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Basic RC Tools

The Bare Minimum Needs for the RC Toolbox


Basic RC Tools: Screwdrivers, Hex Wrenches, Pliers, Glow Plug Tool

Basic RC Tools: Screwdrivers, Hex Wrenches, Pliers, Glow Plug Tool

© M. James
Everybody needs these basics. These common RC tools are must-haves for making basic adjustments and replacements of frequently worn-out parts. Most of the RC tools in this basic setup can be found at your local retail stores and hobby shops if you don't already have them in household tool box or workshop.

The Basic RC tools setup:

  • Tool Box
  • Assortment of small, precision screwdrivers
  • Standard and metric precision nut drivers
  • Assortment of hex wrenches (including metric) (also known as "the most essential RC tool")
  • Assortment of flat-head and Philips-head screwdrivers
  • Needlenose pliers

With this basic RC tools setup you should be able to do basic repairs, installation, and upgrades. Additionally, these days RC manufacturers add their own little tools such as a glow-plug wrench and combination tools along with the Ready-to-Run models and kits. With those supplied tools and the basic setup you should be able to keep your RC up and running barring any catastrophic mishaps or malfunctions.

RC Toolbox
First you need something to carry your tools in. Ideally you should get a tool box that has a removable tray so you can put all your big and bulky tools at the bottom and all your small precision tools and screw drivers on top. A tool box with multiple compartments help keep the small tools and extra parts like screws, washers, and extra glow plugs neatly organized.

A fishing tackle box, can serve as a suitable basic tool box as long as you get one that has plenty of room and can hold your larger, bulkier tools. There are also a variety of metal and plastic tool boxes and totes you can find anywhere home and automotive tools are sold that can serve you for many years. There will come a time when you will discover another tool that will make your repair and maintenance tasks easier so get an tool box that leaves plenty of room for additional tools.

Compare PricesProfessional Tool Box

Screwdrivers and Wrenches
Because the parts are much smaller than those found in the family car and household appliances you'll need to make sure you have the smaller precision tools for much of your repair and maintenance work. Having just one or two screwdrivers will suffice in a pinch, but having a wider variety of sizes and styles increases the chances that you'll have the right one for any type of screw or nut you encounter.

Compare PricesPrecision Screwdriver Sets
Compare Prices10 piece Screwdriver Sets
Compare PricesHex Key Wrench Set
Compare Prices20 piece SAE and Metric Stubby Wrench Set

Again, the size of RC vehicles and their components make needle nose pliers a better choice over standard pliers. It wouldn't hurt to have both a pair with teeth for gripping and a pair with smooth jaws that won't cut into delicate parts.

Compare PricesNeedle Nose Pliers

The Basic Travel Toolbox

Need the minimum of tools to carry with you to the track? Save space with compact and multipurpose tools. A pocket precision screwdriver with multiple bits, a regular screwdriver with bits, a needlenose multi-plier or Leatherman that has extras like a knife, wire cutters, ruler, pick, scissors, or screwdriver built-in, a set of folding hex wrenches, and a precision adjustable wrench minimize toolbox clutter and are usually sufficient for quick repairs and maintenance in the field.

You may already own most of these tools for working on the family car or for use around the house. They aren't exclusively RC tools. As you become more comfortable working with RCs or as you get more involved in the hobby you may find a use for even more common household tools as well as some RC-specific tools. That's when you'll want to expand on the basics with some of these Standard RC Tools.

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