Or good pliers that can actually strip too.
I do not know if it counts as a "tool", but a bloody good torch would be on my essentials list - say a Maglite LED (maybe rechargeable). Pocket 2xAA is a practical size to have in the car but still be useful, or a 4D cell "real mans" version for keeping around the home. I like Maglite - solid, waterproof and serviceable.
You really need to tell us what you usually do? Do you do any auto work, even if it's fitting a new radio, changing a wheel. Any actual DIY or do you just want to be able to fix day to day problems?
Cheers
Tim
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Thanks, I'll add that to my American vocabulary.
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Smitty Two wrote:

I guess you have "everything for a dollar" shops?
But what would you call soft shite metal that the pliars and screwdrivers in such shops are made of?
My dad use to have a term "muckite" (shitite is also used) for die-cast alumunium that snaps as soon as you look at it.
cheesemetal is different - it never breaks but it might as well be lead for all the use it is :-o
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Sure.
"Pot metal" is often used for cheap castings, but I've heard the term applied to any low quality metal, even if it isn't cast.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pot_metal
Cheese metal is a good term. I once bought a drill bit at a home improvement store that bent when I tried to drill a piece of wood with it. Reminds me of the acronym ASO, meaning "anvil shaped object."

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Smitty Two wrote:

Ah - now you've said it, I have heard that term too...

Wood - LoL! And I get upset when my SDS destroys a bit on iron hard masonry :->>>

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wrote:

"White metal" is another term for the same thing.
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On Mon, 10 Dec 2012 06:20:54 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (Herb Eneva) wrote:

1. A box of condoms 2. A "Say No to Drugs" bumper sticker 3. A large foam pad to put under your gas pedal to prevent you from burning rubber when you accelerate. 4. Ear plugs for that loud and vulgar crappy rap music that your generation listens to.
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Herb Eneva wrote:

Every house needs...
pliers screwdriver (one that uses bits is handy, saves screwdriver proliferation) hammer crescent wrench (alternatively & better, a set of sockets)
Power, depends on what you want to do with them but...
3/8" drill & bits cut off saw router and basic bits sander
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Why would a router and a sander be in the top 4? I have both and it has been years since I 'needed' to route something.
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Thomas wrote:

What would you prefer? Milling machine? :)
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wrote:

I was thinking the same thing. I have a router, belt sander, and orbital sander. I have not used any of them in years.
I'd add a circular saw and saber saw to that list before a sander or router. A sawsall is handy too. and yes, an electric drill is at the top of the list for power tools. I also use an angle grinder very often for metal, and even use it on wood occasionally, when I need to hack a small fraction of an inch off a board.
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We're all different. I had 2 routers before I bought my first reciprocating saw. I certainly use my router and router table much more often than my reciprocating saw. Just yesterday, I tried my hand at making cabinet doors and drawer fronts. I made a lot of sawdust with my router but the reciprocating saw never left its case. I also used my palm sander, but not my saber saw.
As I said in my response to the OP: We need to know what the adult in question plans to use the tools for before we can offer a list specifically for him/her - especially when we start talking about power tools. Sure, a screwdriver set, hammer, locking pliers and a tape measure are a decent start for hand tools, but the choice of power tools really depends on what tasks are in this particular adult's near future.
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I would not limit it to just 4 tools. For $ 20 to $ 50 you can get a tool set that contains many of the most needed tools. Granted that they will not be the top quality,but will be a good starter kit. To that add a corded 3/8 drill, 25 to 50 feet of drop cord, and drill bits. The battery powered stuff is nice, but if not used very much, the batteries will be dead when needed.
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On 12/10/2012 07:22 AM, Ralph Mowery wrote:

I'm with this advice. I bought my first socket set when I was 15 and had a dirt bike; it was a cheap set from Taiwan, but it was enough for me to destroy a few fasteners by overtightening them, which led to buying a cheap torque wrench to do it properly.
You can buy a relatively cheap set of tools these days that includes a socket set and wrenches, pliers, et cetera. As you break or outgrow tools, you will have a better idea what kind of quality you want, and can then go purchase a particular type/brand of that tool, which will last you longer.
Don't forget to buy a tool chest and learn to put the tools back in the same place after each use; the hardest part of fixing something is having to struggle finding the tool.
Jon
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (Herb Eneva) wrote in 3171.bay.webtv.net:

Two hands and two feet.
Oh, and a working brain is also useful.
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net says...

Screwdriver Pliers Hammer Duct Tape WD-40
That is all you need for anything!
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don't forget the first-aid kit. Well since you have the duct-tape, all you need is paper towels to make a band-aid. I've done that on more than one occassion.
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Bill wrote:

Come on - MacGyver did not have a hammer!
;->
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"She got her looks from her father. He's a plastic surgeon."
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says...

Well, He did use his head...
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