RV Daily Tips Issue 490. October 13, 2014 | RV Travel

Carry some basic tools even if you can’t use them

by Greg Illes
Well, that’s sort of a joke title — why carry tools if you can’t use them? Actually, the answer is simple: you will use them when you have to.
This article is not for the accomplished do-it-yourselfer, who likely can give us all advice on tool kits. This tip is for the people who can’t remember the last time they picked up a screwdriver. The list which follows is meant to give you a small working tool kit, with only a small investment, which will allow you to fix a lot of simple problems that crop up on an RV. These tools’ usage is pretty much self-explanatory, and none require any advanced skill for their use.
All of these tools are sold in any hardware store — but be sure to buy “decent” tools. Stay away from the $2-special table, because the metal in cheap tools is soft and poorly formed. And don’t be tempted by one of those “all-in-one” tool kits because they have stuff you don’t need and poor-quality versions of what you do need. Shop carefully, buy quality and get familiar with the tools before you tuck them away for later use.

• Screwdriver, multi-blade, $6 — Get one of those six-way screwdrivers. You will have large and small Phillips, large and small slot, and 1/4-inch and 5/16-inch nut drivers, all in one tool.

• Pliers, locking slip-joint, $12 — A really great plier with a grip range around 0-3 inches. Good for pipes, squeezing stuff together and tearing stuff apart.

• Pliers, needle-nose, $8 — Good for twisting wire or fetching tiny things from remote cracks and crannies.

• Hammer, ball-peen, $10 — Just a small hammer for tapping, not a big pounder.

• Wrench, adjustable, $10 (small), $15 (large) — Get two of these, sometimes called “Crescent” wrenches — but that’s a brand name like Kleenex. They will fit any nut or bolt, but they often won’t fit into spaces where the bolts are. You would need a set of wrenches and sockets for such versatility, and that’s beyond this “super-basic” tool set.

• Duct tape, $8 — Another universal tool. The only tape I use any more is the Gorilla brand, far superior to anything else I’ve tried.

• Utility knife with retractable blade, and spare blades, $8 — Universal tool with many uses.

• Voltmeter, $20 — A principal electrical diagnostic tool. This is the only tool which needs a tiny bit of education to use, but it is invaluable (maybe even just to let a helper use it). It will tell you everything from your battery’s state of charge to whether you have a bad switch or connector.

• Inspection mirror, $10 — There are a lot of places that this comes in handy to peek into.

Yes, there are thousands of tools that you could buy and carry (and I carry hundreds) — but if I think back on what I grab first and use the most, this list covers 95% of them.
So there you go. Put everything in a sturdy case or soft-sided bag for safekeeping. For less than $100 or so, you can stuff this in a drawer or the back of a storage compartment and drag it out when something breaks. You’ll be a hero to yourself and your traveling companions!.

About smokeycamping

Well let's see have lived in NY for my whole life, have always loved the outdoors (as long as it is warm out) have always hated the cold, and like a dummy have stayed in NY. But now with my second try my wife, we have been camping now for well over 25 yrs. We currently own a 2010 Cedar creek silverback 35TS and can not wait to get out on the highways and see this great country we all call home. Hope to see every National park before my medical issue becomes too bad to travel. I love my African gray parrot (she is my baby) and have two dogs at the time brother and sister mutts, but love them all the same. Have always been a big Nascar fan, love computers (have a number of certificates to build and work on them) am trying to learn photography, enjoy light hiking, being with good friends and folks. country music, pop music and just being outdoors. So I hope someday to meet some of the great people who like what I like and post out there in some great campground somewhere in the country, till then I will keep posting and I hope you keep liking.

Posted on October 14, 2014, in The world as i see it as a camper and who loves his country and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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