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  #1  
Old 03-30-2010
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tool time

Im starting to get buried in tools--they are like rabbits. So now ive got to figure out the best way to store them all while keeping them handy. there is a bunch of wasted space under the cockpit lazerette, but that doesnt seem very handy. ive given consideration to sacrificing my quarter berth, but it is just too darn cozy. my latest notion is to convert 1/2 the vee berth into a workshop, but i like having that big huge bed.

anyway, enough rambling, how have you guys found is the best way to stow all this stuff? any creative concepts out there?

thanks
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Old 03-30-2010
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Buy a good toolbox, plastic not metal, and store it under a berth or seat. For larger tools like power tools get a large plastic container with lid that will fit under a berth. It's a good idea to have containers for small parts and bolts, nuts, and screws.
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Old 03-30-2010
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First, strip down your tool cache to the tools that you NEED. Chances are, 75% of the sockets and screwdrivers on your boat don't fit anything on your boat, they just came with the ratchet and/or screwdriver kit. Pitch 'em. They just take up room and add weight.

Next, make or buy some tool rolls for flat wrenches, allen keys, ball peen hammer, vice grips, etc. tool rolls are more practical storage than tool boxes because they take up less room and don't rust. If you want to get fancy, install some grommets in the top corners of your tool rolls and some hammock hooks in your engine bay and unroll your tool rolls and clip them up inside the engine bay. Makes use of otherwise lost space.
Or, make your tool rolls out of a nice looking material similar to your settee cushions, with a flap over the tools, then hang them from hammock hooks below the bottom cushion on your settee. looks nice, keeps the tools handy, makes use of otherwise dead space.

Power tools are best kept in a soft tool bag, with a few containers of silica gel to prevent corrosion. Or, use a hanging organizer like on of these...


...in the hanging locker- each tool (drill, grinder, sawzall, attachments) get their own "shelf".
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QuickMick View Post
Im starting to get buried in tools--they are like rabbits. So now ive got to figure out the best way to store them all while keeping them handy. there is a bunch of wasted space under the cockpit lazerette, but that doesnt seem very handy. ive given consideration to sacrificing my quarter berth, but it is just too darn cozy. my latest notion is to convert 1/2 the vee berth into a workshop, but i like having that big huge bed.

anyway, enough rambling, how have you guys found is the best way to stow all this stuff? any creative concepts out there?

thanks
QuickMick,

The method I've seen that I think would work best in your situation is buying something like army surplus backpacks made out of cloth, or other soft containers (not tool boxes), and putting your various tools in those. Then tie some line to each one and drop them down under your cockpit into the inky darkness until they hit bottom. Next, put some hooks within easy reach and tie a loop in each line then hang them on the hooks so that the lines don't fall down out of reach and are accessible to you. Then when you need a tool just reach for the correct line, pull the pack of tools back into the sunlight, and rejoice. Not my idea, but I use it!
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Next, make or buy some tool rolls for flat wrenches, allen keys, ball peen hammer, vice grips, etc. tool rolls are more practical storage than tool boxes because they take up less room and don't rust.
Tool rolls are great, I use them too.
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Old 03-30-2010
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thanks guys, you always have ideas i didnt even consider, and these are all great suggestions. i dont know if i can just toss a tool...um that didnt sound very good...anyway these are clever ideas i didnt even consider... i was busy stubbing my toe on the socket set... tnx again
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Old 03-30-2010
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Don't forget to spray the tools down with Boeshield T9 to help prevent them from corroding. I'd also recommend getting some of the ZeRust type plastic tool boxes, since they'll help preserve the tools too.
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Old 03-30-2010
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Here is what works for me:

Get two sets of screwdrivers and make sure you have a 1/4, 3/8, and 1/2 inch duplicate on your tools as I guarantee you that you will drop them in the water at times. I do not agree with using plastic cases as they are too big and bulky. I actually use a fabric duffle bag. I am not a fan of the roll-up bags because I need something that I can hoist up the mast with me as needed and you cannot do that with roll-ups. No need for a lot of power tools on the boat. Find tools that can be more than one thing. For example, I carry a good sabre saw because it can do most of anything - especially compared to a circular. I do not see a need for a circular as most can be done with teh saber. Make sure your saber can scroll as many areas on the boat are tight. The best saber I have found is made by Skill of all people!?? It has a laser sight, light on the blade, blower, and can scroll. It is actually one of the cheaper ones too. There is nothing wrong with the higher end saws but very few if any have scrolls.

Other items I use are both a power drill (110) and a cordless. The cordless is the most versatile, but there are times when you need more torque. I have both a Dewalt XRP 18v (relly too expensive for a boat) and a small Hitachi 18v. The Dewalt is by and far the better of the two drills, but you can buy several Hitachis for the price of the XRP - so go with something that will not ruin your day when it drops in the water. The chuck is not great on the Hitachi, just a warning. For a power drill, I actually use both a Milwaukee and a Dewalt - though the Dewalt is the better choice for the boat no more use than it gets.

Kobalt (I think is the name) makes a ratchting screw driver set with exchangeable heads. What is awesome about this equipment is that the handle and much of the compnents are aluminum so do not rust. THe bits do, but that seems all. Look into that.

Location for tools should always be as low as possible and in the center of the boat if you can. The bilge will put too much rust on them, but be concious of the locatio nas they are probably the heaviest thing you will put on your boat. If you plan to go offshore, also get a large set of bolt cutters for cutting rigging and cutting off locks that you have forgotten the combo too (hehe... no I would never do that). I also carry a breaker bar that fits over my 1/2 inch wrinch when needed. But you electrical stuff online from here or somewhere you can get good marine grade wire and connectors. West marine screws you over in the stors with a huge markup. Ther are other places to buy elec stuff too (I prefer Cobra wire for my wire and lugs and cabling) - but you can figure that out on your own.

Hope that helps. If you have any other questions, let me know. Good to have you here.

Brian
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Last edited by Cruisingdad; 03-30-2010 at 02:41 PM.
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Quote:
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If you plan to go offshore, also get a large set of bolt cutters for cutting rigging and cutting off locks that you have forgotten the combo too (hehe... no I would never do that).


Bolt cutters = Master key... lol
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Old 09-20-2010
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In the spirit of multi tools never forget about a 10 in 1 screwdriver. 2 sizes of flat and phillips, 2 sizes of torx, 2 square head, 1/4 and 5/16 nut drivers all in one compact easy to carry (or drop!!!!) tool. When I was living life as a general contractor the 10 in 1 and a pair of channel locks and a 10" crescent wrench could fix most tools fairly easily. Just my .02.
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