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Discussion Starter #1
Morning All,

Having had the vast majority of my tools stolen a couple of years ago, I'm planning to restock in order to do some of my own work on the car.

The reasons for this are two-fold.

I used to enjoy working on my cars, and enjoy in a crazy, obssessed way doing a job properly, taking my time and getting it spot on. I spent too much money with independents on my previous car, only to get work that wasn't up to spec. I got fed up complaining and felt sure that given time and tools, I could have done a better job myself.

Secondly, the information on this forum is brilliant and there is generally plenty of really good info on the net generally for BMW's. I'm sure with the excellent guidance, support and DIY articles, that I can do work properly, and save a few quid to boot.

So my question is, having had recommendations from friends and mechanic mates about the Halfords Professional range, and the fact that much of it is on offer at the moment, which would be the best kit to get? I'm liking the Professional stuff as even the case the tools comes in has a lifetime guarantee, let alone the tools.

I've looked at the 150-piece set and am thinking of adding the screwdriver set too. Would this cover the bolt sizes on the M5, or would I be OK to get one of the lesser piece sets, like the 120?

Link for the 150-piece set : Halfords | Halfords Advanced Professional 150 piece Socket/Ratchet Set £115.98 for the pair on offer.

Link for the 120-piece set : Halfords | Halfords Advanced Professional 120 piece Socket Set £105.98 for the pair.

Is it worth saving a tenner, would I be missing sizes I will never need on the E39?
 

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even if the sizes are or aren't covered between sets (haven't looked at the links), you'll find uses for the extra sizes elsewhere and wish you had bought the full set!

for the sake of a tenner when spending money on things like this, it's never worth scrimping IMO.

my toolset is absolutely invaluable to me and built up over a number of years - you'll always find applications which you do't have the correct tool for, be it on your car, the mrs car, the house etc etc
you can never have too many tools!
:D
 

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I have the 150 piece, if you wait long enough you will see it come up on offer for £99.99
I then also bought ratchet spanners and replaced the spanners in the tool-set with the ratchet ones.
The 150 piece has all the imperial sockets in which are pretty pointless, but it does have the screwdriver set (little red box in lower right of bottom tray) this is actually really good.
Another benefit is that you have all the tools in one box so its easier to keep tidy as they slot back into the correct place.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I thought after the original post that for the sake of a tenner, it was a silly question. I just had to read what I'd written to see that. As long as I won't be missing anything blatant, it looks like that will be the one. Seems daft not to get the set of screwdrivers too, which I assume will also have the lifetime guarantee :) Working in IT means I will often be able to use those.

I think the only required thing I will be missing is a torque wrench, any recommendations? There's two from the Professional range of different torque capabilities, will I need both ultimately?

I'm guessing my post on another thread got missed, where's the best place to get torque values for various bolts around the car?
 

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Agree with everything posted. I use a mixture of MAC, Facom, Snap-on and Halfords Professional (!) and the Halfords lose out only on the name. OK, their ratchets aren't quite as smooth or positive, but they're good tools and way better than those who turn their noses up at the brand would have you believe...

YG
 

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I have the Halfords tool set, think its the 120 piece, it was just over £100 about 5 years ago or maybe more. It has done nearly every car related work I have done, that's from basic maintenance to an engine swap on an e36. I have a Classic Mini so both sizes are very useful :)

Just something to be aware of, the 'Lifetime' warranty doesn't cover much, i broke the end of a racket and had to buy the replacement, not major just pointing it out, the warranty covers if the metal arm snaps basically.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Had a feeling I would need to buy two, still, once bought, I should have them forever, lifetime guarantee and all that.

I'm also looking for a reasonable inspection light, any recommendations?

Of course if anyone knows of any tools that are just needed on a regular basis when doing anything on E39, please mention, I'd rather do this in one go, if at all possible. Would hate to get half way through a job and find I'm missing a tool that I can't buy face-to-face locally. Ask me how I know... :( I'm sure it's happened to many, lol.

@ Mikey M5 : Your comments noted, I had been led to believe that most things were covered, but will bear that in mind :)
 

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if anyone knows of any tools that are just needed on a regular basis when doing anything on E39, please mention,
A hammer and Birmingham screwdriver ;)


Being serious, the tool I've used most on my M5 is INPA

If you want slicker feeling ratchets, I dismantled the heads on mine and put some copper grease in there. They are so smooth now, plus hopefully should last a bit longer.
 

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Just something to be aware of, the 'Lifetime' warranty doesn't cover much, i broke the end of a racket and had to buy the replacement, not major just pointing it out, the warranty covers if the metal arm snaps basically.
Ditto, stripped the gears out of a Halfords Professional 1/2" Derive Ratchet Handle as was told tha tthe ratchet mechanism isn't covered by the liftime warranty.

Good tools though, i have alot of them

Matt
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Apologies for resurrecting this thread, but I'm ordering tools in the next few days.

Having looked at the 150-piece toolset from Halfrauds, I'm not convinced I need all the items that come in there. I'm only going to be working on the M5. I've been looking at socket sets, and think one of those would suffice. What are the common sizes needed on the E39?

I'm looking at a 8-50NM torque wrench, and a socket set. Seems I need some extension bars etc. for various tasks. I really don't think I need 40 socket sizes.

Many thanks for any advice, I just want to concentrate on work that needs done and therefore the parts, and not waste money on tools I'll never use.
 

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I think you'll need a bigger torque wrench. For example, the wheel bolts are 88.5 ft/lb (120Nm).

Regarding sockets, most bolts/nuts I've found are between 8mm and 20mm, although I can't say I've done enough work to make that exactly a good guide! Several extension bars and universal joints are a must for some jobs.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Yeah, torque wrench, I take your point. Was going to get the smaller one first, I need to do thermostat, for example. A heftier one will come later.

Will check out socket sets in that range tomorrow. Cheers again.
 

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IMO sockets over 20 mm you would need at a starting point 21mm 22mm 24mm and a 32mm. That should be it really. Ideally the 32mm one should be of impact quality as this is what you will undo your driveshaft to hub bolts if needed.

Good quality allen sockets and a good torx set up to say T50 will do for most jobs. A long T60 if you plan on a flywheel change.

Other than that its a good idea to have at least 2 of each spanner size and ratchet spanners are worth their weight in gold.

As are offset spanners and stubby spanners. I bought a stubby set from ebay 8-19mm for about a tenner, and the offset ones you can get i kid you not from Aldi for a few quid. Likewise they do ratchet spanners in the most useful sizes every now and then, being 8 10 13 14 17 mm. You can then get a 19mm ratchet spanner, or Halfords are doing their full sets at half price at the moment for about £40.

Thats only a quick quick overview of basics. Obviously you can then upgrade to the nicer stuff as and when you need them but IMO its always nice to have some cheaper stuff you can swing off and not be overly fussed if you hammer rash them

I literally had a few mins there. If i think of moe stuff as a starter for 10 i'll add on
 

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Discussion Starter #16
That's really great stuff, Jamie, exactly the sort of thing I was after.
 
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