Mick's Tips - Tools - Wear and Tear

Few tools last forever - knowing when to replace them can prevent a lot of frustration. And save you money.

Get your head around the idea that most tools are consumables. By consumables I mean that they wear out. It's important for your safety and the long term preservation of the components on your bike that you learn to bin tools when they've reached the end of their working life. That means files, saw blades, screwdrivers, spanners (regular and adjustable) allen keys. It's false economy to continue using equipment which has passed its sell by date.

Blunt blades don't cut straight. Worn allen keys, screwdriver blades and bits mash the working edges of fasteners. Worn spanners turn the edges of your nuts and can leave you with bloody knuckles when they slip. Blunt cutters don't cut, they munch. Once you've come to accept that they have a finite life it becomes easy to throw them at the bin the very moment that they let you down.

And once in the bin don't go fishing it out - get your butt to the tool shop for a replacement.

And it goes without saying that buying cheap tools is false economy. Buy the best tool you can afford at every opportunity, you'll thank yourself every time you use it.