Tools… The Importance of a Good Socket Set

“Halfords Professional socket set?  I’ve got one of those as well, really good tools.”

My well used and slightly battered set had come out of the passenger footwell to allow me to bolt on one the wheels I’d finally picked up on the back of the Vitara. Having never met my friend before other than speaking on the phone it was funny how my choice of socket confirmed much.

Tools are all important, anyone who does any type of practical work soon develops a fetish for them. You often start out with a few lower quality ones and slowly upgrade. This was the case with my socket set. I call it the only positive thing to come out of my marriage as it was a Christmas gift many years ago from my ex-wife.   With some metric, some imperial sockets, various Allen sockets, torque bits and with a set of metric spanners from 8 to 19 mm. Over the years some parts have become lost or broken, for instance, the ¼ inch ratchet broke many years ago after it got wet and rusted. I did add fairly early a ½ inch T-bar and socket reducer set. An added benefit of the breaker bar was that the ½ inch extension bar slipped over its end, thus creating a breaker bar when needed. Yet it is my default choice for any job.


Tools are important and you develop a real relationship with them, often to the point that using another person’s tools feels alien. Get the best you can for they will last a lifetime.

I will be covering some of the other tools that have become essential to me over the years, but nothing truly beats a good socket set. After checking the Halfords website, the new name for the Professional range is Advanced. Whatever they call them, they are very good value and truly recommend for the amateur.

On a much cheaper note… Lidl’s and Aldi seem to have the best cheap tools out there when they have them in stock. I have a set of Lidl’s ring spanners and small socket that are carried with me at all times. The spanners seem they well made for the price, the socket set a little less so, but still very useful.

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