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Old 03-12-2013, 16:57   #1
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Where and How to Keep your Tools/Hardware?

I have a european designed boat that was manufactured in the US with a nightmarish degree of metric and imperial parts (US built beneteau). The amount of tools I have to carry on board are getting ridiculous but I need the confidence to know that if something goes wrong at least I won't say "I wish I had taken that from the garage". I have categorized things into the following:

Screw drivers (open mouth bag divided in two for phillips and flat)
Sockets (metric and sae)
Socket handles (extensions, adapters, articulated joints, torque wrench, bar)
Wrenches and vise grips (pliers)
Hammers and mullets
Electrical (cables, fuses, wire strippers, electrical tape, butane solder)
Abrasive (files, sandpaper, saws, wire brushes)
Sticky (tapes, glues, tie wraps, sealents)
Epoxy and fiberglass repair (resin, cloth, syringe, mixing cup)
Rechargeable drill and screwdriver (bits and extensions)
Compartment bin with various nuts, bolts, screws
Compartment bin with various hose clamps
Compartment bin with boat hardware (blocks, rings, hooks, slides etc.)
Splicing, rope and sewing tools
A cabinet full of cans (WD-40, sailcote, penetrant, grease, lithium)


I currently have these divided into multiple fabric tool bags, all over the boat. Not too sure if the tool bag method is good and I am looking for other options. I wish I had space for a dedicated workbench with a tool and hardware organizer but I do not.

How does everyone else carry their tools/hardware on the boat?
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Old 03-12-2013, 17:47   #2
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I currently use the plastic divided tackle trays with lids for all my hardware and small like tools. They stack on edge under the settee seats with the label on the spline edge. All nuts in one. Bolts in one electrical parts, etc. you get the idea. I get about 15 under one seat. If I need just screws I pull that tray. Different sizes in each divided area I even put my dremel set in one. Easy to find what you need and when you are low you can tell at a glance.
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Old 03-12-2013, 17:48   #3
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I currently use the plastic divided tackle trays with lids for all my hardware and small like tools. They stack on edge under the settee seats with the label on the spline edge. All nuts in one. Bolts in one electrical parts, etc. you get the idea. I get about 15 under one seat. If I need just screws I pull that tray. Different sizes in each divided area I even put my dremel set in one. Easy to find what you need and when you are low you can tell at a glance.

Sorry forgot picture.

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Old 03-12-2013, 17:59   #4
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?



I mounted some tool boxes in a cabinet that used to have DVD player etc, The boxes are designed for a vehicle, so have latches to keep them closed when heeling.
Very convenient, since I seem to need tools a lot.

Chuck
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:06   #5
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

Not unusual. You need metric and everything else. Anybody remember GM's X cars (circa late 70's maybe early 80"s?) I have a bag of screwdrivers, a bag of wrenches including metric allen wrenches, and a bag of everything else and then metric and imperial socket sets.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:22   #6
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

I think most boats require an assortment of metric and english tools and fasteners, since engines tend to be metric and most, if not all, other hardware English. I like the Plano shallow dry storage boxes. I have one for spare engine parts, one for engine tools, and two others for miscellaneous other tools. For fasteners I like the divided plastic boxes, and for electrical stuff I like lock-n-lock food containers. I have a small boat and I find it easier to find nooks and crannies to store smaller containers than larger boxes.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:35   #7
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Lol. That one reason to have a large boat. It offsets the whining about all that teak to sand and varnish. I would bet I have 50 Plano type boxes. Makes easy ballast to trim the boat.
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Old 03-12-2013, 18:35   #8
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

you need both types of allen wrenches
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Old 03-12-2013, 19:08   #9
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

I use the fabric tool bags for my tools. One for wrenches, one for electrical, one for misc, and one that I call my "useful tools" bag. Tools I use regularly tend to migrate to the "useful" bag. And then there is the "useless tools" bag. I'm not sure why I carry that, but you never know...

Nuts, bolts, connectors, siezing wire, ty-wraps, adhesives, etc, end up in plastic boxes, with the small boxes stored in yet another fabric tool bag. I actually have a bag for my rolls of duct-tape, but that's obviously silly, since it takes me a couple of years to go through one roll. But again, you never know...

It's not like I have a great system, but I usually know where to find what I'm looking for.
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Old 03-12-2013, 19:54   #10
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

For wrenches, sockets, screwdrivers, and bits I bought this (admittedly less than top quality) kit in a hard plastic organizer case. Nice because it has Metric, SAE, and various driver bits. Admit I also have a "junk drawer" of close at hand tools and parts under the bottom companionway step. Power tools are in a canvas tool bag.

Spare parts (electrical, engine) are in see-through locking top plastic tubs under the saloon settee. Under the vberth: port are Bulky plumbing/hoses, starboard are wood and misc.
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Old 03-12-2013, 22:33   #11
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

My ready use tools and parts I keep in tool boxes, stored in compartments just above the amidships sole. Tools that won't fit anywhere else go with them.

Larger steel ones hold the heavy tools and plastic ones hold the lighter ones. Got then at the local megahardware store.

Larger electrical tools live under one side of the settee, useful bits of wood under the other side and stray bits of pipe live in the middle.

Ready use "fluids" live in a compartment under one end of the settee.

"Large" hand tools live under the galley sink.

I didn't see epoxy putty/resin on your list.
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Old 04-12-2013, 01:47   #12
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

This is a great tool kit for a boat, you can get them at Costco. Or >>> Crescent 170PC Professional Mechanics Tool Set - Tools - Tool Sets - Mechanics Tool Sets.
Got this link from Delmarrey. Bought a set and they are terrific.
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Metric and imperial.
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Old 04-12-2013, 02:50   #13
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

I find a set of ratchet spanners ( wrenches) to be very useful. I like Teng Tools the best , indestructible. ( Ive taken of wheel nuts with a 3/8 socket set!)

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Old 04-12-2013, 06:21   #14
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Re: Where and how to keep your tools/hardware?

Have several large square rubbermaid bins full of tools.... Most for major projects or other folks boats. Keep them stowed in the lowest space that will accommodate their size, and well secured. Lot of weight to be dodging in a blow. Small toolbag stowed behind companion-way ladder for "emergencies" Small set open/ratchet wrenches, several scewdrivers (aka marlin spike), good pair of side cutters, small ball-peen hammer, cold chisel and mini-hacksaw. Rigging cutters live in same location... Haven't had to use it yet, but one never knows.
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:46   #15
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Re: Where and How to Keep your Tools/Hardware?

The choices are: Racks, shelves, plastic divider bins, fabric bags, bulkhead mounted, low in the bilge lockers, drawers... How could you decide? If you're like me, you need to use all these types of places. While sitting here typing this response I can think of 13 different places where I keep tools, solvents, wiring, fasteners, epoxy, parts, etc. Some items need to be in the most dry places. Some need careful storage as they are highly flamable. Some need to be quickly available. Some you can be aware of, but likely never use for years.
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