Journal: Which Tools Should You Carry In A Classic Car?

Which Tools Should You Carry In A Classic Car?

Michael Banovsky By Michael Banovsky
February 19, 2016
17 comments

Mechanical troubleshooting is part of the joy of having a classic car, but being stranded isn’t. I don’t recommend you wade into traffic without a good handle on how your car works, where everything is located, and a nominal toolkit just in case.

The one thing that’s often overlooked is a working, up-to-date fire extinguisher—one of those tools that simply can’t be replaced once you realize that a fuel line wasn’t as secure as you first thought. I often see classic vehicles at shows that forego this “last-resort” item, and hope for the owners’ sake that their beloved car stays fire-free.

When you hit the road, what tools do you consider essential to bring along?

Photography by David Marvier & RM Sotheby’s

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Tharanga WijayaratnaTim WilliamsToby TuttleJoseph V BaldiniDoug Miller Recent comment authors
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Tharanga Wijayaratna
Tharanga Wijayaratna

Did a very long trip in my Alfa (first one in fact). Had combination wrench set (8-19), box socket set (8-19) with ratchet, extra fuel pump, alternator belt, wires, zip ties, wire tape, epoxy glue, screw drivers, multi-meter, extra relays, brake fluid and set of jumper cables. All fit in one cardboard box. Glad I did not have to open it.

Tim Williams
Tim Williams

I tend to carry around an emergency bag, with warning triangle, hi-viz waistcoat, gloves, tow hook, tow hope, starter cables, compressor and gunk kit, duct tape and a Leatherman. In winter I add the snow scrapers, snow shovels and a can of gravel, which can be really useful to help you get going again, if there’s ice. Plus phone, chocolate, torch etc.

Toby Tuttle
Toby Tuttle

A cell phone, a AAA card, a leatherman tool, a corkscrew, and the ability to mend most things using whatever you can find on the side of the road. Which not many people have anymore, hence the triple A card

Joseph V Baldini
Joseph V Baldini

I can not help but notice the lack of 3 items
1. Duct tape
2. Bailing wire
3. A genuine Thor (leather face one side, lead the other side) hammer for your knockoffs.
Or am I dating myself?

Doug Miller
Doug Miller

Engineering flowchart: Does it Move? Should it? #WD40 vs. Duct Tape (original artist unknown)

Tommy Steindal Tobiassen
Tommy Steindal Tobiassen

A tow strap, starter cables, a socket+arm for the wheel lugs, a couple screwdrivers, a roll of electrical tape + a roll of duct tape, a small emergency jack and a membership to a towing company is ideal.

Simon Lockie
Simon Lockie

I’ve usually found that whatever I planned and took was no use. When I didn’t plan, I’ve usually found what I need, granted sometimes after some effort. The moral of the story: just roll with it and never 100\% expect to get where you’re going.

Linda N Brian Schick
Linda N Brian Schick

What about an old woman to nag you?

Yan Scharrelmann
Yan Scharrelmann

1. zipties
2.zipties
3.zipties
4.AAA

Grant
Grant

I always carried the following:

-Spare bulbs
-Spare plugs
-Wrench & Socket set
-Jumper Cables
-CB Radio, for when you’re miles from nowhere exploring the back roads
-Cash
-Jack
-Tire Iron
-Extra Oil

Tom Bruynel
Tom Bruynel

Credit card…

Martin Philippo
Martin Philippo

tie wraps. Did anyone mention tie-wraps?

Maxime Veilleux
Maxime Veilleux

My ”Emergency” tool kit consist of :

– A good Jack
– A lug wrench with a set of sockets
– A spark plug socket
– Screwdrivers
– Pliers and vise grip
– Swiss army knife
– WD-40
– Duct Tape
– Some coverall ( You don’t want to put grease on that new jacket)
– Flashlight
– Rags

And of course some determination and patience to get that Bug back on the road!

Every breakdown usually result in a good story around a pint so stay positive guys.

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

Coveralls ? Oh come now . If you’re toodling around in your classic .. especially if its a Bug ( Bugatti I assume [ just what in the name of St GearHeaditis are you doing wearing that good jacket you’re so afraid of spoiling anyway ? Driving cloths Mssr . Veilleux ! Leaving the ‘ good ‘ jacket you’re unwilling to get greasy [ ahhh … the joys of an old and in the way yet ever so classic tweed always able to be cleaned in a jiffy assuming one knows how ] in the boot assuming for some reason… Read more »

Maxime Veilleux
Maxime Veilleux

Flattering of you to think its a Bugatti But, I don’t have the money nor the mechanical knowledge to properly maintain a Bugatti.

It was more along the line of a VW Beetle Bug.

That beeing said, Its my Daily Driver so I don’t always have the choice of ”Driving attire” but I appreciate the Tweed Jacket nonetheless.

I also like to think that making a good out of a bad situation about fixing our beloved classics sets us appart from the regular driving folks.

But you are right sometime bad is bad ahaha.

Alexandre Goncalves
Alexandre Goncalves

Guitar Slinger said it all 🙂

But I´ll add, a charged phone (you don’t want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere without a way to call for help)

Guitar Slinger
Guitar Slinger

On top of the tools needed to change the tire and a spare wheel – as well as a couple of spare wheel nuts …. at absolute minimum ; Leatherman multi tool Adjustable crescent wrench of reasonable size Roll of Duct Tape Ball of bailing wire Can of what ever brand ‘ Fix Flat ‘ you prefer Two empty containers .. one for acquiring water … the other for holding that emergency dollopo f fuel you just purchased cause y’all ran out due no doubt to a faulty fuel gage [ a common malady amongst all classics ] And err… Read more »