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Thanks for the advice. I intended to get a basic set from Sears to start with and slowly but surely replace them with snap-ons. Of course I'm going to have to go metric rather than standard... euro-bike and all.
Snap-On = Wasting your money. Same with the Craftsman. Unless you just "want" a set of either of those. You can get the same (or better) results with an inexpensive set of Stanley tools from Mal-Wart, or the Kobalt brand from Lowe's.

I've been using hand tools for about 30 years now (literally): Snap-On, Craftsman, Stanley, Challenger, Klein, Popular-Mechanics - all these are in my toolbox(es). I abuse tools almost daily; I've broken more hand-tools than most people have ever owned.

The expensive Snap-on are really no-better than the "cheap" Stanley - one of the best, most-outstanding socket-kits I've ever used was a Stanley kit my Father gave me for Christmas when I was 19 - I've broken two Craftsman and one Snap-on ratchet since then. Other than tarnish and a bit of the chrome is wearing-thin (though not peeling), that set is still going-strong.

Craftsman "first line" are junk - plastic guts in the ratchets, the raised-panel wrenches cut-into your hands when your really have to wail on something (though I've only broken one of the wrenches in all these years). If you HAVE to own Craftsman - go for their "Pro" line of tools.

Snap-on are excellent quality, but stupid-expensive and hard to come-by unless you've got your local Snap-on-dealer stopping at your workplace every two weeks. If so, once you've broken three or four tools and he replaces them, if you're "paid up" - you'll stop seeing him.

Challenger sockets are junk - too damn brittle. I've split nearly a dozen of them up the side - generally in the bottom of the "v" where it's broached. The bigger the socket, the more-fragile it is.

Klein are good-quality (and should be - made by Stanley), but almost impossible to get except through your workplace (Grainger is a big Klein dealer).

The old "Popular Mechanics" brand (formerly "Pro-Mark") that Wal-Mart used to have are made by the same people that mfgr. Craftsman - Danaher Tool Group - I've got a LOT of these in my toolbox, good quality sockets, the ratchets - eh, not so great. Strip teeth now and again, break pawls, I've twisted the drives off two 1/2" breaker-bars. Excellent for home-use, Fair for Industrial.

Those ratcheting "Gear Wrench" tools are just tears waiting to fall - I don't even have to TRY and I can break 'em. If you're given a set, keep them well-lubed and clean. NEVER use them to "break loose" tight bolts, or it's a broken wrench. Period.

What I'm tryin' to say is: you can spend a LOT of money on tools, but still not have anything that's any better than the stuff some guy bought at the local discount-store, or picked-up at a yard sale (you should REALLY check out some of these - some awesome deals to be had at yard sales and estate auctions!).

Unless you can't help it otherwise, stay-away from those traveling tool sales (I'm guilty of buyin' things from 'em!) and Harbor Freight - that chinese made crap is just that - crap. I really only buy oscure items from there, and buy it knowing full-well that it's disposable.

OK, this got long - sorry 'bout dat. Wasn't my intention. S-word happens.
 

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The Toad
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Snap-On = Wasting your money. Same with the Craftsman. Unless you just "want" a set of either of those. You can get the same (or better) results with an inexpensive set of Stanley tools from Mal-Wart, or the Kobalt brand from Lowe's.

I've been using hand tools for about 30 years now (literally): Snap-On, Craftsman, Stanley, Challenger, Klein, Popular-Mechanics - all these are in my toolbox(es). I abuse tools almost daily; I've broken more hand-tools than most people have ever owned.

The expensive Snap-on are really no-better than the "cheap" Stanley - one of the best, most-outstanding socket-kits I've ever used was a Stanley kit my Father gave me for Christmas when I was 19 - I've broken two Craftsman and one Snap-on ratchet since then. Other than tarnish and a bit of the chrome is wearing-thin (though not peeling), that set is still going-strong.

Craftsman "first line" are junk - plastic guts in the ratchets, the raised-panel wrenches cut-into your hands when your really have to wail on something (though I've only broken one of the wrenches in all these years). If you HAVE to own Craftsman - go for their "Pro" line of tools.

Snap-on are excellent quality, but stupid-expensive and hard to come-by unless you've got your local Snap-on-dealer stopping at your workplace every two weeks. If so, once you've broken three or four tools and he replaces them, if you're "paid up" - you'll stop seeing him.

Challenger sockets are junk - too damn brittle. I've split nearly a dozen of them up the side - generally in the bottom of the "v" where it's broached. The bigger the socket, the more-fragile it is.

Klein are good-quality (and should be - made by Stanley), but almost impossible to get except through your workplace (Grainger is a big Klein dealer).

The old "Popular Mechanics" brand (formerly "Pro-Mark") that Wal-Mart used to have are made by the same people that mfgr. Craftsman - Danaher Tool Group - I've got a LOT of these in my toolbox, good quality sockets, the ratchets - eh, not so great. Strip teeth now and again, break pawls, I've twisted the drives off two 1/2" breaker-bars. Excellent for home-use, Fair for Industrial.

Those ratcheting "Gear Wrench" tools are just tears waiting to fall - I don't even have to TRY and I can break 'em. If you're given a set, keep them well-lubed and clean. NEVER use them to "break loose" tight bolts, or it's a broken wrench. Period.

What I'm tryin' to say is: you can spend a LOT of money on tools, but still not have anything that's any better than the stuff some guy bought at the local discount-store, or picked-up at a yard sale (you should REALLY check out some of these - some awesome deals to be had at yard sales and estate auctions!).

Unless you can't help it otherwise, stay-away from those traveling tool sales (I'm guilty of buyin' things from 'em!) and Harbor Freight - that chinese made crap is just that - crap. I really only buy oscure items from there, and buy it knowing full-well that it's disposable.

OK, this got long - sorry 'bout dat. Wasn't my intention. S-word happens.
I basically agree but the one advantage to Craftsman (not Companion) is that you can replace a broken one with ease. Not so easy at Lowes or Home Depot. Especially after they sell out their stock.

I even still have most of a set of K-mart lifetime guaranteed tools that I bought about 25 years ago when I was broke after someone had stolen my toll set. Good luck trying to replace them. I lost the receipt a long time ago.....
 

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Yeah, I've only heard about the quality of Snap-On but I've experienced the "replace it no matter what" guarantee of Craftsman first hand. Buying them, for me, isn't so much about the quality as it is about being able to completely destroy them and replace them for free.
 

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Good advice. I've never wanted to spend $$ on hand tools (power tools are a different matter) so I typically have a collection of pretty cheap but decent enough tools. It may be because I'm a wimp or because I don't do that much work of my own, but I haven't broken any tools, other than perhaps to mangle the tips on screwdrivers.
 

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The Toad
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Good advice. I've never wanted to spend $$ on hand tools (power tools are a different matter) so I typically have a collection of pretty cheap but decent enough tools. It may be because I'm a wimp or because I don't do that much work of my own, but I haven't broken any tools, other than perhaps to mangle the tips on screwdrivers.
My comments about craftsman tools do not apply to their power tools. They look like Black & Deckers now.

I've got my Dad's craftsman tablesaw that he bought in 1950. And his craftsman drill press. The quality difference is unbelievable. The drill press weighs more than a new full size tablesaw. LOL!
 

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None of the anthropogenic global warming skeptics here have given any cogent criticism of climate change science. Instead, the have employed naive arguments about ice ages, etc. under the assumption that these issues have not already been considered by practicing, PhD-degreed scientists in the field.

Do you also give pointers on track technique to Freddie Spencer?

Educate yourself.

***

I agree with the others that the arms race in liter bikes is for the fanboys. Let the tech trickle down from the racers to bikes most of us can actually exploit.
 

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None of the anthropogenic global warming skeptics here have given any cogent criticism of climate change science. Instead, the have employed naive arguments about ice ages, etc. under the assumption that these issues have not already been considered by practicing, PhD-degreed scientists in the field.

Do you also give pointers on track technique to Freddie Spencer?

Educate yourself.

***

I agree with the others that the arms race in liter bikes is for the fanboys. Let the tech trickle down from the racers to bikes most of us can actually exploit.
Regarding the trickle down point, I remember when the first VMax came out with around 100hp. People were saying that it was too much; who could safely use power like that on a motorcycle, and similar remarks. Now, 100hp is fairly common and almost mundane; due to improved chassis, suspensions, tires, brakes, etc. I still think Suzook's ABC switch is dopey, but Ducati is selling real live (and they call it what it is) Traction Control.

Oh, on a side note, remember all the discussion on MC.com about why Kawi wouldn't call traction control traction control (they call it ignition interruption or something)? They are afraid of being sued and all that? I bought a new Mini Cooper last week. It has Dynamic Stability Control, All Season Traction Control, and Corner Braking Control to keep the overzealous or careless driver out of trouble. The manual addressed these systems brilliantly:

"The laws of physics cannot be repealed, even with DSC, ASC, and CBC. An appropriate driving style always remains the responsibility of the driver. Avoid using the additional safety margin provided by these systems as an excuse for taking unnecessary risks."

Gee, that wasn't so hard, was it?

Well well well. At last, somebody else joins the discussion who thinks that maybe scientists who've spent their lifetime studying climatology might know something more about it than Rush Limburger. It's a pleasure to have you here, Mr. Somnus. Please feel free to counter the many "it's all just an ego trip for Al Gore" and "it's all just a pinko Liberal plot to take gun-totin' SUV's away from good 'ol boys" posts you'll find here. I hope your typing skills are up to the task; you'll stay busy if you do.

About tools: sometimes I buy tools for no other reason than because they are so cool it makes me want to use them. I spent a ridiculous amount on a black chrome, gold etched socket set. I actually ask my friends to let me install their accessories just so I can get them out of their burled walnut veneer, micro-fiber lined case and work with them.
 

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The Toad
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Well well well. At last, somebody else joins the discussion who thinks that maybe scientists who've spent their lifetime studying climatology might know something more about it than Rush Limburger. It's a pleasure to have you here, Mr. Somnus. Please feel free to counter the many "it's all just an ego trip for Al Gore" and "it's all just a pinko Liberal plot to take gun-totin' SUV's away from good 'ol boys" posts you'll find here. I hope your typing skills are up to the task; you'll stay busy if you do.
Yeah well you can pretend that the science is 'settled' but there are plenty of climatologists with PhD's who disagree. Especially the ones who spend less time in labs and more in the real world. Like seeing snowfall in Bagdad for the first time in history.

Real scientists still can't decide what makes airplanes fly. Or what causes lightning. I'll treat the claims of fuzzy scientists like climatologists with a grain of salt, thank you.
 

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I only have one thing to add to this wandering, yet interesting, discussion:

Longride, I think (and pray) you meant you liked Randy Rhodes, the tragically-lost guitarist, and not Randi Rhodes, Air America radio "personality" and possibly the most annoying person on Earth.

Then again, I could be wrong. If so, to each his own.
 

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I've had good luck with Craftsman tools, I also have a few Snap On's in the box. I find them OK for home use on the bikes and cars. At work we use Proto for anything over an inch and a set of Craftsman Pro series for under. One thing I like is the Allen wrench's with the ball on one end for working at angles, A lot of our Pressure and Flow Controllers and High/Low cut-outs are inside enclosures that are a beetch to get access to, the ball end lets you work at a slight angle....very clever.


As far as global warming, it's been running in cycles forever, thats why this unprecedented warming is melting glaciers only to uncover remnants of thousand year old villages and settlements. Thirty years ago these same scientists were harping about global cooling and a silent spring.
 

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As far as global warming, it's been running in cycles forever, thats why this unprecedented warming is melting glaciers only to uncover remnants of thousand year old villages and settlements. Thirty years ago these same scientists were harping about global cooling and a silent spring.
Dude, like everybody knows that, with the dying-out in 35-Gazillion B.C. of the Gigantus Automobilus Utilus (more-commonly known as the Prehistoric Giant SUV), the Earth's climate stabilized, and has been virtually unchanged since like, forever. It's only since the Bush Adminstration that Global Warming has reared its fugly face.

Pay no attention to that statistic-manipulator behind the beaded-curtain! I am the Great and Powerful OZ[one]!

Rising Seas!

Uncontrollable Hurricanes!

Famine!

Death!

Charlie Sheen!

Rosie O'Donnell!

Long-Lines at the Pump!

Booga-Booga!
 

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Wow seruzawa, your comment has so many flaws I hardly know where to begin.

* How many peer-reviewed scientists dispute the anthropogenic global warming consensus? A handful, pushing tendentious theories like cosmic ray cloud formation, with many others debunked.

If you had a criticism that held water, that would be a different story.

* Anecdotes != data. Data is calibrated, validated and replete. So what if it snowed in Baghdad this year? It's the entire data set that counts.

* So because we don't understand lift and lightning we should abandon science altogether? This is the same non-argument used by creationists to discredit Darwinian evolution, i.e. the "God of the gaps." Do you also think God designed the computer you're using, instead of human being who understand solid state physics and semiconductors?

***

Kenneth,

Thanks for the kind comment, and I take your point about power -- improved technology can make power more usable. However, I still think it has some downsides: uses more gas, chews up more tire, increases cost/sophistication, and pushes up insurance rates. And, can't any idiot go fast in a straight line?

I guess my view is: give me reliability and just enough power and features to do what I need to do (e.g., touring two-up), then cut weight and sharpen the handling. If tech can give more easy-to-use power without adding weight or hurting reliability, great.
 

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The Toad
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Wow seruzawa, your comment has so many flaws I hardly know where to begin.

* How many peer-reviewed scientists dispute the anthropogenic global warming consensus? A handful, pushing tendentious theories like cosmic ray cloud formation, with many others debunked.

If you had a criticism that held water, that would be a different story.

* Anecdotes != data. Data is calibrated, validated and replete. So what if it snowed in Baghdad this year? It's the entire data set that counts.

* So because we don't understand lift and lightning we should abandon science altogether? This is the same non-argument used by creationists to discredit Darwinian evolution, i.e. the "God of the gaps." Do you also think God designed the computer you're using, instead of human being who understand solid state physics and semiconductors?

***

Kenneth,

Thanks for the kind comment, and I take your point about power -- improved technology can make power more usable. However, I still think it has some downsides: uses more gas, chews up more tire, increases cost/sophistication, and pushes up insurance rates. And, can't any idiot go fast in a straight line?

I guess my view is: give me reliability and just enough power and features to do what I need to do (e.g., touring two-up), then cut weight and sharpen the handling. If tech can give more easy-to-use power without adding weight or hurting reliability, great.
Ha! Who said to abandon science? Just come back when climate pseudo-scientists have more than conjecture based on wildly inadequate data.
 

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Ha! Who said to abandon science? Just come back when climate pseudo-scientists have more than conjecture based on wildly inadequate data.
What makes you think the data is inadequate, and what would constitute adequate data in your mind?

(The data has been adequate in refuting all competing hypotheses. For example, take human CO2 emissions out of the models, and they no longer fit the climate history.)

You can't prove the absolute correctness of theories, you only falsify competing theories. Experience has shown this to work for several hundred years, so this is why I asked you whether you would abandon science.
 

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You can't prove the absolute correctness of theories, you only falsify competing theories. Experience has shown this to work for several hundred years, so this is why I asked you whether you would abandon science.
OK, now you've completely LOST me - are you still talking about climate data here? If so, "several hundred years" is more than a tiny bit of exaggeration - depending on which lia... I mean: well-educated Climate Scientist you listen-to, we've got between 90 and 120 years of "reliable climate data" at the most - EVERYTHING ELSE is "anecdotal data", as you say.

Of course, the best and most-accurate of these computer-models are all based on this anecdotal-data, so they're as infallible as your Logic.

I also note you conveniently left-out any mention of the Solar Flux Dissipation and the theory that this has far-more effect on "Global Warming" (or Cooling - as we appear to have suddenly entered in the last 3-years) than anything Man has ever done to the Planet.
 

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Airhawk, you and Seruzawa are both full of it. Just get your tanning lotion and wading boots on for the onslaught. Too bad the Main Cop on the Global Warming stage is using 10 times the fossil fuel in a month than I do in a year. I guess even he doesn't believe his own bullshyt.
 

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Airhawk, you and Seruzawa are both full of it. Just get your tanning lotion and wading boots on for the onslaught. Too bad the Main Cop on the Global Warming stage is using 10 times the fossil fuel in a month than I do in a year. I guess even he doesn't believe his own bullshyt.
You're probably right - we should just start preparing to move to Mars after we've rendered this world too-hot to live on.

Oh wait - it's "warming up" on Mars as well! Scum-bum-an-inch! We should never have sent those Vikings and SUV's up there - we've ruined two whole Planets already!
 
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