What should a "Mobile Mechanic" carry? - Taurus Car Club of America : Ford Taurus Forum
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post #1 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 02:38 AM Thread Starter
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What should a "Mobile Mechanic" carry?

I have started doing some repairs for people in my community on the side to make a few bucks. I know people may chime in about licensing and permits and insurance and all that and those are all valid points. But I want to just focus on what people think a "mobile mechanic" should be carrying with them besides the obvious tools that are frequently (or semi-frequently used). I'm not talking about a fully stocked workvan, as I am working out of a station wagon. Because anyway it's not like I'm really taking "any job" at "any time." I would be taking jobs I felt comfortable doing, at times that I was able to do them. So I don't have to be insanely well stocked or anything. But I started to realize that I do need to carry some things that I wouldn't normally keep in my car (or even own) if it was just to work on my own car. Here are some things I have come up with so far:

One person brake bleeder
Battery tester
Battery jumpstarter/air compressor/battery charger


I know there are more, so I want to hear peoples suggestions. Thanks!!
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post #2 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 09:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azure View Post
I have started doing some repairs for people in my community on the side to make a few bucks. I know people may chime in about licensing and permits and insurance and all that and those are all valid points. But I want to just focus on what people think a "mobile mechanic" should be carrying with them besides the obvious tools that are frequently (or semi-frequently used). I'm not talking about a fully stocked workvan, as I am working out of a station wagon. Because anyway it's not like I'm really taking "any job" at "any time." I would be taking jobs I felt comfortable doing, at times that I was able to do them. So I don't have to be insanely well stocked or anything. But I started to realize that I do need to carry some things that I wouldn't normally keep in my car (or even own) if it was just to work on my own car. Here are some things I have come up with so far:

One person brake bleeder
Battery tester
Battery jumpstarter/air compressor/battery charger


I know there are more, so I want to hear peoples suggestions. Thanks!!
Pic of my basic, this goes where ever but I will add other things if I am doing some specific work. I am retired 19 years a do volunteer maint work for a local church. Things that I need but did not have caused me to add to my list, such as index cards and marking pen as well as tape. I do mechanical, electric/lighting, and plumbing. If I am thinking of elect, then add wire stripper, wire nuts, and elect tape. I have a separate box for plumbing. If going to the JY, I add socket sets, Torx sets and such.
I have my name to top of this box in paint pen. I loose things.

-chart-
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post #3 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Keeping it basic is a good idea too sometimes, you're right.
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post #4 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 09:01 PM
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Beyond the "typical tools", I would add:

OBDII scanner
Torx bits
Plastic pry tools (for interior panels)
Magnetic pickup tool
Battery/rechargeable LED lights
Metric and SAE tap/die set
Punch set
Metal chisels
Various lengths of pipe for extra leverage with breaker bar

I'd did similar work when I was in high school and college. I quickly learned that students had a lot of beat up, rusty cars. I'd spend way too much time fighting stuck bolts and nuts for what I was getting paid. After a while, I had enough. Also, no brake work!

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post #5 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 09:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Exocet. Why no brake work?
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post #6 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exocet View Post
Beyond the "typical tools", I would add:

OBDII scanner
Torx bits
Plastic pry tools (for interior panels)
Magnetic pickup tool
Battery/rechargeable LED lights
Metric and SAE tap/die set
Punch set
Metal chisels
Various lengths of pipe for extra leverage with breaker bar

I'd did similar work when I was in high school and college. I quickly learned that students had a lot of beat up, rusty cars. I'd spend way too much time fighting stuck bolts and nuts for what I was getting paid. After a while, I had enough. Also, no brake work!
I bought a torch, 26 plus years ago to deal with stubborn nuts and bolts. A portable set is perfect for them.
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post #7 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-22-2017, 09:23 PM Thread Starter
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I just bought a Bernzomatic Max Heat torch that uses Mapp gas...definitely not the level of your oxy setup, but much more portable and pretty hot....people write in reviews that they had good luck using it on rusted nuts and bolts.
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post #8 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-23-2017, 12:48 PM
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so far I've gotten all my stuck bolts free by using the back of a hatchet wrapped with a rag and striking the wrench/ratchet/breaker bar.

I would add lots of rags, distilled water for low batteries and baking soda for cleaning them, assortment of fuses, tire plug kit and small air compressor
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post #9 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-23-2017, 01:11 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueberry View Post
I would add lots of rags, distilled water for low batteries and baking soda for cleaning them, assortment of fuses, tire plug kit and small air compressor

Thanks
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post #10 of 37 (permalink) Old 01-23-2017, 04:29 PM
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Look around for a mechanics socket tool set in a robust plastic box. Craftsman, Hus-key etc. You can pick up a decent one for around $100. Now I know you are saying I already have these tools. But the benefit is the organization of the box. You can find a socket in a second and you can tell if everything is placed back in a quick glance. You may have to add a set of extensions, breaker bar and specialty brake tools.
I am not a tool snob so I don't think you need to have Snap on or Proto tools. If you have the money have at it. I am just saying you can get the job done with less cost.
You can sell your duplicates to cover some of the cost.

Add Metric box and open end wrenches and a good screwdriver kit in a box as well.
Two good floor jacks with stands or similar as well.
I can tell you that organization is key. You may want to invest in a couple of tool boxes.
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