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#4520661 - 09/19/17 07:54 PM Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best?
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
I handled some snap-on's and I was very impressed but I've been recommended to check out Proto. I like the snap-on's because none of them were rounded off and I looked at an old set that has been used a lot and they were all tight with no jiggle or play. I did not even see a retaining pin on the side of the Snap-on sockets so that led me to believe they might be pressed in?

I'm talking half-inch drive 6mm up to 19mm I would not mind having 3/8 Drive in the 6mm and 8mm

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#4520663 - 09/19/17 08:04 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
maxdustington Online   content


Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 629
Loc: Toronna
Apparently VIM are awesome and reasonably priced. That's where I would probably look and I almost only buy made in USA.
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#4520668 - 09/19/17 08:10 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
Same here I appreciate USA made tools I will tolerate certain things made in Taiwan but I love Proto, SK and truthfully I haven't let myself afford many Snap-on items but I really like the hex bit set they have and I'm very tempted to take the plunge. I will check out VIM.

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#4520675 - 09/19/17 08:15 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
NYEngineer Offline


Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 1562
Loc: NY, NY
I've got Snap On hex bit sockets that are probably close to 30 years old. Still in perfect condition. I think once, a long time ago I had to have one of the bits replaced. It was some sort of a press fit. The Snap On man knocked it apart and drove in a new bit.
I was a diesel mechanic for 17 years and my tools got used daily. Now, I have what's basically a desk job. My tools get used maintaining our cars, building stuff... They're still like using new tools. Nothing is rounded or dull.
I stand by my belief that buying quality pays off in the long run. I may have dropped a ton on tools in the past but I'm 51 now and have tools that I bought when I was 15. I think I got my money's worth.
I use the metric hex bits a lot. I build bicycles. The Snap On tools don't ruin anodized aluminum bolts. I've seen people with bolts that I know cost six or seven dollars all marked up.

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#4520676 - 09/19/17 08:15 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
Also, once in awhile we do come across a large bolt that takes a 19mm or 17mm hex that is seized up; up until now I've been putting an allen wrench in them and then putting a 24-inch adjustable wrench on the Allen wrench and breaking it Loose with manual torque. We use grey pneumatic one piece impact hex but I'm talking about the Chrome Vanadium sockets with hex bits installed I will not use these on my impact I will use them with a sliding T handle or breaker bar or ratchet.

By the way if anybody likes a good sliding T handle SK is hard to beat and Proto easily Rivals SK. I like the Proto 1/2 inch drive because it's about an inch and three quarters longer than the SK. But make no mistake the SK is 11 inches long and you can get adequate torque with it. SK makes a nice 8" 3/8 Drive. Notched in the center just like the 1/2" drives; and there is a spring loaded ball detent or something inside the Drive that makes it stop when it slides over the notch. I love it


Edited by SquirrelMan (09/19/17 08:19 PM)

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#4520689 - 09/19/17 08:28 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
Thanks for your Snap-on testimonial. The ones I saw had a gold color to them like maybe they were super hardened or something and had a plating. I was very impressed that none of them were rounded off. The only other hex tool I know of that will not round off is Wiha hex keys (Allen wrenches). They are super hardened. And in our shop we use the hardest highest grade bolts. I would be interested to know of anybodys experience with the Proto hex bit socket sets.


Edited by SquirrelMan (09/19/17 08:29 PM)

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#4520695 - 09/19/17 08:36 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
maxdustington Online   content


Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 629
Loc: Toronna
Originally Posted By: SquirrelMan
Same here I appreciate USA made tools I will tolerate certain things made in Taiwan but I love Proto, SK and truthfully I haven't let myself afford many Snap-on items but I really like the hex bit set they have and I'm very tempted to take the plunge. I will check out VIM.


I feel the exact same way, taiwan is not bad if you're in a pinch but if it's not a power tool and it's not made in a western country my interest will be limited. I also have a lot of SK and Proto but snappy is too expensive. I did buy snappy flare nut wrenches though.
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#4520698 - 09/19/17 08:39 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
Thax Offline


Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 786
Loc: VA
Snap on , SK , Proto and Wright make fantastic USA made hex sockets. Probably the best though would be German made Stahlwille or Hazet brands. I have used everything from gearwrench to snap on professionally , hex and torx sockets is definitely a case of you get what you pay for.
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#4520700 - 09/19/17 08:42 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: Thax]
maxdustington Online   content


Registered: 01/21/17
Posts: 629
Loc: Toronna
Originally Posted By: Thax
Snap on , SK , Proto and Wright make fantastic USA made hex sockets. Probably the best though would be German made Stahlwille or Hazet brands. I have used everything from gearwrench to snap on professionally , hex and torx sockets is definitely a case of you get what you pay for.


If you're going euro you might as well get pb swiss but I don't know if they make sockets. Their bits and keys are the bee's knees from what I understand.
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#4520702 - 09/19/17 08:46 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
Kage860 Offline


Registered: 04/17/17
Posts: 88
Loc: NY
For home use I vote for VIM tools for bits. They may be the supplier of some other big name companies. They will last me basically forever. For pro use you can justify snap on but the vim tool quality from what I hear can be used for pro use
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#4520706 - 09/19/17 08:49 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: maxdustington]
Thax Offline


Registered: 11/07/10
Posts: 786
Loc: VA
Originally Posted By: maxdustington
Originally Posted By: Thax
Snap on , SK , Proto and Wright make fantastic USA made hex sockets. Probably the best though would be German made Stahlwille or Hazet brands. I have used everything from gearwrench to snap on professionally , hex and torx sockets is definitely a case of you get what you pay for.


If you're going euro you might as well get pb swiss but I don't know if they make sockets. Their bits and keys are the bee's knees from what I understand.


I knew I was forgetting a brand or too lol
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#4520714 - 09/19/17 09:03 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
Chris142 Online   content


Registered: 06/05/03
Posts: 16817
Loc: Deplorable in apple valley, ca
Snap on if you want the best. But Taiwan has really stepped up with tool quality in the last few years. The ones that are pressed into the driver and not cast as one piece are very good.
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#4520716 - 09/19/17 09:07 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
NYEngineer Offline


Registered: 12/12/06
Posts: 1562
Loc: NY, NY
Gold ones are metric. Fractional ones are bare steel in Snap On.

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#4520721 - 09/19/17 09:10 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
I really appreciate the replies. The wiha hex keys I mentioned above are made in Germany same outfit that makes Heyco and possibly others. I vote they are the best allen style wrenches. We were issued them but I also grab allenbrand hex keys and use them and they round off so quickly while the German made Ones Will Never.

I'm eyeballing Proto but I got a strong urge to click buy-it-now on some snap-on's. My wife will be mad because I've already had some tools coming in the mail. But you know what? I work for a living and I work 6 days a week. And I love tools. That is my downfall right there! Why can't I just be like some other guys that just use company-issued tools and don't invest their own money in anything? I can't help it I just love tools and I love USA made tools. SK and Proto are two of my favorites!

Some things I just cannot afford an American made one. USA Blind hole bearing puller cost more than I want to spend. USA toolmakers Vise cost more than I want to spend. Besides China makes those vices guaranteed to be parallel and square within .0002 inch and I'm very impressed with the one I got on Amazon for 47 bucks.

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#4520726 - 09/19/17 09:15 PM Re: Who knows about Hex Bit Sockets? What's the best? [Re: SquirrelMan]
SquirrelMan Offline


Registered: 07/04/17
Posts: 55
Loc: In
I have a bad habit of ordering a new tool and then I think it's so nice I don't want to use it!

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