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Author Topic: Mechanic's Hand Tool Help, Please.
Ken I.
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Region: Atlanta
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My nephew is 15 and wants to start taking things apart and working on motors & cars. I've been to Sears and bought a tool box and filled it with wrenches, rachets, sockets and screw drivers, etc. to get him started.

> Can anyone suggest a good book on basic hand tool use?

> How about a helpful web site?

There are hundreds of books on wood working (I've got a shelf full) but damned few on hand tool basics most of us learned by trial & error. His Dad is a nice guy, but is "tool-challenged".

I'd appreciate and suggestions!

Ken Irwin
Atlanta, GA

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Experience. Can he help you when you're wrenching on your racecar? Is there a shop class at his school? Part-time job at a local garage? Sometimes I still need to read up on how to take something apart but until I actually get in there and do it, I really have no clue as to what's really involved (eg: Miata transmission re-installation).

--------------------
-Cy
Supported by LTD Racing & Speed Shack - New England's Premier Auto Accessory Store
Rt1 AutoMile - Norwood, MA
http://www.speedshackonline.com

Steve D. Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
Once you get past the gag reflex, the jelly ain't bad!

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Ken -

I can't really point him in the right direction for a good mentor (I learned everything I know from Fowler and his guys [duck] ) but if the kid wants a complete BMW straight six M20 motor (blown HG) to play with, I have one free for the taking.

I am in Atlanta too.

Glenn Verified Driver
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quote:
I learned everything I know from Fowler and his guys
Thanks Steve I learned my racecraft skills from you [Eek!] [Big Grin]

Really, have him go to the track on race weekends, my 16 yo nephew did not know a screwdriver from a hammer before this summer. Now he can pull a motor and strip a car.

--------------------
Glenn
Crew chief Meathead Racing, NE Region Sales Division Race Engineering, The GOLD standard in SM engines, Occasional race slave for OPM Autosports

FastM3 Verified Driver
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Send him up to my place over his winter break. I will put him to work. Bicycles, Miata suspension and body work. Making radio wire harnesses. Finding ways to lighten the car.
Installing a water heater. Changing oxygen sensors on a BMW. Cleaning out mouse traps. Shoveling snow. Moving gravel. Rustproofing the van. Scraping and repainting the trailer. Changing electric brakes and wheel bearings on the trailer. Cleaning Miata front hubs and changing to redline grease. Diagnosing a clunky sound on the other BMW. Rebuilding the lawnmower engine.

And if all that is not enough there is a 66 Lotus Elan that needs a synchro replacement, valve shim replacement, head installation, main bearing inspection, engine installation, mouse removal.

I might have some other projects as well. Start by getting him a junker bicyle and have him rebuild it.


If I have all these projects and learning experiences you must be able to fiugure a few out on your own.

Good Luck

--------------------
Phil
Silver 38 SM/ITA

Kyle Burkhardt
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Never read a book--learned it all from my grandfather doing small engine repair and working on our hillbilly go-karts. To this day, I still think to myself "that's not how my grandfather taught me" when I'm doing something dumb like using the wrong tool for the job or working with a tool in such a way that I am a hair away from it slipping and slicing open my hand.

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Kyle Burkhardt
NASA Midwest
#12 SM

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Hey Phil, maybe he's knows plumbing??

--------------------
Jerry

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quote:
Originally posted by Steve D.:
(I learned everything I know from Fowler and his guys [duck] )

That includes lessons on reading roman numerals from the peanut butter label.

--------------------
All this has happened before, and will happen again

soupy
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I don't know of any basic tool USE guides. Most of use have learned by watching others or try it ourselves. But here is a good start:
A screw driver is not a pry bar, a chisel or a wedge. Never hit a hammer with another hammer. And your hand is NOT a hammer either.
Are those the kind of tool use things you are looking for?

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Charlie Campbell
Race Engineering
carbotech brakes

Glenn Verified Driver
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Charlie, Red Green says "any tool can be the right tool" LOL, That hand is not a hammer one is a tough lesson........

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Glenn
Crew chief Meathead Racing, NE Region Sales Division Race Engineering, The GOLD standard in SM engines, Occasional race slave for OPM Autosports

TR6
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It's not a text book but here's one good source. Go to the 'general tool discussion' sub forum.
http://www.garagejournal.com/forum/

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Greg H.
2002 red Miata #500
Denton, Texas

benauto
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Phil, I will fix your Miata. As far as rustproof on the van, call me for secrets. It could cost you 15 cookies.

Ken, send your nephew to Phils. Im not sure what Phil will pay, But his wife makes the best cookies.!! Anyway it would be fun to watch him take apart Phils car.

--------------------
LTD Racing- Stuntman
"Blue Plate Specials"

Mike Ferrara
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When I went to work at a race shop as a kid...well I started by sweeping the machine shop...gotta learn how to clean up the mess before you can make it. Then I was taught...the hardest...most time consuming way to do something is probably the correct way....(someone will be driving this at 100mph+) and there should...never never never...be any parts left over when you reassemble something...like a carb!

Joe Specht
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When I was a kid I would take stuff apart and seperated it for scrap. It gave me spending money and kept me busy. I took old motors and pulled the copper, an old cash register for brass (it would probably be worth a lot more now as an antique) and a commercial mixer that my grandfather put where my stuff was (oops). I learned how to use tools and figure out how things came apart. Later I had to learn how to put them back together. OJT is still the best teacher.
Joe

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There has to be some kind of book, and it would be beneficial for a lot of people to read it. I'm no expert but I cringe every time I watch a car repair show on Speed Channel. Those things are rife with misuses of tools and bad practices. My biggest pet peeve is seeing a chrome hand socket being used on an impact wrench. A close second is when the bolt side of a bolt-nut setup is loosened instead of the nut side.

--------------------
Rob Gibson
RJ Racing
2010 NASA Nationals TTE Champion
2008/2009 WERC Champion
2007 NASA SoCal SM Champion
rjracing.net
Weekend-Racer.com

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Ken

I used the Reader's Digest Home Repair book 30 years ago. There are also the Time life series on Plumbing, etc.
http://www.alibris.com/search/books/qwork/463748...20Do-It-Yourself%20Manual

Here is a good one courtesy of the US Navy
http://www.alibris.com/booksearch?qwork=6736174&...cm_sp=works*listing*title

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Paul McLester

dkizerian Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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Youtube!

http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=A+Guide+to+Basic+Hand+Tools+%3A&aq=f

There are 1130 videos under
"A Guide to Basic Hand Tools :"


I have a co-worker that actually learned to change a waterpump and timing belt on his accord from youtube, and just had me swing by to double check his work before he started the car...

He had never done anything more than change a tire prior to that..

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Dave Kizerian
Utah Region SCCA
Road Race Director

fishguyaz
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dave,
it worked for me also to search google videos.
i needed to repair some fiberglass on my formula ford, and i did the search "working with fiberglass" and i found what i needed.
my repair came out professional looking(to my surprise).

--------------------
Josh Pitt
AZ Region

David Dewhurst
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Ken, he'll learn to use the tools as he does projects. IMHJ the best thing anyone can do for this learning young man is to answer his questions in a manner that HE will totally understand what he is told. Even if you dumb down the answers beyond what you think nessary, he needs to totally understand. Ask him to respond back to you as to what he heard you say. It could also be a learning experience for you. I have two sons well beond 15 years old. One was mechanically inclined from his day of birth & his brother let's just say it took a little longer. But he got there & does very well today.

--------------------
Have Fun [Wink]

David Dewhurst
CenDiv
Milwaukee Region
Spec Miata #14

TillerTech
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Busted knuckles and experience are the great teachers. The amount of blood spilled will be directly proportional to the intellegence quotient.

John

--------------------
Miata Race glass and CF from Legacy Molds. 4 1/2# CF Hood
http://www.jnent.net

Keith in WA Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by David Dewhurst:
IMHJ the best thing anyone can do for this learning young man is to answer his questions in a manner that HE will totally understand what he is told. Even if you dumb down the answers beyond what you think nessary, he needs to totally understand. Ask him to respond back to you as to what he heard you say. It could also be a learning experience for you.

+1

Equally true for adults but adults are worse. Kids will usually ask questions. Adults often worry about looking stupid, nod their heads like they understand, and walk away clueless. Just like if you ask many people a question, they'll try to muddle through some sort of answer instead of saying "I don't know" which is the honest answer.

Many things have seemed perfectly clear in my own head, until I tried to get them out of my mouth in a way other people would understand. It's amazing how much teaching or explaining things to other people in a way that THEY understand teaches you.

--------------------
Keith Novak
(Will work for tires)

Ken I.
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Hi guys, thanks for all the ideas and suggestions.

Phil - I doubt his Mom would let him go. I can give you a mailing address for cookies if needed.
Kyle - hillbilly go-kart, that's what started this whole thing. He wants to make a go-kart, I have a couple of old push mowers.
Soupy - I think there's a list of basic quotes like yours, I need to locate it.
Dave - YouTube is a fine idea.

Steve D. - I'll ask him about the motor, it is a good starter project.

**I assume I will get the rolled eyes and crossed arms from his Mom. That started long ago when I put a blue tarp in the back of their Dad's crapped-out pickup and turned it into a pool just before dinner.

I'm having lunch with the yout & his Dad tomorrow to deliver the mowers & toolbox. I'll report back on his reactions.


Ken (from Atlanta)

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I was the 8-year-old kid who had a subscription to Road & Track and devoured it like mad. My love of cars was never really nurtured by my parents because neither of them were really car nuts and I didn't have an uncle like you are. I eventually became less interested, went to college, then law school, and then when I was 30 got back into cars and racing. I sometimes wonder what path I would have taken if I had an uncle who shared my passion and wanted to nurture it. I can only hope that my parents wouldn't roll their eyes at the opportunity to do something I love. So I hope you're wrong about his mom's reaction.

--------------------
Rob Gibson
RJ Racing
2010 NASA Nationals TTE Champion
2008/2009 WERC Champion
2007 NASA SoCal SM Champion
rjracing.net
Weekend-Racer.com

Ken I.
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Rob,

I actually get along just fine with his Mom. I think the eye roll reaction is sort of an act so the boys won't think she is a push-over. I stayed at their house a few weekends ago so the parents could have a weekend away. I took the boys to see the new Jackass3D movie & she was ok.

I was like you Rob, no car nuts in the family. I'm happy to spend time with him. He has a couple of car nut neighbors who can help nurture his inner mechanic too.

If he is interested, I'll take him to the track next year. Perhaps Mr. Pink, Pepe or Tom F. can put him to work.

ki

Ron Alan Made Donation to Website
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quote:
Originally posted by Ken I.:
.

**I assume I will get the rolled eyes and crossed arms from his Mom. That started long ago when I put a blue tarp in the back of their Dad's crapped-out pickup and turned it into a pool just before dinner.

I took the boys to see the new Jackass3D movie & she was ok.


The kind of uncle every boy should have [thumbsup] "I'm all jacked up on Mountain Dew Chip" [rolling on floor laughin] [rolling on floor laughin]

--------------------
-RA


"Happy birthday, I didn't get you a present...Oh, mom got you one? Well, that's from me then too, unless it's shitty."
9:52 AM Sep 14th, 2009 via web
http://twitter.com/shitmydadsays

MazdaSteve Verified Driver
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If he is that passionate he would be out there tearing everything he could apart and trying to put it back together...

There is no book to tell you what extension to use, drop the trans so you can access bolts, how tight is "snug'.

A mentor and bleeding knuckles are the BEST teacher the kid can have.

Been there, done that.

--------------------
Seneca Motorsports
Sponsored by Race Engineering
"American by birth, CONSERVATIVE by the grace of GOD"!

Glenn Verified Driver
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quote:
A mentor and bleeding knuckles are the BEST teacher the kid can have.

Been there, done that.


Not a race weekend goes by where I don't get cut, bruised or bleed. LOVE this hobby! [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

--------------------
Glenn
Crew chief Meathead Racing, NE Region Sales Division Race Engineering, The GOLD standard in SM engines, Occasional race slave for OPM Autosports

wheel Verified Driver Made Donation to Website
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If my shop ever becomes a crime scene, the techs with the luminal, will freak out when they turn on the black light.

David Dewhurst
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quote:
Originally posted by wheel:
If my shop ever becomes a crime scene, the techs with the luminal, will freak out when they turn on the black light.

[yep]

--------------------
Have Fun [Wink]

David Dewhurst
CenDiv
Milwaukee Region
Spec Miata #14

Ken I.
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Hi folks,

I tool the tools and old mowers over to my nephew yesterday & he was thrilled. I took some time and explained each type of tool. I explained about safety (eye protection for splinters & that inevitable shot of brake-kleen in the eye) and how to assemble and tighten bolts in a pattern. His neighbor is restoring a Z car so he will also put him to work.

Thanks for your help!

Ken

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Creighton and I will tell you, the best way to learn how to work on cars is to get something old and british :-). When you are a poor high school kid and its how you get to school and work you learn fast.

   

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