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ezpullpliers.jpg

Steck designed these EZPull pliers to do big-time pulling on a ride that has some big-time damage. The wide jaws on these locking pliers can firmly grip one area or grab hold of a few pins to straighten out bodywork.

The ring and chain may look out of place at first — but they allow you to grab hold and pull on the clamped-down pliers in whichever direction you need to, to straighten out that mangled metal.

Though it’s just one of many tools needed to get straight bodywork, we welcome anything that helps.

Street pricing starts at $40.

EZPull Pliers [Steck]
Street Pricing [Google Products]

 
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When we saw a body man using Steck’s right-angle “Seam Buster,” we instantly realized why we get such crappy results with a chisel. The chisel’s wedge is similar, but spot welds are almost never easily accessbile. The Buster’s shape is perfect for getting in those tight spaces like under fender wells and in trunk corners.

Before you comment, we realize that it’s a $30 steel stick with a foam grippy handle. But like many specialty tools, when you need it, you need it. You could get by with a less effective tool, but if you’re planning on replacing those old, rusted (or bashed) spot-welded panels, this’ll make your job a lot easier.

Right Angle Seam Buster [Steck]
Street Pricing [Froogle]

 
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Broken tie rod = no steering = the damn car’s not going anywhere — unless you happen to have one of these with you.  This tie rod coupler binds the broken rod together to get you back on the road — if only at “pushing speed.”   

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Here’s something I wish I’d run across long ago: a tool that grabs those squeeze-type factory hose clamps and allows you to apply smooth pressure to them with a screw.  I’ve always just cut them when they’re hard (read: near impossible) to remove and replaced them with a screw-type — with the screw positioned properly for good access.  But with this tool should allow non-destructive removal in a much wider variety of situations.

It’s a simple and great idea: just slide the clamp ends into the slot, trapping one of them in the hole (at the right in the picture above), then torque down the screw.  The knob is knurled for finger-tightening, but it’s also got standard 1/4″ square-drive connection so you can turn it with a ratchet — or an air tool.

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We’ve been doing some serious rattle-canning in the TM shop this week, and we’ve learned a couple of things: 1) Any kind of painting takes a tremendous amount of patience, and 2) all the same tools the pros use work great for rattle-can work as well.

Don’t doubt the fact that the guys at the paint supply shop will definitely laugh at you when you come in.  They’ll give you s#!&, lie to you about the gear they sell, and generally treat you like the total poser you are.  But they do have tools that’ll make the difference for you, and you may need to deal with ’em to get what you need.

Thankfully you can mail-order some of the stuff you need, like this portable bench from Steck.  One of the first things you’ll discover when you start trying to do more than just make something roughly a different color with paint is that you need to be able to comfortably get at all areas of the part you’re working on.  And seeing how anything you use to prop it up will get completely and totally covered in paint, you really need something designed for the task.

This bench folds up to get out of the way, and when unfolded stands 45″ tall with 38″ between its foam-padded rails.  Using the two chains you can adjust it slightly for height, and Steck claims it’ll hold up to 500 pounds — probably more than you’ll need.

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