Honda CBR 500 Riders Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at purchasing myself a decent set of sockets and ratchets for my first set of tools to help with basic maintenance tasks.

I've done abit of research online however I'm alittle confused and unsure about 6 and 12 sided sockets. Most of the bolts on my Honda CB500F seem to be 6 sided. Do I need to purchase a socket set with 6 sided socket grooves or will a 12 sided socket also work just as well on 6 sided bolts? I've read alot of information online and it has really confused me, as some people recommend not using 12 sided sockets on 6 sided bolts.

There's a company in the UK called Halfords that looks to sell decent quaility tools in their "advanced" range. The sockets in all their sets seem to be 12 sided. I'm hesitant to purchase until i get some clarification on the 6/12 sided topic. What are the pros and cons of each, if any? Are there also any other brands to consider? I would like to spend no more than around £100
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,417 Posts
6-sided sockets get a stronger grip on the bolt head.
12-sided sockets are easier to position into place on a 6-sided bolt head and work on a 12-sided bolt head (not often found).


For a starter set, I'd buy the 12-sided sockets and buy individual 6-sided sockets for the axle nuts.
The rear axle nuts are probably the only ones that require a lot of torque and are a large size that are not in the set anyway.
I would buy the axle nut sockets with a 1/2" drive- 24" flex handle for the heavy torquing.


Along the way (of acquiring tools), you may want to get some deep-well sockets but that is not needed for most applications.


I'm not sure what is needed for the spark plugs for the 500F, but that is also probably not immediately needed.


I buy tools as sales occur and have not spent the money for high quality tools.

Chain stores (WalMart, Ace hardware, etc) carry some good-enough tools.
Tool brands I buy include: Craftsman, Cobalt and Stanley.

My Motto is "better the right tool than the most expensive wrong tool"



Ride safely,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Discussion Starter #3

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,417 Posts
I can't do the math, but it unlikely that 12-point socket that is 14mm or smaller will require enough torque to round the points on a bolt.


But if it worries you, then buy the 6-point sockets and sleep easy. IF you ever need a 12-point socket, you can buy an inexpensive set.


That is a nice looking socket set
BUT why does the description say "3/8" Drive, 6pt sockets, inc. standard & deep" and the photo shows 12-point sockets ?


I find almost no need for a 1/2 ratchet. Don't use a ratchet to provide strong torque, when a flex handle will be stronger.


Ride safely
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I too also noticed the description about 6 point sockets but pictures showing 12 point instead. I think the description is wrong as this supplier seems to prefer 12 point sockets on most of their products.



I think my fear of rounding bolt heads with 12 point sockets is there because i've been told, via videos and reading material, that it will happen if you use it on a 6 sided bolt and not from personal experience. I want to make sure i purchase the right thing before investing my money or even worse, causing damage to the bike because i chose the "wrong" sockets.



I understand most bolts will be no more than 14mm however im thinking about the bigger bolts, like the rear axle bolts and center steering nut. I'm assusing with these bigger nuts a 1/2" rachet will be more suitable. However you make a great point about using a breaker bar to loosen these bigger bolts. I guess i can always use an adaptor on the 3/8" ratcher to just hand tighten these bigger bolts before using a torque wrench on them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
353 Posts
Kon - I have six and twelve point sockets and twelve point box end wrenches. Have not rounded a hex head yet. I suggest you make your best buy on high quality tools and not concern yourself about six versus twelve. Good tools are a lifetime investment until you loan them to someone :). Good luck. Let us know what you decided. Rick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
359 Posts
6-sided sockets are better fit and do less damage to the bolt & nut heads. Get those if available and within price range; as long as they are chrome vanadium. Should last a lifetime. Next set, long sockets.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,640 Posts
I'm not much for wrenching, but a 12-sided socket is just a worse fit. I don't think there's any point buying them (I've never seen a 12-sided nut or bolt, and even if they exist you probably won't either). The whole point of a socket wrench is that you can freely turn the socket without moving the wrench (and visa-versa). It's not very hard to align a 6-sided socket with the head, and it's less likely to slip and cause damage (but you still need to be careful to get the closest fit possible because it will happen if you use the wrong socket).

You don't need to spend stupid amounts of money on a socket set if you aren't serious about it. Not that they're cheap either. I think I paid like CAD$100 or so for a minimal Stanley set this summer, but it was regular like CAD$300 if not CAD$400. I'm kicking myself because there was a larger Mastercraft kit available at the same time for almost the same money, but I decided Stanley looked more durable. As if it even matters for me.

My previous Mastercraft (Canadian Tire brand) set case had fallen apart and that caused sockets to get lost or just always be falling out of the case. Since I live in an apartment the socket set often traveled in the cab of my Ford Ranger, and that meant pieces were often flying around. If your socket set is going to be mobile (i.e., in a vehicle) often, and even if it's not, you should factor the durability/fit of the case that it's coming in if that's how you'll transport it. There was nothing wrong with the previous socket set tools that I had. My dad is a millwright and does wrench more than most, and he bought me that when I was maybe 14 or 16 (so over a decade ago). The tools came with a lifetime warranty (in my experience, that should be available without paying extra, so it's something to look for, at least in Canada). The only flaw was that the case didn't seal the lid tightly enough to keep everything locked in place. So from almost day one the sockets in the lid would fall out and go crazy. It had a loose fitting cover so they couldn't go far, but it still made for a mess when you needed access to sockets in the lid. It's not worth breaking the bank over just for that, but if you're faced with the choice of a tight fitting case versus a loose fitting case that doesn't secure all the pieces I'd say lean towards the tight fit even if it's a bit more money unless the price is stupid or you'll be storing the tools in a box at home most of the time.

Eventually because the socket set that I had was falling apart all the time I just left it with my dad in his garage. He'll make better use of them then I ever will anyway. And I picked up a new set that seems to stick better, but again I'm kicking myself because it's a smaller set so my options are more limited. Again, I rarely use them, but it's a kick in the nuts to have to try to make the wrong tool work instead of just having the right tool.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Plasma1

·
Registered
Joined
·
823 Posts
I'll choose 12point wrench anytime. it's much easier to work with especially in tight spaces where wrenching range is limited. if you don't have a ratchet handle, you'll need 60° of wrenching angle with 6 point vs 30° for 12point.
12point will not be any worse than 6 point and rounding of nuts & bolts will never happen unless wrong size of wrench is used.
just remember Japanese nuts & bolts are using metric size in mm and American wrenches with SAE sizes in fraction of inches will not fit well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
The mixed views do add confusion to a novice like me. I guess i need to experience both sides of the coin for myself and choose, or not , and eventually have both! :D



I think i'm going to go for the 12-sided socket set from Halfords. It provides a life-time warranty. they are local to me and have everything that I need. If i do find bolts and nuts are being damaged, then i'll get a 6 sided set also.


In all honesty, I cant find any brands that offer a warranty on a 6 sided socket set here in the UK that doesnt cost alot of money, hence the appeal with the Halfords stuff.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,417 Posts
Your reasons for buying that set are good enough for making that decision.
They will work well and in a few years you will have more tools to add to the collection.


Being retired, I have time to attend rummage sales, so I come home with a box of orphan tools and sort through them for what is of value.


Maybe you will also.




Ride safely
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
353 Posts
Bam - "The whole point of a socket wrench is that you can freely turn the socket without moving the wrench (and visa-versa)." That is a neat trick. I need you to show me how to do that. :) Rick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
359 Posts
Sockets are (mostly) used with a Ratchet (i.e. the geared handle with forward/reverse); 6 sided is best; practically no cons or negative if used with a ratchet.

Wrench is fixed size; Ring or Open ended; also known as Spanner in UK, etc. A 12-sided Ring Wrench is the norm and most practical (easier fit angles); they are the most useful tool (more so than sockets & ratchet set) cheap too, buy a set.

There are also 6-sided Ring Wrench which is more "specialist"; avoid unless you have a need for it (unlikely).

Note: I have been "wrenching" for as long as I can remember, decades (shows my age). I know my tools. In those days, sockets were "specialist" and expensive.
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top