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Do it right!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so right now i work for a company and in joy my job. I'm also the type that likes using my one tools and I'm building my collection starting to look at getting bigger tools table saw air compressed etc. should i buy a trailer in thew next few years even tho I'm working for some one and plan on keep working for them?
 

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Repair/Remodeling Tech.
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If you work for someone else, and plan on continuing to do so, why would you buy your own table saw, compressor, etc for job use? Home use, sure...but if you're an employee, your employer should provide large/major tools. IMO, you need your own hand tools and circular saw (if applicable to what trade your in), but things like miter saw, table saw, compressor, nail guns, etc. should be on the owner.

Now...as far as a trailer.....................I think you can tell where this is going, right? :)
 

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Want to play a game?
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I work for someone and have all my own tools. Own truck, compressor, table saw, miter saw, etc. My tools are in better shape than his are for sure.

I just don't like using tools that are inaccurate, harder to use, etc because everyone else has their hands on them. I also never know what could happen so if I ever need to work for myself I will be ready.

I will admit though that I will be on my own someday. Hopefully sooner than later :rolleyes:

So I guess if it was me, if I could swing it, I would do it.
 
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If you have no plans on working for yourself, or get into a position where you have to supply your own tools, I would not be using your own tools on the job.
Tools wear out. Then they need replaced. The guy you work for is not going to pay for you tools.
Unless of course this is the arrangement you have.
The trailer is up to you. There is nothing wrong with accumulating tools.
 

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I work for someone and have all my own tools. Own truck, compressor, table saw, miter saw, etc. My tools are in better shape than his are for sure.

I just don't like using tools that are inaccurate, harder to use, etc because everyone else has their hands on them. I also never know what could happen so if I ever need to work for myself I will be ready.

I will admit though that I will be on my own someday. Hopefully sooner than later :rolleyes:

So I guess if it was me, if I could swing it, I would do it.
Do you ever have problems with co-workers running out and getting your tools off your truck instead of using your boss' tools.?
 

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Capra Aegagrus
Remodeler
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As an employee, there's no reason to have a trailer other than to increase your value to your employer--with a commensurate increase in pay. Until you have enough tools to fill one, its principal use would wind up being material transport, which is generally just as well if not better done with a truck.

It's also an expensive PITA to tow a trailer to every job, every day. It would be foolish to leave several thousand dollars' worth of personal tools overnight on an unsecured jobsite. Let the boss take that chance if he so chooses.
 

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If you want to do something like that make sure you are being paid accordingly... Enough carpenters get taken advantage of without trying to... In my experience if you start providing more of your own things your employer will just take it for granted. You need to negotiate.

Also atleast where I live you without a doubt would need commercial auto insurance... Get into a wreck and be on the hook to pay for someones written off mercedes and ask yourself if it was worth it...
 

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The Dude
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The most important tool you can own is a nice truck, my preference is a white truck. Looks professional even if it's not lettered, and it's easy to keep clean. Black or red? not so much.

You can buy the other stuff a little at a time. Miter saw and table saw should probably be some of the last tools you add, being around 5-600 each for decent ones. Want a Festool Kapex? Figure on spending north of $1500, closer to $2k.

Depending on the kind of work you do you'll probably want a good circular saw, reciprocating saw, cordless drill, and some nail guns before you spend the jack on the big items. Each of these will set you back around $200 for decent ones, more if you've got to have the best.

The trailer? I wouldn't. My friend just bought a 6x16 enclosed trailer - set him back $5k. It's very nice, but also very heavy. You'll need a 3/4 ton truck or bigger if you want to haul something like that around. A half ton might move it, but you'll be breaking / wearing out the truck fast. Smaller trailers fill up FAST. Flat trailers are only good for material and trash hauling, and helping your friends move. You'll already have enough of those beating down your door just because of the truck ...
 

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The Dude
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And don't even THINK about bringing your tools to work. It's REALLY nice to have good tools in good condition. They won't stay that way if they come to work with you.

Coworkers will get grabby with them, they will get lost, broken, worn out - and not be nice for long. Oh, and your expensive cordless batteries will get mixed in with the boss's ...

I've tried everything from explaining to everybody that these aren't the boss's, painting them, calling everybody all pissed off looking for a $200 tool ... If you think it's frustrating when it's the boss's tools - wait till YOU paid for them!

You'll catch people using your brand new cordless to mix mud, your saw's guard will mysteriously disappear, the nose on your trim nailer will be bent to high hell ...

I was working for a friend of mine for a while, and his crews were generally pretty good, but I still had a couple of tools come up MIA / broken.

MY crew??? Those guys are fking animals! I love my crew - but it seems to me that I don't have tool 1 left :laughing:

Well, I did have a serious tool theft happen in my driveway, it's not all my crew's fault.
 

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Unless you are doing jobs by yourself for him, don't bring your gear. Unless like was said, he will pay you or reimburse you for their use. Every time I have people, ie: subs, home owners, friends, etc. use my stuff, it gets a little more dinged up. I ding it up enough and am not easy on my gear, but rarely have pieces missing, or just break off.

How on earth do you chop the corner off my miter saw back stop? That was actually funny though. Shoulda seen his face. :laughing: He felt bad, I just took it as another ding among many on my gear. Or lose one of the wheels to my chop saw guard? Or drop the sawzall in the porta-john. These things happen. Then when you go to do your own work, you have broken and crapped out tools.

The tools you should have are the best hand tools you can afford. It makes your job easier and much more pleasant. Just keep them in your rig.
 

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The Dude
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If you DO bring a tool to work like a cordless drill because your boss's suck - make sure EVERYBODY including your boss knows to keep their fvking mitts off your tools.

"But I'm the boss ..." Then why do you have crappy tools and have to use mine? You should have bought ME this drill, not the other way around.

Pro Tip: Make sure your cordless gear isn't the same brand as the boss's and crews. That way your batteries and chargers won't walk off so fast.
 

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Want to play a game?
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I am not ignorant to the fact that I am lucky enough to not have the problems anyone has mentioned here about personal tools. Everyone knows what is mine and I pay close attention to where my stuff is. If anyone ever wants to use my stuff, they ask. I am compensated a bit for what I own.

This is why I said "if it was me". Sounds like what others have experienced is the norm, so their advice would be good advice.

I just have always believed that I am in this business and I feel I need to have the proper tools. I don't like relying on others for tools to do my job, including any boss I have.
 

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Do it right!
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
right know work has a trailer of tools and between me and one of my coworkers we have a full set of tools that we bring ever day. there are a lot of times where me and the boos or me and a neuter coworker are sent to go do a different job or repair. and we just hop in my truck and go. my boss is rely good about replacing persal tools that are not basic hand tool ( unless he brakes the hand tool) that get broke or lost.
 

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The Dude
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Buy a toy not a tool!!
I'm for that in a way, however I think there is a certain point you should be at tool-wise if you work for someone else. The next level up is that point. You don't have to bring them to work, but have them.

Lets say you go to work in the morning in your gas-saving civic with nothing but a nail bag and circ saw in the trunk. Now lets say that for some reason beyond your control, your job isn't there anymore.

During your quest for more work, when someone asks if you have your own tools, you can answer one of two ways. 1. "I have some basic hand tools and my little gas saver", or 2. "Yes Mr. Jones, I have a truck, and every tool necessary to complete these jobs, however I prefer to drive my car to save gas, and use my employers power equipment."

A little truck is kind of a toy anyway. I'd like a little 4wd Dakota crew cab. Almost bought one of those instead of my Explorer. Good for hauling camping, fishing, boating gear - or whatever - and not horrible on fuel and maintenance.

Maybe alternate. Buy a tool, then a toy.
 

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master hacker of wood
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Yes I owned better tools than my boss, and a van but he never seen them till the last day I was sick of him taking pay away because he didn't bid quite as good as he should of!!

We were doing a bid for a real estate agent, we were at 6 grand and almost done with the bid when the realtor screws up and said the other bid was 18 grand.

I watched him put a 1 in front of the six and say we're gonna be in the 17 thou range great you got it when will you start,

I did the whole job by myself he just came by to say hack it it's good enough!

He tells me he's gonna put me in a company truck, I'm driving a new iroc and my van was home !

He calls and says I got a truck for you come look at it!

I show up to a mr softee ice cream place trucks that cruise the street selling ice cream!
Another client I built a restaurant for!

He shows me a ford stepside like a 78, door missing but it's somewhere , no clutch runs like crap. Has a huge propane tank under it, all for 475 and I have to fix it and insure it.

That was pretty much the last straw with him, I showed up my last day and he's like I'll never get anyone to hire me driving my iroc,

I took him out to my van and showed him I had more tools than him, he was like how long did you have this! Before I started working for you!

I would of paid you more, sure you would of every time he threw me a bone giving me work he didn't think he could make money on I never once got what we agreed upon,
It was always in not paying 800 bucks when you finished it in 2 days. The reason was I had better tools !!

Once everyone found out I was on my own I got all his work in the end! But I did it all to begin with!

Sure if you think you will go out on your own get them hide them, I used mine as a wood working hobby.

But if your gonna stay employed buy the basics and get a toy! You only live for so long, live it while you can!
 

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The Dude
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2,019 Posts
right know work has a trailer of tools and between me and one of my coworkers we have a full set of tools that we bring ever day. there are a lot of times where me and the boos or me and a neuter coworker are sent to go do a different job or repair. and we just hop in my truck and go. my boss is rely good about replacing persal tools that are not basic hand tool ( unless he brakes the hand tool) that get broke or lost.
It's good to be able to split off like that ready to do a job without assistance. Your trade says general construction. I'm taking that to mean you do some of everything - lots of carpentry?

You have at LEAST a solid truck, and nice hand tools. What's your coworker have that you don't? Start with an 18v drill, circular saw, recip, and 12g 100' cord. You can do SO much with just that. You can get the good stuff and still be around $500 so far. Then add a framing gun, 100' poly hose, compressor. That'll set you back another 5-6 bones. Then add couple of trim guns (15 + 18 can do most everything) and some nice big tool boxes to keep your growing collection easily transportable. I get the wheel around ones for about $60 last I checked. There's another $300 or so - so maybe add in another bill or two for some other random things - like a really nice level, door knob jig, cheap kits like paint, drywall, or a step ladder, some sawhorses ...

Each time you're dropping about 5 bones. Each time you are also significantly impacting your ability to complete jobs without assistance.

If you spent $500 each time around alternating between Tool World and Bass Pro every other month - in a year, you'd have a serviceable shop, and plenty of toys!
 

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The Dude
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2,019 Posts
Yes I owned better tools than my boss, and a van but he never seen them till the last day I was sick of him taking pay away because he didn't bid quite as good as he should of!!

We were doing a bid for a real estate agent, we were at 6 grand and almost done with the bid when the realtor screws up and said the other bid was 18 grand.

I watched him put a 1 in front of the six and say we're gonna be in the 17 thou range great you got it when will you start,

I did the whole job by myself he just came by to say hack it it's good enough!

He tells me he's gonna put me in a company truck, I'm driving a new iroc and my van was home !

He calls and says I got a truck for you come look at it!

I show up to a mr softee ice cream place trucks that cruise the street selling ice cream!
Another client I built a restaurant for!

He shows me a ford stepside like a 78, door missing but it's somewhere , no clutch runs like crap. Has a huge propane tank under it, all for 475 and I have to fix it and insure it.

That was pretty much the last straw with him, I showed up my last day and he's like I'll never get anyone to hire me driving my iroc,

I took him out to my van and showed him I had more tools than him, he was like how long did you have this! Before I started working for you!

I would of paid you more, sure you would of every time he threw me a bone giving me work he didn't think he could make money on I never once got what we agreed upon,
It was always in not paying 800 bucks when you finished it in 2 days. The reason was I had better tools !!

Once everyone found out I was on my own I got all his work in the end! But I did it all to begin with!

Sure if you think you will go out on your own get them hide them, I used mine as a wood working hobby.

But if your gonna stay employed buy the basics and get a toy! You only live for so long, live it while you can!
Would have paid you more ... RIGHHHHTTTT!

"But you didn't. Remember that $800 I was supposed to get for that job and you only paid me $600 because it took me 2 days? It took me two days because of these tools - so you COULD have and SHOULD have and were SUPPOSED to pay me more - but you DIDN'T."

So you're supposed to insure a company truck? What a clown!

Yes, get them. I don't think I'd HIDE them, but that doesn't mean I'd advertise it.

An extra 10g he tacked on to his bid - more than doubling it, and he's still telling you to hack stuff and get out fast? Let me guess - he also used the "I'm not making any money on this job" line with you too?
 

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Do it right!
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329 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
smalpierre said:
It's good to be able to split off like that ready to do a job without assistance. Your trade says general construction. I'm taking that to mean you do some of everything - lots of carpentry?

You have at LEAST a solid truck, and nice hand tools. What's your coworker have that you don't? Start with an 18v drill, circular saw, recip, and 12g 100' cord. You can do SO much with just that. You can get the good stuff and still be around $500 so far. Then add a framing gun, 100' poly hose, compressor. That'll set you back another 5-6 bones. Then add couple of trim guns (15 + 18 can do most everything) and some nice big tool boxes to keep your growing collection easily transportable. I get the wheel around ones for about $60 last I checked. There's another $300 or so - so maybe add in another bill or two for some other random things - like a really nice level, door knob jig, cheap kits like paint, drywall, or a step ladder, some sawhorses ...

Each time you're dropping about 5 bones. Each time you are also significantly impacting your ability to complete jobs without assistance.

If you spent $500 each time around alternating between Tool World and Bass Pro every other month - in a year, you'd have a serviceable shop, and plenty of toys!
I have been doing this. But I can't bring my chop saw with me everyday or if its raining and I would like to get a Tabel saw this year but agan no way to carry it around with me.
 

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The Dude
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2,019 Posts
I have been doing this. But I can't bring my chop saw with me everyday or if its raining and I would like to get a Tabel saw this year but agan no way to carry it around with me.
Topper with a ladder rack might be nice :) The ones where you take off the tailgate and have a door in the back are nice - usually have boxes on the side instead of windows, and good locks.

What kind of truck are you in?
 
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