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Know what else the holidays entail? Checking out all the new gimmicky tools that magically arrive just in time to become gifts. Kidding aside, not all “stocking-stuffer-esque” tools are junk. Each year we come across a few that’ll serve a useful purpose all year long — and a few that’ll end up in the trash by Valentine’s Day.

So which bin does B&D’s new ReadyWrench fall in? First, let’s take a look at the basics.

Each end of the ReadyWrench consists of a rotating set of four sockets for a total of eight sizes. On the SAE wrench you get a 5/16″, 3/8″, 7/16″, 1/2″, 9/16″, 5/8″, 11/16″, and 3/4″ and on the metric you get an 8mm, 10mm, 11mm, 13mm, 14mm, 16mm, 17mm, and 19mm — representing most of the common sizes we see around the house. The set’s rotation allows you to swivel the wrench around to fit (and still turn) in tight spaces.

I know, I know. As a hardcore Toolmonger you’ve probably got a full set of sockets, so B&D’s video suggesting that the ReadyWrench will “save you time searching for sockets” doesn’t apply to you. But before you thumbs-down the ‘Wrench in favor of your big set, consider this: what about your friends? What about that guy down the street who has four sockets left out of the set his father gave him when he was 24 — and they’re like a 1-1/4″, a 12mm, a 6mm, and an 11/16″ (but he lost his 1/2″ drive, too)?

And what about what my Dad used to always call “emergency situations”? He endlessly pointed out to me that when the s#!% hits the fan, having any tool that’ll accomplish the task (even if it breaks in the process) is better than none. The ReadyWrench might not be a bad choice for a downsized car toolkit.

Of course, torque specs’ll be interesting in terms of a car kit. We’ll see if we can’t find some for you. But it certainly looks sturdy enough for the tasks you see in B&D’s promotional video, like tightening a bolt on a bicycle or assembling lawn furniture.

It’s $30. What do you think?

ReadyWrench [Black & Decker]
ReadyWrench Via Amazon [What’s This?]

 

17 Responses to Hot or Not: Black & Decker’s ReadyWrench

  1. Joe Sainz says:

    Not, I think someone might be better served by these ones from craftsman ($20 each):
    http://www.craftsman.com/shc/s/search_10155_12602?keyword=dog+bone+wrench

    that were already covered on TM here:
    http://toolmonger.com/2009/08/28/craftsman-dog-bone-wrench/

  2. jeffrey immer says:

    i think it would great in one of those crappy tool kits you give to someone who is not handy but they need a hammer occasionally sort of thing. besides that it will not be in my tool box, and if someone gives it to me, it will be regifted

  3. JC says:

    $30 seems kinda steep – you could get a full set of Harbor Freight sockets with ratchet on sale for less than that.

  4. Alex French says:

    I want to say that it would be good for a minimal set of spare tools in a car, or or someone who isn’t very handy but occassionally needs a tool… but it looks so clunky I’d be worried that it wouldn’t be able to get the job done in an occasional or emergency situation by not fitting into a tight space or corner, where so many of the world’s nuts and bolts live. The heads are so big I think an adjusable wrench could get in most places this guy could, and you could buy cheap metric and SAE adjustables for <1/3 the price.

  5. ToolGuyd says:

    As I alluded to the other day, 8 sockets for 16 sizes does not sound too kosher.

  6. Dave P says:

    I count 8 sockets on the SAE wrench and another 8 on the metric wrench, ToolGuyd. Or, ha ha, should I call you “ToolGoyd?” get it? kosher? he he he…..ahhh forget it.

  7. Cameron says:

    ToolGuyd Said: “As I alluded to the other day, 8 sockets for 16 sizes does not sound too kosher.”

    Yeah, that don’t sound right. “Close enough” is a good way to round a nut.

  8. Bob says:

    Tractor Supply has both these sets (magnetic too) for $14.99 each !

  9. Harry says:

    The modern Chinese versions of an American classic (but useless too) wrench are embarassing at the least. The dogbone design should have been allowed to die peacefully. Yor $30 would be better spent on Gearwrench’s Quadbox wrenches if you have to have multiple sizes on a single wrench.
    I predict they’ll will be many unhappy people on Christmas morning unless you make it clear now that you don’t want anything to do with a Dogbone Wrench.

  10. Sam says:

    Sears had ’em in stock for $20 yesterday

  11. ToolGuyd says:

    @ Dave P – lol at the “ToolGoyd” bit. Anyhow, this one wrench covers both SAE AND metric sizes.

    Also, as per B&D’s advertising: “16 socket sizes, 1 amazing wrench.”

  12. Dave P says:

    Damn, I just looked at the website….I stand corrected. It *does* suck.

  13. Lou says:

    I don’t know….could be useful for certain applications. 1) How many people carry 16 wrenches with them in every vehicle/atv they drive? This could replace the vise-grips most use for that. 2) The “sockets are straight thru so they woul fit over any length bolt. 3) May not fit absolutely everywhere but it would fit anywhere a socket wrench could (with no extensions) and just as many places a Crescent could due to the rotating handle.

    I imagine the sockets work both mm and in by using a stepped design.

    $30 with lifetime warranty, not bad to throw in the glove box and forget it’s there until you need it.

  14. honcho says:

    The Craftsman version is, sadly, Made in China. Yep, our friends at sears (and their tool partner Danaher) are starting down that slippery slope.

  15. Handy Randy says:

    just got one of them dogbones from B&D. they have red and blue markings engraved in the sockets which is helpful to me cause i can never tell those damn sizes. i just used it to put a bike rack on and the 6pt. design seems to make them sockets all fit without rounding off. I think this is a nice lil tool. If I bought one of them metric dogbones from Craftsman I also need the standard one so I end up paying 10 bucks more and have two tools!

  16. Dr Bob says:

    I wouldn’t buy one myself, but one of these is better than some of the “tool” gifts I’ve received.

  17. Wolf says:

    I got one of these for Chrismas, and they work for as long as there is a good 1/2″ of clearance around the bolt head/nut area. In otherwords, it’s not going to get you anywhere if you want to replace manifold gaskets. However, they are handy for bolts longer than deep sockets, and for checking sizes before crawling out from under the car for the fifth time for that other socket.

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