The plug-in kits contain different sizes to match the nuts and bolts for your repair work. However, not all kits are the same. Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing the right ratchet tool.
A good alloy
Alloys are a mixture of metal and other elements that are combined for a specific purpose. For example, steel is an alloy of iron and carbon, which of course has many applications, from cookware to hand tools. However, even steel alloys exist to take on different tasks. Chrome vanadium steel is often used in sockets. This alloy is known for its high strength and durability.
Impact a standard
Does your repair require the use of an impact wrench? If so, you will need to purchase sockets that are designed for impact applications. Impact sockets are designed to withstand the high torque generated by impact tools. This would seem reasonable, but many people use standard impact tool sockets. These sockets often fail, causing components to break off, which can endanger the user’s safety.
Metric and SAE units
Having the right socket size is very important. Some socket sets are only available in SAE (inch) dimensions, others in metric (millimeters). Some kits have both. Think about where the product was built because foreign products tend to use metric bolts and nuts, while U.S. products may have dimensions based on inches. An alternative is to purchase a metric and SAE kit to cover both.
The size of the drive of the selected set of sockets should depend on the type of work you are doing and the equipment you are going to work on. The ratchet and socket set will be the most versatile and suitable for most applications. If you are going to do a lot of work with small (¼” drive) or large components (½” or ¾” drive), you should purchase a set of sockets of drive size more suitable for this size of work. If you purchase a large set of sockets, it will probably come in more than one ratchet and socket size. This will allow you to work on a wide range of tasks.
Deep vs. Plate Well
One of the biggest advantages of the socket wrench set is that the screw head fits the sides of the ratchet. This helps users to get into tight spaces. However, the head plate of the socket head may not be able to get into certain spaces. Deep plunge sockets are designed for applications that require a longer slot for screws that are located deep inside. Think about how long your socket heads need to be in order to gain access to specific screw locations and select the socket sets accordingly.
Six or twelve points
You must understand that there are six and twelve sockets. The points refer to the total number of angles cut in the sockets. Your twelve points will work well in home projects and joint repairs. However, if you’re planning to work on motorcycles, mowers and vehicles, you probably want to have six-point nests. The reason why six-point nests work better in these situations is because they have thicker walls and can apply more torque. Most of today’s kits have six points, but twelve-point products have some advantages to offer. For example, twelve points give double the number of starting positions.
A case in point
The only other topic to discuss is the case in which the sockets are organized. Looking for a set to buy, you will find that they are available in different cases. Most of them are made of blown plastic. It is true that some cases are much stronger than others, and the level of durability you need in a particular case depends on where you will use it. You also get what you pay for. If you decide to spend more money on a high quality kit, it is very likely that you will automatically receive a very durable case. Please note that most large complex sets are not supplied in the case because of the weight of the set. For kits of this size, it is ideal to purchase a rolling metal case with drawers for your organization.