Another Tool Debate
Mar 27, 2016
Another debate about tools came up in the shop last week, this time regarding ratcheting box end wrenches. Those are wrenches like conventional open end/closed end hand wrenches that have ratcheting mechanisms on the closed ends.
Some mechanics like straight-handled ratcheting wrenches. Those wrenches are a little cheaper to buy because they don't have reversing mechanisms of their ratcheting heads. To reverse the direction of ratcheting, the user flips the wrench over.
I prefer ratcheting wrenches that have offset handles. The few degrees of offset provide clearance for my knuckles when I'm ratcheting near an obstacle or flat surface. I also like being able to reverse the direction of ratcheting by flipping a lever without removing the wrench from the bolt or nut I'm working on. And--I admit that I dislike spending the money to have two styles of ratcheting wrenches that are very similar in my toolbox.
My aversion to redundancy has limits. I admit that on my service truck I have multiple versions of regular hand wrenches in common sizes like 13mm, 15mm, 18 mm and 24mm, as well as 1.2-, 9/16- and 3/4-inch. I have an almost compulsive concern for not having one of those common wrenches when I'm on a service call. It bothers me not to have something when I need it.
For that reason, I always carry a house key and a key for my personal pickup truck on separate key rings in separate pockets of my jeans. My wife thinks I'm weird, but I've never been locked out of my house or truck.
She reminds me that the "weird" part of her opinion of me has nothing to do with my carrying extra keys.