At some point every mechanic, will need a custom tool. Whether you are a master technician or an automotive DIYer the perfect tool does not always exist. So we have to either make a tool, or modify an existing tool to fix our car repair needs. For more check out the blog at ~ http://humblemechanic.com/?p=6060
Join me today as we discus:
~Why anyone may need a modified tool
~Custom Power Probe tip
~Custom VW AirBag tool
~Custom VW wiring repair tools
~Locking extension modifications
~Making custom jumper wires
~Buy bulk alligator clips ~ http://amzn.to/20DrwQp
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Had to make a spanner socket to remove the clutch on my motorcycle, made another spanner with a 2x4 to remove a belt pulley on a Kia with a breaker bar after my impact died at the wrong time, and I believe I had to make yet another spanner for something similar for Bronco a long time ago, made a special carburetor adjustment tool for my motorcycle and used a couple water bottles and some tubing to make a carb balancer, made a bunch of custom test leads for multimeter, custom jumper wires, pin removers for electrical connectors
The Ford timing tools. What a stupid thing they did. I worked at a ford dealer for a bit. The compression bolt they use for the crank doesn't always hold. So, you end up resetting the timing 2 or three times. Once had to replace the crank(under warranty) after 3 crank bolta that didnt hold.
Ive done jumper cables out of old locking pliers and welding wire. I made radio removal tool from a scrap chunk of aluminum, and I did a home made soldering iron by holding a nail in locking pliers and heating the tip up with a blow torch. once the nail was hot. I was able to do what I needed do with it
I dropped a relay on my fiancé’s car and it went in a tight place in the engine bay and didn’t have any magnets or anything so I tapped a piece of wire coat hanger on a pair of needle nose pliers on each side and ended up gettin the relay back out good cheap easy extension to your pliers
I'll mod a tool almost ever chance I get cause my custom tools work the way I want and far more cheaper. I came to see the tools humble mechanic made. Seems like a dealer mechanic a VW. I have all ways been an aftermarket tech and have made tons of custom stuff cause that rap van.... tool truck is significantly more for a tool I will use a few times ever then just making a few from harbor freight or something.
custom handles for a head. find a bolt that will screw into any threaded hole in a head, weld it so it makes a T shape with another bolt, and you can use it for picking up and carrying heads a lot easier.
Have one more to add to the reasons why list: sometimes a tool isn't needed until later.
On Audi C3 and Mercedes W123 280 that have K-Jetronic, the original injectors are steel. Had one snap off, so bought a German wrench that is the kind with a really thin (might be stamped) and bent the end to 90*. This allowed it to sneak in behind the fuel lines and hold the injector while getting the flare fitting off (which the injector can be corroded to the steel line). Now when installing use it too as find makes that easier.
Also have whacked the end off the handle of a stubby screwdriver so could access the steering box adjuster on a Volkswagen Squareback. Am sure others, but think those two are enough and add to the list.
My Kawasaki KLR 650 requires a special socket for the spark plug. It's an 18mm but needs a thin walled socket to clear the valve cover. A $3 Harbor Freight socket and 10min with the bench grinder, I had the required tool!
I needed some window holder suction cups to do window regulator work. Instead of buying them off the tool truck, I made them for a few bucks from hardware store parts. Not only do they hold windows up, but they keep doors with worn out detents from hitting things.
I was working on trans for a friend and it needed a 1/2in allen so I took a bolt and welded a chunk of flat stock to the end and made a wrench I gave it to him and he keeps it in his glove box. working in a weld shop I needed a 7/16 socket but the 3/8 rachet was missing so I welded the 7/16 to a worn out 7/8 socket with 1/2in drive and used the 2ft breaker bar we had in the shop to remove a bolt on the band saw to replace a roller for the blade guide. still have that socket some place
On a 2010 chevy silverado dually, we were doing a rear brake job and the caliper slide pin was a 10 hex. The leaf springs were to close to the bolt and the 10 i had was to long. Had to shorten the hex and grind off the mushroom on the head of the hex. Worked wonders
A buddy of mine wanted me to do a "quick" valve adjust on his b18 a while back and I didn't realize that the rockers were about an inch deep in the head. After a few minutes of fenagling with wrenches and sockets and whatnot, I just took an old Stanley 20mm box wrench and made 2 100° bends in it to reach down to allow me to throw a screwdriver on the rocker tip while holding the lock nut in place. That was 4 years ago and my box(es) have moved a few locations between houses and schools and shops and that little bent wrench is still in there
The most engineering I have done was to make a tool to disconnect the stall converter bolts on a astro van with a completely seized engine, I had to weld the head of a open end wrench onto some curved metal that I cut in order to remove all of the bolts, it took a long time.
I had a old 1/2” ratchet that locked up so I never used it well I thought of an idea witch was slipping the handle of the ratchet into a long piece of 1” steel tubing and I welded them together and now I have a breaker bar
I like to wrap a little electrical tape around my 1/4" u joint sockets because they move around too much when your trying to get them on the head of a bolt in a confined place. Works great, costs next to nothing.
Many moons ago I made a very ugly but functional screw device to open the spring clips that held the toilet boll exhaust together on a MK2 golf. I really hated the German who though that was a good way to hold something together. But honestly after I took apart one that used bolts. The clip thing is a thousand times easier to use if you have a tool.
Just getting started in tool make/modding. I have a 22mm socket with the end ground flat for better grip on thin-head diff drain plugs. My favorite is a thinned down 10mm box end combined with thin wood wedges (to prevent the wrench slipping off once in place) I used to break loose some stuck and awkward fan clutch nuts.
Hey Charles, I'm a tech school grad and I got laid off from my tech job about two years ago. Some of my favorite modified/ home made tools are my back probes made from the pins in a junked Ford ABS module. I also take the magnets out of any bad permanent magnet motors. I really enjoy your videos.
Chazza! May I call you Chazza? This video reminds me of being a poor student, a friend of mine coined the term "make a tool to make a tool to make the fix"
You know the saying, "time is money" Well when you've got no money to spend, you can always spend time!
Great video Charles 😀
All those screwdrivers with filled down tips so they fit just right into a specific set of screws used in the car without damaging the grooves, plus countless other repurposed tools hacked up with a hacksaw from a time before I owned the right tool(who'd have though a bearing puller was also good for popping tie-rod ends out of their taper?)
My brother had built a simple tool for pressing out Ram sealed hubs on the 4x4's. Just a shallow metric socket, that fit over the hub bolts, and welded a 4" chunk of cold rolled steel to it. Back off the retaining bolts a couple of turns. With the front end jacked up in the air, start your motor and turn the steering back and forth. The cold stock presses against the frame and the socket pushes against the hubs retaining bolt. When I went to do my sisters '99, we couldn't find my brothers tool. I just used a shallow socket, and a short extension.
I was helping a buddy change out a crank pulley on his S2000. There was a special tool that was required to remove it, but we didn't have it of course. The pulley had a hex pattern recessed into it. I went to the plumbing section in lowes and found a steel elbow with the exact size hex pattern, screwed it onto a length of steel pipe. Worked like a charm.
back when i worked with volvo trucks everyone would have a ground down regular 21mm wrench. ground down those 21mm on the open end because you needed them for almost every air fitting where just a standard wrench would be to thick to fit. also had a complete drawer of just different wrenches with all possible twists and turns on them to reach those stupidly placed bolts and nuts.
working for Volvo Trucks I can confirm this, i got a set of teng-tools spanners when i started my apprenticeship that fit perfectly onto air fittings, and i have the drawer of bent spanners to get onto things, i know the guys who design them have never turned a wrench in their lives!
By the way love the gorgeous car in your picture ;)
03 and newer Ford trucks have a sort of spring loaded ratcheting mechanism for a lock nut at the hub. There's a special tool for it, but all I normally do is use two punches to push in the spring lock, and get a screwdriver between them to give it a twist. Got one that was too tight for me to do this way, so I got a wooden block and drilled a couple shallow holes in it to help put more pressure on the spring and just have an all around sturdier set up. Not sure if that counts but I was proud of myself for it. Only a year or so experience when I first did it haha.
Welded the pin wrench my angle grinder came with to a wrench that fit the wire wheels I use, then bent it in the middle so it cleared the shroud. Totally worth it. Also built a slide hammer from a piece of printer rod, some rebar and scrap for the weight, and a lug nut for the end stop, and welded that to some vise grips.
koviack - Putting an O ring on a wobble socket extension's male end so that the socket doesn't wobble as much. (good idea, by the way) Putting tape on a loose universal joint works the same way. A wobble extension has a tapered male end, so the socket can tilt while you're turning it. Pretty much the same effect as a swivel socket or a socket on a universal joint. https://www.harborfreight.com/9-pc-wobble-socket-extension-set-67971.html Here's the set that I bought just to try out some wobble extensions. Not usually a Harbor Freight guy when it comes to that kind of stuff, but I'm happy with them.
One of best tools I've made was out of desperation. I was doing a clutch on a t660 kens worth and the adjuster was rusted. Even with factory tools and some torch it didn't budge. I had to grab my 3 ft pry bar, torch and bend it 45 to the left and downward and boom. Busted the rust and adjusted the fucker. Haven't used it since but keeping it around till next time
I made a extra long extension for my test light to run from my negative battery cable and go wherever Area I need to work. Works great with rusty vehicles that don't have a lot of areas where there is a lot of clean metal for a ground.
A quick one I made for VW and Citroen/Peugeot strut assemblies. Is a wedge tool to expand the strut to allow it to release from the steering knuckle. Just modify an old 1/4" hex bit. Works a treat and saves spending money
I modify tools all the time. I needed a 29mm socket once but the closest thing I had was a 34 so I tacked two pieces of 1/4" rod inside of the socket to make it the size I needed. I've also bent and notched a screwdriver specifically to be able to put the springs on the parking brake shoes on my jeep.
i found out the hard way that the 1.8 turbo engine in my 02 gti has a special torx type driver to take out the head bolts to replace the the head gasket and jim elliss vw wont even sell that sucker to you they sell the gasket but not the tool friggin jackhats thank the lord for snapon
Toyota's use a cartridge oil filter. the caps need a special cup style socket . I bought one and then they turned the filter and cap side ways . that 40 $ tool won't work on them when the are sideways. I thinned the sidewalls way down and it works now
Chevy hd gas engines can't remember if it's a 6.7 or 7.0 litre but the oil filter adaptor had pugs covering the bolts to remove it but it was square drive between 1/4 and 3/8 so I ground down a old extension till it fit only used it once but I still have it
My favorite thing is pretty simple, I usually wrap up any swivels I have with electrical tape. Gives them just enough flex but keeps them from flopping around all over the place when I don't want them too.
my pocket screwdriver is always parked in my front shirt pocket with a good pen... outta all my tools the get used the most!!! conveniently my snap on dealer knows I'm always in need of these mini multi tools ... those lovely screw drivers lol and always drops a few on me every so often... come to think of it a rep whom is more of a friend then a salesman is invaluable asset to our carrers
Can't begin I tell I how many custom tools I've made. One notable one was a socket for Honda crank bolts. Anyone who knows well tell you how hard it is to get them out. They're tight. I dropped a 19mm deep impact socket inside a larger impact socket, maybe a 30mm, I forget exactly, then welded the two together. The added mass rips those crank bolts right out no problem. After a thousand crank bolts the modified socket has been 100% successful.
So many guys can't think outside the box in this business, or any business for that matter. But especially in the automotive industry you've got to be able to adapt.
+HumbleMechanic wide open throttle. If the two voltages are nearly the same the monitor completes and registers as passed. If the map sensor voltage is significantly lower than the BARO sensor voltage the monitor completes and a DTC sets. Now, being that I try to think outside the box, I know that there is another reason the map sensor voltage would indicate high vacuum during wide open throttle... A restricted intake upstream of the throttle plate. Upon inspection of the intake duct I found it completely packed full of insulation from a rodent. This creates the restriction that a closed throttle plate would have and confuse the monitor. I'm sure plenty of techs have replaced computers because of this DTC only to end up finding a restriction n the intake. Point being, outside thinking needs to happen all the time including when using troubleshooting steps provided by the manufacturer.
+HumbleMechanic On the subject of thinking outside the box, it doesn't just apply to making tools. A few days ago I had a Honda accord come in with a P0069 barometric pressure sensor range/performance problem. The troubleshooting steps from the manufacturer are as follows; Replace the PCM. Being that the BARO sensor is located inside the pcm with no external wiring or sensors it makes sense to replace the pcm. Honda has what's called "advanced diagnostic". This is a separate link that comes up along with the traditional troubleshooting link when you enter the DTC into the computer for information. The advanced diagnostic link provides information regarding enable criteria for the monitor to execute as well as the fail criteria to set the DTC and exactly how the vehicle computer determines there is a fault. The way the vehicle determines there is a failure of the BARO sensor is by comparing the BARO sensor voltage to the manifold absolute pressure sensor voltage during
+NothingSpecial "So many guys can't think outside the box in this business, or any business for that matter. But especially in the automotive industry you've got to be able to adapt."
I see this on the daily. FREAKING NAILED IT!!!
i was swapping out an air strut from a 2009 mercedes benz S550 and i needed a 10mm socket with the channel like the one you made in order to get the air fitting off.. so i improvised and made one by cutting a channel into a cheap 10mm socket lol
I've made a few custom tools but probably the one I use most is a modified Gorilla locking lug spline tool. I got tired of pulling out the spline key and then looking for the correct size socket to use with it. Instead, I welded it directly onto the correct size socket. No more looking for the matching socket, which would always get separated, used for some other job, returned to the toolbox separate from the key, etc.
Another one is to tape or weld the spark plug socket onto a suitable length extension. No more fishing down in the spark plug tube for the socket that fell off the end of the extension.
I didn't have the right pick to replace the ignition switch. Since it has a locking pin to preventing from coming out. Got a wire clothes hanger cut the straight piece off and made long enough with a bend to have leverage to release the locking pin.
Once made an injector puller from a piece of hollowed out stub pin a length of round bar and welded the nut from the piping to the top =) also recently made a 14mm 'o2 sensor" socket like yours! Awesome time saver buddy!!! great video=)
i was replacing vavle cover gaskets on a 2003 Audi A4 Convertible with the 3.0 V6 and could'nt remove the bolt at the very back of the vavle cover on the driver side,the brake lines are in the way and there is just no clerance to get there with a ratchet and a torx socket. so i took a 1/4 wrench and weld a torx bit on the close end still have it tho but i never work on VW/Audi now
i like making taps out of old bolts. Mostly axle bolts for newer vws. its easy with a grinder wheel. just taper the end and cut 3 or 4 notches to let it have some space to cut. then just file down the edges till they are nice and sharp and clean up the threads around where you tapered it and it cuts threads just as good as your hardened steel taps you get from snapon. I actually ended up trading my whole tap and die set for a stream light stinger after i found how easy it was to make my own.
Just yesterday i made a special bmw 12 point spark plug socket from a cheap socket ground to be thin walled. Even glued a small piece of hose into the end to grab the spark plug and secure it into the socket! Love making tools! They always work better and are cheaper than buying a £45 socket off the snap on guy.
Welded 4" long chunk of cold rolled steel to a shallow socket in order to press out the sealed front bearing on my 99 Dodge 1500 4x4. In hind sight I should of used an extension, and not make a one use tool. works great. Back off the retaining bolts. Turn the steering wheel left and right, let the tool but up to the frame, and slowly press out the unit bearing. Don't get greedy and jam up the bearing assembly
"Tool" #1 In the place of an inadequate, limited reach bench grinder- I put my variable speed drill in a vise. Wire brushes and grind/cut wheels have a longer reach, you have great control and access to the work. "Tool" #2 is I made a small wooden box, installed a 110v extension cord, dimmer switch, and receptacle. Now I have a "variable power supply" that I can plug that vised drill into, and turn down if needed. I made it before I got a variable speed drill, but even with that- just lock the trigger and use the dimmer if need to.