Tool Boxes

tool boxA regular topic for mechanics is the toolbox. We thought this might be a great place to delve into these questions and provide answers where everyone could read them.

What company is best? There isn’t one perfect box company, however many of us are using models produced in the United States by Ellis and Howe Industries. Their product is realiable and they have a great repair policy.

What size is best? This really depends on how you intend to use it and how much stuff you are carrying. If you work for a small number of riders you might consider a 6 inch box. If you plan to do a lot of neutral work, you should look into an 8 inch box to hold all those extra tools. The bigger boxes also provide room to pack a small parts bin or two. A recommendation would be the 6 inch box unless you want to limit yourself, as far as what you can carry. Also, those looking at 8 inch boxes should consider a wheeled case as it will save your arms.

Which pallets should I use? There is no perfect answer to this question as each mechanic has their own preferences. However, consider the fact that the more space you have in the pallets and the better laid out they are, the less likely you will loose your smaller tools in the bottom of the box. Some mechanics like the models with socket rails built in. Others prefer to have more space for hex wrenches and possibly a pouch for crank tools and spoke wrenches. You might consider a winged pallet for the top of the box as this will allow you to hang more tools.

Which material should I use? Stick with the polly box as it is cheaper than aluminum and stronger than vynal or wood. Plus, it is easier to repair when the hinges or locks get damaged.

Should I get a wheeled box? Not unless you want a large box. The wheeled boxes come in larger sizes such as 8 or 10 inch. If you are doing a lot of traveling, this may be a good idea. It would allow you room for more of your parts kits and be easier to drag around the airport.

How do I order one? Hey, that’s an easy one. Click over to our shopping cart as we have many of them for sale on our website.


Owner of and long time professional race mechanic.